Garnier Organic Skincare

Early last year french Garnier (previously known as Laboratoires Garnier) launched a new skincare range certified by the Soil Association. I’m a little slow of the mark with this one but it took me a while to get around to trying it!

In launching this range, Garner have put certified organic beauty products into the mainstream market. If you live in larger cities (and some well stocked smaller towns) or shop online you can access natural and organic products quite readily, however for the vast majority of us high street drugstores such as Superdrug or Boots are the only way to easily access beauty products.

There are six skincare products in the range: Lemongrass Detox Gel Face Wash (£5.99), Lavandin Smooth and Glow Facial Oil (£11.99), Argan Hydrating Mist (£7.99), Thyme perfecting Toner (£5.99), Cornflower Micellar Cleansing Water (£6.99) and the Konjac Sponge (£5.99).

On whim I decided to try the Cornflower Micellar Cleansing Water (£6.99 from Superdrug) as I was on the verge of running out – both in my pro kit and my bathroom drawer. Enriched with organic cornflower and barley water, this micellar water is designed to cleanse and remove makeup, without leaving the skin feeling dry.

As a cleansing product, it’s ok. It does what it says on the bottle although I wouldn’t suggest trying to remove long-lasting or waterproof products with it; as with most micellar water’s it’s better for a quick wipe over or the removal of minimal makeup rather than a deep cleanse. Overall as a product I don’t think it’s going to set the beauty world on fire, however you can’t argue with the price.

At £6.99 for 400ml, you get a lot of product for your money and so in that respect it is a winner. Organic beauty doesn’t come cheap and the majority of smaller independent brands can’t afford to lower their prices, which puts their products out of the financial reach of many consumers. Garnier can afford to make this line economically viable to the consumer, even if in doing so they make a loss (not that I think they necessarily are), therefore they are making organic beauty an affordable option for a huge number of people. This is great news!

Making natural and organic products (beauty or otherwise) a viable option for the wider population is what the majority of people involved in the green beauty industry want so it is good to know that there is an affordable, accessible and Soil Association certified range readily available on the High Street.

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I have to admit I was somewhat reluctant to give the products a try. Garnier are owned by L’Oreal, a company who due to their historic stance on animal testing, I choose not to support (they are also still listed on the Peta list of brands to avoid). Additionally, the company as a whole do not perform well on the Ethical Consumer Ethiscore table either (scoring just 4 out of a potential 20 points) – primarily because of their parent company.

The cynical side of me does see this as an attempt at greenwashing however in order to gain Soil Association certification, Garnier would’ve had to jump through a lot of hoops in order to meet the stringent certification requirements. With this in mind, they should be applauded for choosing to make a difference and the release of this organic skincare line is not the first step Garnier have taken to commit to a future of greener beauty.

‘As the world’s leading natural beauty brand (Euromonitor 2019), we have the opportunity to help create a positive impact by leading the way towards sustainable beauty that’s accessible to all’
(Garnier, 2020).

Garner have set out a manifesto for sustainability engagement. I have outlined it below but you can read it in full here – Our Sustainability Engagement in 5 Steps (Garnier)

  • More solidarity sourcing
    By 2025 Garnier will have empowered 800 communities worldwide as we grow existing and introduce new Solidarity sourcing programme.
  • Green Sciences & Formulas
    In 2019, our new shampoos and hair care formulas reached an average of 91% biodegradability*. By 2025, we will create new high performing and respectful formulas for your hair and skin, powered by Garnier’s Green Sciences initiatives.
    *As per OECD 301 or equivalent tests

  • More recycled & recyclable packaging
    By 2025, Garnier will aim to use Zero Virgin Plastic in packaging, saving 37,000 tonnes of plastic every year. By 2025 all packaging will also be either reusable, recyclable or compostable.

  • More renewable energies
    Since 2005, our industrial sites and distribution centres have cut water usage by 45% and reduced CO2 emissions by 72%. By 2025, 100% of our industrial sites will be carbon neutral

  • More actions to fight plastic pollution
    Garnier has partnered with two NGO’s to help improve both the environmental and social impact of plastic pollution: Ocean Conservancy and Plastics For Change.

These are bold statements and it is great that the company are looking to move towards a more sustainable way of working. It will be interesting to see how this pans out over the coming years.

How do you feel about the range and Garnier’s move to become more sustainable?


(*denotes from organic farming)
Aqua/Water, Hordeum Vulgare Stem Water*, Propanediol, Centaurea Cyanus Flower Water*, Glycerin, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Phytate, Arginine, Coco-Betaine, Alcohol, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Linalool, Parfum / Fragrance (F.I.L B223870/2)
COSMOS Certified Organic
11% of the total ingredients are from organic farming
99% natural origin of total

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