50+ “Green Friday” Sales

I have mixed feelings toward Black Friday/Cyber Monday week; while I dislike the crazy consumerism aspect, it’s also a great time to save some money and, especially this year, budgets are tighter so shopping during this time can be very helpful. But if you’re shopping this Black Friday weekend please shop consciously and support sustainable and ethical businesses! Your dollar can help keep a small brand’s lights on instead of adding to Bezos’ billions.

I love some of the great initiatives to refocus, give back, or “green” the traditional Black Friday like Fair Friday, Small Business Saturday, Shop for Good Sunday, Giving Tuesday, Reclaim Black Friday, and more!

Here are some of the sales or giving back initiatives (look for the little symbols!) I’ve found from conscious brands and I’ll be updating the list as more post promotions, so check back too. I also want to add a friendly reminder that it’s not a good deal or sustainable if it’s something you don’t need!

(please note this list contains some affiliate links)

Shop for Good Sales

Every year DoneGood celebrates Shop for Good Sunday (but the deals run all “cyber week” from the 24th-30th) with up to 75% off their huge selection of ethical and sustainable brand partners. There are clothing, home goods, bath and beauty, children’s products, and lots of great gift options.

Clothing

Azura Bay (CAN/US) – Underwear and loungewear. Up to 50% off

ArmedAngels (DE) – ๐ŸŒณ Up to 30% off or help protect the Ecuadorian cloud forest

Arraei (CAN) – 20% off with code ALLYOUNEED

Ash & Rose (US) – Free recycled gift wrapping, 3-Day shipping, and a free mask with purchases of $50+

Christy Dawn (US) – 30% off with code LOVE30

Conscious Clothing (US) – 15% off with code SHOPSMALL

EarthHero (US) – ๐ŸŒณ 20% off sitewide plus every order plants 5 trees

Encircled (CAN) – Various products on sale and door crashers Fri-Mon. US/Global site, Canadian site

Franc (CAN) – 20% off select items

Galerie.LA (US) – Up to 65% off

Girlfriend Collective (US) – Activewear. 30% off sitewide

Groceries Apparel (US) – 30% off sitewide

Indigenous (US) – Up to 40% off

Knickey (US) – Organic underwear. 20% off sitewide

Kotn (CAN) – โœ๏ธ From Friday to Monday they are donating 100% of profits to build 3 schools in Egypt

Liz Alig (US) – ๐Ÿค 100% of profits go back to seamstresses and weavers

LONDRE (CAN) – ๐ŸŒŠ Swimwear. Up to 70% off and orders over $150 plant coral

Made Trade (US) – ๐Ÿฒ Get 10% off or donate 10% to provide food for families in need with codes GET10 or GIVE10

Mary Young (CAN) – Underwear. 20% off sitewide with code BFCM20

MATE (US) – 30% off sitewide

Miakoda (US) – 30% off with code HOLIDAY2020

MUD Jeans (NL) – Buy nothing new “Blue Friday” vintage and secondhand jeans sale

Neu Nomads (US) – 20% off sitewide with code EXTRA20

Pact (US) – Up to 40% off

Passion Lilie (US) – ๐ŸŒŽ Taking part in Reclaim Black Friday

People Tree (UK) – Up to 70% off select styles

Prana (US) – 30% off select styles

Sotela (US) – ๐ŸŒŽ Taking part in Reclaim Black Friday

TAMGA (CAN) – ๐ŸŒณ Up to 30% off and 20% donated to the Sumatran Orangutan Society which helps protect forests and habitats

Tentree (CAN) – Up to 50% off sitewide on “Green Friday”

The Good Tee (CAN) – 30% off with code GOODDEAL

Tonle (US) – ๐ŸŒŽ Taking part in Reclaim Black Friday

Tradlands (US) – Daily deals all week

Two Days Off (US) – Various items on sale

Uye Surana (US) – Lingerie. All items on sale

Vetta (US) – Up to 80% off

WAMA (US) – Hemp underwear. 40% off sitewide

Wolven (US) – 35% off sitewide

Shoes, Bags, & Accessories

Angela Roi (US) – ๐Ÿฒ Vegan purses and bags. Donate $1 or more to Feeding America or a non-profit of your choice and receive a 20% gift code when you send a screen shot to rebel@angelaroi.com

Chic Made Consciously (US) – Recycled statement jewellery. 30% off sitewide

Darzah (US) – Artisan made products. 20% off bags with code DARZAHGIFTS

Etsy – Various products on sale up top 60% off (please note: not all Etsy sellers are eco/ethical)

GOT Bag (EU/US) – ๐ŸŒŠ Recycled ocean plastic bags. 20% off and they have a goal to remove 20 tons of plastic from the ocean this week

HFS Collective (US) – Sustainable bags. 40% off with code 2020

Myssyfarmi (EU) – Handknit hats. 30% off most styles

Nisolo (US) – Ethically-made shoes. 25% off sitewide with code EARLYBIRD, and tiered discounts Cyber Monday with savings up to 60% off

Pela (CAN) – Biodegradable phone cases and tech accessories. Up to 50% off

Po-Zu (UK) – Sustainable shoes (some vegan options). Up to 60% off

Baby & Kids

Beya Made (US) – 20% off sitewide

EarthHero (US) – ๐ŸŒณ 20% off sitewide plus every order plants 5 trees

Finn + Emma (US) – 20% off with code BLACK20

Jackalo (US) – BOGO 50% off with code SHOPSMALL2020

Little Lentil Clothing (US) – 35% off with code THANKS35

Nest Designs (US) – Up to 50% off

Pact (US) – Up to 40% off

Parade Organics (CAN) – 20% off with code GREENIE20

Soft Soul (CAN) – 40% off with code LOVEYOU40

Solly Baby (US) – Up to 30% off

Green & Cruelty-Free Beauty

100% Pure (US/CAN/EU) – $10 deals on various products

Au Naturale (US) – 25 – 40% depending on purchase amount

Clove + Hallow (US) – 30% off sitewide

EarthHero (US) – ๐ŸŒณ 20% off sitewide plus every order plants 5 trees

Earth Mama Organics (US) – 30% off sitewide only on Nov. 30th

Evan Healy (US) – 30% off sitewide

Follain (US) – 20% off and free shipping

Meow Meow Tweet (US) – ๐ŸŒŽ Taking part in Reclaim Black Friday

Pure Anada (CAN) – 25% off with code THANKYOU25

Red Apple Lipstick (US) – 15% off sitewide plus bonus deals

The Choosy Chick (US) – 15% off sitewide with code THANKFUL

Home Goods

Boll & Branch (US) – Organic cotton bedding. 25% off sitewide with code CYBERWEEK

Darzah (US) – 20% home decor with code HOLIDAYHOME

EarthHero (US) – ๐ŸŒณ 20% off sitewide plus every order plants 5 trees

Etsy – Various products on sale up top 60% off (please note: not all Etsy sellers are eco/ethical)

GlobeIn (US) – Up to 60% off

Made Terra (US) – 15% off sitewide with code GIVINGWEEK20

Made Trade (US) – ๐Ÿฒ Get 10% off or donate 10% to provide food for families in need with codes GET10 or GIVE 10

Naturepedic (US/CAN) – Organic mattresses and bedding. 20% off sitewide with code SLEEP20

Ten Thousand Villages (US) – Fair trade home goods. Various sales.


Check back because I’ll be updating this list as more brands announce their sales.

You can also check out my Green Gift Guide for sustainable holiday gift ideas for everyone on your list!

GREEN GIFT GUIDE – 25 Sustainable Gift Ideas for Everyone on your List

posted in brand roundups, holidays

The annual green gift guide is here!

As always I’ve compiled a variety of sustainable and ethical gift ideas so you can not only give thoughtful presents, but also have a lighter impact on the planet. There are options for everyone – kids, women, men, friends, family, environmentalists, minimalists, vegans, zero-wasters, and a range of unique to practical, luxury to inexpensive gifts – so youโ€™re sure to find something perfect! 

This year more than ever, these conscious brands also really need (and deserve!) the support. Iโ€™ve included some truly amazing small businesses and this year placed a special focus on featuring POC and women-owned brands.

Thank you for voting with your dollar ๐Ÿ’š

$ = under 25            $$ = 26-50          $$$ = 51-100          $$$$ = 100+ 


(please note: this gift guide contains some partnerships and affiliate links)

The Most Comfortable Belt $$

I donโ€™t say this lightly, Unbelts are a whole new world of belt-wearing. My husband (who wears his every day) says the Intrepid Belt is hands down the best belt heโ€™s ever worn. I also love their classic style for adding interest to my dresses and jumpsuits, and itโ€™s super comfortable in jeans and trousers.ย 

The stretchy belt gives you the perfect pant fit and they’re fully adjustable so you don’t have to worry about what size to give. Plus Unbelts are ethically made, they use some recycled materials (and are continuing to incorporate more recycled components), theyโ€™re a B Corp, and give back to community programs and organizations.

They are Canadian but have both an American and Canadian store and also have a bundle promotion for the holidays where you can get belts for the whole family!

Audiobook Escape $ – $$$

Relaxation, thrills, adventure, mystery, romance, education, and entertainment – you can give all these things with audiobooks! Who doesnโ€™t need a mental break these days? A Libro.fm audiobook subscription is my favorite gift to give (and honestly get because I have a deeper appreciation for audiobooks as a mom with much less time to sit and read).

Libro.fm partners with independent bookstores so you can actually support your local bookstore through your subscription. They have a huge selection of audiobooks and curated collections and recommendations to help you find titles youโ€™ll enjoy. You can gift 1, 3, 6, and 12-month memberships. 

