We’ve put Crème de la Mer through a rigorous evaluation process, looking at everything from the recyclability of its iconic jar to the credibility of its sustainability claims. Because let’s face it – in 2024, it’s not enough for a product to just make us look good. It should make us feel good about our impact on the planet, too.

These tests aren’t just for show – they’re a critical part of holding brands accountable and pushing for more sustainable practices in the beauty industry. By examining factors like excess packaging, refillable options, and responsible sourcing, we can get a clearer picture of just how eco-friendly (or not) a product really is.

So, without further ado, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of Crème de la Mer’s packaging and sustainability profile. Will this luxurious cream pass the eco test, or will it leave us feeling a bit guilty about our carbon footprint? Only one way to find out – let’s get evaluating!

Recyclability Check

As a company, La Mer has made some commendable commitments to sustainability in recent years. They’ve pledged to make over 75% of their product packaging recycled, recyclable, reusable, refillable, or recoverable by 2025 – a goal that likely includes the signature glass jar that houses Crème de la Mer.

And indeed, upon closer inspection, it appears that the jar itself is made of recyclable glass. The metal screw top may also be recyclable, depending on your local recycling guidelines. So, from a materials standpoint, it seems that Crème de la Mer’s packaging is on the right track.

However, it’s worth noting that there’s no definitive information available on whether the jar is specifically designed to be reused or refilled. While the sturdy glass container could certainly be cleaned and repurposed for other uses, it’s not clear if La Mer has any official programs or guidelines in place to encourage this.

That being said, the fact that Crème de la Mer comes in a glass jar rather than a plastic tub is still a step in the right direction. Glass is infinitely recyclable, meaning it can be recycled over and over again without losing quality or purity. Plastic, on the other hand, can only be recycled a limited number of times before it becomes too degraded to use.

So, while Crème de la Mer’s packaging may not be perfect from a sustainability standpoint, it’s certainly better than many other luxury skincare products on the market. And with La Mer’s commitment to increasing its use of recycled and recyclable materials in the coming years, it’s possible that we may see even more eco-friendly options in the future.

Of course, the recyclability of a product’s packaging is just one factor to consider when making a purchasing decision. For many skincare enthusiasts, the quality and efficacy of the product itself will always be the top priority. And in that regard, Crème de la Mer certainly delivers.

But for those who are looking to make more sustainable choices in their beauty routine, knowing that Crème de la Mer’s packaging is at least partially recyclable can provide some peace of mind. It’s a small step, but one that can make a difference when multiplied across the millions of jars of Crème de la Mer sold each year.

Packaging Material Evaluation

Let’s start with the outer box. Crème de la Mer is known for its luxurious, high-end packaging, and the outer box is no exception. Made of materials like matte paper, rigid board, or even MDF wood, the box often features a high-gloss lacquered finish that screams “expensive”. There may even be foil stamping or embossing for the La Mer logo, adding an extra touch of opulence.

But while there’s no denying the visual appeal of this packaging, it’s worth asking: is it really necessary? Does a moisturizer, no matter how luxurious, really need to come in a box that could double as a piece of home decor? Or is it just an example of over-packaging, of using more materials than are strictly needed?

Moving on to the inner packaging, we have the star of the show: the iconic Crème de la Mer jar. Made of weighty, substantial glass and topped with a metal screw top lid, this jar is designed to feel as luxurious as the cream inside. It’s the kind of packaging that feels good in your hand, that makes you feel like you’re holding something truly special.

But again, it’s worth considering the environmental impact of this packaging. Glass is infinitely recyclable, which is a point in its favor, but it’s also heavier and more energy-intensive to produce and transport than some other materials. And while the metal lid is also recyclable, it’s not always easy to separate from the glass jar, which can complicate the recycling process.

So, where does that leave us in terms of Crème de la Mer’s packaging sustainability? On the one hand, the outer box and inner jar are both made of materials that are largely recyclable, which is a step in the right direction. And the fact that the jar is made of glass rather than plastic is also a plus, as glass can be recycled over and over again without losing quality.

