I began recycling my makeup about three years ago, and as I’ve learned more and more about it, I continue to get more and more into it. There’s a few different ways to recycle which aren’t only good for the environment, but can do good for both yourself and for others.
When I first began my journey, it started with MAC and their recycling program called BACK TO MAC. I’ve always been a huge MAC fan. Over the past 10 years, the one product I have never been able to give up is their Studio Fix Powder. I also am a huge fan of their makeup brush cleaner. It’s one of the best brush cleaners I’ve found out there. I love them so much, they both made my All Time Favorites Beauty page.
The way MAC’s Recycling program works is this:
Bring in 6 used MAC containers, and get a free lipstick of your choice. I know, this seems like a lot. But I typically use 2-3 different MAC makeup products at a time, and I’ve literally collected over 10 high quality lipsticks for free.
Their recycling program is honestly how I get ALL of my lipsticks I’ll ever need. All you have to do is bring it in to them, and you’ll get to pick out a lipstick. You also don’t have to bring them in all at once, they’ll take a few at a time for you if needed.
The second program I love is called Wands for Wildlife. It’s super easy to do, and helps animals that have been rescued. Wands for Wildlife is a recycling program for your old & used mascara wands. They small bristles are great for removing fly eggs and larva from animals.
All you have to do is clean your used makeup wands with warm soap and water, then send them to the address below during the months of October and/or April with this Wands for Wildlife Recycle Form.
Address: Appalachian Wild, P.O. Box 1211, Skyland, NC, 28776
Have those beauty products that you just never got around to using? Project Beauty Share is an organization that provides new and/or gently-used beauty, hygiene, and cosmetic products to non-profit organizations helping women who are overcoming poverty, homelessness, abuse, etc. To figure out exactly what they accept as donations, click the link here. Once you are ready to send in, just mail to the following address: 2718 E. Sprague Ave. Spokane, WA, 99202.
Last, but not least, is TerraCycle. This one is one of my favorites, because it can help provide people with the most simplistic basic need – clean water. Let me explain.
TerraCycle is a program that partners up with brands to recycle used products. Though each program is different, a typical example would be providing a pound of waste in exchange for 100 TerraCycle points. Using these points allows donations to be made to any of their charities listed, or a charity of your own choice. My favorite charity to donate to is the charity providing fresh water to people who otherwise wouldn’t have access.
With just 6 points, you can provide clean drinking water for someone for an entire week. This is such an invaluable gift, and it’s so easy to help make a difference. You can read more about their points program here. Here are just a few brands that have partnerships with TerraCycle:
- Burt’s Bees
- Herbal Essence
- Gillette Razors
- Living Proof
- Newell Brands Home Fragrance Candles (Yankee Candle, Chesapeake Bay, etc)
- Rodan + Fields
how to go about it
These are a lot of different programs, and it can easily get overwhelming. The easiest way to do it is to pick one or two, and create separate bins to collect. For example, this is what my MAC makeup bin looks like:
I keep this in my bathroom cabinet, and simply place the makeup product in there when they’re all empty. It’s not something that can be done overnight, but by just implementing the strategy, you’ll be making a difference before you know it!
Another way to go about it is to suggest to a your monthly organization meeting to bring a specific brand to your next meetup! When you submit and donate, you’ll easily start to rack up those TerraCycle points or be able to provide a group of women with essential toiletries!
In conclusion, these small efforts you make will make a huge difference in other people’s lives. You’ll sleep well knowing you’ve done your part in showing the world what compassion and love looks like.
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