It is said that responsibility is on all of us, as the “us” movement becomes less individualistic and more transcendent to the greater good. As Winston Churchill once said, “The price of greatness is responsibility.” In the face of beauty, we can uncover many sectors in which we can apply responsibility to achieve said greatness.
The shift in consumers’ mindset to require companies to do and be better falls in line with an overall wellness movement that integrates the feelings held both physically, and more often, emotionally about the products and companies they spend their hard-earned money on.
As beauty care is both:
- An individualistic routine by nature
- A community creating experience based on shared backgrounds, lifestyles, values, and ideals
You may ask yourself how responsibility applies to such a personal choice, and more importantly how you can affect that choice in your favor. Moving beyond surface level aesthetics, consumers expect authenticity, and that companies reflect their values. They are looking for you to surpass just the principle of nonmaleficence, which is based on concern to refrain from doing harm, and assume beneficence, which is an obligation to act for the benefit of others. See, consumers are capitalizing on the information age to wager a sense of control in the actions of companies, which is why transparency is a theme you will continue to see grow.
Let’s begin breaking down Social, Ethical and Environmental responsibility, and how these aspects fit into product development.
Social Responsibility Goes Beyond Culture
Social Responsibility holds us all accountable for principles that as children we did not feel the need to remind ourselves of. In the complexities of an ever-growing world, society requires more attention from us, delivers more pressures and forces us to reevaluate our position amongst our communities. In particular, the discussion around Inclusionary Beauty is to confront the division in the beauty space and reject the stereotypes. This shift unearths what beautiful means for entire groups of people who have felt ostracized, including people with disabilities, those over a certain size or age, those of low socioeconomic status, people of varying colors and nationalities as well as those not conforming to gender and orientation conventions.
Environmental Responsibility Allows for a Build-Your-Own Impact Story
Environmental Responsibility entails numerous facets allowing the initiative to lend itself to a build-your-own impact story. It is important to consider that consumers are seeking full transparency from beauty companies on their sourcing methods, production, ingredients, and overall sustainability practices. Being a brand that is inherently sustainable means clearly communicating the strides your brand takes, and how the products you are launching to the market correspond with consumers' drivers for a better earth. You can start with tactics such as responsible and natural ingredient sourcing, water conservation & preservation, waste reduction, and improved energy consumption to name a few.
A brand truly driven to make an impact will adopt a combination of those and others not mentioned here.
It is important to understand that most ingredients will not encompass all those tactics, there are however substantial developments in controlled environment agriculture which aims to not only encompass each of those pillars but to further preserve the environment by leaving existing ecosystems completely untouched and limiting carbon footprints. Technology advances such as these allow ingredients to be grown without the intrusion of pollutants such as pesticides or preservatives and are a completely natural reproduction process so there is no need for concern of GMO or crop scarcity as the growing is not dependent on location or weather conditions and can happen year-round!
Ethical Responsibility is the Scale that Keeps Us All Balanced
Ethical Responsibility is among the top concerns for today’s beauty consumers. As much as we have understood the negative impacts of depleting the earth's resources, we have further come to realize that depletion, at alarming rates, removes the economic opportunities of the impoverished regions we have been taking advantage of. This principle breaks down to more than just self-regulation. For instance, millions make a living off the cultivation of palm products across the globe, when corporations neglect to understand the impact of commandeering crops, local farmers become displaced with no work, resources, or other viable skills.
Making sure that there is fair pay for fair work is part of our responsibility as links in the supply chain. Working with the local communities who pick and process the crops in a responsible manner is important to those we partner with. Programs that focus on smallholder farming, upcycling, education and skills training, RSPO & Mass Balance are some of the initiatives our partners have established or taken part in to ensure a community has sustained resources and earnings to maintain local habitats and infrastructures.
Taking responsibility presents the opportunity to act, to instill good for all, and look to the future for the world we want. At Ross Organic, we pride ourselves in aligning with technology-driven organizations whose product development mirrors in the pillars of ethical, innovative, efficacious, and sustainable as is becoming standard in the beauty industry, and we implement continuous strategies to improve upon these pillars. Beyond that we understand the care and time it takes to launch your products and can assist you in understanding and incorporating real and specific actions to put these principles into practice. We invite you to connect with us as we provide concepts, ideas and evolving technologies that touch upon everything highlighted here, pressing trends and ingredient developments which allow you to pivot to meet changing consumer demands.