Pioneers of Circular Skincare
In a world where new beauty brands emerge seemingly every week, it's disheartening to witness the lack of consideration many of them give to their environmental impact. From ingredient sourcing to packaging, these crucial aspects are often overlooked. The question remains: Why aren't more brands prioritizing sustainability in their practices?
Within the realm of beauty, there exists a multitude of avenues for brands to embrace sustainability. We witness the transformative power in the practices of remarkable brands like Dew Mighty, with their ingenious waterless serum bar, Kjaer Weis, offering refillable makeup palettes, and Āthr Beauty, crafting zero-waste makeup palettes. Undoubtedly, achieving zero-waste packaging stands as a paramount objective. However, when contemplating the broader landscape, we must acknowledge that it is not the sole target to strive for.
Drawing inspiration from the food industry, a profound truth emerges. Even if we were to eliminate all packaging in the realm of food, vast quantities of wasted food would persist. Astonishingly, the United States discards a staggering 108 billion pounds of food annually, equating to a staggering $161 billion in wasted resources each year. So, what lies at the heart of the solution?
Enter UpCircle Beauty.
As their name suggests, UpCircle Beauty embodies the essence of "upcycling." This practice breathes new life into discarded objects or materials, elevating them into creations of superior quality or value compared to their original form. In the case of UpCircle Beauty, they have honed their focus on revitalizing food and beverage byproducts, granting them a newfound purpose by incorporating them into their exquisite range of skincare offerings.
How it Started
Let's rewind to the beginning, back in 2015, in the vibrant city of London. Siblings Anna and William embarked on their usual morning routine, grabbing coffee at their beloved café before heading to work. As they sipped their drinks, they couldn't help but notice the staggering amount of coffee grounds being discarded by the café through a third-party service. Intrigued, they discovered that despite the cost incurred by the café, these grounds ultimately ended up in landfills.
This revelation sparked a brilliant idea within Anna and William. They pondered the immense volume of coffee grounds discarded by all the coffee shops across London. Research further revealed the staggering statistic that 500,000 tonnes of coffee grounds find their way to UK landfills annually. The situation in the US was even more significant.
With a shared sense of urgency and a passion for sustainability, Anna and William resolved to take action. They aimed to intercept the cycle by collecting used coffee grounds from cafés and transforming them into skincare treasures. Combining Anna's gift for storytelling and William's financial acumen, UpCircle Beauty emerged as a beacon of innovative and eco-friendly skincare. Their journey began, fuelled by a determination to reshape the industry and pave the way for a brighter, more sustainable future.
A third of all food in the world is wasted. UpCircle Beauty's formulations contain byproducts from the food and beverage industries, including coffee, brewed chai tea spices, fruit stones, and salvaged fruit waters from the juice industry.
UpCircle Beauty started by up-cycling used coffee grounds into a small range of products. They now have seven coffee-based skincare products.
Coffee Body Scrub with Peppermint
Coffee Body Scrub with Lemongrass
Eye Cream with Maple and Coffee
Floral Coffee Face Scrub
Herbal Coffee Face Scrub
Citrus Coffee Face Scrub
Organic Face Serum with Coffee Oil
Just seven years later, the company now has a solid range of skincare products that include other byproducts from the food and beverage industry.
The UpCircle Beauty brand has quickly become a cult favorite for its sustainable and ethical stance and simple and affordable skincare. Some of their best-sellers include:
Cleansing Face Balm with Apricot Powder: A true gem in the realm of skincare. This extraordinary cleanser harnesses the power of rescued apricot stones, meticulously milled into a fine powder, alongside a carefully curated selection of naturally-derived ingredients.
At the forefront, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil takes the stage, brimming with Vitamin E and its remarkable hydration and antioxidant properties. Joining the ensemble is Hippophae Rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Fruit Oil, renowned for its hydrating prowess, healing properties, and ability to stimulate collagen production.
But let us not forget the star of the show—the apricot kernels. Boasting over 50% oil content, they are a wellspring of oleic and linoleic acids, renowned for their unparalleled hydrating qualities.
Prepare to be enveloped in sheer opulence as the balm's luscious and luxurious texture glides effortlessly, embracing your skin. Effortlessly, it emulsifies makeup and sweeps away debris, unveiling a refreshed canvas, all without the slightest hint of dryness.
Hydrating Face Serum infused with Coffee Oil: This beloved best-seller boasts the hydrating prowess of coffee seed oil, rich in linoleic acid while harnessing its detoxifying properties for reduced inflammation and a brighter complexion.
Joining this powerhouse blend is the collagen-boosting Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil, aiding in skin brightening and hydration. For skin clearing, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Seed Oil, abundant in Vitamin A, takes center stage, accompanied by antioxidant-rich Vitamin E to protect against signs of aging.
This award-winning serum is celebrated for its lightweight texture, suitable for all skin types. It's a versatile elixir that extends its benefits beyond the face—try it on your hair or beard for a nourishing and hydrating leave-in treatment.
Face Moisturizer with Argan Powder: Crafted using rescued argan shells sourced from the argan oil industry, this moisturizer showcases the incredible potential of upcycled ingredients.
Derived from the fruit pips of Moroccan argan trees, argan oil is renowned for its abundance of antioxidants and fatty acids. Its anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties have made it a sought-after ingredient in both hair and skincare routines.
