Thanks to the wider conversation about plastic waste, the beauty industry’s environmental impact has been called into question over the past few years. While excessive packaging is obvious to spot and tangibly changed, what about the ingredients hiding in the products in your bathroom?
Case in point: palm oil. In a new BBC Three documentary, “Unmasked: Makeup’s Big Secret,” that aired earlier this month, Emmy Burbidge, a makeup artist from southwest England, travels to Papua New Guinea to see the damage done by this ingredient.
While it’s widely documented that palm oil is terrible news for the planet, less known is that it’s used in a whopping 70% of cosmetic products, primarily as an emulsifier and surfactant.
The beauty industry therefore has a part to play in the deforestation caused by palm oil production that’s said to have destroyed 8% of the world’s forests between 1990 and 2008.
Watch “Unmasked: Makeup’s Big Secret” above and read the story at Refinery29.
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