But on the other hand, there’s no denying that Crème de la Mer’s packaging is a bit…extra. The outer box, in particular, feels like an unnecessary addition, a bit of luxury fluff that could easily be eliminated without detracting from the product itself. And while the glass jar is undeniably chic, it’s worth considering whether a lighter-weight, more minimalist option could be just as effective (and more sustainable in the long run).

Ultimately, the sustainability of Crème de la Mer’s packaging comes down to a balance between luxury and eco-consciousness. The brand has made some steps in the right direction by using largely recyclable materials, but there’s still room for improvement in terms of minimizing excess packaging and considering more lightweight, low-impact options.

For some skincare enthusiasts, the luxurious look and feel of Crème de la Mer’s packaging will always be a big part of the appeal. But for others, the environmental impact of all that excess material may be a turnoff, no matter how chic the end result may be.

Reusable Packaging Test

Unfortunately, when it comes to sustainability, this is one area where Crème de la Mer falls a bit short. After scouring the packaging and product descriptions, I found no indications that any part of the product is designed to be refilled or the packaging to be reused.

This is a bit of a disappointment, especially given the high price point of Crème de la Mer. With such a luxurious product, one might expect a more eco-friendly approach to packaging, such as a refillable jar or a take-back program for empties.

But alas, it seems that once you’ve scooped out the last precious dollop of Crème de la Mer, you’re left with nothing but an empty glass jar and a twinge of environmental guilt.

Now, to be fair, the glass jar itself is recyclable, which is a step in the right direction. And the heavy, substantial feel of the jar does lend itself to potential reuse – perhaps as a small vase, or a container for bobby pins and hair ties.

But without any specific guidance or encouragement from the brand to reuse or recycle, it’s all too easy for these jars to end up in the trash, contributing to the growing problem of beauty waste.

It’s a shame, really, because with a product as iconic and beloved as Crème de la Mer, the brand has a real opportunity to make a difference in terms of sustainability. Imagine if they offered a refillable version of the jar, or a discount on your next purchase when you returned your empties. Small steps like these could go a long way in reducing waste and encouraging a more circular approach to beauty.

But for now, it seems that Crème de la Mer is content to rest on its luxurious laurels, without much thought for the environmental impact of its packaging. And while that may be par for the course in the world of high-end skincare, it’s a bit of a letdown for those of us who believe that luxury and sustainability don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

Sustainability Claims Verification

On the surface, La Mer seems to be making some commendable efforts towards sustainability. They claim to harvest the sea kelp used in their products in a “responsible manner” from protected North American waters, which aligns with their overall sustainability commitments. However, without more specific details on harvesting locations, methods, and oversight, it’s hard to fully verify the extent of this responsibility.

Similarly, through their La Mer Blue Heart program, the brand has donated over $5 million to ocean conservation projects like protecting marine habitats. This is certainly a significant financial contribution that demonstrates a level of commitment to environmental causes.

However, when it comes to the packaging of Crème de la Mer itself, things get a bit murkier. La Mer has stated a goal of having 75% of their packaging be recyclable, reusable, or otherwise sustainable by 2025 – but it’s unclear if this target specifically includes the iconic Crème de la Mer jar. Without more transparency on the breakdown of their packaging sustainability goals, it’s difficult to give them full marks in this category.

For a brand as high-end and influential as La Mer, sustainability efforts need to go beyond just sourcing and donations. They have the platform and the resources to be true leaders in the eco-luxury space, pioneering new packaging solutions and setting a higher standard for transparency and accountability.

As consumers, we have the power to demand more from the brands we support. While it’s great to see La Mer making some strides towards sustainability, there’s still room for improvement – and room for us to keep pushing for better.

So, what’s the verdict on Crème de la Mer’s sustainability claims? It’s a mixed bag. On the one hand, they’re clearly making some efforts to be more environmentally responsible, with initiatives like sea kelp harvesting and ocean conservation funding. But on the other hand, there’s a lack of specificity and transparency around some of their claims, particularly when it comes to the packaging of their most iconic product.

Packaging and Sustainability: Verdict