Upcycled Home Slippers $$$

Artisan-made slippers using upcycled, recycled, and deadstock fabrics, for comfy and stylish days at home.

These are a modern take on the traditional South Asian โ€œJuttiโ€ by ONE432 who not only pays living wages but also profit-shares with their artisans in Pakistan and helps build schools and sponsor childrenโ€™s education.

In addition to these slippers, Made Trade also has a wonderful collection of fair trade and sustainable gifts for your friends and loved ones – itโ€™s the perfect destination to easily do your holiday shopping while supporting artisans and small conscious businesses!

Arts & Crafts Kids โ€œBusy Boxโ€ $$

Who isnโ€™t looking for ways to occupy kids this year? This eco-friendly โ€œbusy boxโ€ from EarthHero is really a gift for both children and parents! 

It includes 2 tubs of natural play dough, eco-crayons, origami paper with instructions, and a beeswax candle making set. Perfect supplies for kids to get crafty and creative with.

EarthHero also has a fantastic selection of other curated, eco-friendly kits and boxes which make great gifts.

Ocean Plastic Backpack $$$ – $$$$

Close the loop with a recycled GOT Bag. They have a minimalist, functional style perfect for students, adventurers, commuters, or anyone who could use a sustainable way to carry their stuff.

The roll-top style is the worldโ€™s first backpack made of ocean plastic; it has 20-30L volume, is 100% waterproof, and comes with a removable laptop bag that can also be used as an inner pocket. If youโ€™re looking for a smaller option, the daypack style makes a great everyday bag.

GOT Bag is on a mission to clean up the ocean – they work directly with fishermen to collect plastic which is turned into their bags or properly recycled. Each roll-top backpack helps remove 7.7 lbs of ocean plastic!

They have both a US site and also a German store for those in Europe.

Wild-Harvested Botanical Skincare $ – $$$

For those who deserve some pampering, Sแธตwรกlwen Botanicals creates โ€œplant medicine for skin and spiritโ€. Their products are a beautiful way to give some indulgence, skin nourishment, and self-care.

Sแธตwรกlwen is a Canadian Indigenous brand making small batch skincare with ingredients responsibly foraged on the pacific coast.

Their range makes great gifts from stocking stuffers like lip balm, salves, and mini sanitizer, to skincare sets, and luxurious masks, bath salts, and oils.

Socks that Give Back $ – $$

These socks are so much more than your classic, useful gift! Every pair of Conscious Step socks is not only organic and ethically-made, but also gives to various charities and organizations.

You can choose a cause your recipient will appreciate like protecting endangered animals, childhood literacy, providing clean water, breast cancer research, planting trees, LGBTQ support, saving dogs/cats, and many more. It’s a personal, practical, and impactful gift!

My husband and I both love our Conscious Step socks – theyโ€™re comfortable, durable, and we appreciate the assortment of both fun and classic colours/patterns. 

Cute & Quirky Bamboo Earrings & Pins

Adorable earrings, pins, and necklaces laser cut from sustainable bamboo and hand-painted. 

The Mountain and Me has so many fun designs in their Etsy shop which are sure to please. The price also makes them a perfect stocking-stuffer or secret Santa gift.

Etsy is also a wonderful place to find handmade products and support small businesses!

Build Anything Block Set $$$

This is not your ordinary set of wooden blocks! Designed by developmental experts, Loveveryโ€™s 70 piece block set offers endless possibilities for play, building motor-skills, exploration, and learning. 

The block set is great for toddlers and children, and the high quality means it will last and can be passed on. The blocks are made from sustainably harvested wood and non-toxic, water-based paints/finishes.

Luckily she canโ€™t read yet, because this is my daughterโ€™s gift this year. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Recycled Cashmere Gloves or Beanie $$$

Winter staples from luxurious and sustainable recycled cashmere. Organic Basicโ€™s gloves, beanie, or scarf are timeless and a perfect upgrade for those winter essentials. 

Cashmere is deliciously soft and warm but unfortunately the demand for this fibre is causing issues like desertification. So Organic Basics uses only recycled cashmere, made from old cashmere garments that are re-spun and ethically-made into new pieces. You get all the cosy benefits of real cashmere without the ethical and environmental issues! (Psst – you can use code MYGREENOB for 10% off)

Natural Tie-Dye Kit $$ – $$$

Bring back those summer camp vibes with sustainable AND fair trade DIY tie-dye tees! The Good Teeโ€™s tie-dye kit is great for both beginners and those experienced with natural dyeing. 

It includes an organic white tee (you can choose youth, toddler, or adult sizes) and they have kits for indigo (blue shades) or a selection of 4 natural colours (purple, yellow, red/orange, and pink). 

A unique gift for creative teens, DIY queens or a fun couple/family project – the kit includes enough dye for 3-4 t-shirts and you can purchase additional blank tees for 50% off.

Spa Treatment at Home $$ – $$$

Oil + Waterโ€™s face and body products are so beautifully formulated and naturally scented, they make you feel like youโ€™re at the spa. The herbal clay mask set with ceramic bowl and fan brush makes a great gift and is formulated for all skin types, and I can’t rave about their oils enough.

The travel/starter set also makes a nice gift or stocking-stuffer and is a great way to try the products in mini-form!

Oil + Water is my favourite skincare brand, using only carefully sourced, potent natural ingredients and all their products come sustainably packaged and they have a zero waste recycling program. (Psst – use code MYGREENCLOSET10 for 10% off!)

Wooden Hair Sticks $$ – $$$

A unique and simple, yet beautiful way to hold and adorn hair. SAYA Designsโ€™ wooden hair sticks and combs are hand carved by Indonesian artisans from rescued root wood.

They have a variety of nature-inspired designs and styles for both shorter and long or thick hair. Plus every purchase plants up to 10 trees in rehabilitation and reforestation projects in Indonesia.

Handcrafted Plant Pot $$ – $$$

I donโ€™t know anyone who hasnโ€™t added some plant friends to their home this year. ๐ŸŒต So how about giving a beautiful pot to display them in? Katie M Muddโ€™s handmade stoneware and ceramics are timeless and simple yet with beautiful details and thoughtful design. 

Her pieces are all handmade in Portland, using locally-sourced materials and design to last a lifetime.

We own some Katie M Mudd ceramic drink tumblers and they are honestly stunning – I love drinking from them and we always get compliments from guests. 

Star Wars Shoes $$$ – $$$$

Know someone who loves Star Wars? Shoes from the officially licensed Po-Zu Star Wars collection are sure to be an impressive gift. 

Sustainably and fairly-made, thereโ€™s everything from more subtle printed sneakers to Reyโ€™s and Finnโ€™s boots and even full-blown furry Chewbacca boots. Many of the options are vegan too!

Little Princess Shimmer Set $

A non-toxic gift pack of shimmery lip balm, roll-on natural glitter, and no-odor nail polish for little princesses! Pure Anada makes natural, non-toxic cosmetics and this cute set is sure to please any sparkle-loving little ones.

One of the reasons I like Pure Anada is that they are careful about their ingredient safety and commit to ensuring any mica used is child-labour free – because none of us want to give children (or anyone) gifts mined/made by children. 

Pure Anada also has lovely natural beauty, nail polish, and skin care gifts for adults too!

Block-printed Scrunchie & Headband $

Cute hair set including a scrunchie, twisted headband and little bag made with offcuts from Ich Chaโ€™s beautiful artisan fabrics.

This hair set makes a special stocking stuffer or perfect gift for scrunchie-lovers, zero-waste gals, or artisan textile appreciators.

Comfy, Cozy PJs $$ – $$$$

Especially this year we could all use a soft set of pajamas to curl up in, from soft organic cotton, to silky Tencel there are so many great sustainable options available for men and women!

Check out Azura Bay, Made Trade, Ettitude, Yes And, Living Crafts (EU), or People Tree (UK) for a variety of eco-conscious and responsibly-made styles.

Or you can see some of my favourite baby/kids pjs here.

Handmade Scented Candles $$

Nothing quite sets the mood like a candle. Land of Daughters is a small, Metis-owned, Canadian brand making vegan candles from sustainable soy wax. 

They have some of the most unique scent combinations Iโ€™ve seen, like wintery โ€œNostalgiaโ€ (sandalwood + sugar plum), or sweet and bright โ€œGirl Gangโ€ (cotton candy + lime). 

Land of Daughters also donates and fundraises for various animal rescue and social organizations. 

Recycled Silver Jewellery $$

Kind Karma is a beautiful Canadian jewellery company that employs at-risk and homeless youth to handcraft their jewellery. While the youth get paid regular hourly wages, Kind Karma has an innovative art therapy based employment model and profits from sales also go back into helping the employees with things like education and housing.

They also are just launching a new recycled silver collection starting with these delicate and timeless stacking rings.

Play-Clothes Designed for Durability $$$ – $$$$

Jackalo seeks to solve the problem of kids always wearing through their clothes by designing long-lasting play clothes for little builders, explorers, tree climbers, and all kinds of adventures.

Jackaloโ€™s clothing is sustainably made from organic cotton and they also have a take-back program when the clothes are outgrown and repair services if anything does happen.

Heirloom Linen Apron $$ – $$$

For the cooks, gardeners, painters, bakers, crafters, and makers. NotPerfectLinen has a variety of apron styles from long to short, cross-back to traditional, made from their super soft yet durable washed linen.

The aprons are made-to-order in their workshop in Lithuania from Oeko-Tex certified European linen and come in over 30 colour choices.

Self-Watering Seed Starter $$$

Beginner growers and seasoned green thumbs alike will appreciate this self-watering terracotta seedling starter from Uncommon goods.

