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Conscious beauty: Kind to you & the planet

08 Jul 2022 • 4 min read


More and more of us are trying to juggle living our best life with caring for the planet – and that concern naturally extends to our beloved beauty products.

We get it. And that’s why we want to help the transition run nice and smoothly.

As a brand, we are making a stand to move towards cleaner and more conscious beauty. Let us give you the low-down on everything conscious in beauty, and help you find products that are both kind to you and kind to the planet.

We have pioneered the way when it comes to being mindful of the products we consume and apply to our bodies. We don’t just want to be ‘good for you’, but ‘good for our planet’ too.

But that’s not all, we also understand that you want to know what goes into your beauty products and how they are made, so we work hard to ensure all of our ranges are made from simple, natural ingredients.

In return for using Mother Nature’s bounty, we want to help look after our environment too.

From waste and energy to the products we sell and the suppliers we work with, we want to make our impact on the planet as small as possible.

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What is conscious beauty?

Conscious means ‘to have knowledge of something'. In our modern world, we consume so much without really knowing the impact it may be having on the environment and creatures we share this Earth with.  

Consciousness is also making sure you are doing good for you and the planet – because beauty doesn’t have to cost the earth.

Learning about the potential harm your average shampoo or face cream could cause to our planet and other animals is essential. Think of it as a wake-up call, and the fuel you need to swap to kinder and more conscious beauty products.

This way, you get a double dose of feel-good: all the pampering and self-love, as well as knowing you are shopping responsibly.

We get that it can seem a little overwhelming to know what’s best to do, so here are the basics to look out for when shopping for conscious beauty.

Zero waste

Because the land is already full Zero waste means just that, no waste! Over 80 billion shampoo and conditioner bottles are thrown away in the UK every year.

We could help dispose of this plastic waste epidemic by choosing zero waste products where we can.

Try making the following swaps:

Welcome to the zero waste world

What are your thoughts on zero waste beauty? Are you embracing it? Is it something you’re becoming increasingly conscious of? Or maybe you want to find out more about it?


Because once is not enough Another way to reduce excess waste is to buy products with packaging that’s compostable, refillable, made from recycled materials or easily recyclable, like the products in our environmentally conscious packaging and sustainable range.

Did you know? 64% of consumers are actively looking for beauty products with recyclable packaging.

17 sustainable beauty swaps

If you’re eco-conscious and looking to make some sustainable swaps in your beauty routine, you’re in the right spot.

Waterless products

Because all water is precious

Less water in products and the less water needed to use them means more water for living.

The UN has predicted that demand for water could outstrip supply soon.

Conscious beauty brands like Earth kindTrue Skincare and our very own CBD Muscle Balm Ultra are swapping water for concentrated natural oils and concentrated botanicals. 

The waterless skincare & beauty trend

Waterless skin care and waterless beauty is creating ripples within the global skincare and beauty industry, and has done for a while now.


Because all life is beautiful

Animal testing is so last century… The thing is, we don’t need to test on animals to enjoy our favourite beauty products.

Here at H&B, we are against animal testing and are proud to offer a variety of 100% vegan ranges. The animals say thank you! 

We know that if you don’t want to eat animal products, then you probably don’t want to use anything that contains them either. That’s why we’ve sourced an extensive range of vegan-friendly (and animal-friendly) beauty products from like-minded brands.

The ultimate guide to vegan beauty

In this article we provide you with an all-you-need-to-know guide to vegan skincare and beauty.

Caring for our oceans

We are proud to be the first national retailer to ensure all of our products are free from plastic microbeads. These are the tiny plastic balls used as exfoliators in some beauty products, such as face and body scrubs.

However, at less than 5mm wide, they are small enough to pass through sewer water filters and end up in the sea. Here, they are at risk of harming sea creatures and ending up in the food chain.

But there’s more. This year, we also stopped selling chemical sunscreens and released our own reef-friendly range of mineral sunscreen.

