Recycling your Beauty Products

29 May 2020

Recycling your Beauty Products

After writing up about the beauty empties I’ve used over the past year, I thought about the sheer amount of packaging from beauty products - there is a hella lot of plastic and glass! 

Beauty products are notoriously hard to recycle which can make it hard to know what to do with them, and often means they end up being thrown away. 

120 billion units of packaging are produced every year by the global cosmetics industry, of these, very few plastic waste items generated in the bathroom are accepted by most public recycling programmes. Beauty product packaging is often composed of a variety of types of material — mirrored glass, cardboard sleeves, paper inserts, expanded plastic foam and more have been known to be used in cosmetics packaging– sometimes all in one item. This can make recycling them incredibly difficult.

This post has the information you need on what is recyclable, where you can visit and recycle any beauty empties (including pumps, lids, etc) - given the current lockdown situation we are in, I will be keeping them all until somewhere near me reopens. As for glass, I can recycle through my local council - most councils allow this, but check before you do this. 



So many beauty products, like fragrances and new make-up products, come wrapped in cellophane. Annoyingly, this cannot be recycled and should be put in your normal bin.


Hairsprays and deodorants can be recycled in most household collection schemes. But do make sure they’ve been completely finished before recycling them.

Plastic bottles

Plastic bottles, like shampoos, conditioners and shower gels, are accepted by most recycling programmes. However, make sure that you have emptied and cleaned them out first. You can also leave the lids on as these can be recycled, unless it’s a trigger head or a pump. These will need to go in your normal bin. If you haven’t completely finished your conditioner, do NOT pour it down the sink. Instead, get out as much as possible and put it in your normal bin. (The same goes with any product that you have a little left of.)

Hair tools

If your tools still work, check with your local charity shop if they’ll take them. If they’re broken, then they can be recycled at a specific centre. 

For hair straighteners specifically, Cloud Nine recently launched their own iron recycling service. They’ll recycle or reuse your old straighteners, free of charge, and regardless of the brand or when/where they were purchased. Simply download a pre-paid recycling label, pop your straighteners in a box and take to the Post Office. You can find out more about the scheme at

Nail varnish, fragrance bottles, make-up brushes

Sadly, these can’t be recycled, so should just be placed in the normal waste bin.

Mascara, lipstick, make-up palettes (eye shadow, bronzer, blusher)

Annoyingly, these are too complicated to recycle. However, TerraCycle has partnered with Garnier to create a free recycling programme for beauty packaging, and these can be taken to one of their allocated drop-off locations. Find your nearest one here. They will also take sheet masks and their wrappers, face wipes and their packets, trigger sprays, pumps, pipettes, roll-on deodorants.

Glass jars

As long as these have been emptied and cleaned, these are free to be popped in your recycling bin - woop!

Cotton pads

These have come under quite a lot of criticism for being as bad for the environment as face wipes, but in actual fact these can be recycled with your food waste. So after taking your make-up off, take them straight into the kitchen to throw away, OR do what I did a couple of years back, and buy reusable ones - they’re just as effective as regular cotton pads, except you can pop these in with your washing, and use them over and over. I buy these ones.

Toothbrushes and toothpaste

Don’t put these in your recycling! Like Garnier, Colgate has collaborated with TerraCycle and set up special drop-off locations (that can be found here).

Recycling your Beauty Products

Brands doing their bit

There are several brands that have got on board, and are doing their bit. See below for where you can recycle your empties - some even have incentives, such as discounts and offers. 

John Lewis

John Lewis has a recycling scheme for their members. The scheme applies to any beauty product with the exception of perfume bottles, nail varnish and aerosol cans, and allows customers to bring their empties to John Lewis stores to receive a £5 discount on a beauty purchase in return. More info here.

Ren Skincare

Ren has a company-wide goal of being completely zero waste by 2021 - that’s only a matter of months away. It currently has 100% recyclable packaging, refillable solutions and bottles made from reclaimed ocean plastic.

