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Looking for fine and sustainable cosmetics? A new day cream, serum or scrub? Look no further! The Upcircle brand was founded in 2015 and has been making quality cosmetics with rescued natural ingredients ever since.

Think coffee grounds collected by bike from London cafes, fruit seeds and blueberries from the juice industry and chamomile stalks from the tea industry.

Upcircle upcycles these waste streams into surprisingly nurturing skincare essentials for your bathroom and on-the-go, packaging them in easily recyclable and refillable packaging. Curious about the story of the pioneering Upcircle brand? Read on quickly.

People

All of Upcircle's products are ethically made in England. Upcircle has been working with the same manufacturer since its inception. The name and statement regarding quality and good manufacturing practices of this factory have been provided confidentially to COSH!

The brand also supports several charities. For example, they make donations to charities to save forests; One Tree Planted, Amazon Frontlines and Rainforest Alliance. Humanitarian charities; Refuge (a charity related to domestic violence) and The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust against inequality. As well as the Save The Elephant Foundation to support captive elephants.

In addition to money, they have donated pampering packages to frontline workers and children's books featuring protagonists from ethnic minorities to more than 135 schools.

Through Project Saaf Samudra in India, Upcircle gives commercial value to plastic that would otherwise end up in the sea. Waste workers receive good wages, health insurance and access to a dignified workplace. This project allows Upcircle to do their work "plastic-negative" because they collect more plastic than they use.

Having a diverse team is also valued at Upcircle's headquarters. Women, people of color, people with disabilities and members of the LGBTQ+ community are strongly encouraged to apply for jobs at Upcircle.

Ingredients

Upcircle started out making cosmetics from upcycled coffee grounds. But now the brand features many more upcycled ingredients, such as chai herbs, date seeds and flower petals. Each of these ingredients offers unique benefits to the skin or contributes to the product's fragrance.

Moreover, the other ingredients in the cosmetics are COSMOS-Approved and contain no SLS, SLEs, parabens, mineral oil, perfume and sulfates. The upcycled ingredients themselves cannot be certified because they are residual products from other industries.

For these industries, such as the juice industry, wood industry, tea industry and shea butter industry, partnering with Upcircle is also beneficial because it means they still earn something from their residual products, which are put to good use.

Because the remaining ingredients are approved by the COSMOS standard, we can be sure that no harmful chemicals are present in the cosmetics. Good news for both you and the planet! Some of the ingredients are also of organic origin; these are indicated with an asterisk.

However, preservatives are required to ensure that your Upcircle product remains good for 6 to 9 months after opening. The package sizes are tailored to this time period so that you are not left with excess product. Upcircle considers what the best agent to add to a product is and chooses the most natural and safe option.

Circular packaging

Upcircle's packaging is made of reusable and recyclable materials. The jars are glass and the lids are aluminum. The products that come in tubes have a tube made of aluminum. The "soap bars" are in cardboard boxes. Some glass jars like the serum have a pipette made of plastic or a plastic pump, but to reduce waste, you can order refills for these. At some zero-waste stores you can even have your empty containers refilled so there is no new packaging involved.

Short chain

The length of Upcircle's supply chain, varies by product. Because the ingredients each have their own origin and sometimes come from different locations depending on the season, it is difficult to establish an average length of the chain. What we do know is that all ingredients are processed locally into products in the United Kingdom.

Animal

The brand uses only plant-based ingredients, so it is totally suitable for vegans! They also do not test on animals; to guarantee that to you they have Leaping Bunny certification and have an 'animal testing policy'.

Vision

Upcircle wants to go against the negativity of the beauty industry and instead wants to inspire self-confidence and authenticity. Therefore, the brand is body positive, gender neutral, for all ages and encourages diversity. Upcircle's models are clients, family and friends. Real beauties!

To make sure you get the most out of your Upcircle skincare routine, there is a how-to video for each product with tips on how to use it.

Transparency

Upcircle is very transparent about its sustainability story and ingredients. Only their exact origin is not known. The name of the factory where Upcircle produces all its products has been disclosed to COSH! Upcircle also answered all our questions in an interview. Therefore, Upcircle scores high on transparency.

Would you like to start a circular skincare routine? At Upcircle, you'll find all the products you need to take care of your skin and make it glow, from day cream to scrub! Check the map below for local outlets.

Where to buy UpCircle?

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