Against Animal Testing

You can have peace of mind when choosing your natural beauty products. Here are just some of our Leaping Bunny brands:

We vow to continue to lead the way when it comes to promoting natural beauty products.

Natural oils



This is a natural alternative to Retinol, perfect to support the production of collagen. It’s suitable for all skin types, dry, sensitive, oily and combination.


Rosehip Oil

Used to hydrate the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines. Also helps reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation.


Argan Oil

Contains essential fatty acids and vitamin E. It helps to repair damaged hair and gives your locks an all-over glossy shine.


Jojoba Oil

Jojoba oil is a liquid wax used to nourish dry skin. It mimics sebum (our skin’s naturally occurring oil) and tricks our skin into producing less.

Natural ingredients


Cocoa butter

A rich emollient containing antioxidants, which can help fight free radical damage. Using a cocoa butter moisturiser can also reduce the appearance of blemishes.


Manuka honey

Has been celebrated by the Maoris for centuries thanks to its cleansing properties, which also make it a great natural skincare treatment.


Pink Himalayan sea salt

Makes an effective exfoliator when mixed with coconut oil. It is also used as a bath soak for dry skin conditions.


Ginkgo biloba

Is believed to help fight spot-causing bacteria. The tree extract has been used for hundreds of years for its antimicrobial properties.



A rich source of regenerating ferric acid, which has soothing and cleansing properties, beneficial to spot-prone skin.


Blue algae

A natural source of retinoic acid – a form of vitamin A – which contributes to reducing the appearance of fine lines and dark spots.


Magnesium chloride

May help soothe skin concerns and sensitivity, which is why it’s often found in bath salts and skin lotions. It is also believed to help reduce spots.

Natural extracts


Hyaluronic acid

Helps to rehydrate skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines when used in skin creams and serums by attracting over 1000 times its weight in water.


Bee venom

Helps to promote healthy blood flow in the skin and the synthesis of elastin and collagen to promote youthful skin.


Vitamin C

Aka ascorbic acid, fights free radicals as well as helps to shield the skin from the effects of pollution and sun damage, as well as helps to fade the appearance of pigmentation.



(Coenzyme Q-10) is a powerful antioxidant that helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and speeds up skin cell regeneration / repair.


Willow Bark

Provides gentle exfoliation for more radiant skin. Helps improve the appearance of blemishes and excess oil from the skin.

Why you can trust us to meet your conscious beauty requirements

We like to think ahead at H&B. Selling health and wellness products that don’t cost the Earth is our number one priority, and it always has been. Take a look at some of our landmarks:

2009 – We chose not to use SLS, SLES and Parabens in our Beauty Products

2010 – Plastic bags banned in all stores

2013 – Microplastic Ban ahead of the EU Cosmetics Regulations

2016 – All products only contain sustainable palm oil (RSPO certified)

2019 – Wipes banned from all stores

2019 – Zero waste beauty range launched

2021 – Single use sheet masks ban

2022 – Mineral sunscreen launched

And, we choose to say no to:

  • Microplastics
  • Unsustainable palm oil
  • Artificial colours or flavours in Holland & Barrett products ever
  • Pesticides
  • Prohibited substances as per WADA
  • Over 240 ingredients that will never appear in any of our products and this list continues to grow!

The final say

That’s why you can trust us to stock the best conscious beauty products because we have always believed in making bold choices to help protect our planet while helping you feel and look your best.

Last updated: 8 July 2022

The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.

Author: Manisha TaggarSenior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: May 2019

BSc Hons in Pharmaceutical & Cosmetic Science

Manisha started her career at a Cosmetics distributor as a Regulatory Technologist followed by a Regulatory Affairs Officer, ensuring the regulatory compliance of cosmetic products from colour cosmetics to skincare.

After 3 and half years in this role, Manisha joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.

Manisha specialises in Cosmetic products, both own-label and branded lines, ensuring that these products and all relating marketing material comply to the EU Cosmetics Regulation.

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