Microplastics are solid synthetic polymer (plastic) particles, insoluble in water. Due to their small size (<5mm) they often pass through sewage water filtration systems and can pollute waterways; microplastics impact the food chain as they can be ingested by marine organisms. Cosmetics/ personal care products account for 2% of microplastic pollutants in the ocean*.
Ahead of legislations, A.S. Watson has taken the positive step to ban the use of microplastic in rinse-off Own Brand cosmetics/personal care scrub products development since 2014.
To further fulfill our commitment to the environment, A.S. Watson has decided to extend the ban to all rinse-off cosmetics products / personal care products containing microplastics, and targets to end the sales of such products by end 2019. Where A.S. Watson subsidiaries are bound by legal requirements in their markets, they will work towards full compliance with the respective laws accordingly.
*Source: Boucher, J. and Friot D. (2017). Primary Microplasticsin the Oceans: A Global Evaluation of Sources.