Beitrag Microplastics in cosmetics and the sea

Microplastics in cosmetics and the sea

Plastic in the sea, large rubbish whirlpools consisting of plastic pieces of all sizes and widely distributed microplastic - this is the worrying situation in our oceans.

Plastic in the sea, large rubbish whirlpools consisting of plastic pieces of all sizes and widely distributed microplastic - this is the worrying situation in our oceans.

Large pieces of plastic are broken down more and more over time by wave action and UV light until they become microplastics. In addition, these tiny plastic particles also end up in wastewater and eventually in the sea when washing textiles containing synthetic fibres, as abrasion from car tyres and as an additive in cosmetics. Sewage treatment plants cannot filter out microplastics. Plastic particles attract pollutants from their environment like "magnets". Such polluted plastic is eaten by fish, mussels, worms and seabirds and ends up on our plates with many a supposed delicacy from the sea. Microplastics can also be detected in sea salt.

We are still allowed to use microplastics in cosmetics. "It is found in peelings as an abrasive, in shampoos for a delicate plastic film around the hair or in creams for that smooth feeling," explains Sabine Hentschel from the consumer advice centre in the DHB - Netzwerk Haushalt. "Those who want to avoid these ingredients often don't find too much help with the "ingredients list" and the many foreign-sounding names." The Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz (BUND) offers a shopping guide on its homepage that lists cosmetic products that contain microplastics and are therefore better to be avoided. You can also search for plastic-free cosmetics with free smartphone apps such as beathemicrobead, codecheck or ToxFox.

Newsletter abonnieren

des DHB – Netzwerk Haushalt, Landesverband Hessen e. V.