eco friendly glitter alternatives

Eco Friendly Alternatives to Glitter

Today let’s talk about eco friendly alternatives to glitter.

I don’t know about you, but I had been trying to keep my head in the sand about the environmental impact of glitter, of all things.  Much like tea bags, I didn’t want to believe that something so fun and seemingly innocuous as glitter could be harbouring a dark secret.

However, it is indeed true: scientists are calling for a ban on glitter.  Why?  Most glitter is microplastic – fragments of plastic less than 5mm in length.  This microplastic can easily be swallowed by marine life, proving fatal to them, and could potentially enter the foodchain.

More worryingly, in the same article it goes on to say that “most glitter is made of aluminium and a plastic called PET… PET can break down to release chemicals that disrupt hormones in the bodies of animals and humans“.  This is not good, so a ban on glitter, much like the ban on microbeads for the same reasons, would be very welcome.

This ban would mean a world without glitter.  Some nurseries are substituting glitter for lentils or rice for use in craft projects, but it’s not quite the same, is it?  And sticking lentils to your face at festivals may not produce the desired effect, and may cause people to give you a wide berth!

If you can’t live in a world without glitter, but don’t want to damage the environment then fear not.  The future is not lentil based because I have found six eco friendly glitter alternatives for all your glitter based cosmetic and crafting needs:

Eco Friendly Alternatives to Glitter

eco friendly alternatives to glitter uk


Bristol based EcoStarDust, whose clever slogan is “glitter without the litter”, sell biodegradable glitter in all the colours, and when I say all the colours I mean all the colours, in varying sizes from chunky through to fine.  The glitter is made from plant cellulose, and is reasonably priced at £3.50 a pot.  Delivery is free when you spend over £10 and 10% of profits are donated to environmental projects.

Eco Glitter Fun

Eco Glitter Fun sell biodegradable, cruelty free and vegan glitter from £3.50 a pot, again in all the colours and sizes you could possibly need.  Their glitter is made from a certified compostable film that will biodegrade in soil, compost or a waste water/ocean environment,

Fulfilled Wishes

UK based Fulfilled Wishes sell biodegradable glitter via their Etsy shop.  Prices are £4 for 5 gram jars, and they specialise in more chunky eco glitter.

The Mermaid Cave

The Mermaid Cave sell a beautiful range of eco friendly glitter, with all their glitter named after endangered ocean species.  The Mermaid Cave is the place to go if you are looking for zero waste biodegradable glitter as all glitter is sold in glass vials with cork stoppers.  Their glitter is vegan friendly, made from plant based materials and and the glitter will biodegrade in soil, compost, waste water and ocean water.  It’s priced at £5.99 for 8 ml of glitter of £9.99 for 20 ml of glitter.

The Soap Kitchen

The Soap Kitchen specialise in microfine eco friendly glitter, in a more limited colour palette.  Prices start at £1.50 for 5 g, but you can purchase in bulk bags, in bags of up to 500 g (a whole lot of glitter!) if you need larger quantities.  You can also get 5% off your first order when you sign up to The Soap Kitchen newsletter.

Wild Glitter

Finally, Wild Glitter sell EU certified biodegradable glitter made from natural compostable plant based materials.  A variety of colours and textures are available, from fine through to chunky.  Prices are reasonable too – they start from £2.75 for 3 ml and they can be purchased in recyclable pots or refill bags.

If you find any more eco glitter alternatives then do let me know in the comments below!


  1. Sounds fantastic, especially as blue planet are now highlighting the terrible effects of glitter on marine life and the planet. I work in a special needs school and the children there put everything to their mouths so this would be a great alternative. Thank you.

    • Good old Attenborough – he’s my favourite! Hmm, I’m not too sure even eco friendly glitter would be great to ingest – maybe the edible glitter you get for baking might be more suitable for craft projects in this instance?

    • Good question! I would say use it up in craft projects, but try and avoid using it for cosmetic purposes, where it’s more likely to be washed off under the tap or in the shower.

  2. Hi Wendy. I didn’t realise glitter contained micro plastic although it’s been in the news lately. Great idea to list a few eco-friendly alternatives.

  3. Thanks for this, I’ve spoken to my son’s preschool to ask them to stop using glitter (and plastic/foam stickers etc, etc) and it will be helpful to be able to point them to biodegradable alternatives. But I keep wondering – what about the glue they use? Is that equally a problem?

  4. I completely judged this before I read it and HOW WRONG WAS I!!! I have been enlightened. Thank you so much for this. I never had given it a second thought!

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  9. My issue is that all these glitter manufacturers are producing cosmetic glitter. And £5 for a bottle is fine when I go to Glastonbury once a year. But I am looking for eco-glitter for toddler-crafting. At home and also as an incentive to pass on to Children’s Centres and nurseries. Especially come christmas, glitter is everywhere. So to find a company that does really affordable eco-glitter in bulk packages for kid’s venues would be amazing. I still have craft glitter at home but it sits there, stupidly, because I’m too afraid to use it. I contacted our local authorities about that issue, by the way, and they said that they are not aware of glitter being a problem for the water plant. Now, he could just be a moron, or it’s not as big an issue as assumed. Which I don’t really believe. A follow-up with the water plant is still due.


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