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Brief Published: 23 Sep 2015

Bio Microbeads: Beauty Game Changer?

Canadian Biotech company TerraVerdae has developed a sustain

Canadian biotech company TerraVerdae has developed a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to the polluting plastic microbeads still used in many personal care products.

TerraVerdae’s microspheres are made from non-GMO PHA-based biomaterial. The particles come in a range of sizes in both coarse and smooth finishes, and are transparent in appearance – providing the flexibility to work across a range of personal care products. Most importantly, they comply with industry standards on degradation for marine ecosystems. 

Non-biodegradable polyethylene microbeads – commonly used in products such as scrubs, toothpastes and cleansing products – have become the bane of the personal care industry. Washed into the sewer system and then into our waterways, microbeads are ingested or absorbed by marine life, resulting in the plastic particles entering the food chain.    

Many personal care brands have already eliminated or are committed to removing the plastic microbeads from their products. However, this is becoming a business imperative: an increasing number of US states are banning the plastic beads, while a Bill waiting to be passed would ban all plastic microbead products from being sold in the US from 2018.

For more on sustainable alternatives to common beauty ingredients, see Natural, Ethical Sun Protection. Take a look at Natural & Organic Products Asia, Gen Y: Beauty Meets Wellbeing and Rethinking Beauty: Sustainable Futures for more on eco beauty trends. For more on eco-friendly alternatives to plastic, see Edible Water Bottle, KFC Takes Edible Packaging Mainstream and Carlsberg’s Sustainable Bottle.