This clever design makes starting seeds โ€œidiot proofโ€ and replaces the need for plastic trays and pots, plus the handmade clay looks lovely on the counter or windowsill. 

Solar Portable String Lights $$ 

These lights can be used in the middle of the forest or camping in your living room and make cozy, energy-saving decorations. This sustainable string of lights from MPOWERED is charged by the sun and lasts up to 20 hours on a charge.

The light is waterproof and compactly rolls up making it easy to take on outdoor adventures or the patio, and in a pinch you can even use the power to charge your devices!

MPOWERED also gives solar lights to communities without reliable electricity and they also have other designs like solar powered candles, coloured lights, task light, and even a build-your-own solar lamp kit.

Natural & Sustainable Pet Toys $

Finally, letโ€™s not forget our furry friends!

EarthHero has the best selection Iโ€™ve seen of sustainable pet toys and products.

You can find hemp rope toys, natural rubber balls, organic catnip, handmade toys, organic cotton or hemp collars and leashes, and more for your cats and dogs.




Happy holidays and thank you for supporting small businesses and giving gifts with a greater impact!


๐Ÿ’š

Plus Size Slow Fashion Guide

posted in brand roundups

This post is long overdue. Unfortunately sustainable/ethical brands offering extended sizing is still a niche within a niche, when really by now both should be mainstream, however there are some beautiful clothing brands offering conscious fashion for everyone!

Currently I’ve compiled over 60 brands who offer at least size 2X with some up to 6X and even custom sizes. This list will continue to be updated as well, so check back. ๐Ÿ™‚

(please note: some affiliate links are used in this list)

Casual, Work, & Formal Clothing

Ace & Jig (US) colourful clothing featuring artisan textiles – Sizes up to 4X

Alice Alexander (US) variety of styles made-to-order in-house from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 4X

Aliya Wanek (US) minimalist pieces made in the US from natural materials – Sizes up to 2X

Altar (US) dreamy styles made in Portland from organic and deadstock fabrics- Sizes up to 6X

Altar dresses

Arraei (CAN) romantic and minimalist styles, made in Canada from natural materials – Sizes up to 3X

Beaton (CAN) linen garments made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Birdsong (UK) cheeky graphics and fun colours ethically-made from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 3X/UK 24

Cherry Velvet (CAN) retro and vintage-style dresses made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Christy Dawn (US) dreamy dresses made from deadstock fabrics and organic cottons – Sizes up to 3X

Dazey LA (US) Colourful casualwear made-to-order in LA – Sizes up to 3X

Dressarte Paris (FR) custom, made-to-measure classic & formal pieces from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 2X + custom sizing

Eileen Fisher (US) huge variety of sustainable and ethically made, timeless garments – Sizes up to 3X

Encircled (CAN) comfy staples and versatile styles made in Canada from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 2X

Franc (CAN) casual basics and knits made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Free Label (CAN) sustainable basics and loungewear made in Canada – Sizes up to 4X

Free Label bra, pants, tee, & skirt

Hackwith Design House (US) breezy dresses and drapey linen pieces, made in the US – Sizes up to 4X

Hours (US) styles exclusively made for plus size women – Sizes 14-28

IGIGI (US) customizable work and formal dresses ethically made-to-order in Ukraine – Sizes up to 32 + custom sizing

Jamie + The Jones (US) drapey minimalist pieces made in the US from natural materials – Sizes up to 4X

Kaela Kay (CAN) colourful dresses and statement pieces made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X/22

Mara Hoffman (US) both classic & statement pieces made form natural and sustainable materials – Sizes up to 3X

MarketPlace: Handwork India (US) fair trade clothing made in India from block-printed, batik, hand-dyed and other artisan fabrics – Sizes up to 4X

Mata Traders (US) plus size collection of patterned fair trade dresses – Sizes up to 2X

Mettamade (CAN) comfy basics and knits made in Canada – Sizes up to 4X

Miakoda (US) comfy casual, lounge, and yoga clothes, made in the US from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 4X (currently in the process of expanding their styles to 4X)

Miakoda leggings

Mien (US) minimalist, classic and casual styles made in LA from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 3X

Nettleโ€™s Tale (CAN) classic wardrobe staples ethically made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Only Child (US) sustainable basics made in-house – Sizes up to 4X

Passion Lilie (US) sustainable and fair trade clothing featuring artisan fabrics – Sizes up to 2X

Poplinen (US) casual tees and basics ethically made in LA from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 3X

Sarah Sue Design (CAN) sustainable statement and staple pieces, made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Seasalt Cornwall (UK) large variety of classic and colourful styles – Sizes up to 28UK

Simoneโ€™s Rose (CAN) sustainable, small-batch womenswear, made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Sotela (US) sustainable line made in-house focusing on fit and body fluctuations – unique size system

State (US) colourful clothing made in the US – Sizes up to 3X

Symbology (US) artisan block-printed garments, great for unique and formal dresses and options – Sizes up to 3X

Symbology wrap dress & bomber jacket

Thief & Bandit (CAN) – whimsical, hand-printed fabrics made-to-order in their studio – Sizes up to 3X

Tonlรฉ (US) zero waste clothing ethically made from scraps and reclaimed materials – Sizes up to 2X

Tradlands (US) focus on quality, timelessness and natural materials – Sizes up to 3X

Two Fold Clothing (US) Linen and natural fiber clothing made-to-order in the US – Sizes up to 3X

Uniform (CAN) natural, minimalist pieces made-to-order in Canada – Sizes up to 3X


Denim

Coco Copper jeans (left) & Warp + Weft jeans (right)

Arturo Denim Co. (CAN) slim-fit jeans made in Canada – Sizes up to 42

Coco Copper (US) jeans made in LA from denim milled in sustainable European heritage mills. – Sizes up to 36

Nudie (intl.) variety of styles with stores internationally – Sizes up to 38

Pearls of Laja (DE) organic cotton jeans made for different body types – Sizes up to 37

Warp + Weft (US) vertically integrated, ethically made denim – Sizes up to 24 (dress size)


Activewear

Girlfriend bras, leggings, unitard & shorts

Alder (CAN) transparent and ethically made hiking/outdoor apparel – Sizes up to 4X

DAY/WON (US) activewear made in the US from mainly recycled materials – Sizes up to 5X/32

Girlfriend (US) colourful leggings and activewear made from recycled bottles – Sizes up to 6X

Miakoda (US) comfy casual, lounge, and yoga clothes, made in the US from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 4X (in the process of expanding all styles to 4X)

Prana (US) active and outdoor apparel made from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 3X


Underwear/Lingerie

Azura Bay lace bralette

Azura Bay (US/CAN) online store with a variety of sustainable and ethical brands – Sizes up to 3X

Hara (AUS) bamboo bralettes, undies, and loungewear made in Australia – Sizes up to 5X

Knickey (US) organic cotton undies made in fair trade certified factory. They also have a great recycled program for old underwear! – Sizes up to 3X

Lara Intimates (UK) comfy non-wired bras with a focus on fit, made in London from deadstock and reclaimed materials (these are seriously my favourite bras ever!) – Sizes up to 16UK & 36GG

Proclaim (US) inclusive nude undergarments – Sizes up to 3X

Thunderpants (US) underwear with cute prints and fun colours, made from organic cotton in the US – Sizes up to 3X

Uye Surana (US) beautiful and sexy lingerie, ethically made in the US and Colombia – Sizes up to 3X


Swimwear

Nettle’s Take (left) & Saltwater Collective (right)

Bold Swim (US) bright colours and sexy cuts made form a proprietary โ€œbiodegradableโ€ nylon – Sizes up to 2X

Dazey LA (US) colourful printed swimwear, made-to-order in LA – Sizes up to 3X

Hackwith Design House (US) one and two-piece styles with wrap and tie details – Sizes up to +4.5/28

Londre (CAN) variety of unique styles made in Canada from sustainable materials – Sizes up to 2X

Mara Hoffman (US) classic and colourful swimwear and coverups – Sizes up to 3X

Nettleโ€™s Tale (CAN) variety of cuts and styles from sporty to sexy, made in Canada – Sizes up to 3X

Saltwater Collective (CAN) cute cuts in a variety of colours made in Canada from recycled materials – Sizes up to 2X

Thief & Bandit (CAN) – whimsical, hand-printed swimwear made-to-order in their studio – Sizes up to 3X

Unika Swim (CAN) sexy swimwear for all sizes made in Canada from recycled materials – Sizes up to 4X + custom sizing


Secondhand & Vintage

Another Love (CAN)

Ballyhoo Vintage (US)

Berriez (US)


Are there any conscious brands missing? Please share them in the comments!

Baby/Toddler Fall & Winter Capsule Wardrobe

posted in capsule wardrobes, family

Capsule wardrobes are great for babies and kids! They allow you to have a small number of pieces that you can mix and match for a variety of outfit combinations and since little ones grow so quickly having a limited number of items not only is more budget friendly but also more sustainable.

It creates a organized and clutter-free closet where you can put outfits together with minimal thought, because decision-fatigue is very real as a parent.

Plus capsule wardrobes are also perfect for Dads, kids who dress themselves, or anyone who might not be the best at putting together outfits. ๐Ÿ˜… I’ve definitely had a few “you put her in that?” moments will my husband, but a capsule wardrobe offers a pretty foolproof way of dressing.

Outfit from the baby capsule wardrobe

Planning the Capsule

Take Inventory

The first step is to see what you have – what still fits and if you have any gifts or hand-me-downs that are the right size. This is a good base to build your capsule around.

Also be sure to clear out anything that no longer fits so it’s not taking up space and adding unnecessary clutter.

Plan for the Weather

The temperature and weather is of course key to what clothing you’ll need. Start by making a list of the types of items eg. long/short sleeve tops, layers, snowsuit, etc.

