Milk + honey is an Austin-based brand that specializes in skincare products. The cream deodorant is a natural, aluminium-free, coconut and vanilla scented alternative to traditional deodorant, which keeps you smelling fresh all day. Moreover, it is free from sulfates and parabens, which have been linked to reproductive problems and different cancers. While I appreciate the transparency about the ingredients, I would want the company to provide more details about production, suppliers, working conditions and packaging, in order to assess the sustainability of the product accurately.
Ingredients: Organic Virgin Coconut (Cocos nucifera) Oil, Organic Shea (Butyrospermum parkii) Fruit Butter, Baking Soda (Sodium Bicarbonate), Organic Arrowroot (Maranta arundinacea) Root Powder, Organic Beeswax, Vanilla (Vanilla planifolia) Oil.
The milk + honey cream deodorant contains mostly organic ingredients from around the world, and is made of emollients and antioxidants, such as antibacterial organic virgin coconut oil and shea butter, naturally absorbent ingredients such as baking soda and organic arrowroot, and essential oils such as vanilla oil, for a pleasant scent. Sodium bicarbonate is used for product effectiveness, however, it can be abrasive and irritating on sensitive skin. Other starches, such as corn starch or activated charcoal powder could be used instead, but the company offers baking soda-free options as well.
The product is gluten free, paraben free, propylene glycol free and cruelty free. But even though it does not test on animals, it uses honey and/or beeswax in some of its products, including the cream deodorant Nº 20, so that they are not suitable for vegans. Milk + honey formulates with high quality, safe ingredients and essential oils, and it sources ingredients organically wherever possible. I would want the company to commit to always using organically sourced ingredients, and to provide more information about where the ingredients are sourced from, and who is sourcing them.
Milk + honey’s products are hand-made in Austin, TX, hand-filled and hand-labelled. However, the company is not transparent about the manufacturing process, labour practices, pay, and resources. The cream deodorant comes in a dark plastic component, but I believe that glass packaging would be more environmentally friendly. Moreover, most of the company’s products are stored in glass containers, and I would like to know why the cream deodorant is stored differently. Milk + honey does not say whether the packaging is recyclable or how it can be recycled, and it does not say whether it is entirely made of virgin plastic. I would want the company to disclose this, and I also think it would be great if it was able to ensure a circular packaging life cycle, by collecting, recycling or reusing it. Nevertheless, it is planning on releasing large bulk refills, which will reduce the number of single-use plastic units used for replenishment, but there is no concrete information available on how it plans to achieve and implement this. Moreover, the company only has a few locations in the United States, so I would like to know how most consumers would be able to refill their packages through this method.
In the late 90’s, Alissa Bayer, the founder of milk + honey, became aware of clean, organic foods, and everyday toxins and extended these acknowledgements to her company. Milk + honey was launched as a spa in 2006 to create an exceptional spa experience, enrich employee’s lives, and give back to communities. Since then, the company has 6 new locations. In 2014, it launched the milk + honey product line, and 4 years later, the company reformulated and relaunched the milk + honey cream deodorant. The company is committed to only using hyperclean premium, effective ingredients, which were created with the help of milk + honey estheticians, massage therapists, and stylists. I wish the company had a sustainability page where consumers could be informed about how it is sticking to its original values, the company’s progress in terms of sustainability, as well as what it has already done, what else it is trying to achieve, and how it will accomplish this.