Grooming

Why This Global Company Is Focused on Fixing the Planet Right Now

Garnier Philippines is leading the L’Oreal Group’s decade-long push to reduce its environmental impact and become more sustainable. 
IMAGE Instagram/ garnierph, Getty Images
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So a super virus is out there still messing with the way we live. But while most businesses have been scrambling to keep their heads above water, shoring up their online platforms for e-commerce, reconfiguring operations to keep the lights on, the L’Oreal Group is choosing to double down on a very old problem.

A 10-Year Roadmap to Greater Sustainability

In case you missed it, the Earth has had it your disinterest and abuse. Despite urgent calls to, as the song goes, heal the world, the planet sizzles, natural resources dwindle, water is polluted, and animals are threatened. The current situation we find ourselves in is but a reflection of these ills. Man plunders the planet wantonly, pushing into its forests and devouring its gifts, so the Earth decides to fight back—with a virus. 

The L’Oreal Group, which houses everything from Kiehl’s to Shu Uemura, La Roche-Posay to Garnier, has been working on a daring goal that seeks to reduce its environmental impact in 10 years. In the Philippines, Garnier takes the lead, becoming the lab rat for the group’s Green Beauty campaign, and already, the democratic beauty brand, which is known for its eye-roller (a wand that deploys good juices to your eye area via a ball roller) and micellar water, implements a three-headed plan anchored on packaging, sachets, and education.

The First Sustainable E-Commerce Packaging in the Philippines

The most tangible and, perhaps, most impactful among Garnier’s operations is Green Parcel, the first sustainable e-commerce parcel in the country. It goes like this: When you order from Garnier via Shopee, the hub where it first launches the setup, the product will be nestled within a honeycomb packaging (in place of bubble wrap), packed in a green cassava bag (instead of plastic), and then placed in Shopee’s recyclable box. 

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Made by EcoNest Philippines, the Geami honeycomb packaging looks like an intricate paper weave—it reminds you of the tails of Christmas lanterns—that it’s almost a shame to tear it apart to get to the good stuff. And though it appears delicate, Garnier says the die-cut paper sheath provides excellent protection against damage. Most important, the honeycomb, which is made from virgin kraft paper, will biodegrade in two to six weeks, making it fully renewable.  

Meanwhile, the green cassava bag, which is developed by SainBags, is made from cassava starch instead of plastic (it feels strangely supple). This one takes around 90 days to compost in soil or water and returns to nature as water and carbon dioxide. The bottom-line: All these layers, from honeycomb to box, will not contribute to the clogging of waterways or the harming of animals.

A Network of Recycling Sachet Stations

Garnier also makes sure to make its in-store experience greener, producing side bins, product hangers, and collaterals from recycled or recyclable materials and then deploying these to 230 stores in the country.

Allowing you to be more accountable for the health of the planet and addressing a prevalent waste problem in the country, the brand introduces a sachet collection drive, too. Sachet lovers can drop used sachets in Garnier stations in Mercury Drug branches in Metro Manila. These sachets will then be recycled and funneled into the building of emergency houses by The Plastic Flamingo, a social organization that combats marine plastic pollution.  

Finally, the cure is knowledge (the previous are but remedies). With the help of Edukasyon PH, Garnier is developing learning modules focused on sustainability, which, hopes the brand, will “provide a better understanding of sustainability and empower consumers to make more informed choices.” 

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The Importance of Starting Right Now

Garnier's Green Parcel initiative debuted in Shopee in November, but L’Oreal notes that it is in talks with other retailers to expand the program. Also good to know is how L’Oreal is not passing on whatever costs it acquired in the development and switch to green practices. 

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Supriya Singh, country managing director of L’Oreal Philippines, explains why the global company is going full throttle in reaching its sustainability goals by sharing a bit of her background. The beauty boss, who describes herself as always “passionate about sustainability,” reveals that she has two young kids who “hold her to high standards.” 

Seen from this point of view, L’Oreal is doing its best to help repair what is broken so that the Earth can still be viable—livable and beautiful—for future generations. “Our focus for L’Oreal for the Future is driven by our purpose,” she muses. “There are things that you do because it’s the right thing to do and the world demands it.” 

garnier.com.ph

 

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Clifford Olanday
Editor in Chief, Esquire Philippines
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