[unpaid/sample/prioradrelationship] I had really wondered what would happen to refill stations, given how shops have suffered a decline in footfall. I was in central London yesterday and while it was a delight to be able to walk around the city in comfort without crowds jostling, it’s also eerie because this is peak tourist season – and there aren’t any.
However, The Body Shop is ploughing on with their plans of 400 refill stations this year and another 400 next year, rolling out globally, eventually leading to the majority of their stores all over the world being refill points with 155 of those in the UK and Ireland. Refills are available for 12 best sellers – the products that are used the very most which comprise shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and hand wash. If their estimates are correct, the average refill user could save £76 a year as well as (combined) saving 25 tonnes of plastic annually. I’ve mentioned before their work with waste pickers in India who contribute to The Body Shop’s recycling aims – I don’t know of another brand that has chosen to work with such a marginalised group, but it works to give the pickers respect, fair pay and sanitary working conditions.
Just as a behind-the-scenes aside, these refills arrived with me in a RePack bag. It’s reusable packaging – you simply remove the address label, flip out the return address to Repack and put it in any post box from where it will be returned to be used again – and again, and again. Genius!
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I’m interested that Body Shop is doing refills- when the company first started, I am sure they did refills, as well as five or so sizes of bottles. Does anyone else recall this, or am I just making things up.
it’s ringing a bell with me but I can’t quite remember doing it myself….
I remember this clearly. I’d forgotten about the different size bottles though, but you’re right. I’m not sure if everything was refillable but all the shampoos and shower gels were, and the same with the perfume – that amazing big perfume station with all the different perfumes that are long gone – you choose from the cheaper plastic bottle or various sizes of glass ones.
I definitely remember refilling my ice blue shampoo in a middle size bottle and smaller travel bottle in Body Shop back in the 80s and coveting the huge bottles of bubble baths. I also had the ubiquitous White Musk perfume oil refilled at one of the huge glass perfume stations where you could test the various perfumes by dipping a glass rod into a bottle. I don’t remember how much you saved refilling but to a teen me it was worth it.
Those are such good ideas. I hope I get one in my area and I would totally refill a refillable bottle there, too.
I agree – great idea and I quite like the style of the refillable bottles.
Refillable shower gels, shampoos and conditioner is a great idea and I went for it very happy indeed. Even happier that there was a refillable body shop station near where I live as well.
However cleaning out the bottle prior to refilling is an ABSOLUTE NIGHTMARE.
Washing it out by hand took ages as the bottles with shower gel and conditioner produce foam and foam and yet more foam.
And despite taking forever and running a whole lot of water to wash them out apparently 3 bottles hadn’t been cleaned well enough as per the body shop person who refused to fill them. She suggested I do the wash in a dishwasher. I was happy to give that a go as she probably knew what she was talking about.
Well I tried that today. WHAT A NIGHTMARE. The foam filled the dishwasher and the whole of my kitchen floor. I then took the bottles out and washed them out by hand, mopped up all the foam and water off the kitchen floor and the. tried to run the dishwasher again.
And guess what it’s not working now with an error code. It won’t even turn off. I’m going to have to get someone in now and don’t have a dishwasher till this is sorted.
It’s practically a new dishwasher only 3 months old. If these refillable bottles and their foaming products have ruined my dishwasher I will not be happy at all.
Body shop really needs to get a better way of refilling these bottles.
I am happy washing out my
Bottles but if they are going be so particular about having zero product, non foamed bottles as if new than they are going to lose customers who are willing to use these refillable bottles and buy their products. Get fresh nozzles for each customer to keep it clean if they need to.
There are products in USA that are refillable. Surely it’s not as ridiculous as all this to get the bottles sorted to get refilled again. So much for trying to be environmentally friendly. Body shop is definitely not helping.
Oh dear – you’ve had an absolute nightmare with this!
It definitely has been. There have got to be easier ways.