Co-authored by: Amanda Pickens
Ever bought a "sustainable" product that just didn't do the job? We have. In fact, we've bought loads of them on our quest to find sustainable products that actually work.
And we're not referring to counting greenhouse gas emissions or recycling waste. While that's all great, we define true sustainability as the ability to sustain yourself.
People are always talking about saving the planet. But the planet is regenerative; it'll ultimately heal. It's the human species that's out on a limb. And the way back requires a return to the ESSENTIALS -- those biz-life elements that help you thrive.
The companies you'll find listed here use simple, safe ingredients and advocate obtaining a lifestyle worth sustaining.
But don't just take our word for it. Do your own research and share what you've found or created in the comments. Let's help each other thrive!
Looking for a safe way to enjoy the sun this summer? Raw Elements has you covered.
Have you ever applied sunscreen that never seems to come off, or that doesn't let the sun through at all?
Enter Raw Elements: the perfect mix between safety and performance. Blending certified natural, recycled and recyclable zinc oxide with organic oils and herbs, it allows you to absorb all the vitamin D you need, without overexposure.
And the product offering is simple. Knowing what to cut is just as important as deciding what to keep. Clear, concise, and not distracting... thumbs up!
Read labels. If you don't recognize an ingredient, Google it! Look for an authority who can explain what you're putting on your largest external organ -- your skin -- before you use it.
If you have the choice of wearing an organic, non-toxic product on your boobs, or a potentially hazardous one, which one would you chose?
FROM's Organic Cotton Yoga Bra helps women sustain themselves by raising awareness to the potential harmful chemicals found in modern day synthetic sportswear.
But not everyone is a fan.
Breast Cancer Now, UK's largest breast cancer research charity, removed FROM's Organic Cotton Bra from this year's corporate partner list because, "BCN couldn't be seen to be supporting the concept that organic fabric was better than other fabrics, and because their other promotional clothing partners weren't organic," says Dodd.
FROM reports being asked to drop all detoxing and organic is best for your breasts references, to which Dodd promptly refused: "As a small brand this messaging was integral to our values, and we weren't able to ignore what was clearly information applicable to half of the global population."
"As people demand more performance from their sports clothing, chemical finishes are applied to nearly all synthetic fabrics. These finishes often include hazardous chemicals (e.g., Phthalates, PFCs, Triclosan) that have been linked to certain cancers, adult obesity, and hormone disruption," adds Dodd.
With breast cancer rates increasing, FROM wanted to raise awareness to the potential risks associated with wearing tight fitting, synthetic sports bras, especially during physical activity when the skin's pores are open and more receptive to absorption.
Get informed. The information is out there; you just have to ask the tough questions. The more flags we wave, the more brands might adopt safer alternatives.
Think about the products you buy for your hair. Now imagine if you could substitute all of them with ONE simple and effective product that actually works. How would that feel?
You'd be saving money, space, materials, and... well, your sanity.
Hairstory offers only one option -- New Wash. "I don't think it's modern to be cluttered," says Founder Michael Gordon, "and I don't think hairdressers can tell the difference between 90 percent of the products that are on their shelves."
New Wash is a detergent-free cleansing crème made with aloe vera extract and essential oils that clean hair without stripping it of its natural properties. As Gordon explains, "We've all seen skincare evolve to where women use non-foaming cleansers full of oils and extracts on their faces, instead of harsh soaps. Why then are we using it on our hair and scalp?"
Shampoo is a detergent. And detergent, whether natural or synthetic, is an irritant. "It dries and damages your hair before you even step out of the shower," explains Gordon.
New Wash helps return your hair to its natural, child-like vitality. The way it was meant to be.
Subscribe to simplicity. Less is more. It's time to reclaim your space, and that means thoughtfully cutting away what doesn't serve you.
Annmarie Gianni Skin Care
The majority of skincare products in commerce today contain questionable to downright dangerous ingredients that are often hidden behind "all natural" claims, making it very difficult for the end user to make informed decisions.
No more passing the buck. Annmarie Gianni Skin Care offers a chemical-free, wild-crafted line that's exclusively organic. A mix between delicious aromatherapy and pure values, this product smells amazing and works wonders.
Your skin is your calling card, the first impression the world gets of you. It either says: "I'm happy, healthy and glowing!" Or "HELP!" Your preference?
If you choose to glow, Annmarie Gianni Skin Care also has you covered with fair product markup, no animal testing, no-GMOs, fair trade, and the best customer service EVER. You can also find loads of DIY recipes on their website.
Rely on Nature. Gaia's got us covered. As Annmarie points out, "Nature's already done it. We're just here to pull it together."
That concludes the first edition of sustainable products that actually work.
Be inspired to do your own research and find or create the products that work for you! Because at the end of the day sustainability is about the ability to sustain yourself.
It's time to "be the change you want to see in the world." -- Gandhi
If you're looking for more ways to thrive with the essentials, get the full skinny here. In the meantime, leave a comment and let us know what's working for you.