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Nordstrom Launches BeautyCycle Nationwide

Retail giant attempts to increase recycling of its beauty products.




Nordstrom Launches BeautyCycle Nationwide

Each year, more than 120 billion units of plastic packaging are used by the beauty industry to protect its products, but a minority of that packaging gets recycled. Nordstrom aims to change that with the nationwide launch of BeautyCycle in October 2020.

Customers can now bring in their empty beauty product packaging to be recycled at any of Nordstrom’s full-line stores or Nordstrom Local service hubs in the continental United States. Through this program, Nordstrom aims to take back 100 tons of beauty packaging by 2025 to ensure it’s recycled.

Eco-minded beauty shoppers, who might have difficulty getting their products’ packaging recycled in the past through their municipal recycling centers, can now enjoy their beauty products and keep their sustainable sensibilities. “We understand our customers care about sustainability, and we want to help them move toward a zero-waste beauty routine so they can look great and do good at the same time,” says Gemma Lionello, executive vice president, general merchandise manager, accessories and beauty, at Nordstrom. “We’re proud to partner with TerraCycle on a solution to help our customers reduce their beauty packaging waste.”

How does it work?

  • Starting October 1, customers can bring their empty beauty products to any Nordstrom or Nordstrom Local to be recycled. BeautyCycle boxes will be available in the beauty department.
  • Nordstrom will send the content of these boxes to TerraCycle where they are cleaned and separated into metals, glass and plastics.
  • Those materials are then recycled based on the material composition. For example, plastics are recycled into a wide range of new products including park benches and picnic tables, while metals are reused as base materials for stamped product applications like nuts, bolts, washers and rings.

What items can be recycled?
Customers can bring empty cosmetic, haircare or skincare packaging regardless of brand or purchase location. This includes:

  • Shampoo and conditioner bottles and caps
  • Hair gel tubes and caps
  • Hair spray bottles and triggers
  • Hair paste plastic jars and caps
  • Lip balm tubes
  • Face soap dispensers and tubes
  • Lotion bottles, tubes, dispensers, and jars
  • Shaving foam tubes (no cans)
  • Lip gloss tubes
  • Mascara tubes
  • Eye liner pencils and cases
  • Eye shadow and tubes
  • Concealer tubes and sticks


Linda Casey is the editor-in-chief of BXP.

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