American department store giant Nordstrom has become the first major retailer in Canada to offer a recycling program called Beautycycle that allows customers to return hard-to-recycle beauty packaging.
Starting today, customers can bring empty cosmetics, haircare, or skincare packaging, regardless of brand or purchase location, to a Nordstrom location in Canada, where it will be recycled using TerraCycle Zero Waste Boxes.
The recycled packaging will be cleaned and separated into metals, glass, and plastics. Plastics are then recycled into a wide range of new products, including park benches and picnic tables. Metals are reused to create nuts, bolts, and rings.
According to Nordstrom, each year, more than 120 billion units of plastic packaging are produced by the global beauty industry, but less than nine percent are recycled.
Through Beautycycle, Nordstrom aims to take back 100 tons of hard-to-recycle beauty packaging by 2025, reduce its single-use plastic by 50 percent, and donate one million dollars to support textile recycling innovation.
“We understand our customers care about sustainability, and we want to help them move toward a zero-waste beauty routine so they can look great and do good at the same time,” stated Gemma Lionello, executive vice president, general merchandise manager at Nordstrom, in a release.
Nordstrom first launched Beautycycle in the US in 2020 after many local recycling centers did not accept beauty materials and packaging because they often contain a mix of materials that are difficult to recycle together.