The Body Shop

The Body Shop has recycling points in every store, where you can return empties. This scheme is only for their products. Love Your Body™ Club members will receive a reward worth £5 when they return any 5 of the Body Shops empty bottles, tubs, tubes or pots.


L’Occitane have TerraCycle collection points in their stores and they organise sponsored beach cleans all over the UK, from Brighton to Edinburgh. You can take your empty beauty and skincare products from L’Occitane and any other beauty brands. You will even receive 10% off a new full sized L’Occitane product. Further information here.  

MAC Cosmetics

If you’re an avid Mac customer, you’re probably already aware of the Back to Mac programme, which has been running for years. But if you’re not, it’s pretty simple to get to grips with – simply return six primary packaging containers to a counter store, and you’ll get a free Mac lipstick of your choice - the only exemptions from the offer are the lipsticks and lipglasses from limited editions collections, and the Viva Glam range, as 100 per cent of the selling price of these is provided to organisations that help people living with HIV/AIDS.


Recycle & Be Rewarded, Kiehl’s encourages, by giving customers loyalty cards that get stamped every time they return an empty Kiehl’s product, or shop with a reusable bag. Once you’ve built up 10 stamps, you’ll get a complimentary travel size product from the range, perfect for popping in your carry-on on your next short-haul trip.

What else can you do?

It’s a little pricey, but you can purchase a TerraCycle Zero Waste Box – they will send you an empty box to your house, you fill it with your beauty empties, and then send it back to them to recycle it all. They offer various boxes for different recyclables. More information on this initiative here.

Also, you can buy products that are packaged in highly recycled materials, like PET bottles, and some brands offer a refillable service or reusable packaging. In the city I live in, we have a few local zero-waste stores that offer these services, mainly for household items such as washing up liquid and cooking oils, but it’s worth a look to see what they offer. 

The Weekly Edit: Dressing for early summer

27 May 2020

early Summer fashion

With the gorgeous weather we've been having off and on over the last few weeks, I'm getting my hopes up that Summer has arrived. And whilst we may be a little limited on what we can do, and where we can go right now here in the UK, that shouldn't stop us from swapping our joggers for something summery -  I know that for my own sanity, getting dressed each morning, and not sitting around in my PJ's all day, has helped me massively. 

Dressing for the hot weather can be a little tricky, especially when it's still cold in the evenings. Wearing layers is key and slipping an oversized denim jacket is perfect for this, plus it's a great piece to have in your wardrobe - they never date. 

Post lockdown (staying positive that there will be an end to this all soon!) This outfit would easily take you from a day in the office, to after-work drinks alfresco-style. I've had my eye on this Ganni dress for ages, and I think it would look great teamed with these Veja Condor Trainers.  Accessories-wise, if like me you've been lusting over 'that' Shrimps bag, but can't quite justify the spend, then this & Other Stories one is a great high-street version. Finish off with some gold hoops, and slap on a bright pink lipstick, and you're good to go.

Shop the post

Lockdown Larder: One Pot Coconut Curried Chickpea Stew

25 May 2020

One Pot Coconut Curried Chickpea Stew

This stew by Alison Roman, has become internet-famous. It’s a versatile dish - have it as a side, or as a main, and it tastes great the next day as leftovers as well. 


60ml olive oil, plus more for serving
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 thumb-sized piece ginger, finely chopped
Salt and black pepper
1½ tsp ground turmeric, plus more for serving
1 tsp mild chilli flakes, plus more for serving
2 tins chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tins full-fat coconut milk
270ml vegetable or chicken stock
1 bunch Swiss chard, kale, spinach, stems removed, torn into bite-size pieces
Yogurt, for serving (optional)
Toasted pita, lavash or other flatbread, for serving (optional)

Heat 60ml oil in a large pot over medium. Add garlic, onion and ginger. Season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally until onion is translucent and starts to brown a little at the edges, three to five minutes.

