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How to Recognize Greenwashing and What to Do About it

What is greenwashing and how can you recognize it? There are many companies nowadays that are the kings of greenwashing.

Greenwashing is a marketing strategy that many brands use to be perceived as more environmentally friendly than they are. This is because corporations want to capitalize on the general public becoming more aware of climate change and its impacts, but without putting any effort towards addressing the issues.

There are many examples of greenwashing across industries. Beauty industry is one of them. Clean skincare is often promoted even though most companies can’t explain what specifically makes products clean. Another example is vegan skincare and cosmetics. It is often advertised as better than animal-based, but in reality, both animal-based and plant-based products can contain suspicious ingredients. It is therefore important to read labels and ask questions. For instance, is vegan plant-based retinol better than synthetic? Is natural Vitamin C cream for face better than non-natural?

Here are some things to look out for in order to recognize greenwashing. There are a lot more besides these so stay tuned to find more!
Green, brown, or nature-inspired imagery on packaging/marketing, without additional info is one example of this dangerous trend. Then, terms such as “eco-friendly”, “clean”, and “bio” are unregulated and can be used by anyone without meaning anything. And as you know, many companies are using these terms without providing any details on how specifically they are eco-friendly or what makes them green or clean. For instance, vegan niacinamide and vitamin c When there are no details or background provided, it’s usually greenwashing. Additionally, sustainable clothing lines in large companies, often talk about how green and sustainable they are, without addressing overproduction. That’s usually a red flag.

How do you know when a brand is NOT greenwashing? Well, you need to look for concrete actions, such as: using better materials consistently, not just in one collection or line. Providing details and proof that they really are using better materials in fashion or healthy, non-toxic ingredients in beauty and skincare. Another thing would be offering repair programs for their products. In case of beauty, it usually means, offering recycling or reusing initiative for their packaging.

Moreover, very important thing is publishing the names and locations of their manufacturers or factories. If a company doesn’t tell you who and where manufactures their products and who and where produces their parts and ingredients, that usually means they have something to hide. Most of the greenwashing companies are using third parties and manufacturing overseas, most often in China where they get access to cheap workforce and materials. That is another red flag you need to be mindful of.

James Morkel

Tech website author with a passion for all things technology. Expert in various tech domains, including software, gadgets, artificial intelligence, and emerging technologies. Dedicated to simplifying complex topics and providing informative and engaging content to readers. Stay updated with the latest tech trends and industry news through their insightful articles.

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