Is LUSH Actually Ethical & Sustainable or Just Greenwashing? — The Honest Consumer

Is LUSH Actually Ethical & Sustainable or Just Greenwashing? — The Honest Consumer

Perhaps it’s time to ditch the bath bomb soak and mellow in the tub with candles, rose petals, and soft music instead.

Low Waste Packaging

When it comes to packaging, or lack thereof, LUSH is a winner. They offer a lot of naked soap bars, plastic free bath bombs, and zero waste shampoo bars, which means not only zero plastic, but zero packaging. Most of the packaging they do use is either recyclable, biodegradable, or returnable.

The latter is the case for their black pots, which can be returned to stores. These are then sent for recycled to be mixed with post-consumer plastic to make new pots, keeping this part of their manufacturing process in a closed loop.

Furthermore, wherever possible, there factories are powered by renewable energy and they recycled production waste.

Are LUSH Products Ethically Made?

LUSH’s headquarters are in England, with manufacturers located in Canada, Germany, and Australia. Sixty seven percent of their supply chain is from direct relationships with manufacturers and growers.

They source globally but also locally and have taken steps to ensure they understand their supply chain, launching investigative trips to learn more about it.

When they discovered links to child labor in Indian mines sourcing natural mica, they stopped using the ingredient and switched to a synthetic alternative.

Whil LUSH has made many grand gestures – like the above mining example, as well as fighting animal cruelty and closing down stores in support of a global climate strike – they seem to flounder closer to home: in their own factories and stores.

There have been instances of complaints of poor working conditions in a factory in Australia where workers reported injuries due to physically demanding work, lack of proper equipment, sexual harassment, and unrealistic output, placing LUSH in the realm of mass production and fast consumerism, trying to make as much product as fast as possible, regardless of how this affects workers’ health and safety not to mention the environmental impact.

There have even been attempts to stop workers from unionizing in Canada. It has also been difficult for LUSH employees to become full-time which precludes them from receiving benefits.

Third Party Certifications

As a vegetarian brand, LUSH is registered with the Vegetarian Society, and vegan products are approved by The Vegan Society. However, in order to keep their supply chain and their ingredients transparent, they tend to draw up their own policies.

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