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5 products you’ll find in our beauty bag this Plastic Free July

Photography By Michael Comninus for RIISE
Published 06.07.22

This Plastic Free July, we're looking at our bathroom shelves and asking: what really deserves a place here?

In 2018, the US alone produced almost 7.9 billion units of rigid plastic just for beauty and personal care products – the kind of statistic that keeps us up at night. 

While it’s hard to keep plastic out of our lives altogether, Plastic Free July is the perfect time to start somewhere. And we’re doing so by taking aim at our bathrooms. If you’re keen to do the same, here are our favourite plastic-free beauty products to kickstart your journey this July.

Elizabeth Roberts, Deputy CEO

“Bare-faced or full glam, the perfect lipstick always provides the finishing touches before you step out of the house. Right now, Axiology’s Nude Plum Balmie, which can be used for the lips, cheeks and eyes, is my favourite. Not only does it get a huge tick for being zero waste, but it’s the perfect colour; not too berry or too brown. It’s formulated with a skin-loving blend of elderberry, hemp and plum oil which is great for my sensitive, combination skin which is particularly angsty at the moment with the cold snap in Sydney.” 

Insider tip: while it has a really lovely matte finish, I personally like popping lip balm underneath to give it some shine for everyday wear. It’s the perfect beauty bag addition. 

Amy McCulloch, Head of TV Development

Why did we ever stop using a solid bar of soap? It’s probably the most practical item I’ve added back into my everyday routine. Of course, some people have shunned soap for legitimate reasons like dry or sensitive skin, or because their Grandma’s rose-scented variety has left them scarred. But New Zealand beauty brand Sphaera’s Kukui and White Kaolin Clay Soap bar is divine. It has a rich, creamy texture that feels luxurious and high quality and is not drying at all. It’s created specifically for sensitive skin and is suitable for your face, hands and body (making it great for travel).” 

Insider tip: it’s a nice big cube which feels great in your hand for washing, but my little hack is to slice it into two pieces – one for the shower and one for your travel kit.


Olivia Lord, Art Director

I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect sunscreen to add to my beauty collection for ages; one that’s non-greasy and can cope with my oily, acne-prone skin and one that doesn’t harm the reef. Sun Juju’s Hydrating Reef Safe SPF50 ticks both boxes, plus it features Kakadu Plum extract which plumps and hydrates my skin (and works well as a makeup base).”

Insider tip: whenever I apply this sunscreen, I love to take the time to slow down and give my face a little massage. 

Kiara Cengic, Social Media Assistant

We all want glowy, dewy skin. Highlighters are meant to mimic the way natural light catches and reflects off the high points of your face – in other words, it makes you look fresh and alive. My go-to is Flavedo & Albedo’s High Glow (in Champagne) which I wear during the day on my cheeks on bare skin for a natural, undone look and at night over makeup on my eyelids and inner corner of my eyes. The texture is nice and creamy and it’s formulated with vitamin rich moisturisers so it feels like it melts into my skin. It’s perfect to keep in my handbag or travel kit for a pick-me-up if I’m feeling a little dull throughout the day.”

Insider tip: it’s super pigmented and a little bit goes a long way. You only need a small amount to make yourself glow – so the pot will last a lot longer than you think! 


Courtney Kruk, Acting Editor in Chief

“Shampoo bottles can be one of the trickiest plastic products to ditch, as it’s hard to find a plastic-free alternative that works. But, Sphaera’s Balance + Volume Shampoo Bar actually makes my hair look and feel good after using it.

“You know when you try to use a new shampoo and you wake up the next day and your hair just doesn’t sit or feel right? That hasn’t been my experience with Sphaera – I have oily and flat hair and this bar has been great for volume. It also contains ingredients that are good for deep cleansing and microexfoliation, like activated charcoal and peppermint oil. Plus, it’s a great travel companion as it’s small and compact.”

Insider tip: thoroughly wet your hair first. Then run the bar from your hairline down to the nape of your neck a few times. Once you’ve sort of coated your hair with the bar, lather it with your fingers. (It’s simpler than it sounds!)


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