Aizome industrial textile wastewater

Even our waste is good for you, states the campaign for this year's most unique beauty product. The Japanese-German textile start-up AIZOME in partnership with German branding and advertising agency Serviceplan Innovation has launched WASTECARE™, a premium skin care product made from the wastewater of its textile dyeing factory.

Provocatively zero impact from the manufacturing process to the packaging that wraps it, WASTECARE is such an authentically clean 'waste' that it seems unreal. The whole point is to create a belief in a different way of consuming.
By rethinking the whole supply chain and avoiding the greenwashing trap for both companies and users, it is possible to restore the balance between people, the planet and general health.

How? By reminiscing ancient natural methods, with a dash of technology.

At AIZOME we believe that textiles should not just be harmless, but even healthy. That’s why our ULTRA™ dyeing process is 100% natural from farm to fabric.

— Misa Muto, Co-founder, AIZOME


All the pictures of the products are courtesy of AIZOME and Serviceplan


AIZOME uses plants, water, and ultrasound technology, instead of toxic chemicals, to consciously produce bedding infused with medicinal herbs “for your health, our workers and the planet”, they say.

A 360-degrees project that has ended up in a harmful product for the skin, which follows the manufacturing philosophy of AIZOME.

Inspired by ancient Japanese craftsmanship and holistic wisdom, their products are made from 100% GOTS-certified organic unbleached cotton and dyed exclusively with plants: with no finishes and no toxic waste AIZOME creates soft, high-quality fabrics while eliminating exposure to synthetic chemicals for their workers and wearers.


Some of AIZOME dyed fabric


The ultrasound process applied to the dyeing process.

Traditional plant-based dyeing has been around for millennia.Unknown to many, the word aizome evokes the ancient technique of dyeing fabrics with indigo to create Japanese blue, one of the most distinctive colors in Japanese tradition. Since 300 BC, when aizome fabric was carried on the Silk Road, aizome masters in Japan have been experimenting with the ancient method of soaking cloth in a mixture of crushed indigo and water.

Even then, the masters were improving the fermentation technique for indigo to produce sukumo, a mass of raisin leaves ferment for about three months, which made the color last longer.

Without chemical finishing, however, the color fades quickly, making it infeasible for mass production.The subsequent invention of synthetic dyes was the turning point, a technique that quickly replaced natural eyes in Europe and led to a decline in demand for aizome.
Then came innovation.

The start-up invented a patented ultrasonic dyeing process, AIZOME ULTRA, an innovative solution that binds plant molecules to the fibre, resulting in long-lasting colour and health benefits.

There is a wide range of medicinal plants that can provide a variety of wellbeing properties: Indigo colors the yarn blue and makes the fabric anti-inflammatory, which is beneficial for eczema-prone skin. Rubia produces a red pigment and helps relieve menstrual pain. Turmeric is used to create yellow, which also acts as an antioxidant.


Finally, the unique design system combines visual elements inspired by ultrasound and traditional Japanese culture. Created in collaboration with Workbyworks Studio, a New York-based, award-winning design studio, the package was conceptualized to create an intimate unboxing experience.

Packaged as a high-end beauty product, bottled in a medical-grade vial, and packed with fully recycled materials, WASTECARE™ challenges the preconceptions around waste.

— Han Gao, Founder and Designer, Workbyworks Studio


Your mind is pure when you can see beauty in waste - Mitsuo Aida

The packaging combines practicality with aesthetics. The cardboard layers reinforce the packaging so that it can be shipped without outer protection and recycled afterwards. Each stage of unboxing allows the user to get closer to the story of AIZOME through data visualization, fabric, and finally, the face serum.




The benefits of AIZOME have been recognised by the National Eczema Association as an innovation to improve the quality of life for people with sensitive skin.

Co-founder Michael's experience of his mother being diagnosed with cancer and her weakened immune system no longer being able to protect her skin from the harsh chemicals embedded in the fibres when she was forced to spend a lot of time in bed, led him to turn this lesson into knowledge. A doctor explained that the source of her irritation was probably the dark, synthetic dye in her sheets; by simply changing her sheets to undyed textiles, her skin irritation was significantly reduced, giving her a little more comfort on her journey with terminal illness.

AIZOME, which he co-founded with his current wife Misa, is about doing more with less. According to the UN, the textile industry is the second largest polluter of water. More than 1,500 synthetic chemicals, from formaldehyde to heavy metals, are used in production, causing 79% of dermatitis cases triggered by chemicals in dyes.

WASTECARE is one of our simplest product innovations yet. All it took to develop was a shift in perspective and good design: Industrial waste — presented as high-end skincare. Demonstrating not only AIZOME’s world-changing technology — but also the power of creative thinking”

— Alex Schill, Chief Creative Officer, Serviceplan Group


All the pictures of the products are courtesy of AIZOME and Serviceplan
Creative Direction: @workbyworks