- Lush (company)
Lush is a company, based in
Poole, Dorsetin the UK, that produces and sells fresh hand-made bath products, soaps, body lotions and cosmetics. The first Lush store opened in 1994 at 29 High Street, Pooleby the husband and wife team of Mark and Mo Constantine. [ [http://usa.lush.com/cgi-bin/lushdb/about.html?expand=about] ] [http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2007/apr/13/retail2] Lush fosters environmental awareness and is against animal testing. Since July 2007, mail-order goods have been packed using popcorn as filler rather than the shredded paper used previously. According to an article in "The Guardian" [ [http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/ethicalliving/2007/08/popcorn_blog.html] ] the popcorn is 60% lighter than the shredded paper packing, saving 10% on shipping costs and using roughly the same amount of energy to 'pop' as to shred the paper.
Since the first Lush shop opened in the
United Kingdom, they have expanded to more than 500 stores located in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Macedonia, Malta, Morocco, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emiratesand the USA.
Lush makes many products solid to reduce packaging waste and the need for preservatives. Solid products are sold wrapped in paper or in small bags. Some examples of Lush's solid products include
Bubble bath, shampoo bars, hair conditioner bars, and massagebars. Lush's founders invented the bath bomb, a solid fizzy ball that dissolves in the bath releasing scent and, in some cases, confetti, flower petals or seaweed. [http://www.lush.co.uk/categories/Emotibombs_1702.aspx]
Lush sells its products through its stores and through direct mail order from the company. Lush stores, in countries outside of the U.K., are either franchised or the result of a partnership with an investor in that country. [ [lush.com] Under the link partnerships and franchises]
Lush lists their product ingredients in English as well as Latin, and utilizes fresh fruit, vegetables, other plant products, and safe synthetics. Ingredients are listed in descending order of quantity used in making the product. Lush uses fresh ingredients for their products, and so inventory is maintained at lower levels to ensure that only fresh products are sold. Many products are labeled with a use-by date. In addition, Lush tries to reduce the use of synthetics in their products.
All Lush products are
vegetarian, in that they contain no ingredients that require killing an animal, and only 25% contain animal products like beeswax, honey, free range eggsand lanolin. Products which contain no animal ingredients at all, are marked as veganwith a bright green 'V' in Lush catalogues, on store displays, and on the container itself. Approximately 75% of the products at Lush are vegan.
Some Lush products use
Paraben-based preservatives, which have been shown to reduce male fertility [cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/187992.stm|title=BBC News - Health - Toiletries 'feminise' men] and have been linked to breast cancer [cite web|url=http://www.organicconsumers.org/bodycare/breastcancer090604.cfm|title=Cosmetics, Parabens, and Breast Cancer] . Parabens are the subject of intense scientific speculation. Some other ecologically-conscious stores [cite web|url=http://www.thegoodhuman.com/2007/06/21/what-are-parabens-and-why-should-you-avoid-them/|title=What Are Parabens And Why Should You Avoid Them - The Good Human] have refused to use parabens altogether. Lush only uses methyl and propyl, which have been used in food preservation for decades. Only the liquid products contain the Paraben. Solid Products have no Paraben in them.
Lush does not buy from companies that carry out, fund or commission any
animal testing. [cite web|url=http://www.lush.co.uk/LushLife/StillAgainstAnimalTesting.aspx|title=Lush - Still Against Animal Testing] The company claims that this offers a greater incentive for companies to stop testing on animals than the "fixed-cut off date" approach used by peers. Lush will not boycott a company or ingredient for testing in the past. Therefore, a company that currently tests on animals still has an incentive to cease all current testing. [http://www.lush.co.uk/LushLife/StillAgainstAnimalTesting.aspx] Lush itself tests its products on human volunteers before they are sold. [http://www.lush.co.uk/LushLife/StillAgainstAnimalTesting.aspx]
In keeping with its stated ethos, Lush has also begun to phase out its use of sodium palm kernelate. Sodium palm kernelate is derived from trees in the natural habitat of orangutans. Although Lush has been involved in multiple replanting efforts to neutralize their use, the trees have not been growing as quickly as anticipated. Greenwash, a pine scented soap, is the first soap to be made using palm-free soap noodles, although it still contains SLS, which is derived from palm oil. Fact|date=May 2008
In 2007 Lush started openly supporting small radical campaigning groups by sending a dozen groups cheques for £1000 each, including road protests groups such as Road Block and NoM1Widening, Seeds for change (activist training), Hacan Clear Skies (anti-aviation group), and Dump the Dump (which is flighting against an incinerator)cite web|url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2007/apr/18/activists.guardiansocietysupplement|title=Guerrilla giveaway|date=
2007-04-17|author=Bibi van der Zee|work= The Guardian|accessdate=2008-01-15] . They introduced the "Charity Pot" body lotion, each pot promotes a different small charity on the lid, and the full purchase price (except for VAT) goes to charity [cite web|url=http://www.lush.co.uk/products/Charity_Pot_1923.aspx|title=CharityPot|publisher=Lush|accessdate=2008-01-15] . They have also introduced a range of "Go Green" products that they say are inspired by Rebecca Lush(no relation), a roads campaigner who set up Road Blockin the early 1990s, pied Jeremy Clarksonfor his glorification of the car and who now works for the Campaign for Better Transport [cite web|url=http://www.lush.co.uk/products/Go_Green_Fragrance_Spritzer_2920.aspx|title=Go Green Fragrance Spritzer|publisher=Lush|accessdate=2008-01-15] .
Lush is a privately-owned company with only a small number of shares available on an invitation basis only. The company's growth is based mainly upon partnerships and franchise holders. The company also owns the "B never too busy to be beautiful" brand, which has outlets in
Poole, Leeds, Carnaby Street, Covent Garden, and Oxford Street.
* [http://www.lush.com Company website]
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