With Valentine’s Day approaching, what are expert bloggers’ favourite Fairtrade options for beauty products?
“My favourite Fairtrade beauty product is Odylique’s Coconut Candy Scrub. It is a real treat for any skin type, including sensitive ones. Gently massage it into damp skin or apply to dry skin for extra exfoliation. It will leave skin feeling smooth, hydrated and really pampered. It smells amazing too.”
Odylique, which until recently was named Essential Care, is a family-run company set up by 2003 and run by Margaret Weeds and daughter Abi. In 2009 it became the first UK brand to be certified by both organic and Fairtrade Foundation standards for its ‘2 in 1 Purifying Mint Mask’. They also offer certified Fairtrade eyeliner and lip sticks.
Available from www.odylique.com
Blogger, The Eco Edit
“Natalie Bond Organics are a beautiful range of skin care products and candles, hand created in small batches using only organic, raw plant ingredients. Made and distributed from a workshop on the edge of the Peak district in England, the husband and wife team behind the brand are passionate about natural skincare and ethics, none of the products are tested on animals and majority of them are vegan. They also donate a percentage of profits to support World Vision, who help children in some of the poorest communities in the world.
“These Himalayan pink salts with Rose Geranium and Patchouli are the ultimate indulgence, they are packed with skin loving minerals and calming essential oils for a therapeutic soak – the perfect way to relax after a long day, or as a precursor to a romantic evening.”
Available from www.gatherandsee.com
Blogger, What Emma Did
“For women, my favourite Fairtrade beauty product would have to be from the selection of skin loving beauty treats from Neal’s Yard, due to the fact this brand have the belief that beauty should be natural and not synthetic. The products from this brand are seen as ‘remedies’, so not only contain ethical and natural ingredients, but are made with each individual’s skincare concerns in mind. My ultimate favourite is Rehydrating Rose Daily Moisture Cream, £25, which is full of anti-oxidants and soothing properties for everyday moisture and radiance. Plus it smells divine.
“Other brands to look at for Fairtrade and ethical beauty is Lush, The Body Shop, and L’Occitane, which are easily available across department stores and independent shops as well as online.”
Blogger, Lovely Witches
“Lush is always my first choice to buy ethical and Fairtrade beauty. My favourite product right now is the Bubblegum Lip Scrub, a sugary, edible scrub that exfoliates your lips to make them super smooth and soft. It’s a sweet treat to keep lips in tip top shape through the colder months, plus it really tastes like bubblegum. Lush also have a whole range of divine Valentine’s Day gifts, from perfume to lip gloss, so you’ll be spoilt for choice for ethical and vegan beauty.”
Blogger, The Blushing Giraffe
“When it comes to Fairtrade beauty, the first word that comes to mind is ‘Lush’.
“Not only do Lush provide fresh and handmade products, they’re an ethical company who support many causes and remain true to their roots. I can’t think of anybody who would be disappointed with receiving a Lush bag for Valentine’s Day, which happen to contain some fantastic Fairtrade ingredients.
“If you fancy treating your loved one to a soak in the tub, go for the ‘Lover Lamp Bath Bomb’ which contains Fairtrade organic cocoa butter. Not only will the bathroom smell like orange and vanilla, but once the bath bomb starts dissolving, you are left with three large red hearts of cocoa butter to soften and moisturise the skin. Plus the tiny red hearts on the outside make it irresistible for valentines, don’t you think?”
There is ever more demand for ‘ethical’ jewellery in the UK, and Fairtrade gold is now widely available.
Becoming Fairtrade certified helps miners formalise and improve their mining and business practices. It ensures strict standards are upheld on working conditions, health and safety, handling chemicals, women’s rights, child labour and protection of the environment. Miners receive a guaranteed Fairtrade minimum price and premium to invest in improving their business or in community projects such as education, clean water and healthcare.
There are around 50 traders of Fairtrade gold and the sole importer of Fairtrade gold into the UK jewellery market, Cred, has reported a 332% increase in sales during 2015 against those in 2014. Whereas 15kg of Fairtrade gold was imported in 2014, last year saw that figure rise to 50kg – enough to produce around 16,600 wedding rings.
In terms of co-operative choices for where to buy ethical jewellery, Michael Jones Jewellery is a workers’ co-operative based at two locations in Northampton, with another in Banbury. The co-op has been in business since 1919 and source their jewellery from the UK and across the globe. If you’re not in the area then there’s also a webstore with special online offers on rings, bracelets. watches, necklaces and more.
The Co-operative Florist has a wide range of bouquets and bunches of flowers available, and there is delivery available across the Midlands.
The Fairtrade Foundation also works with almost 50,000 flower workers and eight national retailers in the UK, listed here.
Other places to check:
- Fairtrader is a community co-op based in West Yorkshire offering a wide range of Valentine’s Day gift ideas. Their online shop includes everything from Fruity Tipples and beauty products, to purses, wallets and things for the home. The co-op partners with small and sustainable suppliers to help communities in developing countries.
- Ethical Superstore is another online shop fully stocked with gifts. The Bluebeard’s Revenge Perfect Man set is cruelty free, paraben free, vegan and made in the UK. Alternatively, there are chocolates from Montezuma’s.
- You can ensure that you buy clothes made from Fairtrade cotton by checking the Fairtrade Foundation website. The Fairtrade mark guarantees that farmers in places like India, Kyrgyzstan and West Africa are paid a fair and stable price for their cotton. You can find out more here.
- Traidcraft aims to fight poverty through trade. It’s formed of a trading company and charity working together, and their online shop has everything from bags to jewellery and accessories.
- For a comprehensive guide of how to buy Fairtrade in the UK, take a look at the National Fairtrade Purchasing Guide.