Reducing personal care waste through innovation
: a study on the feasibility of the creation of a new platform for selling near-expiry and damaged personal care products in the Portuguese market

  • Sara Lima de Sousa (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The personal care industry has witnessed significant growth, with the COVID-19 pandemic further accelerating the shift towards online channels. Overall, consumers have become increasingly conscious of environmental issues, leading to higher demands for sustainable practices, circular economy and waste reduction. However, there’s a significant portion of unmanageable waste from the industry that is hard to control, attributed to unsold, damaged, or near-expiry products that fail to reach the end consumer and end up in landfill. Driven by the market growth and sustainability awareness among Portuguese consumers, this study examines the feasibility of establishing a new platform that enables consumers to purchase near-expired or damaged personal care products at discounted prices. The research investigates the potential consumer profile using the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) framework, as well as identifies the drivers and barriers that influence the purchase intention of these products among Portuguese consumers, drawing on relevant literature. A mixed methods approach was used, resulting in 10 in-depth interviews from qualitative data, and an online questionnaire with 143 valid answers from quantitative data. The findings indicate that the purchase intention of these personal care products could be acceptable in the Portuguese market. Moreover, no significant barriers were identified as relevant, with consumers perceiving value for money and trying new products as key drivers of their purchase intention. Finally, two distinct consumer profiles emerged, reflecting different characteristics: one group focused on seeking bargains and saving money, while the other prioritized sustainability and preferred environmentally-friendly options.
Date of Award28 Jun 2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorMiguel Fontes Rita (Supervisor)


  • Personal care industry
  • Waste reduction
  • Innovation
  • Platform
  • Near-expiry products
  • Damaged products
  • Portuguese market
  • Consumer profile
  • Drivers
  • Barriers
  • Sustainability


  • Mestrado em Gestão e Administração de Empresas

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