Cosmetic packaging trends: 2020

Kristin Ellen Roy Hi there! I'm Kristin, a New England-based graphic designer with a passion for branding, packaging, and great typography. I've been working in the industry for over 10 years, and have had the privilege of helping many diverse companies tell their stories and elevate their brands. Currently, I spend my days working as a creative at BRIGADE in lovely Hadley, MA and spend my nights freelancing.

In 2019, we saw a shift in cosmetics packaging — environmentally friendly personal care products started having their moment. It is becoming standard practice in the cosmetics industry to have both eco-friendly packaging and products. We are seeing both consumers and brands alike embracing a cleaner, more environmentally friendly approach to beauty. Sustainable cosmetics packaging initiatives have become inescapable.

Examples: Lush, Elate, Thrive Causemetics, Nudi, Fat and the Moon, Drunk Elephant, and others

Ways to make your packaging more environmentally friendly:

Create refillable packaging

Designing packaging that has the ability to be refilled means that your packaging will not only be environmentally friendly, but that the consumer can continue to buy your product. Refillable packaging means that consumers will want to keep it around for longer, and it’s less likely to end up in a landfill.

Cut Out Wasteful Elements From Your Packaging

There’s nothing wrong with adding some creativity to your cosmetics packaging; but it’s important to seek out eco-friendly options. Attractive packaging has always been a huge asset to beauty brands. Multi-layered packaging designs have often been used to signify “luxury” or “high end”, and though this is visually appealing, it can be very wasteful. Are there any packaging elements in your design that don’t serve a clear purpose?

Experiment with Unusual and Innovative Packaging Materials

Cork is not only durable, but 100% biodegradable and waterproof. Bamboo packaging has also gained popularity due to being compostable and low-impact to grow. Seaweed, cornstarch, and even mushroom fibers are now becoming viable packaging materials. Additionally, using paper packaging means that products that can be reduced and reused, are 100% recyclable and fully biodegradable.