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In Your Face is a media-based collective project with participants from all over the world, the ocean conservation collective Ocean. Now! realized together with the conceptual artist Swaantje Güntzel.  The project replicates the artwork Microplastics II by Swaantje Güntzel on “familiar faces”. The portrait series includes 56 portraits in collaboration with Ocean. Now! created with the photographers Saskia Uppenkamp and Tomaso Baldessarini.


Over a period of 3 months, ocean lovers collected microplastic samples from beaches around the world. These appear symbolically in the form of a “beauty mask”. The bleeding nose represents the destructive nature of microplastics. The project aims to send a clear message: it is time to finally ban microplastics in cosmetics and cleaning products. It's time for us humans to look ourselves in the eye.


Every year, more than 42,000 tons of microparticles enter the environment in the European economic area, which has a variety of negative effects on living organisms and ecosystems. More and more studies are now pointing to the significant risk to human health. Since the end of 2018, Ocean. Now!, together with 20 partners, including NGOs, cosmetic brands and foundations, campaigned for a comprehensive restriction that includes not only solid microplastics, but also dissolved synthetic polymers. 


In October 2023, the campaign on “Microplastics in cosmetics and cleaning products” achieved success - after 13 years of negotiations, the EU restricted intentionally added microplastics in cosmetics and cleaning products. Ocean criticizes. Now! remains the 12-year transition period granted to make-up product manufacturers to reformulate their products. Nevertheless, the NGO sees the EU regulation overall as a stage victory. Transition periods of four and six years are set for “rinse-off” and “leave-on” cosmetic products. 

The exhibition In Your Face has been shown in ten locations since 2021. The entire In Your Face project achieved a reach of over 12 million readers in online and print media and on television. Since 2020 it has also appeared in the English book “Pathway Approach and Pathway Advanced” (Westermann Verlag) for the secondary school in connection with a discussion exercise task.

The moment to protect the Ocean is Now!


Find out more about Ocean.Now! 






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