Recently, as I was scrolling through Twitter like I do most-days, I came across an article declaring that Microbeads (found in facewashes & other liquid soaps) were being banned in America, so I was eager to find out why.
Firstly, I’ll mention that this caught my attention because like many of us, I have used products that contain microbeads, such as face washes as unfortunately I have spot-prone skin (see my tips here!). Though upon seeing this information, I’m going to avoid them.
Why you’re asking?
- Microbeads are any solid plastic particle that is less than 5 millimeters and is used for the purpose of exfoliating or cleansing, and are found in hundreds of products ranging from body scrubs to toothpastes but this means that when they are washed down drains they do not dissolve due to being made of plastic.
- They may also be posing a threat to the environment, in September 2015 a study in America by the Environmental Science & Technology reported that more than 8 trillion microbeads were entering the country’s aquatic habitats daily. The volume was enough to coat the surface of 300 tennis courts every day, but they are so small it’s near-impossible to clean up. The researchers also say that microbeads have contributed to a greater increase in microplastic polluting the planet’s oceans and lakes.
- They’re also posing a threat to aquatic life, as according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, some marine life mistake the small plastic as food particles. Scientists are still researching whether microplastics affect the health of the marine life once ingested and if any chemicals transfer to humans who eat those species later, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Therefore, if that happens in America, there’s no reason why the same isn’t happening across the world. Knowing this, does this change your opinion on products containing Microbeads? As I secretly hope the rest of the world can follow America’s lead and ban the products too.
Want to make a change? Sign the petition!