‘We need to play our part’: French beauty brand Caudalie works to extend its sustainable mission to SEA
The brand was established in 1995 and after more than two decades, the brand is still privately owned by its co-founders, Mathilde and Bertrand Thomas. Today, Caudalie is best known for its vinotherapy skin care products, inspired by the family’s vineyard in Bordeaux, France.
Caudalie considers itself a pioneer in the clean and sustainable beauty movement, especially in the luxury beauty sector.
“For many years, the beauty industry thought that you couldn’t be a luxury brand whilst being a clean and sustainable brand, but things are changing. In 2022, we believe that sustainability is the new luxury and soon all brands will realise that being sustainable is not just a marketing gimmick but a necessity,” said Mathilde Thomas.
Over the years, the company has been reinforcing its commitment to sustainable practices. For the last 10 years, it has contributed to 1% For The Planet as a member and is one of their top contributors.
“We have been a member of 1% For The Planet for 10 years, and have already planted 10 million trees. This makes Caudalie the leading contributor among cosmetic brands worldwide for 1% For The Planet. This compensates our carbon footprint four times over – we are actually carbon negative but we believe we can do more,” said Thomas.
A couple of years ago, the company unveiled an eco-friendly facility to house its laboratories, offices and warehouses. The building is powered by solar energy and geothermal energy.
In 2020, the firm undertook plans to revamp its entire line of packaging, aiming to make them recycled, recyclable or refillable by 2022.
Tackling sustainability in SEA
Speaking to CosmeticsDesign-Asia, Thomas said the firm is aiming to extend its eco-friendly mission further in South East Asia, which she believes is still lagging behind in terms of eco-consciousness.
“The aim for us is to open the discussion on this topic amongst consumers, brands and retailers in SEA and we would love to have many other companies to join us,” said Thomas.
“The lack of public awareness around plastic pollution is a major challenge in SEA. We need to play our part together with retailers in helping to raise awareness to help consumers reduce their consumption of plastic each and every day.”
As of 2021, the company has planted 300,000 trees in Chiang Mai, as part of 1% For The Planet. In 2020, it co-founded 100% Plastic Collect, a project is based in Thailand, which aims to collect and recycle the same amount of plastic it produces annually.
Caudalie co-founder Mathilde Thomas
“We decided that we would remove the same amount of plastic that Caudalie produces every year from beaches in Thailand, recycle it locally, and give the recycled plastic in the form of bricks to the local population for their infrastructure. Last year we have collected more than 500 tonnes of plastic and it is just the beginning,” said Thomas.
Additionally, the company hopes to introduce its new refill packaging system soon, which is currently undergoing tests for one of its new collections.
“Once you have finished your moisturiser, you can simply twist and remove the inside cap and replace it by a refill which comes as a capsule. The initial feedback from consumers in Europe and the USA have been very positive and there is a strong demand for more refillable products,” said Thomas.