Buy a perfume and save the earth? Sounds like a lofty promise and no one product can actually undo the mess we have made of our planet. But kudos to some sustainable beauty brands that are trying.
One of my favorites is Guerlan, which is supporting the world’s super-endangered bee population through its Guerlain for Bees Conservation Programme. Through the World Bee Day weekend, 20% of all the brand’s sales will be donated to the Programme, which runs bee schools, sustainability initiatives and supports beekeepers through the year.
A great fit in my mind, given the beauty brand’s long association with bees — ever noticed that their iconic perfume bottles are adorned with a myriad of bees on the bottom and a honeycomb design on the top?
This design has remained constant since 1835, when the first flacon was crafted Empress Eugènie, who wore the fragrance for her wedding to Napoleon III.
The shape of the Bee Bottles, as they came to be known, was inspired by the top of Napoleon’s column in the Paris’ Place Vendôme, which was the site of Guerlain’s first store.
The bee itself is an ode to the French royal family’s coat of arms and symbolizes immortality and resurrection. Plus, it could not have escaped the mind of founder Pierre-François-Pascal Guerlain how closely bees are associated with perfumery, through the denominator of flowers.
So, now that bees themselves are in danger, it’s entirely fitting that Guerlain steps in with a number of initiatives to resurrect these fragile, diminishing colonies.
Well, when you consider that 90% of the world’s flowering plants and more than 35% of the food crops rely on these tiny, buzzy workers for pollination — and hence survival — do you still think we can live without them?
World Bee Day is a way to save ourselves from a dystopia that’s not just honey, it’s about EVERYTHING. The food we eat, the flowers we love, the life we enjoy. Basically, they may be the third most important thing for the human race after the sun and water.
And it reminds me of what Einstein had said: “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.”
And these bees ARE disappearing at a frighteningly rapid rate. Think widespread use of pesticides, loss of habitat, WiFi signals buzzing though the airstreams, mono-cropping… it’s all causing bees to die out.
The problem is so serious that the United Nations has designated the World Bee Day (May 20th every year) and President Obama created the Pollinator Health Task Force.
So, how can we help? Some of the easiest ways:
🐝 Buy raw honey from local farmers
🐝 Sponsor a hive
🐝 Reduce the use of pesticides, fungicides or herbicides in your garden
🐝 Buy products that support sustainable agricultural practices
🐝 Get bee-friendly plants like lavender, honeysuckle, ivy, dahlias, rosemary and mint
🐝 Leave a water bowl outside for the busy pollinators
And share this post to raise awareness with your communities and networks. The decline of bees affects us all!
Tell us how you give back to our beautiful Earth in the comments section