Eco-friendly items every working mum should have in her makeup bag

By Lucy Zender, creator and founder of Tweezerfile

Along with all the other juggling we working mums have to do, balancing looking our best and trying to make eco-friendly choices is another on the long list. Unfortunately, the beauty industry often has a use-it-bin-it-buy-another attitude, which isn’t great for the environment or our purses for that matter.

Here are some unusual items which are much more planet-friendly and will help give your make up bag a sustainability boost. Not to mention they are all likely to help ensure you are never looking anything less than your absolute best – always a bonus when dashing from the school run to a meeting!

Save every drop with a makeup spatula

You’re probably unwittingly throwing away an awful lot of makeup which is left at the bottom of tubs and tubes. I highly recommend cutting open your old tubes and scooping out what you can no longer squeeze out to make sure you waste less of your favourite products and save yourself money at the same time. That’s what makes a makeup spatula a great value purchase and one you will use over and over again, once you realise how much product you are wasting ordinarily. The Every Drop Beauty Spatula by Every Drop is available online from Amazon

A reusable cotton bud

A good old cotton bud can be a lifesaver at times. If you’ve done your whole face and smudged your mascara or eyeshadow, a quick precision swipe can prevent you from having to start again from scratch. However, unless you are ridiculously fastidious, these little buds tend to get ingrained with left-behind makeup mess, go fluffy and fester at the bottom of the bag so when you really need them, they can be worse than useless. Not to mention the environmental impact. I know they’re only tiny, but the accumulation of these little bits of single-use plastic is a considerable contributor to the problems we are facing environmentally.

Enter LastSwab! A sanitary and reusable bud, or q-tip, a LastSwab can be cleaned using soap and water so they are convenient when you are touching up in the ladies. They come in small, convenient carrying case, which means they can stay clean in your makeup bag and, for the eco-conscious, one LastSwab replaces a massive 1,000 single use cotton swabs. What’s not to love?

Reusable makeup remover pads

Much like q tips, small products that do massive damage environmentally are the wet wipes and cotton pads we use to remove makeup etc. But you probably already know that. What might be news is that there is now a large variety of reusable makeup pads on the market.

When you get home from work or an evening out, use one of these beauties to take off your makeup. Generally, you can use your usual makeup remover just as you would with a single-use cotton pad, although some are made from materials which mean you can get away with simply using water.

Most of them can simply be thrown into the washing machine. Some even come with little wash bags to put them in when washing – practical and cute. Do check the washing instructions before you buy, though, as some require hand washing, which doesn’t work for everyone. They will last for up to about a thousand washes, which means you can use them over and over again for years.  And they don’t just work for removing make up, you can also use them to apply toner and other creams or lotions.

If you are taking them out and about in your cosmetic bag, small pads, like the ones from Tabitha Eve are the ideal size:

Mascara shield

You can save that LastSwab for even longer if you don’t make a mess in the first place. Woosh Beauty launched an innovation in 2018 which became something of an Instagram hit, including receiving praise from the British Beauty Council. It is a shield that not only protects your lids from smudged mascara, it also helps separate the lashes as you apply it. You can use it on both the top and bottom lashes and it even has a handle that can be used as a lash and brow comb.  and Amazon.

Disinfectant wipes

Most of us are aware that our favourite makeup bag will have residue of makeup kicking around in it that has been there far too long. And that’s a potential problem. After all, if you are applying makeup to skin that has recently been thoroughly cleansed or plucked, you don’t want old make up coming into close contact with open pores or follicles. A small amount of contamination can result in infection, which could end up looking rather unsightly. I recommend cleaning your bag, products and applicators regularly. If you’re applying your makeup at home, detergent and water are easy enough but when you’re out and about, I suggest wipes after each use, too. The Cheeky Panda supplies 100% biodegradable wipes, infused with purified water and natural antibacterial agents. Use your brushes, pencils, tweezers; then wipe, flush and go!

Keep those tweezers working perfectly

I’m sure you have tweezers in your makeup bag, whether for a stray eyebrow hair, applying false lashes, plucking out the odd grey from your hairline or removing a splinter or prickle from a little finger. But what if you go to do your essential task and your tweezers are too blunt? Don’t throw them out – sharpen them! As the name suggests, Tweezerfile is a file for your tweezers and just a few strokes up and down will restore your favourite tweezers to their former glory, meaning you can get at even the most stubborn little hair.

As an added bonus, you can use Tweezerfile as a nail file too so if you discover a snag on the way to a meeting or on a date night with your other half – this handy little tool can sort that out too.

Jade facial roller

A jade facial roller is a must for your makeup bag at home and should really be used daily as it provides a ‘work-out’ for your skin. It boosts circulation and eliminates puffiness, providing a sculpted look and making you positively glow. If you’ve been burning the candle at both ends or enjoying your Friday night tipple too much, you will really appreciate the effects of this little roller.

And, with regular use, it has a great anti-ageing effects, without the need to coat your skin in chemicals; improving texture and tone, plumping fine lines and reducing persistent wrinkles. You can put it in the fridge before use for even better results with tightening and relaxing. Available from a variety of outlets including Look Fantastic, SpaceNK, and CultBeauty.  

Get sparkly!

Ok, so not your day-to-day necessity but we could all do with some sparkle from time to time. If you’re heading to a family festival or think you might go from pub to club on a long-anticipated mums’ night out, EcoStardust comes in handy little pots that will sit comfortably inside your makeup bag “just in case”. Many glitter makeup products contain a lot of plastic but there are eco friendly versions available made from plant cellulose which is 100% biodegradable.

So, if you’re looking for ways to stay looking your beautiful best while helping the planet these little gizmos are worth working mums getting their hands on and keeping in their makeup bag, along with all the other everyday essentials.


Tweezerfile is an award-winning and innovative new beauty product that allows you to sharpen your old blunt tweezers and bring them back to life. Hold your tweezers with the blades together, then slide the tweezer up and down the Tweezerfile, gently applying equal pressure on the top and bottom blade. After a few strokes, your tweezers will be back to their old glory, gripping even the shortest hair! Available in two beautiful colours, coral and petrol blue. Available via and from Amazon.



Beauty Awards:

  • The Beauty Awards 2019 – Highly Commended
  • Global Makeup Awards 2019 – Silver
  • Pure Beauty Awards London 2019 – Bronze
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