We all love glitter... that's why you are on this website - but we know that most of the glitter around is the dreaded plastic variety. So, why is that a problem? Why should you stop buying plastic glitter? This article will take you through the twists and turns of the last few months... and hopefully help you make the switch from plastic glitter to eco glitter.
Over recent months, the Eco Glitter Fun team have been overjoyed by the media coverage of ‘micro plastics and single use plastics’, not to mention the most recent pledge from Theresa May to ‘eliminate UK’s plastic waste by 2042’. This awareness has led to more and more of you glitter lovers making the switch from plastic glitter to biodegradable eco glitter. Our happiness was then pushed to the limit when our co-founder, Sophie Awdry, received a personal note from Sir David Attenborough!
The hand-written note reads,
“Dear Sophie, good luck with your project, the last programme in the Blue Planet II series, draws attention to the plastic problem in the oceans. Best wishes, David Attenborough”
Eeeek… Our dreams had literally come true. Sir David Attenborough wishing us luck with our business. The media awareness, the coverage, the love from our new customers plus a note from Sir David Attenborough… wow… we are truly humbled and honoured to be able to do our bit towards educating and reducing plastic usage.
Tiny plastics, Big articles, Massive awareness
Speaking to Sophie in November 2017, BBC Newsbeat highlighted the popularity of plastic glitter use and the indefinite ban on microbeads due to come in to force in 2018. Since discovering the harmful effect plastic glitter imposes on the environment, co-founders Sophie and Noemi Lamanna founded Eco Glitter Fun. Our sole purpose is to bring awareness to micro plastics in a fun and unique way. Our eco-friendly biodegradable glitter allows everyone to enjoy the sparkles, guilt free. The success of our product continues to grow as we were recently featured in the Huffington Post’s ‘Five Eco-Friendly Beauty Products that aren’t made from plastic’ (November 2017), alongside high street chain, Lush - it feels great to be recognised alongside such beauty giants.
In December 2017, the Sunday Times featured biodegradable glitter in response to Tops Day Nurseries decision to ban glitter from their nurseries altogether. Parents across their sites reported the importance of being eco-friendly – and what better way to educate people on environmentalism than to start at a young age? Our eco glitter is suitable for children’s use on faces and in their artwork - so no need to ban the sparkles, just move to an eco-friendlier option!
The recent media coverage highlighted the general lack of awareness that a) glitter is mostly plastic and b) there are biodegradable options out there. Some scientists, quoted in the articles, believed that glitter should be banned altogether! Speaking to the Independent in November 2017, Professor Trisia Farrelly commented on increasingly ‘hidden’ glitters in products like shower gels and how it is becoming impossible for consumers to avoid it. We totally agree – things need to change. Something that’s on your body for a few hours shouldn’t then cause havoc in our eco system for hundreds of years. That’s where our biodegradable eco glitter comes in. No ban, just swap to eco friendlier options.
To educate and spread the work we are partnering with many different organisations and movements, in particular Plastic Oceans Foundation, an organisation and registered charity dedicated to challenging the world’s attitude to plastic consumption. Sophie states: "We're very passionate about plastic pollution so when we found out about an alternative glitter we wanted to tell the world about it. Donating to Plastic Oceans Foundation is another way that we, as a company, can help fight the great fight".
We are also a member of the Plastic Pollution Coalition; a growing global alliance of individuals, organisations, businesses, and policymakers working toward a world free of plastic pollution and its toxic impacts on humans, animals, waterways and oceans, and the environment. In light of the recent vow from the UK’s Prime Minister, Theresa May, on eliminating the UK’s plastic waste by 2042, we are excited and motivated about what changes are on the horizon. We do agree with WWF Chief Executive Tanya Steele, quoted in The Independent article recently, who welcomes any step to reduce plastic waste, but that if we do want to solve the problem we need to think bigger and move towards an end to single-use plastics.
Plastic Glitter Vs Eco Glitter
So, what’s the difference and why would anyone want to swap to eco glitter?
Plastic glitter is a form of ‘microplastic’ and it’s also ‘single use’ plastic ie: it will not be recycled. They are tiny bits of plastics below a certain size and are commonly found in exfoliating scrubs, cleansers and toothpaste. The body of research of the effect of micro plastics upon marine life continues to grow, with many species confirmed as ingesting it; of course, this has far reaching consequences for both aquatic life and the wider food chain within which they sit. It’s a tough pill to swallow, but we must acknowledge the fact that the sparkly plastic glitter which we have loved for years, is actually dulling the shine in our oceans.
Our eco glitter is made of 90% biodegradable cellulose film. Unlike plastic glitter which takes hundreds of years to breakdown and is most likely to end up in the ocean. Eco Glitter is designed to be metabolised by microorganisms in the sewage system, so very little, if any, will end up in the ocean. These microorganisms are also present in the ocean and in soil, and the glitter is consumed over several months. Teaming up with ‘Green Matters’, we created the following video to explain our eco-friendly glitter. Update to video details = 90% biodegradable cellulose film.
The video has attracted over 288,000 views on Facebook, with Green Matters currently reaching a population of over 987,000 on the social media platform. The numbers highlight an increasing move towards sustainable products and point towards the hot topic that the impact of micro plastics is growing to be. Another film to look out for is ‘Film The Change’, a group of eco warrior film makers who we worked with earlier this year.
Make 2018 the Year of Guilt Free Sparkles for all
As 2018 descends and brings with it microbeads legislation and those dreaded New Year’s Resolutions, why not pledge to be more sparkly and look after the environment by swapping your plastic glitter for our Eco friendly, Ocean loving biodegradable eco glitter!
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