Unveil the protective powers of antioxidant-rich Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, shielding your skin from external elements and free radical damage. Rejuvenate with Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Blood Orange) Peel Oil, boosting collagen production and fortifying skin resilience. Witness the healing and cell-repairing prowess of Frankincense oil, while relishing the presence of finely-milled argan shell—the heart of this exquisite moisturizer.
With the Face Moisturizer with Argan Powder, UpCircle Beauty invites you to embark on a journey where sustainability and skincare intertwine, nourishing your skin and celebrating the remarkable potential of upcycled ingredients.
Face Toner with Mandarin and Chamomile: An honorable mention in their stellar lineup. This extraordinary toner harnesses the power of salvaged fruit water, a testament to their commitment to sustainability and addressing the beauty industry's water waste issue.
UpCircle Beauty's face toner offers an innovative solution to the world's water scarcity problem. As a waterless product, it reduces the strain on precious water resources while maintaining its efficacy and refreshing properties.
But the advantages don't end there. The use of fruit water brings forth a wealth of minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and functional actives that bestow remarkable benefits upon the skin. Mandarin, for instance, showcases its anti-inflammatory prowess, brightening properties, and circulation-boosting effects, leaving you with a radiant and revitalized complexion.
Building upon its humble beginnings of rescuing used coffee grounds, UpCircle Beauty has swiftly expanded their mission. Now, they proudly recover not just one, but ten diverse byproducts from the food and beverage industry. Their unwavering commitment to sustainability fuels their ambition to continually broaden their sourcing and skincare menu, with grand plans to incorporate even more remarkable byproducts in the near future. The journey towards a more conscious and resourceful skincare experience has only just begun for UpCircle Beauty.
Not Just Skincare
Beyond their renowned skincare cult classics, UpCircle Beauty has embarked on an exciting expansion journey. Their range now encompasses a diverse array of reusable and non-disposable bathroom essentials, revolutionizing sustainable living beyond skin care. From innovative and eco-friendly bathroom items to thoughtfully crafted products, UpCircle Beauty continues to inspire and empower conscious consumers in their quest for a greener and more sustainable lifestyle.
Plastic-Free Safety Razor: 100% chrome.
Hemp and Cotton Makeup Rounds: 70% hemp, 30% cotton.
Tube Squeezer: 100% metal alloy.
Muslin Cloths: handmade by a woman operative in India.
Bamboo Cotton Buds: sustainable bamboo, recycled paper box.
Cotton Wash Bag: 100% fair trade cotton.
Drawstring Bag: 100% fair trade cotton.
Accessible to All
UpCircle Beauty defies the norm when it comes to unique skincare and wellness brands. While many would assume such brands to be expensive or exclusive, UpCircle Beauty shatters these expectations. Led by Anna's unwavering dedication, they strive to maintain a high-quality brand with strong values and ethics that are accessible and affordable to the masses. After all, what's the point of making a difference in the world if only the affluent can experience it?
With UpCircle's price range, affordability takes center stage. Their product offerings span from $9 USD for face and body bar cleansers to $30 USD for their luxurious body cream. However, the majority of their exceptional products can be found around the $20 USD mark. This commitment to reasonable pricing ensures that UpCircle's transformative skincare experience is within reach for a wider audience, allowing everyone to embark on their sustainable and affordable beauty journey.
Keeping it Simple
UpCircle Beauty is dedicated to making their products accessible to a wide range of individuals. Their formulations are carefully crafted to be effective for all skin types, ensuring inclusivity in their skincare solutions. They pride themselves on utilizing high-quality organic and naturally-derived ingredients, which are sourced sustainably and ethically.
These thoughtfully chosen ingredients not only provide gentle care for sensitive skin but also deliver impressive results for stubborn skin concerns. With proven efficacy, UpCircle Beauty empowers everyone to experience the transformative power of their skincare line, embracing a sustainable and effective approach to skincare for all.
With an unwavering commitment to environmental preservation, UpCircle Beauty takes proactive steps to minimize its ecological footprint. Their dedication is reflected in their packaging choices, as 99% of it is plastic-free. Embracing sustainability, most products are housed in glass bottles or jars adorned with aluminum lids. While they acknowledge the presence of plastic in the dropper or sprayer lids for serums and toner, this decision was made to ensure optimal product functionality.
To encourage a plastic-free journey, UpCircle Beauty offers a sustainable solution. Upon receiving their first bottle with the dropper or sprayer, customers can keep the mechanism and opt for subsequent purchases that come with aluminum lids only. From that point forward, all future purchases remain entirely plastic-free.
Even the product boxes align with their eco-conscious ethos, crafted from recyclable cardboard. UpCircle Beauty ensures that every aspect of its packaging is carefully considered, striving for a harmonious balance between exceptional skincare and responsible environmental stewardship.
Pioneers of Circular Beauty
At UpCircle Beauty, the belief in a circular future for skincare drives their mission. They recognize the transformative power of repurposing and revitalizing existing products and ingredients as a catalyst for meaningful change.
With innovation and core values as their guiding principles, UpCircle Beauty leads the charge towards a better world, starting with the humble coffee ground. Embracing this sustainable vision, they are rewriting the narrative of skincare, paving the way for a brighter and more conscious future, step by step.