As pressure mounts on beauty brands to remove plastic microbeads from products, Waitrose has announced it will not stock branded cosmetics containing the tiny terrors from September this year.
It says its own-label beauty products have never contained microbeads and will now extend this stance to other brands.
The supermarket is also taking the extra step by switching from plastic to FSC-certified, biodegradable paper stems for its cotton buds, without upping the price.
Dr Clare Cavers, Manager of The Cotton Bud Project, which campaigns on this issue, comments: "This is an excellent example of a major supermarket chain taking a lead, and we hope that more companies will soon follow suit."
Plastic microbeads and cotton bud stems find their way into marine ecosystems, causing serious harm to wildlife and, potentially, humans – people who eat fish could be ingesting the plastic themselves second-hand.