How Many Items?

This will depend a lot on how often you do laundry. We do laundry about once a week so I need at least 7 outfits, plus it’s good to have a couple extra options as well in case she gets something dirty and needs to change.

Here’s the breakdown I used:

  • 7 tops (3 short sleeve, 4 long sleeve)
  • 2 dresses (1 dressy tunic, 1 dress)
  • 7 bottoms (3 leggings, 3 pants, 1 overalls)
  • 3 layers (1 hoodie, 2 cardigans)
  • 2 outerwear (1 coat, 1 snowsuit)
  • 3 shoes (1 slippers, 1 outdoor boots, 1 snow boots)

So there’s a total of 24 items including shoes and outerwear.

This will be a learning process though and as you use the capsule you will get a better sense of the number of items that works best for you.

Decide on a Colour Palette

Pick your neutrals and any accent colours, this might be guided by pieces you already have and in that case think about colours that can best tie them together to give you lots of combinations.

The easiest method is keeping accent colour and patterns to either tops or bottoms and neutrals in the other areas, however you can also mix colour in different, it just requires some more planning. Try to choose patterns that incorporate a few of your colours so they can go with a lot of items.

For this capsule I decided on greys and whites as neutrals, and yellow, rusty-orange, and dark green as my colours. I also have a purple and navy piece which are pretty neutral and still work.

Capsule wardrobe colour palette for fall

Pick your Pieces

As you’re selecting items keep in mind the kinds of activities your child will be doing, what they like wearing, and any clothing needs they have (for example if they often wear out the knees in pants look for items that have reinforced knees).

As you select each item, make sure that it goes with the majority of other pieces – you don’t want to end up with items that can only be worn 1 or 2 ways.

B’s Fall/Winter Capsule

Here is the capsule wardrobe I put together for my daughter for fall/winter. She is 13 months so hopefully all these pieces should fit until it’s time to get ready for spring.

24 piece baby/toddler capsule wardrobe for fall and winter

Most of the items I got secondhand however when I do get clothes new, I love being able to support responsible, eco-conscious and ethically-made brands.

Sustainable/Ethical Brands in the Capsule

(note: some of these items were kindly gifted and this list also contains a few affiliate links)

Soft Souls makes lovely cork slippers/baby shoes – the cork is sustainable and more durable than cloth slippers, her feet can stay warm, and the flexible and grippy sole is perfect now that she’s walking and developing her balance. I was also very excited to find a vegan/non-leather baby shoe option!

This adorable woodland jumper is from Pure Colour Baby – a Canadian brand who creates clothing in house with their beautiful custom prints. They use organic cotton and eco-friendly lyocell.

Sustainable clothing for babies - organic cotton top, secondhand pants, eco-friendly cork shoes
B in her woodland jumper, secondhand knit pants, and cork slippers.

Her rust-coloured romper/overall has already been getting a lot of wear, it’s a linen blend from Beya Made and is the perfect statement piece for the wardrobe. Their clothes are made in the US and designed to grow with your child!

I love the organic cotton harem pants from Parade Organic because they work so well over cloth diapers, plus they have some great colours and prints.

Finally one of my favourite places to get secondhand clothing is Mini-Cycle. They have a circular business model and will buy-back any items they’ve sold. You can get lovely and high quality pre-loved garments through their “re-cycle” section, but you have to stay on top of their weekly drops, because items can go fast!

I also visit my local Once Upon a Child (a consignment store with locations all over the US and Canada) to fill in any gaps in the capsule.

Pajamas & Sleepers

For bed I have 5 sleepers and prefer to stick to organic cotton since it’s in close contact with her skin for so much of the day. We get some of these secondhand and I also really like the ones from Pact , Parade and L’ovedbaby. I haven’t tried them yet, but Finn & Emma and Nest Designs also have some really cute organic sleepers and pjs.


After 6+ years of doing a capsule wardrobe my biggest lesson is that it is an ongoing learning process – every capsule you can learn from what did and didn’t work and use that knowledge for the next one. So I definitely don’t expect this wardrobe to work out perfectly and since it’s the first one I’m sure there will be a lot to learn.

I’m very much looking forward to the ease and simplicity of getting dressed though!

๐Ÿ’š

For more minimalist and eco-friendly baby stuff check out my sustainable baby must-haves!

Actually Ethical Everlane Alternatives

posted in brand roundups

I’ll keep it blunt, Everlane is shady. Their “radical transparency” is a joke, their sustainability initiatives often feel like greenwashing, it’s difficult to find info about their factory standards and wages, and the recent union busting and allegations of a racist and toxic work environment just further solidify they aren’t to be trusted. Plus as we saw testing their product, the quality isn’t great either.

So with my video about Everlane out I’ve been getting questions about where to find other brands with a similar style which you can support instead, so here they are! These are some alternatives for Everlane’s best selling pieces as well as brands to check out if you love their classic, minimalist style.

(please note: some affiliate links are used in this list)

Basics & Essentials

Everlane’s turtleneck vs. Kotn

Everlane is probably best know for their classic pieces and KOTN has a very comparable overall vibe to Everlane with similar styles of basics and wardrobe staples, plus a sprinkling of trendier cuts. As we saw in the tee comparison video, KOTN also has better quality and more transparency around their sourcing and manufacturing.

KOTN has a unique “farm to closet” approach, working directly and fairly with cotton farmers in Egypt and is hands-on through the whole manufacturing process.

Although they have fewer styles, Organic Basics (which you can also see reviewed in the video) is another great options for tees and basics!


Denim

Everlane’s jean vs. Warp + Weft

Luckily there are lots of alternatives for more conscious denim! Here’s a few brands to check out:

Warp + Weft – They have a vertically integrated approach starting with processing and spinning the cotton, and various practices to reduce their environmental impact (although I wish they had more info about wages and any ethical standards available). I especially like that they focus on designing for different body types though with styles that go up to a size 24.

MUD Jeans – Even though they are based in the Netherlands, I have to give MUD Jeans a mention because they are my personal favourite. I love their circular approach, transparency, and they have great styles and fit!

Everlane’s jean vs. ร‰TICA

ร‰TICA – With many sustainability initiatives, ร‰TICA claims to use up to 90% less water and over 60% less energy to make their denim clothing. The jeans are fairly made in their own factory in LA.

Nudie Jeans – With tons of retailers, Nudie is a great sustainable option for those who prefer being able to try jeans on. Their jeans are made from organic cotton and they manufacture both in Europe and India where workers are paid a living wage.


Casual & Loungewear

Everlane’s sweatshirt vs. Mate

Everlane’s more casual and lounge pieces always seem to show up on their bestseller list, so clearly they’re popular. A great alternative to these pieces is MATE.

MATE has joggers, tees, tanks, sweat sets, and waffle knits in a rainbow of colour options. All their pieces are responsibly made in LA form natural and organic materials. And it’s not just lounge clothes! MATE also has some lovely dresses and linen pieces that would be perfect alternatives to Everlane’s.


Active

Everlane’s workout bra and shorts vs. Girlfriend

An easy dupe for Everlane’s activewear collection is Girlfriend Collective. They have similar recycled tops and leggings (as well as other styles) in more colour options, available in a larger size-range (up to 6X), AND at a lower price! How could you not make the switch?

Girlfriend makes most of their clothes out of recycled water bottles and the fabric has Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certification which regulates the use of harmful chemicals. Their products are made in Vietnam in SA8000 certified factories which they have extensive information on their website about what this certification means and their sustainable practices.

Also check out my activewear round-up for more eco-friendly exercise brands!


Cashmere

Everlane cashmere sweater dupe Naadam
Everlane’s cashmere sweater vs. Naadam

Classic cut cashmere sweaters have been a staple for Everlane, however despite their “radical transparency” Everlane offers almost no information about their cashmere sourcing.

For a more conscious alternative check out Naadam. They claim to be “the world’s fairest cashmere” practicing direct trade and sourcing their cashmere from farmer’s in Mongolia’s Gobi desert. They pride themselves on having 100% traceability with their cashmere products.

Unlike wool, cashmere can actually be obtained through brushing off the goat’s winter coat (the same as bushing your dog or cat). Naadam only works with herders who hand-comb and they also help invest in veterinary care and have animal welfare standards.

Style-wise Naadam offers the same classics as Everlane, as well as some more fashion-forward and unique cuts like their cashmere cropped tank, joggers, or dresses.


Shoes

Everlane’s ankle boots vs. Bhava

BHAVA (vegan) – high quality vegan shoes in a variety of both classic and unique styles .

Fortress of Inca – classic leather shoes fairly handmade by artisans in Peru.

Nisolo – large selection of leather shoes with many similar styles to Everlane. Nisolo is passionate about wage transparency and fair manufacturing.

Rothyโ€™s (some vegan) – large variety of flats 3D knit from ocean plastic (dupe for Everlane’s re-knit flats). While Rothy’s has some good sustainability initiatives, I wish they had more info about their ethics and wages.

Also check out more sustainable and ethical shoe brands in my footwear roundup!


More Brands Where You Can Find Similar Styles

Everlane’s cotton cardigan vs. Tradlands

Tradlands – From classic shirts to jumpsuits, to dresses and knitwear, Tradlands has many styles that would easily fit in a former Everlane-lover’s wardrobe. They take a “modern approach to foundational pieces’ with a focus on quality and longevity.

Vetta – Their pieces are designed as a capsule with classic styles and options to mix and match, plus many convertible designs for added versatility. Vetta uses a variety of sustainable materials and manufactures in the US as well as in fair trade and SA8000 certified factories in India.