Add 1½ teaspoons turmeric, one teaspoon mild chilli flakes, and the chickpeas, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, so the chickpeas sizzle and fry a bit in the spices and oil, until they’ve started to break down and get a little browned and crisp, eight to 10 minutes. Remove about a cup of chickpeas and set aside for garnish.

Using a wooden spoon or spatula, further crush the remaining chickpeas slightly to release their starchy insides. (This will help thicken the stew.) Add coconut milk and stock, and season with salt and pepper.

Bring to a simmer, scraping up any bits that have formed on the bottom of the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the stew has thickened, 30 to 35 minutes. (Taste a chickpea or two, not just the liquid, to make sure they have simmered long enough to be as delicious as possible.) If after 30 to 35 minutes, you want the stew a bit thicker, keep simmering until you’ve reached your desired consistency. 

Add greens and stir, making sure they’re submerged in the liquid. Cook until they wilt and soften, three to seven minutes, depending on what you’re using. (Swiss chard and spinach will wilt and soften much faster than kale or collard greens.) Season again with salt and pepper.

Divide among bowls and top with reserved chickpeas, a sprinkle of chilli flakes and a good drizzle of olive oil. Serve alongside yogurt and toasted pita if using; dust the yogurt with turmeric if you’d like.

Tips: When shopping, be sure to avoid low-fat coconut milk, coconut milk meant for drinking or cream of coconut aren’t suitable here. 

All the Beauty products I've used up in the past year

22 May 2020

Beauty Empties 2020

Today is all about beauty, and what products I’ve used up in the past year. SPOILER ALERT, but hardly a surprise, that the biggest amount of beauty empties I have, are skincare. I recently ran out of three skincare products over two days, which is sods law when you’re going through a lockdown - thankfully online shopping is still going strong, and I have a rather large shopping basket on Cult Beauty, ready and waiting for payday (and hopefully a CB discount code) to come! 

I haven’t done one of these posts for just over a year, so that means I have a fair amount of empty beauty products to get through - go grab a drink, and settle yourself in for a mammoth bit of reading! 

Green Clean makeup meltaway cleansing balm, Farmacy

Clearly my cleanser of 2019, I managed to get through two travel sized tubs, and two large tub of this cleanser! 
Repurchased? Not yet, I’m working through the last of my current cleansers.  

Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser, Drunk Elephant

Green Clean may have been my cleanser of choice for 2019, but in terms of my most-purchased brand of 2019? Drunk Elephant wins hands down! 
Repurchased? This cleanser was bought mainly because it was a new product to the DE line. It’s not my favourite product of the brands, and it was a pretty average cleanser - I won’t be repurchasing. 

Travel-sized products, Drunk Elephant

2019 was a big year of travel for me, and a lot of travel-sized products were used whilst I was away, mostly from DE! I always had a small tube of their B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum in my in-flight beauty bag - perfect for long-haul flights. Their Lala Retro Whipped Cream was my moisturizer of choice on my trips, and I’ve just finished a tube of their Beste No.9 Jelly Cleanser I had in my ‘travel beauty’ drawer (yes, really) as I’m trying out a couple of travel-sized cleansers I have before making my Cult Beauty purchase. 
Repurchased? As soon as I get back in travel-mode, I will be making a purchase, but as I’m currently grounded until lockdowns are lifted, repurchasing any of these are not on the list. 

Protini Polypeptide Cream, Drunk Elephant

I love a good moisturiser, and this one is a favourite of mine. It’s just a bit of a nightmare, and something that annoys me about this product - you can’t see when you’re about to run out, which is what happened when I ran out last year, and again last month!
Repurchased? Not yet, but it’s in my Cult Beauty basket (I just need to stop sulking about the packaging!)

Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum

I’ve managed to get through 2 full-sized bottles of this product - I use this daily, and have just ran out - I feel quite lost without this product in my morning skincare routine. Luckily, I have a couple of travel sized ones, and they’ve been getting me through the last part of the month before payday hits. 
Repurchased? It’s in my CB basket ready to go!

Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil, Drunk Elephant

A little goes a long way with this product, and it lasted about 18 months before finally running out! I love applying this before bed, and also after using the DE BabyFacial product - it’s super nourishing, and feels like you’ve had a right little pamper. 
Repurchased? As much as I like the product, it is also one I can live without - it’s pretty expensive, and I have another face oil that I prefer…

Maqui + Acai Prickly Pear Goji Superberry Hydrate and Glow Oil, Youth to The People

I absolutely love this oil. I use it twice a day, everyday. Like the DE one above, a little really does go a long way with this product.
Repurchased? I stocked up on this product when I was in the US back in November last year. I very nearly didn’t, and I’m so glad I did as you can’t purchase this in the UK - I’ve even started to use it sparingly as I’m nervous I’ll run out before I can head back to the US and stock up!

Kale + Spinach Green Tea Hyaluronic Acid Superfood Air-Whip Moisture Cream, Youth to The People

My other favourite moisturiser! It left my skin feeling so hydrated, and was perfect in the Winter months.
Repurchased? Sadly, no, but it will be the first product to go into my Sephora basket as soon as I’m back in the US. 

Cleansing Balm & Gel Balm Cleanser, Eve Lom

Both travel-sized products, and used across a few trips last year. I’d never used the Gel balm cleanser, and I decided I prefer the balm. Both great products though.
Repurchased? As soon as I get back in travel-mode, I’ll be grabbing the Eve Lom balm.

Black Tea Kombucha Facial Treatment Essence, Fresh Beauty

This was something I purchased on a whim when I was in NYC, and although it smells delightful, it didn’t float my skincare boat. 
Repurchased? No, and I’m not sure I will again! 

Créaline H20 Micellaire Water, Bioderma

A skincare that has been part of my daily routine for YEARS! I love taking my makeup off with this before I start my cleanse, and a little goes a long way.
Repurchased? I didn’t need to - I already had a bottle ready to go!

Jet Lag Mask & Overtime Mask, Summer Fridays

Face masks over sheet masks any day, and these two are ones I reach for at least once a week. The Jet Lag Mask comes along with me on my trips - it’s a great one for long-haul flights! I also like using this one as a primer before applying makeup. 
Repurchased? I have a fair few masks to get me through the next couple of months, so I’m holding off for now, but they will be back in my skincare drawer in the future. 

Beauty Empties 2020

Snow Mushroom Water Serum, Volition

I came across this brand in Sephora back in November. Always intrigued by new skincare, I picked this up, mainly as it had the most hipster name! But, looking into the brand a bit more, it really got my attention. It launched on Cult Beauty at the beginning of this year, and I’m looking forward to trying more of their products. 
Repurchased? I won’t be adding this to my CB basket, but I have a couple of their other products in there, so looking forward to trying those out shortly.

Hemlock & Bergamot and English Pear & Freesia perfumes, Jo Malone

I love these scents, but for me, the English Pear and Freesia will always be my favourite of all.
Repurchased? Yes - I picked up a bottle of the English Pear and Freesia at the airport back in November, along with a newer fragrance, Poppy & Barley - it’s gorgeous!

Bye Bye Foundation - total coverage Moisturiser, it Cosmetics

I very rarely wear a ‘base’ but this product is amazing! Sadly, you can’t get this in the UK - it seems to be an Ulta exclusive. I prefer it to their CC Cream, which I’ve also used in the past. 
Repurchased? As it’s not available over here in the UK, no! 

