Why you need to take a mini-break this Plastic Free July

2 min read

This Plastic Free July, here at SBTRCT we're focusing our attention on the problem with Travel Minis. And it's a big one.

The global travel sized toiletries market is expected to expand to 3.3 billion by 2030 - but that the UN has coined a “hotspot issue” for sustainability because of how difficult they are to recycle.

To help raise awareness of the issue and encourage those going away to "Take a Mini-Break", we’ve partnered with the quite brilliant and multi-award-winning, activist illustrator Jasmine Hortop, to paint a picture of the damage caused by plastic pollution in our oceans.

London-born and Bristol-educated Jasmine, who lives a nomadic lifestyle, living and working in a beautifully converted van, uses her artwork to help drive positive change and work towards a more sustainable planet. “I am passionate about working with people who contribute to bettering the earth, so SBTRCT’s ambition to clean up plastic pollution within the beauty industry resonates enormously. I hope that this partnership drives awareness of the issue and helps people to rethink their holiday spending habits.”

Here are the facts on the issue...

Travel Minis along with Pick & Mix toiletries are growing YOY - and so does the plastics crisis.

Travel Minis are hugely problematic in the recycling sorting process because of their small size.    

The UN and World Travel & Tourism Council named Single-Use Plastic (SUP) toiletries as a hotspot issue for sustainability with a reported 980 tonnes of travel-sized toiletries being dumped every single year.

The state of California has even banned hotels from providing guests with travel sized shampoos & lotions, leading the way in ‘avoidance’ best practice for plastic pollution.

There is an estimated 171 trillion pieces of plastic floating in the world’s oceans today; a figure that is expected to quadruple by 2040 if we don’t change behaviours.

A WWF (2019) report highlighted that plastic waste produced in the Mediterranean increased by up to 30% in the summer months, correlating with tourism seasonality.

Disposable toiletries are the second most likely cause of plastic pollution within travel accommodation, responsible for 31% of their plastic waste.

Collective action makes a massive difference.

So give the planet a break and take a Mini-Break.

Take a Mini-Break illustration by Jasmine Hortop
Jasmine Hortop photograph by Bella Bunce

1) Stylus - Travel Beauty Transformed

2) United Nations Environment Programme, 2021

4) PLOS One

5) World Wildlife Foundation

3) CNN Travel