ABLE – A clothing, shoe, bag, and jewellery brand with timeless styles and a focus on employing women and wage transparency.


If you’re are a fan of Everlane’s style I hope you’ve discovered some great brands in this list! I will update it if I find more sustainable/ethical brands that are a good fit and please share in the comments if you know of any other Everlane alternatives.

๐Ÿ’š

How to Throw a Zero Waste, Socially Distanced Party

posted in holidays, low waste

If you look up anything about having a socially distant, covid-safe party, there’s plastic everywhere. So when planning a small gathering for my daughter’s birthday I wanted to see if I could keep it plastic free. Here’s what I learned and some tips for hosting a safe, socially distanced, and low waste party! (These are my suggestions but make sure to only do what you’re comfortable with, the risks vary greatly depending where you live and your personal situation so these ideas might not work for everyone)

Keep it Small & Simple

Small is pretty obvious, the fewer people the less risk of infection and also the less you will need. Try to not see it as a negative, but instead embrace the intimate nature of a small gathering.

Also keep it simple! A few snacks and drinks, afternoon cake, or ordering pizzas are all great. The important thing is spending time together, the elaborate table spreads and platters can wait.

Hosting outdoors is safest and you’ll want to choose an area where you can space out chairs, picnic blankets or other seating.

Small, outdoor party in the evening

Clearly Communicate

It will work best and go smoothest if everyone knows what to expect.

Let your guests know if the party will be indoors or outdoors so they can dress appropriately and come prepared. It’s also nice to let everyone know how many are coming so you can make sure they are comfortable being around that many people. If guests are expected to wear masks or you don’t want people going inside to use the bathroom make sure everyone knows beforehand and can plan accordingly. Also include with the invite if people should bring chairs, their own cups, etc.

When guests arrive let them know where they can sit and also if there are any other things they should know about.

BYO…

One of the best ways to keep things hygienic is have your guests bring their own stuff.

You can have people bring everything including their own food, or if you want to serve food (see some ideas below) then maybe have guests bring their own plates, cutlery, cups, etc. or maybe just have people bring their own chairs. However you want to manage it, don’t be afraid to ask your guests to bring things!

Food & Drink Ideas

Here is where most of the plastic comes from as you want everything individually portioned. Gone are the easy zero waste cheese, fruit, and charcuterie boards, and definitely avoid anything the involves people touching the same knife, handles, bottles, etc.

Also serving food that people can easily eat with their hands and a napkin or small plate are often best when you don’t have everyone seated at a table.

Here are some ideas of plastic-free food and snacks you can serve where most of the ingredients can be bought in bulk, without packaging, or with plastic free packaging:

  • Popcorn in individual paper bags or little bowls
  • Bake cupcakes with compostable wrappers (helpful guide to zero waste baking)
  • Homemade cookies
  • Naturally wrapped fruit such as mandarins and bananas
  • Homemade fruit popsicles
  • BBQ corn on the cob
  • BBQ veggie skewers
  • Ordering pizza can also be an option if you know of a local pizza place that deliver plastic-free and you can compost the boxes
Plastic-free party food ideas

Drinks are a bit trickier to avoid waste as you don’t want people touching the same pitchers and bottles. Either have drinks in recyclable glass bottles or cans (and support local breweries/drink companies if you can!), or have people bring their own drinks or water bottles.

Food Prep & Serving

It’s of course best to make sure whoever is preparing the food regularly cleans their hands and wears a mask while preparing and plating the party food.

You can space the food out on a serving plate for easy, minimal-contact grabbing or even better, set up multiple serving plates around the space. You can also pre-make individual plates if you think that would work well, but this can also increase food waste.

Decorations

For zero waste decorations, I think going natural is always lovely. Depending on the season you can decorate with flowers from local farms, squash and leaves in autumn, or pine branches and holly in winter.

Zero waste natural decorations

Candles are always loves for ambience. Some DIY bunting using scrap fabric or paper is also a great re-useable option and adds a special charm for birthdays.

You can also often find themed decorations, candles, lights, decorative serving platters, and party supplies secondhand at thrift stores and through “buy nothing groups”.

Also set up a…

Sanitation Station

It’s best if there’s an easy and obvious place for people to sanitize their hands. Set-up a pump or spray bottle of sanitizer for guests to use when coming into the party and during the event.

You might want to also set one up by the door, bathroom, or anywhere people will be touching handles or the same items.

Green tip: Many distilleries are now selling cans of sanitizer which you can use to refill your bottles and avoid more plastic!

Compost & Dirty Dishes Bin

Label a bucket for guests to put any paper, food scraps or compost.

If you’re using dishes, cutlery and cups it can be helpful to have a large bucket or bin where people can put their used items, and you can add hot water and soap after the party for easy cleanup.


Those are my socially-distanced and low waste party tips and please share yours in the comments too!

๐Ÿ’š

What Your Unworn Clothes Can Teach You About Personal Style

posted in shopping tips, style

Those unworn clothes hiding in your closet? They can teach you A TON about your personal style and what types of clothing actually work for you.

Many women around the world only wear about 20-35% of their wardrobe (but believe it’s a lot higher). This discrepancy has a lot to do with our aesthetic and perceived style vs. our lifestyle and practical style – how we think we would like to dress, vs what we actually end up wearing day-to-day. Having a better understanding of this difference can not only allow you to shop smarter and buy clothes you will definitely use, but it can also help you figure out how to showcase your style preferences in your everyday outfits, or help find your personal style if you’re feeling a little lost with it.

What your Unworn Clothes are Telling You

It’s Not Functional for Your Lifestyle

This is one of the top issues I saw while working as a personal shopper and stylist – people buy clothes they love but don’t actually work well for their life.

I used to do this all the time – I love dresses and would buy fancy ones for all the imagined brunches and cocktail parties I was going to attend which never actually happened (I maybe have a handful of dressy events a year). It’s very easy to dress our “dream selves” instead of our more realistic selves. However it’s important to focus on what you actually wear the most and build your wardrobe around that.

This can also happen if there is a significant change in your life, maybe you switched jobs, graduated from school, had a child, took up a new hobby, etc. There are many life phases that require different clothing, so while you had pieces that worked before, they might not be right for you anymore.

Your lifestyle is an incredibly important aspect of personal style because no matter how much you love the style and look of something, if it doesn’t work for your life then it’s just going to be a waste of money and collect dust. I talk more about the role of lifestyle in finding your personal style in this video!

Something is Off

I think we’ve all owned pieces that just aren’t quite right.

Whether it’s too tight or loose, twists or rides up, or the colour just doesn’t make you feel good, no matter how you try it’s simply not a piece that’s easy or enjoyable to wear. These are the ones that typically only come out when everything else is in the laundry.

Make note of what in particular you don’t like or doesn’t quite work. Unless we’re aware of what exactly the problem is it’s easy to repeat these mistakes, so be mindful of avoiding the same issues when acquiring any new pieces.

It Doesn’t Work with the Rest of Your Wardrobe

This is another common problem, we have items we really like but they never go with anything and therefore always sit it our closet.

If you follow me you know that I think a capsule wardrobe is an incredible tool to build a wardrobe where everything works well together, however if you don’t want to commit to a minimalist wardrobe you can still take a lot of ideas and inspiration from the capsule concept to give yourself lots of outfit options.

I usually never recommend buying more clothing and accessories just to make certain pieces in your wardrobe work, so often these items are best to let go of, however if you really love the garment and adding one or two more items could make it much more wearable and those items can be worn with many other pieces then it might be worth keeping it.

There’s a Similar But Better Option

A typical wardrobe will have similar items and pieces that serve the same role or function. It becomes an issue when we either have too many of the same type of item or some that are more comfortable, fit better, or are more versatile than others.

Take a look at how many items serve a certain function in your wardrobe – which ones are worn and which aren’t? This is a great opportunity to understand some less obvious clothing preferences you may have. Maybe differences like the feel of fabrics, certain details, colours, or construction elements have you reaching for one over the other. Make note of these more subtle things you like and dislike.

Your Style Has Changed

As mentioned, your lifestyle can change which affects your wardrobe and style, but your aesthetic can also shift and change.

Looking at your unworn clothes is an opportunity to assess and redefine your personal style. Take some time to think about what styles and pieces you feel your best in and compare those to the unworn garments. You might also want to look for some outfit and style inspiration and consider how your current wardrobe fits with the styles you like.

Your Body Has Changed

This is normal and our wardrobes shift along with our bodies as we move through life.

If your body fluctuates a lot, look at which clothes you’ve been able to wear through body changes – often prioritizing adjustable and stretchy garments helps.

It’s also up to you whether you want to hang on to pieces that no longer fit – some people prefer to pass them on as they bring up negative emotions, but if you decide to hang on to them I think it’s always good to pack them away for a while so your working with a wardrobe of clothes that fit and you can actually wear.


Let Go of Guilt

Often looking at what we don’t wear comes with a lot of guilty feelings – we feel bad about the money we spent, maybe some items were gifts, or maybe we just feel guilty they aren’t getting worn. Guilt is normal, but try to refocus it into learning and lessons you can take away. The clothes we don’t wear can teach us a lot about ourselves, help us not make the same mistakes, and give us a path to build a wardrobe that works best for our style, body, and life! Try to let go of the guilt and instead focus on the things you can learn and apply to your wardrobe and future clothing purchases. ๐Ÿ™‚


If you’re interested in learning more and some activities to help you analyze your wardrobe, find your personal style, and curate a more conscious closet check out my ebook Quit Fast Fashion & Build Your Conscious Closet.


๐Ÿ’š

Why You Should Join a Local Freecycle Group (or How to Start One)!

posted in home, low waste


Have you heard of Freecycle/Buy Nothing groups?

