Defra has been working with other countries in the Oslo and Paris Convention for the Protection of the North East Atlantic (OSPAR) to secure the voluntary phasing-out of microplastics in personal care and cosmetic products. This campaign is making progress. Following discussions at the end of 2015, the trade association Cosmetics Europe announced a recommendation to its members and the rest of the industry that the use of plastic microbeads should be discontinued. The British Plastics Federation has also said that microbeads should not be used in cosmetics.
The UK Government is supporting initiatives, such as Beat the Microbead, which help consumers to identify products that do or do not contain microbeads, so that they can make informed choices about the products they buy. Many cosmetics brands have now publically committed to removing microbeads from their products.