Just in case you haven’t heard… Q+A is now listed in hundreds of UK stores and online with Holland & Barrett! Whilst we’re a little disheartened not being able to cheer you all to pop into your local branch and see our rainbow of products sitting on the shelves, there is still plenty to cheer about! Primarily, that we’ve partnered with a company that shares our brand values and is actively working to improve the retail world for the better. (And that gives us a great little excuse to let you know how we’ve been trying to do the same!)
Holland & Barrett champions reducing the impact of highstreet retail on the planet, in a holistic approach which covers all product categories, suppliers, and retail locations. This is thanks to their Plan-It Green project. You’ll find them strictly against using microplastics, SLS or SLES, and animal cruelty, their beauty section awash with vegan-friendly skincare and cosmetics. No need to scrutinise the INCI list on each product, H&B loves simple, natural ingredients, asking brands to innovate where others stick to their potentially harmful ingredients (better safe than sorry!). Holland & Barrett also look to source over 95% of their products from suppliers in the UK to considerably reduce the need for sea and air freight. We love to support our fellow UK brands, especially if it encourages keeping production and sourcing within the country to reduce transport emission!
Just like Q+A, H&B cares about educating their customers on all things green beauty, but it doesn’t stop there! H&B go far to provide qualifications for their staff to attain to give certified, relevant advice to an entire spectrum of people. That’s what I’d call care!
So, if you’ve spent some time with us, or just had a look over our website, you might already be well aware Q+A is 98% natural (and sourcing ingredients from sustainable places, and the UK as much as we can), and loves to be as informative as possible… But what else?
When it comes to packaging, Q+A has made some conscious decisions to move in the right direction. We decided to use glass wherever possible, as it has an indefinite recycling life, and PET plastic (the most widely recycled form of plastic) with 10% recycled content elsewhere. If you’ve received an order from us, that tissue paper is made from soy and is biodegradable, plus our shippers are totally plastic-free. And this goes for PR send-outs too.
But it’s not all on the products themselves, but our manufacturing processes. As an indie brand, we have the benefit of assembling and filling our products in-house where we can monitor and reduce our CO2 footprint. For example, using filling machines which operate using air compression, rather than electricity. Carrying out a large number of manufacturing processes at the Q+A HQ also means our products are not being sent from location to location for different manufacturing process! It may not seem like huge steps, but reusing our cardboard boxes and pallets, and using the recyclable wrap and packing paper are ways our team are sticking to the three R’s of sustainable practice; reduce, reuse and recycle. And whilst we’re talking about minimising waste, our small batch production method means product waste is at an extremely minimal level in our production facility!
We’re always looking for suppliers who are also doing their part, and as a result, are involved with tree replantation run buy one of our suppliers known as the Eco-Packaging Alliance. The global scheme has planted almost 10,000 trees worldwide, everywhere from the Amazon rainforest to Vietnam!
Now, I recognise we’re not the epitome of perfect sustainability, but the team here are always looking at new ways to improve… not to brag, but for the benefit of our earth. We want to give you the peace of mind that your skincare is a step towards clean living, not a step away.
So, pop over to Holland & Barrett's online store to witness this wonderful pairing in action!
Amy @ Team Q+A
Online community coordinator at Q+A and wishful novelist