They are an amazing way to get things you need (for free!) and easily pass on items you no longer need to people who can use them. It’s incredibly sustainable and budget friendly, plus I love that they are growing in popularity as they get even better with more people taking part! So here are some of my tips for finding and participating in these groups as well as how to start one if there isn’t a good one in your area.

But what are they exactly?

Freecycle or buy nothing groups are a way for communities to share and create gift economies. Too many people have stuff sitting around they don’t need or no longer use while others might be looking for those exact products, these groups create that link!

People list items they have or are looking for and connect with others who need or have that item to give. It’s that simple!


How to Find & Use Freecycle Groups

Where to Find Them

I’ve found Facebook to be the best place to find and use these groups. They can go by different names so try searching “freecycle”, “free”, “buy nothing”, “upcycling”, or any other words that makes sense in your language or area, along with your city and/or neighborhood (the groups have different geographical scopes). You can also try looking for barter or swap groups but these will have more requirements for getting and giving stuff.

Additionally there are groups focused on more specific products such as tool sharing, sports equipment, or children’s items, so also try those terms if there are areas you’re more interested in.

Also check out Buy Nothing Project’s group listings and Freecycle.org.

How to Join

Most groups will have rules and requirements, be sure to read these carefully and follow them! Be aware that some groups require posting an item before you are allowed to receive anything and many groups are focused on a specific neighborhood, so make sure you live within the boundaries.

Tips for Posting an Item or ISO

It’s most helpful to be as clear and concise as possible with listing any items to give or ISO (in search of) posts.

  1. Follow any group posting requirements.
  2. Photos are always helpful.
  3. Mention the condition of the item and if there is anything the person should be aware of.
  4. Most people want to know if there was smoking or pets around the item – I’ve often seen this listed as SF (smoke free) or it will say “from a cat-friendly/dog-friendly home” if there are pets.
  5. Include if the item is pick-up only or possibility of deliver and roughly where you are located.
  6. It’s helpful to include how you will select someone if there is a lot of interest – random, first response, best fit for pickup (have people say when they can come get it) etc. Some groups will also have rules around how to choose people.
  7. If you are listing multiple items include if you would like everything picked up together or will give items separately.

For ISOs you don’t have to just post about a specific product eg. “I need a can opener”, you can also make general inquiries and see what people have eg. “looking to fix up the yard and for gardening supplies”. If you are open and flexible, I’ve actually seen some very creative solutions and exchanges come from ISO posts.

Pick-up or Give Safely

One benefit of freecycle groups vs. buying/selling secondhand items is you can totally avoid coming in contact with the other person.

Since we are living in a pandemic it’s of course prudent to wash and sanitize your hands and wipe down the item after picking up, and if you will be close to or coming in contact with anyone, wear a mask!

The method I prefer is porch or front door pickup – the giver will leave the item in a designated spot, usually on front steps or in the front vestibule of an apartment building, and the receiver can go pick it up at the arranged time.

Like with buying items secondhand, it’s important to exchange in a safe situation – only arrange to meet or pickup in open areas and during the day; if I’m doing a front door pickup, I’ll look a the address on google maps to see what the front of the house/apartment and street looks like and make sure I feel okay picking up there. If you do feel unsure or uncomfortable, bring someone else along or arrange an exchange you are more comfortable with.

How to Start a Freecycle Group

No group in your area? Why not start one! It only takes a little work to set up and after it’s running you can ask for volunteers to help with admin and moderation.

What to decide about your group:

  • What area do you want to include? Your whole city, a part of the city/few neighborhoods, or just your immediate neighborhood?
  • Is it going to be open or focused on specific things? eg. children’s items
  • What rules do you want to have? Check out other groups for examples of rules, and some good things to include in your rules are:
    • Items must be 100% free, no selling, trading/bartering or “strings attached”
    • Age minimum for members
    • If there are any things people can’t post, for example some groups allow the sharing of free services, some are items only
    • Member must participate as themselves ie. no business accounts on FB
    • Members must be respectful to each other and use appropriate language or can be removed
    • Only PM the person posting when requested by that person
    • Posts must be offers or ISOs, do not use the group for other purposes
  • Decide if you want to require members to list an item before being able to receive anything and how you’d like to track that.

You can also start your own Buy Nothing group though the Buy Nothing Project. The have tools to help you set up the group, rules to use and follow, and will list your group.

After you set up your group it’s time to get members! A good place to start is by asking friends, family, and neighbors to join and help spread the word. You can also reach out to other community organizations or local, community-focused businesses to see if they will help you share the group.



I love being part of these groups. Not only have I been able to pass on some things we no longer use but we’ve also saved a bunch of money and scored some great items, my favorite so far is a small pool which Baby B has been so thrilled to splash in this summer.

If you have things to get rid of or are in need of certain items then I would highly encourage you to join or start a freecycle/buy nothing group. It’s not only wonderfully sustainable, but also a great way to support and connect with your community, and of course you can save a lot of money!

Are you a member of freecycle/buy nothing groups? Do you have any more tips to share?

Also check out my post about how we managed to furnish (almost) our entire home with secondhand items!

๐Ÿ’š

Images from Unsplash.

Sustainable Shoes for All Your Needs

posted in brand roundups

Footwear is difficult when it comes to sustainability since there are so many different materials and components needed to make shoes. While, like with anything, there are no “perfect” sustainable shoes there are some brands working to improve the industry and worth supporting!

For this roundup I compiled footwear brands who take a more conscious approach but with different areas of focus – there are vegan options, leather options, completely natural and plastic-free shoes, as well as brands using everything from innovative techniques and materials like pinatex, apple leather, and 3D knit recycled plastics, to traditional artisan techniques and materials like vegetable-tanned leather, handwoven grasses, and block-printed cotton. Some brands also have a stronger focus on ethical manufacturing, supporting communities, and artisan partnerships. Ultimately though I hope there is something to fit everyone’s style and values!

Like with all my brand roundups there are North American, European, and some Australian options – plus this one also has more international brands!

Quick-Reference Symbols

๐Ÿฐ – Vegan
๐Ÿ„ – Leather
๐ŸŒฟ – Natural Materials
โ™ป๏ธ – Recycled Materials
๐Ÿค – Fair Trade Certified Materials and/or Production
๐Ÿ’š – A brand I personally own

Jump to…

(please note: some affiliate links are used in this roundup)

Sneakers & Runners

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

AKS – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Hand-embroidered, organic cotton, hi and lo cut sneakers with natural rubber soles. Based in USA, ships within USA.

Allbirds – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿ’š Natural everyday sneakers (and one of only a few brands who makes running shoes – their “Dashers”) made from wool and/or Tencel with bio-based and recycled components. Stores in USA, Canada, UK, EU, NZ, Australia, China, and Japan.

Ethletic – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Vegan brand making everyday sneakers, trainers, and “Converse-style” shoes from fair trade certified organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Germany, ships within EU, UK, and to USA.

Etiko – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค (right) Vegan sneakers made from organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Australia, ships international.

Lunge – ๐Ÿฐโ™ป๏ธ Vegan running and walking shoes made in Germany with some recycled materials. Based in Germany, ships within Europe.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Po-Zu – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Everyday sneakers and hi-tops made from a variety of natural materials including linen, pinatex, organic cotton, cork, wool, and fair trade natural rubber, as well as some chrome-free leather and vegan leather options. They also have a Star Wars collaboration! Based in UK, ships international.

Rothy’s – โ™ป๏ธ 3D knit shoes made from recycled water bottles and ocean plastic. Shoes styles also contain vegan leather, leather, wool, and/or bio-based components. Based in USA, ships international.

SoleRebels – ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ Casual shoes made from hand loomed fabrics, mainly cotton and natural materials used with recycled tire soles. Some leather components and vegan options. Based in Ethiopia, ships international (many countries duty free).

Thousand Fell – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ White sneakers and slip-ons made from innovative sustainable materials and designed for closed-loop circularity with a recycling program. Based in USA, ships to US & Canada.

Veja – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Sneakers and runners in both leather and vegan leather, as well as some cotton canvas and recycled plastic options. Based in France, ships international.
๐Ÿšฉ Note: My husband used to own a pair and we were unfortunately not happy with the quality, but I know others who have had good experiences with Veja.

Wildling – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ Barefoot shoes made from a variety of materials, many sustainable and natural, and with some vegan options. Based in Germany, ships international.

Will’s Vegan – ๐Ÿฐ Sneakers and walking/hiking shoes made in Europe from mainly bio-oil derived vegan leather. Based in UK, ships international.

Womsh – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„ Sneakers made in Italy from either heavy-metal-free leather or vegan “apple leather” with some recycled components. Based in Italy, ships international.

My Allbirds Tree Dashers – they are super comfy!


Boots

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

Alice + Whittles – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿค๐Ÿ’š Plastic-free rain boots and hiking/walking boots primarily made from fair trade natural rubber. Based in USA, ships international to select countries.

BHAVA – ๐Ÿฐ (right) Stylish vegan leather shoes with natural components/accents like wooden heels and some interchangeable designs. They also have actual winter boots! Based in USA, ships international.

Christy Dawn – ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Lace-up boots made in LA from upcycled leather. Based in USA, ships international.

Fortress of Inca – ๐Ÿ„ Leather shoes made by artisans in Peru. Based in USA, ships international.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Nisolo – ๐Ÿ„ Leather shoes. While Nisolo doesn’t have a strong sustainability focus they are very transparent about their wages and manufacturing. Based in USA, ships only within USA.

Swedish Hasbeens – ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ Platform and heeled boots made from vegetable-tanned leather with carved wooden or natural rubber soles. Made by artisans in Europe. Based in Sweden, ships international.

