Unilever and Dove are rethinking consumer product packaging
“At Dove, we’re on a mission to eliminate plastic waste without compromising the care of your skin,” a company spokesperson said. “The Dove reusable bottle brings us one step closer to that goal.”
The bottles are designed to be reused and filled with Dove shower gel concentrates which are packaged in recyclable and 100% recycled bottles. Consumers have a choice of two packaging options. Dove Reusable Aluminum Bottle + Body Wash Concentrate uses 50% less plastic after two refills, compared to standard Dove bottles. The 16oz bottle and 4oz refill sell for $14.99. Dove Reusable Bottle + Concentrated Body Wash uses 50% less plastic after four refills, compared to standard Dove bottles. The 16oz bottle and 4oz refill sell for $9.99. Both formats are available in three flavors: Daily Moisture, Cucumber and Shea Butter & Warm Vanilla. The products are available in January through e-commerce and at mass, food and drug retailers across the United States.
Dove says it has a lifelong commitment to consumers and reusable bottles.
The move is just the latest part of an effort the Unilever brand made nearly three years ago.
Dove currently has over 100 different projects running across the world, spanning all facets of its packaging. Preceded by the introduction of 100% recyclable PCR plastic shower gel bottles in 2019 and Dove 0% aluminum refillable deodorant in 2020, the introduction of Dove Reusable Bottles + Body Wash Concentrates is the latest move to fulfill the commitment brand to transition all Dove packaging to be plastic-free, made from 100% PCR or reusable/refillable plastics by 2025.
“While this innovative packaging system is currently only available in body wash format, we are exploring reusable bottles for other products for future release,” the spokesperson added.
To ensure measurements of this latest packaging move, Dove engaged independent sustainability consultants to calculate the environmental footprint of its concentrated body wash and refillable bottle, compared to its standard body wash of 22oz. The team looked at the impacts from sourcing to manufacturing and disposal.
“With this study, we concluded that after two refills of the aluminum bottle or four refills of the PCR bottle, reusable bottles and Dove Concentrate help consumers use 50% less plastic than if they bought our bottles. standard single-use 22 oz. body wash,” the spokesperson said.
Over the course of a year, there are additional benefits in key environmental impact areas, including reduced carbon dioxide emissions and energy savings.
Dove created both the 100% recycled plastic bottle and the aluminum bottle to help meet consumer preferences for price and material. For those who prefer to buy as little plastic as possible, the aluminum bottle is available at a higher price. Alternatively, the recycled plastic bottle is available at a lower price than the aluminum bottle.
Fast-moving consumer goods companies have had mixed results when it comes to convincing consumers to follow the “reuse, recycle” message. Dove executives note that Dove
Shower gel concentrates are packaged in 100% recycled plastic which can be recycled after use.
“Although you can also recycle the Dove reusable bottle, it is designed to last a lifetime. In fact, we believe in the quality of our reusable bottles so much that we give them a lifetime guarantee. If your Dove aluminum or 100% recycled plastic bottle is broken or damaged, we’ll replace it for free – no proof of purchase necessary,” the spokesperson said.
To have the greatest environmental impact and reduce plastic waste, Dove and Unilever hope consumers will continue to reuse and refill it. But if for some reason the consumer needs to recycle it, easy-to-follow instructions are available on the H2R logo found on the bottom of the starter kit for each component.