Cloud Paint (puff) and Boy Brow (brown & clear), Glossier

I use both of these daily, (not so much at the moment as I’m make-up free during lockdown) and have done for a good few years. With the Cloud Paint, a little goes a long way, and I love a cream blush more than a powder one (don’t get me wrong, NARS Orgasm powder blush will always have a piece of my heart!) Boy Brow beats all other brow products hands down. 
Repurchased? I always have a backup of BB in my beauty drawers, and a couple of other shades of CP ready for when I run out. 

Magic Away Liquid Concealer, Charlotte Tilbury

I’ve always been ‘blessed’ with dark circles under my eyes, and have tried so many under-eye concealers over the years to hide them. I’ve only come across two brands that have products that I use. Sadly, this isn’t one of them. As much as I love CT, this product just didn’t deliver for me, and I really didn’t like the applicator!
Repurchased? No, but I have one of her ‘eyes to mesmerise’ shadows in my CB basket - I love those! 

Endless Weekend Scented Candle, Bath & Bodyworks

One of my friends introduced me to their candles (and hand sanitizers!) so every-time I can get to one of their stores on a trip to the US, I stock up. My luggage has gone over the weight limit in the past due to this! Their candles are such good value, and smell amazing!
Repurchased? I have a couple left in my stockpile - I’m using them sparingly though! 

Shop the post

Lockdown Larder: Slow Cooker Vegetable Curry

18 May 2020

Hello, and welcome to a new series on WLDN - Lockdown Larder! 

Every Monday, I will be posting one of our favourite recipes we love in our household, and, none of the ingredients will be super fancy - so you should be able to pick these up in your local supermarket easy! Heck, you may already even have them in your fridge and/or kitchen cupboards. 

So, let's crack on with the first recipe in the series...

This is a new favourite in our household. We don't have a slow cooker, but we have a casserole dish, so we use this, and put it in the oven around lunchtime, and leave alone until dinner. You can use any vegetables you have, and you can freeze any leftovers for another day. Plus, it takes less than 10 minutes to prepare - something we can get on board with!

400ml can of light coconut milk
3 tbsp mild curry paste 
1 tbsp of finely chopped ginger (if you have ginger puree, that's also fine to use)
3 cloves of garlic, sliced
200g sweet potato (peeled)
1 red pepper, deseeded and sliced
1 small courgette
1/2 cauliflower, chopped into mini florets
2 handfuls of spinach
1 red chilli, deseeded and sliced
Coriander, chopped (optional)
Wholemeal flatbread, to serve

Put the coconut milk, curry paste, ginger, garlic and chilli into the dish. Give it all a good stir, and then add the vegetables. Mix together, and then cover with the lid, and place in the oven at 100 degrees for 6 hours, stirring occasionally. 

Slow Cooker Vegetable Curry

Taste, and sprinkle with the coriander (if you fancy) and serve with the flatbread. 

Lockdown treats: Brighton Restaurants at home

12 May 2020

Lockdown treats: Brighton Restaurants to your door

Week 7 of lockdown in the UK, and I don’t know about you, but I am in a complete state of confusion as to what the heck is going on! One positive, is that some of my favourite local Brighton and Hove restaurants are offering up some tasty treats to takeaway or deliver. 

And I don’t know about you, but that’s something I can get my head around.

Cin Cin at Home

Cin Cin

My favourite Italian restaurant in Brighton and Hove have put together Cin Cin At Home boxes. Launched a few weeks ago, each box contains a three-course meal for two, and has a vegetarian Arancio and salumi selection to start, a handmade pasta with vegetarian sauce for two as a main, and a dessert for two to finish.

We tried it in their first week of launching it, and were not disappointed - the food was delicious, and super easy to finish off in our small kitchen at home. Delivery is on Friday and Saturday afternoons, and they also have a selection of Italian wines to add to your order if you fancy.

Ordering starts at 6pm every Wednesday, via the Local ordering app here.

Cin Cin have also teamed up with The Flourpot Bakery to deliver homemade lasagnes ready to reheat and share at home.