The Root Collective – ๐Ÿ„ Boots made from leather and handwoven fabrics made by artisans in Guatemala. Based in USA, ships international.

Will’s Vegan – ๐Ÿฐ Casual, heeled, insulated, and hiking boots made in Europe from mainly bio-oil derived vegan leather. Based in UK, ships international.

Alice + Whittles natural rubber ankle rain boots in mustard
My Alice + Whittles boots have held up great in the rainy weather!


Flats

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

Allbirds – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿ’š Knit ballet flat and slip on styles made from wool and/or Tencel with bio-based and recycled components. Stores in USA, Canada, UK, EU, NZ, Australia, China, and Japan.

BHAVA – ๐Ÿฐ Stylish vegan leather shoes with natural components/accents like wooden heels and some interchangeable designs. Based in USA, ships international.

CANO – ๐Ÿ„ Shoes handwoven and handcrafted by Mexican artisans from vegetable-tanned leather, with natural rubber and upcycled tire soles. Based in Germany, ships international, or shop from the US here.

Darzah – ๐Ÿ„๐Ÿค (right) Leather sandals, slides, and flats hand-embroidered by women artisans in Palestine, Darzah is a non-profit and is fair trade certified. Based in USA, ships international.

Fortress of Inca – ๐Ÿ„ Leather shoes made by artisans in Peru. Based in USA, ships international.

Funky Kalakar – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ Vegan artisan brand with a circularity model using vegan leather, cotton and recycled materials. Based in India, ships international.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Rothy’s – โ™ป๏ธ (right) 3D knit shoes made from recycled water bottles and ocean plastic. Shoe styles also contain vegan leather, leather, wool, and/or bio-based components. Based in USA, ships international.

SoleRebels – ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ Casual shoes made from hand loomed fabrics, mainly cotton and natural materials used with recycled tire soles. Some leather and vegan options. Based in Ethiopia, ships international (many countries duty free).

The Root Collective – ๐Ÿ„ Flats made from leather and handwoven fabrics made by artisans in Guatemala. Based in USA, ships international.

Veerah – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ’š Dressy flats made from vegan “apple leather” and a combination of bio-based, natural, and recycled materials. Their designs have interchangeable accessories for different looks. Based in USA, ships international.

Will’s Vegan – ๐Ÿฐ Casual and dressy flats made in Europe from mainly bio-oil derived vegan leather. Based in UK, ships international.


Heels

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

BHAVA – ๐Ÿฐ Stylish vegan leather shoes with natural components/accents like wooden heels and some interchangeable designs. Based in USA, ships international.

Brother Vellies – ๐Ÿ„ Heels made from vegetable tanned leather with some sustainable components like recycled tire soles by artisans around the globe. Based in USA, ships international.

Jo-Anne Vernay – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ Vegan heels made in Italy from Pinatex, wood, and cotton. Based in USA, ships within USA.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Veerah – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ’š Various heel styles and heights made from vegan “apple leather” and a combination of bio-based, natural, and recycled materials. Their designs have interchangeable accessories for different looks. Based in USA, ships international.

Will’s Vegan – ๐Ÿฐ Classic pumps made in Europe from mainly bio-oil derived vegan leather. Based in UK, ships international.

Veerah heels with some of their detachable accessories


Sandals

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

BHAVA – ๐Ÿฐ Stylish vegan leather shoes with natural components/accents like wooden heels and some interchangeable designs. Based in USA, ships international.

Brave Soles – ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Sandals and slides made by artisans in the Dominican Republic from leather and recycled tires. Based in Canada, ships international.

Brother Vellies – ๐Ÿ„ Heels made from vegetable tanned leather with some sustainable components like recycled tire soles by artisans around the globe. Based in USA, ships international.

CANO – ๐Ÿ„ (right) Shoes handwoven and handcrafted by Mexican artisans from vegetable-tanned leather, with natural rubber and upcycled tire soles. Based in Germany, ships international, or shop from the US here.

Christy Dawn – ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Sandals made in LA from upcycled leather. Based in USA, ships international.

Darzah – ๐Ÿ„๐Ÿค Leather sandals, slides, and flats hand-embroidered by women artisans in Palestine, Darzah is a non-profit and is fair trade certified. Based in USA, ships international.

Deux Mains – ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Leather sandals and slides with recycled tire soles made by artisans in Haiti. Based in USA, ships international.

Etiko – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Vegan thongs/flip flops made from organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Australia, ships international.

Fortress of Inca – ๐Ÿ„ Leather shoes made by artisans in Peru. Based in USA, ships international.

Indosole – ๐Ÿฐโ™ป๏ธ Flip flops and slides made with natural rubber and recycled tire soles. Based in USA, ships international.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š (right) Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Nisolo – ๐Ÿ„ Leather sandals. While Nisolo doesn’t have a strong sustainability focus they are very transparent about their wages and manufacturing. Based in USA, ships only within USA.

Proud Mary – ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ Sandals and slides handmade by Moroccan artisans from raffia (a type of grass) with leather soles. Based in USA, ships international to select countries.

Rothy’s – โ™ป๏ธ 3D knit shoes made from recycled water bottles and ocean plastic. Shoe styles also contain vegan leather, leather, wool, and/or bio-based components. Based in USA, ships international.

Swedish Hasbeens – ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ Platform and heeled sandals and clogs made from vegetable-tanned leather with carved wooden soles. Made by artisans in Europe. Based in Sweden, ships international.

I wear my Nae cork sandals almost every day during the summer!


Unisex & Men’s Shoes

Ahimsa – ๐Ÿฐ (right) Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers. Based in Brazil, ships international.

AKS – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Hand-embroidered, organic cotton, hi and lo cut sneakers with natural rubber soles. Based in USA, ships within USA.

Allbirds – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿ’š Natural knit everyday shoes, sneakers, and running shoes (“Dashers”) made from wool and/or Tencel with bio-based and recycled components. Stores in USA, Canada, UK, EU, NZ, Australia, China, and Japan.

CANO – ๐Ÿ„ Shoes handwoven and handcrafted by Mexican artisans from vegetable-tanned leather, with natural rubber and upcycled tire soles. Based in Germany, ships international, or shop from the US here.

Ethletic – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Everyday sneakers, trainers, and “Converse-style” shoes made from fair trade certified organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Germany, ships within EU, UK, and to USA

Etiko – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Vegan sneakers and sandals made from organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Australia, ships international.

Funky Kalakar – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ Vegan artisan brand with a circularity model using vegan leather, cotton and recycled materials. Based in India, ships international.

Indosole – ๐Ÿฐโ™ป๏ธ Flip flops and slides made with natural rubber and recycled tire soles. Based in USA, ships international.

Lunge – ๐Ÿฐโ™ป๏ธ Vegan running and walking shoes made in Germany with some recycled materials. Based in Germany, ships within Europe.

Nae – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ๐Ÿ’š Large variety of vegan shoes made from PU leathers, recycled and/or natural materials like cork, pinatex, and organic cotton. Based in Portugal, ships international.

Nisolo – ๐Ÿ„ Leather sneakers, slip-ons, and boots. While Nisolo doesn’t have a strong sustainability focus they are very transparent about their wages and manufacturing. Based in USA, ships only within USA.

Po-Zu – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค (right) Everyday sneakers and hi-tops made from a variety of natural materials including linen, pinatex, organic cotton, cork, wool, and fair trade natural rubber, as well as some chrome-free leather and vegan leather options. They also have a Star Wars collaboration! Based in UK, ships international.

SoleRebels – ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ Casual shoes made from hand loomed fabrics, mainly cotton and natural materials used with recycled tire soles. Some leather and vegan options. Based in Ethiopia, ships international (many countries duty free).

Thousand Fell – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟโ™ป๏ธ White sneakers and slip-ons made from innovative sustainable materials and designed for closed-loop circularity with a recycling program. Based in USA, ships to US & Canada.

Veja – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Sneakers and runners in both leather and vegan leather, as well as some cotton canvas and recycled plastic options. Based in France, ships international.
๐Ÿšฉ Note: My husband used to own a pair and we were unfortunately not happy with the quality, but I know others who have had good experiences with Veja.

Wildling – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ Barefoot shoes made from a variety of materials, many sustainable and natural, and with some vegan options. Based in Germany, ships international.

Will’s Vegan – ๐Ÿฐ Casual and dress shoes made in Europe from mainly bio-oil derived vegan leather. Based in UK, ships international.

Womsh – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„ Sneakers made in Italy from either heavy-metal-free leather or vegan “apple leather” with some recycled components. Based in Italy, ships international.

Men’s shoes from Nisolo


Children’s Shoes

Etiko – ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค Vegan sneakers made from organic cotton and natural rubber. Based in Australia, ships international.

Indosole – ๐Ÿฐโ™ป๏ธ Flip flops and slides made with natural rubber and recycled tire soles. Based in USA, ships international.

Nooks Design – ๐Ÿ„๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿค (right) Baby/toddler boots and shoes made from wool and leather in a Fair Trade Certified factory in Nepal. Based in Canada, ships international.

Rothy’s – โ™ป๏ธ 3D knit shoes made from recycled water bottles and ocean plastic. Shoe styles also contain vegan leather, leather, wool, and/or bio-based components. Based in USA, ships international.

Soft Soul – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ Baby/toddler slippers made in Canada from cork and vegan sustainable materials. Based in Canada, ships international.

Veja – ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ„โ™ป๏ธ Sneakers and runners in both leather and vegan leather, as well as some cotton canvas and recycled plastic options. Based in France, ships international.
๐Ÿšฉ Note: My husband used to own a pair and we were unfortunately not happy with the quality, but I know others who have had good experiences with Veja.

