ethique – my review of the Beauty Brand that’s raising the eco-friendly bar!

The World’s First Zero-Waste Beauty Brand finally arrives in the UK!

I never thought I’d hear myself say this but I think I’m in love . . . with a shampoo bar. When Ethique asked me to review their beauty bars I was up for the challenge, despite the fact that I am most definitely not a beauty blogger. But I think that places me in the perfect position to give you an honest review.

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ethique Beauty Bars

I rarely wear make-up and I spend most of my days in walking boots and wooly hats, out in the Cornish countryside. I once went 10 years without going to the hairdresser. Having said all that I do take care of my hair and my skin. And I have always tried to avoid harsh chemicals, mostly because I have very sensitive skin. But, something else is driving me to write this review. Something very much on everybody’s minds these days: PLASTIC WASTE.

Ethique’s is the only company in the world devoted solely to producing handmade solid beauty bars in place of liquid beauty products. This means no plastic bottles. Even their bar’s packaging is 100% recyclable.

As I have said before Cornwall is, I feel, ahead of the pack when it comes to the plastic-free movement. Penzance officially became the UK’s first plastic free town back in 2017, with Newquay and Falmouth quickly following suit. More and more businesses are shouting about their eco-friendly credentials. And Ethique, like Cornwall, is ahead of the game and has plenty to shout about! Since the business was started in 2012, by Brianne West in her New Zealand kitchen, it has saved over 3.3 million plastic bottles from production and subsequently disposal. An epic achievement. Amazingly their lab also runs on 100% renewable energy and the brand donates 20% of it’s profits every year to animal charities.


Brianne says: “Myself and the Ethique team are passionate about the values the brand stands for and the change we are creating in the world. Together, we have been able to create a business that has a positive, tangible effect on the environment and that will always be our priority.”

*All of Ethique’s bars are vegan, cruelty-free and palm oil free!*

So, – what about the product? – I hear you ask. It is all very well to have all these green credentials, but do the bars really measure up? Down to the review. Ethique sent me their –

  • Frizz Wrangler Shampoo bar
  • The Guardian Condition bar
  • Pumice, Teatree & Spearmint Bodywash bar
  • And the nifty pink in-shower container

The Frizz Wrangler

I was a bit worried when I saw this shampoo was for dry, frizzy hair. My hair is dead straight, not really dry and has a tendency to look flat and lifeless, if the product is too heavy. But from the first wash I loved it! Unlike other shampoo bars I have tried, it lathered up like a dream! Loads of luscious bubbles!

But the main difference from the bars I’ve tried before is – absolutely ZERO residue! No stickiness. Just gorgeous shiny, soft hair. And just one Ethique Shampoo bar is equivalent to 3 bottles of liquid shampoo!

Brianne says: “Up to 75% of [conventional] shampoo and 90% of conditioner can be water, which is just crazy – you have water in your shower! Obviously water is an important part of the product, but i was interested in what happened if you simply combined the ingredients without it.”

Also Ethique’s formulas don’t contain any parabens, phthalates, dioxins or petroleum by-products. Their shampoos are also soap free.

ethique bars

Oh and did I mention it smells of yummy coconut!

The Guardian

After rinsing out the shampoo lather, you just run this condition bar through your wet hair. Weightless, this gentle detangler does it’s job with no fuss and no residue. Designed for normal to dry hair, it has lots of coco butter, coconut oil and zesty lime oil. And left my hair silky smooth and shiny. Like the shampoo bar The Guardian is palm oil free, vegan and cruelty free. And also like the shampoo bar a little goes a very long way – just 1 conditioner bar is the equivalent of 5 bottles of liquid conditioner! So with just these first 2 products I have already saved 8 plastic bottles. Go me!

