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Recycling our plastic bottles, bottle caps and black pots

Plastic isn't the root of all evil, but human reliance on the synthetic stuff is definitely creating a massive problem for the planet. That's where Lush comes in. We’re working hard on minimising our packaging footprint, which means our plastic packaging is plain, simple, recycled or even non-existent where we’ve reformulated naked alternatives. But if you're super attached to a potted or bottled product, and want to do your bit to save the planet too, this handy recycling guide will give you all the know-how you need.

Black and clear Lush pots

All of our PP (polypropylene plastic) product pots (AKA the black or clear ones) are made from 100% recycled materials, that then go straight back into our ‘closed-loop’ recycling system when you return them in-store. We take them from you, give ‘em another clean (we’d appreciate it if you gave them a good rinse out for us first, it can get a bit grubby in there if products left to lurk for a long time) and ship them over to the Green Hub where they get melted down and remade into black pots over and over again. 

What counts in the bring back five pots scheme?

  • Any full-sized black PP pot (not including sample pots).

  • Any full-sized clear PP pot (the clear pots that shower jellies come in).

  • Black PP mascara, lipstick wands and loose powder make-up tubs.

 

Whilst we don’t accept body spray bottles in the black pot scheme (as they are HDPE plastic and not PP plastic so they cannot go into the same waste stream) you can bring them in-store to be sent back to the Green Hub to be recycled.

How to recycle your black and clear plastic pots: 

  1. Give your pots a good wash when you’ve finished the product inside. (Get ‘em squeaky clean, please!) 

  2. When you’ve collected five, take them to your local Lush store so we can send them off to the Green Hub in Poole. 

  3. Receive a complimentary fresh face mask as a thank you.

Also feel free to upcycle our black pots. They’re handy storage containers when you are travelling, or great to pot plants with.

Plastic bottles

Our plastic bottles are made from PET clear plastic. This is the most widely recycled plastic in the world and almost every local council around the UK and Ireland will take these in household recycling bins. Whilst we could recycle them for you, it would take up a lot of extra resources to do so. We suggest that you pop these bad boys into your recycling bin at home (after giving them a good thorough clean of course).

How to recycle your plastic bottles:

  1. When you have used all the product, wash them well.

  2. Pop them into your recycling bin.

Plastic bottle tops/Lush black bottle tops

The good news is around 50% of UK and Ireland councils do accept bottle tops! If your local council doesn’t, we can accept small amounts of most drink bottle tops (soft drinks, milk, plant milk etc) in-store. These are collected to make bottle board that is used for furniture in our shops and sometimes donated to charities that can make use of them. However, we ask that you give these to us in small amounts as we don’t have the capacity to process bulk donations.

How to recycle your plastic bottle tops

  1. Remove any additional packaging attached to bottle top.

  2. Rinse ‘em out.

  3. Bring them into your local shop and we will send them to the Green Hub to be recycled for you.

Happy recycling!

Comments (12)
12 Comments

about 1 month ago

Do you also accept glass packaging as part of the 5 pots? I bought the Bubblegum lip scrub and I'm not sure it falls into this category? Many thanks! :)

espe.bretti_7203056

about 1 month ago

Hi, I live in denmark and I am collecting 5 pots but I still dont know how to do it if we dont have a shop here in denmark. Should I just recycle them with the others or there is a way that we can send them to you guys? thanks :)

leonorgraca2006_6441207

about 2 months ago

I was wondering if we had to take the labels off the tubs before returning them.

shonamacdonald_7050234

about 2 months ago

After seeing programmes on tv about UK 'recycling' ending up in other countries being buried and burned when we think it is being recycled responsibly I'm concerned that I have to put your clear plastic bottles in my household recycling bin. Would it be possible to put more products into your black pots instead of bottles - toothy tabs for instance? Is the company looking into the idea of having refill stations in store? Thanks

about 4 months ago

I know this is going to sound odd, but is there any way to return the tubs without getting a fresh face mask? There's no point me taking them as I just forget to use them, and the folk at my local Lush get sad and confused when I turn them down... :) I currently resort to giving my empties to friends who do the whole face mask thing but it's a bit of a faff to arrange, and I haven't yet dared to pounce on random strangers outside the shop.

about 8 months ago

I live a long way away form a store, so almost never get there to bring pots back. I get plenty of products by mail order. Would you consider a freepost address to send pots to for re-use? No need for a freebie, I'd just be glad the pots are getting re-used instead of discarded! Thank you for considering this :)

Lush Customer Care

about 8 months ago

Staff

Hi there, please email us on [email protected]. ~ Sam

lcucurullo_6878003

about 8 months ago

Have you considered a refill scheme for some of your products? Especially for the ones that currently come in your clear bottles. I steer clear of those because even though they are widely recyclable, as you very well said, the truth is we don't know where they end up. Also, recycling products over and over again, while definitely a step-up from single-use containers, demands a lot of energy that could be better used elsewhere. For loyal customers who regularly purchase many of your products over and over again, it would make sense to simply drop off the pots at one of your shops, get a refill and take the product back, IN THE SAME CONTAINER. I'm sure lots of people would welcome this idea, especially if you paired it with a symbolic discount to encourage packaging re-use. You could trial this in your biggest shops. Just a thought!

Lush Customer Care

about 8 months ago

Staff

Thanks for getting in touch. This is something that we're considering for the future. i'll pass your interest onto the team. Thanks again! ~ Sam

Lush Customer Care

about 8 months ago

Staff

Hi, thanks for getting in touch. We have looked into this and may be something we can do in the future. I will pass your interest into the team. Thanks again! :) ~ Sam