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Microbead ban on rinse-off products comes into effect from today

The ban has been issued in an effort to protect the marine environment

Sabrina Barr
Tuesday 19 June 2018 11:42 BST
(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The ban on products that contain microbeads will come into effect from today, the government has announced.

In January, it was revealed that manufacturers in the UK would no longer be allowed to develop products containing the miniscule pieces of plastic, due to the detrimental impact that the plastic has had on the ocean.

When products such as face washes, body scrubs and toothpaste that contain microbeads are flushed down the drain, they can consequently damage the marine environment when they eventually reach the sea.

In 2016, a report issued by the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee stated that approximately 100,000 microbeads can make their way to the ocean from a single shower.

The ban will prevent retailers in England and Scotland from selling products that contain the harmful microbeads.

“Microbeads might be tiny, but they are lethal to sea creatures and entirely unnecessary,” said environmental secretary Michael Gove.

“We have led the way in banning these toxic pieces of plastic, but this is by no means the end in our fight.

“We will now press ahead with our proposals for a deposit return scheme and ban other damaging plastic such as straws.”

Dr Sue Kinsey, senior pollution policy officer at the Marine Conservation Society, has also expressed her approval of the new measure.

“We are delighted that this robust microbead ban has come into force,” she said.

“This is the strongest and most comprehensive ban to be enacted in the world so far and will help to stem the flow of microplastics into our oceans.”

If the microbead ban has filled you with dread at the prospect of having to source new beauty products for your daily self-care regime, have no fear.

There are a number of microbead-free products that you can use instead, not to mention several homemade scrubs that you could experiment with using ingredients such as oats and coffee.

Here are five of the best microbead-free scrubs for you to try:

Clarins One Step Gently Exfoliating Cleanser: £21, Boots

This product is very effective as both an exfoliator and a toning cleanser.

It’s gentle on the skin and ideal for anyone with an oily complexion.

Espa Refining Skin Polish: £37.03, Amazon

Bring the spa home with you and indulge with this luxurious exfoliator.

This product will be particularly appealing for those with dry skin.

Alpha H Liquid Gold: £33.50, Cult Beauty

This product, described as a “resurfacing and firming lotion” is allegedly extremely popular with celebrity makeup artists.

It can help reduce visible signs of scarring or sun damage when applied with a cotton pad every night.

Sukin Oil Balancing + Charcoal Pore Refining Facial Scrub: £9.99, Holland & Barrett

This product, which contains moringa extract, can help those with oily skin obtain a more balanced complexion.

It’s very gentle on the skin so you don’t have to worry about your skin becoming irritated.

Simple Kind To Skin Soothing Facial Scrub: £3.49, Boots

If you’re after a facial scrub that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg, then this facial scrub is a safe bet.

It isn’t overly fragranced, meaning that it’s especially suitable for individuals with sensitive skin.

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