When I began my green journey 20 years ago, there were no sustainable low-waste Canadian skincare brands on the market, most of them were packaged in plastic. Fast forward to today and it’s a different story! Here are 15 Sustainable Low-Waste Canadian Skincare Brands you NEED to know about.
I’ve never really been a major skincare junkie. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good body butter or face serum, but my skincare regime is very minimalist and it’s been that way pretty much my whole life. When I began this “green” journey 20 years ago I learned so much about toxins in skincare it made me even less likely to get hooked on the latest product.
Today, all these years later my routine consists of washing my face with a good cleanser, using a good serum/moisturizer and of course sunscreen, which has always been an important part of my skincare regime.
You will notice I did not use the term zero-waste, simply because there is no such thing as zero-waste. All products whether eco-friendly or not create some form of waste. Nothing is waste-free! I have chosen products that use glass packaging and eco-packaging that can be reused or recycled. All of these brands are sustainable, low-waste and made in Canada. Make sure you scroll down to the bottom of this article to read more about how I chose these brands.
1. Wolf & Pine
Located in Lively, Ontario and founded by a herbalist who is also a registered nurse Wolf & Pine pick all their own herbs used in their formulations, drying them, processing and distilling them all themselves. I mean it does not get any better than that! All products contain almost exclusively organic and wild oils and botanicals. They do not use chemicals, toxins, artificial colours, fragrances or fillers.
Wolf & Pine Herbals donates a portion of proceeds from every purchase to a wolf sanctuary in Colorado and to reforestation efforts in Ontario and British Columbia. They are also vegan, which I really love.
2. Luna Oil Organics
LUNA OIL ORGANICS is a woman-owned, Canadian company specializing in luxury, handcrafted face & body oils that are made with 100% natural and organic ingredients. The entire line is based on the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda principals. None of the oil contains harsh preservatives. They carry face and body oil that comes in these beautiful glass jars. I can totally see myself reusing these bottles. What really stands out to me is that each of their botanical formulations is specifically tailored to your skin type.
3. Skin Essence
Skin Essence Organics is one of my favourite sustainable low-waste Canadian skincare brands, it was developed nearly 20 years ago when the concept of using organic oils & extracts on the skin was relatively unknown. Formulating their products started by thoroughly studying each ingredient on thousands of people’s skin, observing their individual effects before spending years delicately balancing them to obtain the best possible results. Today, they continue to produce their products locally in small batches to ensure both quality and freshness. They ECOCERT-Certified. I’ve been lucky enough to use the whole line and I must say my skin loved this stuff…all of it.
More than 552 million shampoo bottles end up in the landfill each year. It is estimated that by 2050 the ocean will contain more plastic than fish. Each Jack59 shampoo bar eliminates up to 3 plastic bottles and our conditioner bars can eliminate up to 5 bottles. I love the fact that no matter your hair type, long, curly, normal colour treated hair, they have a bar for you. The bars smell amazing and are made in Edmonton Canada by women. “We are proud to employ local women and local mamas. We provide all of our staff with flexible working hours so that they can provide for their families and take care of all the things that matter in their lives.”
I have finer hair and have really been enjoying their Serenity Shampoo and conditioner bars, loving them so much, my hair feels great when it’s dry and it smells like heaven.
5. Cardea Auset
A Canadian plant-based beauty and wellness brand with a philosophy based on the power of feminine energy and the gifts of Mother Earth. Founder by two BFF’s who were called to build something new two years ago that would redefine what it means to live the good life. I was introduced to the brand at the Green Living Show last year and was hooked. I use and LOVE the Phoebe facial oil, its simply lovely.
6. UpFront Cosmetics
Each Upfront shampoo or conditioner bar replaces up to 3 bottles of packaged alternatives, minimizing waste and ecological impact. They offer a line of shampoo and conditioner bars free of sulfates, parabens, and synthetic fragrances. It’s a female-owned company from New Brunswick. Got to love that. I’ve been using the Enlivening Conditioner Bar which has really helped my hair with the frizz this summer and it smells UNREAL!
7. Two Sisters
Two Sisters Naturals is founded, owned and operated by East Cost born and raised sisters Crystal Mills and Jillian Anderson. I really love how they have embraced natural living. The whipped body butter and hand salves are two of my absolute favs. Both are not greasy at all and my skin just soaks it in!
Amy is the one-woman show behind the scenes of Lisse. IF you WANT to shave, then a safety razor is a more sustainable option. Amy says on her website: “By 2050 it’s predicted there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish. So initially, the environment was my biggest driver to start dabbling in the world of safety razors. What I didn’t realize though was how much of a better shave it was, I couldn’t believe it had taken me so long to make the switch.”
If you have not made the switch, I highly recommend that you do. I have been using a safety razor for a little over two years now. It was a bit of a transition, but you can do it, and when you do, you will never go back to plastic, ever! Lisse offers a rose gold and matte black. Both gorg. And love the fact that 2% of gross razor sales go straight to Femme International who empowers people with periods through health and menstrual education in East Africa. Femme equips them with the supplies and confidence they need so they’ll never have to skip school because of a period ever again.