Available from Thursday this week via The Flourpot Bakery website. Both meat and vegetarian option available - each serve 6 people.

Fatto A Mano Deliveroo

Fatto A Mano

If there’s one thing I’ve been craving for the last 7 weeks, it’s pizza from Fatto A Mano, heck, I’m not even ashamed to say that during one of my lockdown meltdowns a couple of weeks ago, I shed a few tears as I just wanted one of their pizzas so bad. Emotions were running high in the household! 

So, when they announced a couple of days ago that they were reopening their Hove branch for takeout and delivery only, it was the best news ever! They opened back up on Monday, and I've set my weekly meal plan around this - pizza for lunch and dinner is totally acceptable. 

You can order via Deliveroo, order at the counter in their Hove branch (social distancing rules are in place), or go through their website for collection. 

Petit Pois home delivery

Petit Pois

French restaurant, Petit Pois have created a take on their seasonal menu that can be enjoyed at home, including their popular Sunday roasts. This is one of my go-to restaurants with my girlfriends when we want to eat somewhere central in Brighton, so we can head out dancing after. Make sure you order their delicious goats cheese croquettes - just thinking about them is making me hungry!

Open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday 12-3 and 6-9, you can order via Deliveroo, or give the restaurant a call and order directly, with pick up only. 

The Coal Shed at home

The Coal Shed

Brighton steak restaurant The Coal Shed are bringing their restaurant to your table at home. All dishes are served to share between two and prepared to be finished at home with cooking instructions.

The menu looks delicious, and you can also add a variety of wines to your order - plus, on a Sunday, they're offering up their sharing roasts to order! Food is available for curbside collection or delivery Thursday - Saturday between 3- 6pm and Sunday between 1-3pm. Due to limited availability, food needs to be pre ordered by 4pm for the next day. ​

Orders can be made here

Wild Flor to your door

Wild Flor

The lovely people at this Hove-based restaurant have recently launched Wild Flor, to your door, a finish at home three course meal box. Each box is designed to feed one person, and costs £25. 

There’s one box for meat-eaters and another for veggies, with box contents set to change weekly and in line with the seasons. We tried it out a couple of weeks ago, and as much as we miss visiting their restaurant, these guys have nailed the food offering, with perfect portion sizes and delicious food. I just hope they add their anchovies as an option to order soon - I miss those slippery little suckers!

Wild Flor are also listing a few wine options, so you can place an order with your food. From sparkling, white, red, rose, or even lager, these have been chosen to go perfectly with your meal. 

Not that local? But still keen to order? Well, if you get in touch with them, they may be able to arrange for you to collect direct from the restaurant. Since launching a couple of weeks ago, they have been selling out in 20-25 minutes after orders open - amazing!

Ordering starts at 5pm every Tuesday, via the Local ordering app here.

The Urchin Hove

The Urchin

Starting this week, my local pub are trialing four of their favourite dishes, to share and finish at home. They suggest mixing three of these dishes between two people; Moules Mariniere, Malaysian Prawns, Cuttlefish Feijoada with Chorizo and White Beans and Clams with garlic, chilli white wine and coriander. They're super easy to prepare in no more that 5-10 minutes, and they'll have some wine and beers from their list that can be paired with the dishes.

Order via their website now. Pickup is direct from The Urchin in Hove, between midday - 3pm Friday or Saturday this weekend. Alternatively, if you're unable to pick up, and live in Brighton or Hove, they will deliver to you.

Back at it

11 May 2020

Brighton blogger

It's been nearly a year since my last post - time does fly.

I'll be honest with you, I had sort of fallen out of love with blogging, and wasn't sure if I wanted to keep going.

Nearly a year on, and I've had a change of heart, and with the current climate we're in, I needed a distraction. 

So I've decided to start writing again, and give the ol' blog a little redesign. 

I'm looking forward to sharing current, relatable content, plus what I've been up to over the last year. 

Boy, do we have a lot to catch up on!