Wildling – ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒฟ Barefoot shoes made from a variety of materials, many sustainable and natural, and with some vegan options. Based in Germany, ships international.


Online Stores with Multiple Shoe Brands

Avesu – Vegan shoe store with a large selection of vegan brands. Based in Germany, ships international to select countries.

DoneGood – A curated ethical and sustainable marketplace with many of the shoe brands listed and more! Based in USA, ships from many locations.

Made Trade – Large selection of artisan, fairly-made shoes. Most made from leather. Based in the USA, ships international.

Ocelot Market – Variety of artisan made shoe styles, most from leather. Artisan marketplace which ships from many locations.




Are there shoe brands I missed? Please share them in the comments!

๐Ÿ’š

Is your Makeup Actually Cruelty Free? Beauty Brands who use Ethical Mica

posted in makeup

Mica is incredibly common – if you check your makeup products you will likely find it listed as an ingredient in most of them (it can also be labelled as CI 77019). Mica is a mineral that gives us glowing highlights, shiny lips, and glittery eyes. It’s also unfortunately an ingredient with ethical issues, child labour, and human rights abuses.

After learning more about mica I started looking for info about where brands were getting theirs, it was incredibly disappointing to see so many brands who market themselves as “cruelty free” having zero transparency about their mica sourcing. Why is this something so many beauty brands seem to be ignoring or trying to sweep under the rug?

So I’ve done some digging (no pun intended) and put together a list of cruelty free makeup brands that also have ethical mica.

But first, what is Mica and why is it bad?

Mica is group of shimmery minerals which are obtained through mining and the industry has a huge child labour problem. Children are unfortunately especially suited to mica mining as they can easily maneuver through the narrow mines and reach small spaces. It’s also extremely dangerous, according to SOMO’s mica mining report, “of all forms of hazardous work, mining is by far the most mortally dangerous sector for children”.

I highly recommend watching this short documentary to get a good overview of the child labour issues with mica:


Also, while I know the term “cruelty free” is used in regards to animal testing, it does feel incredibly hypocritical to call yourself a proud cruelty free brand while having dangerous and unethical child labour in your supply chain. ๐Ÿค”


Ethical Mica

So far the brands who are actually addressing the issue seem to be taking two different routes – some are using synthetic mica created in a lab (also called synthetic fluorphlogopite) while others are trying to ethically and transparently source their mica. While I think both approaches have pros and cons, I definitely think it’s something brands need to be taking action on and looking into their supply chain!

Can you avoid mica by sticking to matte products?

This was one of my first thoughts, but unfortunately no. Even though mica is best known for adding shimmer, it’s also used to colour matte products as well. There are some mica-free products, but generally they’re difficult to find.

FYI – while mica is the base material, it’s actually coated in oxides to achieve the different colours, for makeup titanium dioxide (CI 77891) is most commonly used but I’ve often seen iron oxides used as well.

Are there certifications to look for?

One issue with trying to find ethical mica is there isn’t a third party certification or regulatory body to audit and oversee suppliers. The Responsible Mica Initiative is an organization set up to help monitor and improve child labour and poor working conditions however they rely on “voluntary collaboration” and don’t perform audits.

Unfortunately in almost all cases we have to take the brand’s word that their mica is mined fairly and without child labour. There definitely is some trust involved.

While we can’t be 100% certain, I would like to believe the following brands I’ve researched do care and are honest about their mica sourcing…


Makeup Brands who are Cruelty Free AND use Ethically-Sourced or Synthetic Mica

(note: some affiliate links are used in this list)
Pure Anada mineral pressed eyeshadow with child labour free mica

Pure Anada

A Canadian natural cosmetics and skincare line.

What they say: “Our Mica supplier ensures that their product is mined ethically in India without the use of child labour.  They own their own mines, fund schools and daycare centers so that the quality of life for their employees is fair.”

๐Ÿ‘ I really appreciate that this information is included and easily found in their “about” section unlike many other brands where it can be quite hard to find or not publicly available at all.

LUSH

A bath, body, and beauty company who is vocal about mica issues and uses synthetic mica.

Clove + Hallow

A vegan makeup brand who claims to be “child labor free” and sources their mica from the US.

What they say: “[Mica is] a natural shimmery mineral that we source ethically within the United States”

Au Naturale creme highlighter in "rose gold" with child labor free mica

Au Naturale

A “clean beauty” cosmetics line.

What they say: “our micas are child labor free – mined, processed and distributed sustainably world wide. We take a purists stance when it comes to color – refusing to partake in unethical sourcing practices that are harmful to people, animals or the environment”

And on a mica blog post they say “Because our suppliers own their supply chain from harvesting to processing and distribution, we can assure only the highest quality micas, mined without the use of child labor, are used in our formulations”

Aether Beauty

Vegan “clean beauty” brand which uses both natural and synthetic mica.

They have a whole blog post about mica in makeup. Pertaining to their own use they say: “When we use natural mica, we source only from suppliers in the US or Malaysia. These areas have (and enforce) ethical labor standards which prevent the use of child labor. We avoid all mica from India or Madagascar where labor standards are unregulated and child labor is rampant. We choose synthetic mica when we canโ€™t vet and guarantee that the source of our mica is child-labor-free.”

๐Ÿšฉ I want to note that the SOMO report does list Malaysia as a “high risk” country “suspected of illegal mining” so the part of their statement about Malaysia enforcing ethical standards doesn’t seem accurate.

Red Apple Lipstick Eyeshadow with ethically sourced mica

Red Apple Lipstick

A gluten free, vegan, natural beauty brand (not just lipstick).

I couldn’t find anything on their website, but when I reached out to them they said: “we source all of our ingredients from the United States, a few from Europe and some others from Canada. All of which we make sure do not involve child labor, and that workers are paid fairly.” Specifically about their mica they said, “We source all of our mica from the US from privately owned mines. This allows us to be assured that child-labor is never used, and that miners are paid fairly + treated very well.”

Fat and the Moon

I couldn’t find anything on their website, but when I reached out to them they said they use synthetic mica.

From a DM: “The mica that we use is lab-created, not mined. We know about the horrendous circumstances in which mined mica is a result and do not support those practices. The mica that we use is made of natural ingredients that mimic mined mica”

๐Ÿšฉ Note that they just list “Mica” in their ingredients, which is legal however I would definitely prefer if brands specify that it is synthetic mica.

100% Pure

100% Pure "moonstone glow" Gemmed Luminizer with ethical mica

A natural makeup, skincare, and beauty brand.

What they say: “All of our products use ethically sourced mica.”

I reached out to them for more info and this was their statement: “We condemn the use of child labor in particular, in manufacture and service of any raw materials. All of our mica suppliers are required to annually provide certificates that child labor is not used in mica mining and the subsequent manufacturing processes.”

Dr. Hauschka

A large natural beauty and skincare brand.

I couldn’t find anything on their website, but after reaching out they sent me a statement from their head company (WALA Heilmittel GmbH) which includes this: “Due to close co-operation with the local authorities, a better co-operation with the miners and regular and unannounced on-site audits, our supplier can guarantee, since the middle of 2011, that all mica retrieved by them from India is free of child labour.”

The rep also said that they were in the process of re-doing their website which is why I couldn’t find this info publicly.

Inika

A natural and organic beauty and skincare brand.

What they say: “Our suppliers work within the Ethical Trade Initiative and do not employ child labour in the mining and processing of their products. Our suppliers have been carefully selected with their guarantee that they work within the Ethical Trade Initiative, from regions where ethical business practices are transparent and do not employ child labour.”

RMS Luminizers with child labor free mica

RMS

Organic and “clean” makeup brand.

I couldn’t find anything on their website, but when I reached out to them they said: “All of our ingredients are sourced fair-trade and cruelty-free. For proprietary reasons, we cannot provide specific sourcing information for the mica we use, but please know that our founder Rose-Marie spends much of her time sourcing ingredients from sustainable and environmentally friendly sources. We would never source ingredients from a facility that utilizes child labor.”

And they also said: “We are working on getting ours โ€œcertified child labor freeโ€œ but the certification has not been finalized yet.”

I really wish this info was available publicly in their ingredients break-down!

Jane Iredale

A mineral makeup company who uses synthetic mica.

๐Ÿšฉ Note that they just list “Mica” in their ingredients, which is legal however I would definitely prefer if brands specify that it is synthetic mica.

Elate Cosmetics

A Canadian natural and low waste makeup brand. Shopping from the US? You can find them here.

What they say: “The mica used in Elate products is fair trade, and sourced from suppliers who are active members of the Responsible Mica Initiative.”

๐Ÿšฉ Please see above about about certifications and the RMI


Mica-Free Makeup

Haut Cosmetics

Canadian makeup and beauty line with all mica-free products.

Omiana

Has a mica-free collection, they also say the mica in their other products is ethically sourced but so far I haven’t been able to find more information.



Those are the brands I’ve found so far and definitely check back as I will be updating this post as I discover new brands and hear back from brands I’ve reached out to. Overall I still feel there is a lack of transparency which I hope will improve, but I think this is at least a good start.

Also if you know of any other mica-free or ethically sourced makeup brands please share them in the comments!

Is Mica found in Other Products?

I think it’s also important to add that mica isn’t only used in makeup. Electronics is actually the industry that consumes the most mica (about 26%), followed by paint (24%), construction – typically used in drywall (20%) and then cosmetics which uses about 18% of mica produced. (source)

The unfortunate thing is that in these other industries it’s even harder to avoid or find transparent and ethical alternatives. With makeup we at least have some more power as consumers to make better choices.


LAST UPDATED: 23/10/20

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