Pumice, Teatree & Spearmint Bodywash Bar

This bar is perfect for me! Not only because I have sensitive skin but also because I have Keratosis Pilaris. This is a very common skin condition, especially in women. It is genetic and basically means you get tiny lumps, almost like goosebumps, on your upper arms and thighs. As well as the little bumps, this skin condition can cause dryness and itchiness. Most women develop it in their teens or twenties and grow out of it. I never have!

The best treatment is gentle exfoliation and keeping your skin healthy and moisturised. This Ethique body bar is specially designed to help tackle problem skin. The pumice gently exfoliates while teatree is a natural antiseptic. The spearmint gives the bar a refreshing scent and, like the shampoo bars, it is super bubbly and non-drying.

The last product that I want to review may seem at first glance the least exciting but there is more to it than meets the eye!

The Pink In-Shower Container

Now, of course this colourful little box has a very practical purpose – to keep your beautiful bars safe and dry while you are storing them in the shower. Simple. But this pink container is also eco-friendly. No plastic here! It is made from 100% non-toxic, biodegradable bamboo fibres, making completely compostable.


Ethique means ‘ethical’ in French and Brianne and the team are gearing up to change the landscape of the UK beauty industry in 2019. A change that will hopefully encourage many more of us to #giveupthebottle and pick up the bar! After trying some of their wide range of beauty products I can honestly say I am hooked.

If you want to know more, or to try Ethique’s products for yourself, pop over to their website:

Author’s Note: I was not paid for this review. This is my honest opinion on the products I was sent.

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9 thoughts on “ethique – my review of the Beauty Brand that’s raising the eco-friendly bar!

  1. I regularly try to make environmentally friendly purchases whenever possible. One of the issues that really stands out for me is the issue of financial cost. Many of these products that I see on sale in health food shops, farm shops etc etc are probably out of the price range for many people on a low budget. I have a reasonably good income but some of the prices make me think twice. If you are on minimum wage or no wage you may not have the luxury to state you are an environmentally friendly consumer. If you are skint are you really going to spend £5 on some shampoo when you can get it for £2 in a supermarket? It seems like these ‘green’ products are aimed with the middle classes in mind, in which case we will struggle to make a huge positive impact. The environment is everyone’s business but the environmentally friendly products are far from within everyone’s budget. Lasting change will require these products are more available to a wider market. People who live in an affluent area may be able to be environmentally friendly, people who are less well off have less available to them so may struggle. We need a culture change that’s affordable to all. It needs to become the norm.

    1. Hi Gary, i totally agree with everything you just said. I guess for me it is that we all have to tey and start somewhere. The more of us that buy/damand these products the more the price will come down to hopefully put it within everyone’s reach. The other thing I would say is that the bars may be a bit more than I would usually spend on a shampoo but one bar is equivalent to 3 bottles so actually doesn’t work out too bad at all really. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment, it is so important that we debate this stuff!

      1. Hi. Thanks for the reply. I hope the prices do reduce for people when the demand rises. I also think that when possible the companies if they serious about environmental care they should do their bit as well by making their products an option for the majority. Thanks for the discussion.

  2. I am all for reducing our reliance on plastic, but I have a real problem with the fact that Ethique’s products are being shipped to the UK from New Zealand! How can that be justified in terms of saving the planet? There are lots of wonderful UK natural beauty brands that manufacture everything here in Britain, including some great Cornish ones (I love Bloom Remedies And small brands are often open to suggestions/feedback from customers, so if they are not making shampoo bars, they might start if people ask for them. For me, sustainable living is not just about getting rid of plastic (which is essential) but also about supporting small local businesses so that we are giving back to our own communities.

  3. These all look pretty ace! I will definitely have to have a better look into trying them out! I love trying new products and that spearmint body wash bar looks like the sort of thing I would love!
    Also I am trying to use less plastic waste too so I feel like this would be a perfect place to start! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for your comments Chantelle! And really do give them a go! I genuinely loved the bars, as you can probably tell 😊Xx

  4. Thanks for giving me the name for those little bumps on my arms! I loved your honest response to the products since I am like you in using no makeup or fancy products.

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