Stella McCartney launches ‘responsible alternative luxury’ skincare

by | Aug 29, 2022

Stella McCartney, sustainable fashion mogul known for the first mushroom leather and fur-free-fur, launches Mother Earth-friendly skincare

Stella McCartney and LVMH’s beauty division have unveiled STELLA by Stella McCartney, a three-piece skincare line focusing on skin’s longevity over short-term results. 

On her eponymous launch, the fashion designer says: ‘We set out with an idea, and because we didn’t want to compromise – on results, the origin of our ingredients, and, of course, ensuring we minimised our impact on Mother Earth – we kept on trying.’ 

The cleanser, serum and restorative moisturiser have been two years in the making, pointing toward the meticulous detail that comes with creating a really natural product. Working with LVMH’s beauty division, McCartney has created products that are all at least 99% of natural-origin ingredients. 

The 0.3% to 1% drop in sustainable ingredients comes from preservatives, which ensure that the products maintain effectiveness and stay safe for use.

Have you been a purveyor of skincare since the mid-2000s? You may have realised that this isn’t McCartney’s first beauty launch. Care by Stella McCartney was a short-lived project which failed due to regulatory changes concerning organic labelling. On the project, the designer-come-formulator says, ‘My previous line was almost too ahead of its time. However, thankfully the industry seems to have caught up and my current line is everything I had always envisioned.’ 

Stella McCartney couldn’t be more correct. Since 2006, there have been huge developments in ethical sourcing, green formulation, and minimising negative manufacturing footprint on the environment. 

Stella McCartney

Since then greenwashing has become rife too. In a recent interview with The Sunday Times Style McCartney says: ‘It’s greenwashing, (SPFs) are all bad for the environment… I just can’t make one yet.’ Highlighting that just a few days after her first launch, the designer already thinking of expanding her range. 

How have the innovators at STELLA protected the products against greenwashing claims? Firstly, the brand has banned 2000 ingredients from its formulations, this exceeds the EU regulations. Then, the team drafted Quantis, an environmental sustainability consultancy, to verify unique ingredients including wild organic birch sap and organic rock samphire. 

Packaging is – as with most ethical skincare brands – at the forefront of the brand’s sustainability endeavours. All three products are housed in recycled glass bottles, and the After-Care serum, Restore cream and Reset cleanser can be refilled thanks to soft packaging pouches created from certified renewable sources. 

In true McCartney fashion, the skincare line takes it up a notch when it comes to transportation and testing. Sea freight is used for transcontinental stock movements as opposed to air transportation, this lowers the brand’s footprint by a third. What’s more, cotton pads and single-dose samples have been banned throughout the production process. 

The ‘responsible alternative luxury’ skincare line isn’t all about the (patented) ‘Skin Sustainability’, it is a homage to Stella McCartney’s upbringing in Scotland. LVMH Beauty’s Perfumer Francis Kurkdjian worked with McCartney to create the perfect fragrance of highlands in a bottle. Staying true to his motto: ‘I never start with the fragrance. That comes at the end of the story.’ 

The Reset Cleanser (£50), After-Care Serum (£110) and Restore Cream (£85) can all be purchased at and the Stella McCarney UK flagship store on Old Bond Street. Space NK will be stocking the products from mid-September.

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