Earth Month is here and even though we can talk your ear off about everything Refill Goodness, we don’t carry every single sustainable item you’ll ever need or want. While you’re reflecting on your waste and begin researching more environmentally friendly solutions this month, we thought to highlight our favorite sustainable brands NOT from the shop. Keep on reading for our team’s top picks on sustainable products and companies.
Girlfriend Collective: Rechelle’s Pick
If you’re friends with Rechelle then you know her obsession with Girlfriend Collective. Girlfriend Collective is a sustainable apparel company focused on size inclusivity and recycled fabrics. Most of their clothing is categorized as casual clothing and activewear. Everyone Rechelle’s gifted items of clothing to have since repurchased from Girlfriend. Don’t make waste; wear it! Six highlights of Girlfriend Collective are:
- Recycled Fabrics – They use recycled water bottles to make most of their clothing, have legitimate certifications for their practices and factories and go into extensive detail on those processes.
- Closed Loop Company – Send the company your old Girlfriend clothing and they’ll turn it into new Girlfriend. As a bonus, you’ll receive store credit as thanks through their ReGirlfriend program.
- Size Inclusivity – A HUGE problem Rechelle found when seeking out sustainable clothing was the lack of items in her size. That’s until Girlfriend came into the picture! Majority of products come in sizes XXS – 6XL. They additionally use models of a variety of sizes and backgrounds. We love representation and accessibility!
- Incredible Rewards Program – Rechelle is a Sage Rewards Member (oops!) and with that comes free shipping, gifts and early access to sales. This points program has SO MANY ways to earn points past purchasing and points add up quickly. Also, if you refer a friend, they get money off and you get a free pair of leggings. Pssst…. if you want to use Rechelle’s referral code here it is: http://rwrd.io/89zmggm?c
- Transparency from Company – If you’re wanting to know more about their sustainable processes and practices, they have multiple webpages and FAQ’s covering those topics. They even understand that microplastics still happen while washing their clothing and have a filter attachment for your washer.
- Packaging – You’ll never get plastic in your shipped orders. Clothing comes in reusable zipper bags (great to use for refilling) and plastic-free shipping materials.
Allbirds: Jenny’s Pick
Jenny’s favorite every day shoe comes from Allbirds. Allbirds is a Certified B Corporation shoe company prioritizing mother nature’s materials (like wool fabric) over cheaper, synthetic alternatives. Jenny loves the consideration this company puts into all they do and how comfortable her shoes are. She said there wasn’t even a break in time, they were immediately perfect! Allbirds highlights their HUGE sustainability guide on the website detailing their practices, materials, measurement of carbon and more. They put their money where their mouth is, proofing “Better Business, Not Better Buzzwords”.
- Responsible Materials – Allbirds uses materials like tree fiber, wool, recycled plastic bottles and castor bean oil. On the website you can find info on how they source, certifications like FSC and why they chose a specific material.
- Sustainable Shipping – You’ll receive your shoes plastic-free and shipped only in one box.
- Carbon Offsets – Allbirds is one of the few companies to be transparent in saying carbon neutrality is not enough. They offset their carbon and show you exactly how they do it. Allbirds is also one of the few companies to show you a gameplan into cutting their footprint in half by 2025.
- Allbirds ReRun – A marketplace where you can shop slightly imperfect and gently used products from Allbirds.
Elate Cosmetics: Jenn’s Pick
Another popular brand within the low-waste community is Elate Cosmetics. Elate is a company creating cosmetics for your conscious beauty routine. Jenn loves their loose powder which comes in a water treated bamboo container that can be refilled. They are a Certified B Corporation who in 2020 alone, donated over $27,000 to social and environmental organizations. Elate’s goal is to become the first waste free cosmetic company.
- Low Waste Packaging – Elate’s packaging is about 75% waste free. Products come in aluminum, bamboo, refill seed packaging and glass. A few products do come in recycled plastic, but it is rare to see a beauty company take large strides like this.
- Transparency from Company – On their website you can find specifics into how they source ingredients, sustainable practices in the office and the disposal method for all their products. They additionally have a green team and social impact team staffed highlighting their current goals and initiatives.
- Perfectly Imperfect Program – Products that don’t pass their visual quality standards (discoloration of bamboo, dents, scratches) are offered at a discount rather than them going to waste.
Pela – April’s Pick
Tech has a very large carbon footprint and it’s important we protect our devices, so they last as long as possible. Meet Pela, a company looking to create everyday products without everyday waste. What originally started as fully compostable phone cases has turned into sunglasses, watch bands and phone accessories. April recommends Pela since so many people purchase and throw out perfectly good phone cases.
- Plant Packaging – Pela compostable cases are made from flax shive and a plant based biopolymer. They report that their products use 34% less water for creation and have 80% less waste production.
- Expansion into new Products – Pela is also behind a new revolutionary product that launched this past year. Lomi is a kitchen composter that is compact and perfect for small spaces.
- Minimal Shipping Packaging – When ordering online they ship in the smallest plastic free boxes as possible.
- Giving Back to our Planet – Pela donates a % of every sale to Ocean Cleanup and Preservation Initiatives. They have partnered with 1% for the Planet and the Surfrider Foundation just to name a few. The company is Climate Neutral Certified and a Certified B Corporation.
- Pela 360 – Pela considers their product’s entire life cycle and will take your old cases and turn them into new Pela product.
Birkenstock – Katie’s Pick
Loved by many for years has been the classic cork soled Birkenstock. Katie believes Birkenstock is the opposite of fast fashion since they are a classic shoe made with quality craftsmanship and natural sourced materials. You can read more on sustainable practices on their website. Birkenstock sandals have longevity since they can be re-soled. They’ll last you for YEARS. Repairing before buying something new is sustainable AND cost effective. Birkenstock also uses mostly natural materials. Natural cork, jute and latex are all renewable resources. Birkenstock was one of the OG’s to use water-soluble and solvent-free adhesive.
Package Free Shop – Nicole’s Pick
Another low-waste shop on our list, what?!?! Package Free Shop earns a spot on this list because of they were one of the first places online to purchase sustainable goods and currently have products we don’t carry in shop (for now…) but love. This company has been an inspiration to us from the beginning. Nicole is a BIG fan of Plant Paper, carried at this shop, because it’s tree free and packaged in one large box. Since launching in 2017, they’ve diverted 132 million plastic bags and 448 million plastic straws from landfill. They also give back to other organizations like Lower East Ecology Center, Los Sures Food Pantry, Committee for Hispanic Children & Families, Habitat for Humanity, and Black Girls Code.
Cariuma – Everyday / skate shoes
Parade – Sustainable basics, apparel and undergarments
WUKA – Period undies
Culina – Plant based yogurt in glass jars
Cotopaxi – Adventure gear
OSEA – Vegan, clean skincare
What’s Your Favorite Sustainable Brand?
Leave your comments below with your favorite planet-loving brands / products or tag us on their Instagram so our team can try them out!
*All photos taken from company’s website