9. Leaves Of Trees
I was first introduced to this beautiful brand about 5 years ago. I was looking for a good eco deodorant, back then you didn’t have the selection we do now, and was gifted one at an event, I fell in love with the brand right away. The brand was founded by Dr. Roohi Qureshi, who has master’s in chemical engineering and a passion for high-quality, natural, and fair trade products.
Many of the ingredients used in the products are sourced directly from producers in Morocco—the country that inspired Qureshi’s development of the brand after her first visit. Among these sources is a women’s cooperative that Leaves of Trees supports by the exclusive use of their hand-pressed organic Argan oil. All of their products are made locally, by hand, and in small batches, using as many high-quality organic and fair trade sources as are available. They also carry a wide range of skincare products, each time I use the lavender-infused lotion someone always comments on the beautiful scent.
10. F. Miller. Skincare
This was one of the first green beauty brands I began using. Thie facial oil and body oil is unlike anything I have used before. I fell in love instantly. The scent of each product is truly sensational! The herbal infusions are crafted in-house and they hand blend each formula in small batches to maintain freshness and efficacy. They prioritize eco-friendly, responsibly sourced packaging materials and are committed to minimizing waste and footprint.
11. Woman Divine Skincare
I adore this brand and its founder Magdalena Tomczak (a skincare therapist) so much. She’s given me so much insight into clean skincare. She’s taught me about oil cleansing and how to help my skin during stressful times.
I’ve been using the face balm for years, it’s my go-to in the winter and the summer. It’s super healing and I just love it. I also use the cleansing oil which effectively removes pollution and makeup without disturbing or stripping my skin. The whole line is inspired by Polish pharmacies of her childhood and prepared with all-organic healing and nourishing cold-pressed vegetable oils, nut and seed butters, essential oils and premium quality herbs. Magdalena has a gorgeous studio in Ottawa, which one day I will visit.
12. Herb Market Botanicals
Founded by a holistic nutritionist, and wellness advocate, Herb Market Botanicals is committed to using only 100% natural, effective, superior-quality ingredients. I am new to this brand and have been using the Lavender Patchouli Luxury Body Oil blend which takes me on a woodsy and enlightening journey, heightening all my senses with the unique blend of rich, earthy aromas from lavender and patchouli. If you love body oil like me, you will LOVE this.
13. The Milana Company
Nisha the founder is simply lovely. We’ve been communicating via email while I try her edible skincare products. Yep, you read that right, you could actually eat them. Their products are 100% natural, edible, vegan and free from artificial ingredients.
I’ve been using the Ritual Trio Cleanser/Exfoliator/Mask, its a 3- in-1 energizing formula purifies, exfoliates and balances the skin. As a cleanser and an exfoliator, the blend gently lifts impurities, removes dead skin cells, improves circulation, strengthens skin and its elasticity. A botanical combination of pure herbs softens and smooths while retexturing and toning the skin. As a mask, it helps to tighten the pores and balance all types of skin without damaging and drying it out.
Sḵwálwen (skwall – win) is an Indigenous business creating small-batch botanical skincare products. Honouring traditional Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) plant knowledge, we incorporate wild-harvested plants and organic, high-quality ingredients. Our wild plant ingredients are harvested in a sustainable and respectful way and each product has a Squamish name to honour the place where this plant knowledge comes from.
Founder Leah is an ethnobotanist, researcher and community activist, her aim is to contribute to cultural knowledge renewal in connection to Indigenous plant foods and medicines. Wherever possible she draws on teachings learned from family and community members that are connected to Indigenous plants and the land.
Founded by Rose Gwet, Luxcey beauty is designed to inspire slow living, a communion with nature, and stepping into positive rituals. Drawing on her roots and time spent living in a Cameroonian village, Gwet finds inspiration in life’s simple moments and believes in dedicating time to one’s well-being.
From Montréal, she perfects her notion of rituals, an important legacy of her journey in Cameroon. More than just products, Rose can now offer a complete sensory experience.
All these beautiful creations are packaged in glass that can be reused or recycled.
BONUS: 16. The Cure Apothecary
Founder by Nitasha Goel originally a Toronto native but now calls the East Coast home. After owning retail shops she decided to create her own line of natural goodies, every ingredient that goes into The Cure products is selected for its effective properties. There are no fillers, perfumes, emulsifiers, parabens used in The Cure products. Having an understanding that skincare does not need to be fussy, but it does need to be functional. Filling in the gaps with brands that we admire is very important to what The Cure stands for. I love the hand and cuticle oil. It’s a fast-absorbing oil that is perfect to take on the go instead of hand cream.
If you are new to The Eco Hub my goal with this website is to help you make informed decisions when buying products that claim to be sustainable. When it comes to sustainable beauty, our criteria is simple. Brands must meet the following guidelines to be featured:
- Natural and/or non-toxic ingredients
- Cruelty-free ingredients (and practices)
- Vegan ingredients
- Ethical sourcing
- Environmentally-conscious packaging
- Corporate responsibility
Sometimes these factors are difficult to spot, in my comprehensive guide on What Is Sustiabale Beauty Anyway, I break it down for you. Switching to natural skincare can be a challenge, take your time and start replacing the ones you use the most with more eco-friendly options.
Parents is your teen looking for skincare to help fight acne, Thirsty Naturals is such a great choice.
What do you think of these sustainable low-waste Canadian skincare brands?
Have I missed any? Please tell me in the comments below.