So, what does this actually mean? It’s quite a statement, I agree, but I wanted to explain why I feel so strongly about you, your business and the products you use…hence why we really do give a shit!
So, when it comes to creating a product range, you have what feels like a million types of packaging to choose from. These range from basic, un recyclable plastic (the cheapest), to recyclable plastic, then glass and finishing up with Aluminium.
I personally opted for Aluminium as I want to encourage our salon partners, clients and team to reuse them. Aluminium is the most widely recycled form of packaging for beauty products; however, it is the most expensive.
Aluminium is super easy to maintain when it comes to washing them out, ready for recycling and although it dents quite easily, I find that it is better than glass – especially when glass smashes in a salon environment – a nightmare with all of the bare hoofs walking around!
Because our products contain essential oils, I also had to factor this in. I needed my packaging to be effective in keeping our essential oils fresh, but also look great and encourage refilling.
Aluminium is predominantly made in China. I try to keep my carbon footprint to a minimum and buy in the UK wherever possible. I do purchase our bottles via a UK distributor as they allow for smaller quantities than if I went to the manufacturers in China directly. I also like that I spend my money with a UK company, even if the products are being brought into the UK from China. As they buy in such large quantities, it’s less travel/freight time which is better than me buying directly myself and adding to those emissions surely.
Now labels are a whole different ball game. I will always buy in the UK as I want to see proofs before we go for printing. We use litho printing so we can get a clear crisp line on our delicate fonts. We tried various suppliers and didn’t have great success until I found a really high spec printer just down the road from me. So, I went to see his workshop, saw his manufacturing and met his team. When I am dealing with suppliers, I love to build these relationships. It takes a lot of people and companies to pull a product line together, so the better the relationship – the smoother the process in my opinion.
When it comes to wax, I was adamant that I wanted to have it made here on my home turf. There are only two or three wax manufacturers in the UK and I went with the one who had the most knowledge and was the most supportive in helping me find a kick-arse wax.
The company I chose is incredible. They are knowledgeable, and really understood my brief of wanting to create what I felt was the perfect wax. Nothing gimmicky, nothing trendy – just the perfect wax for all uses. It took a year to find the perfect creation and our supplier can never use the same type of wax for anyone else. It is our own secret recipe as such, and I am super proud of it. It gives me all the feels when colleges and my fellow therapists love it equally as much as I do as I think it’s super special. It’s not the kind of wax you always love straight away as you do need to get used to it. But when you do – nothing else gets the same results which is music to my ears.
Pumps are a tricky one as again, as they are made in China as well. I went through every type of pump you can imagine however; I wanted something that really encourages reusing.
I buy our pumps directly from the manufacturer and buy in large quantities to try and reduce that freight/travel time. This is where so much to think of when creating a product brand, and pumps really should be up there in the thought process.
Pumps are rarely recycled as the majority of us just put them in the recycling bin. Unless a pump is broken down and the metal springs removed, it is very unlikely that they get recycled when they go to your local sorting centre. This means that they end up in landfill which really hurts my heart.
So, when I chose the bamboo collar on the pumps, it was with the intention that it looks good on any type of bottle which would hopefully encourage the user to give it a rinse and use it again. Our bottles are sold with and without pumps for this very reason.
Save your pump, save the planet, albeit a smidgen.
I really believe that if we all do a little, we can contribute a lot. When it comes to sustainability we have to consider everything that we are doing, producing, making and wasting. You can’t fix it all, you can’t change the world, but we can all do a little bit. If 8 billion people all did a little bit – that’s quite a difference overall right?
Thanks for reading, let’s catch up in Part 2!