Let’s face it. The term “eco-friendly” gets thrown around like crazy. But what does that really mean? To us, it means our product accomplishes the same goals as the current products on the market, while being generally better for the environment. We take steps that result in less waste, less chemicals, less processing, and fewer emissions without sacrificing functionality of the end product. We know that’s loose, but if every company did this, it would be incredible.
We’re not patting ourselves on the back, either. Don’t take this page the wrong way. We don’t think we’re special, or deserve special recognition. To us, its just the right way to produce products. We use sustainable, natural materials where we can. We prefer organic material to chemicals. Also, there’s no PERFECT solution. All we can do is try our best to look at the end result, and know that our way of doing things is a big step in the right direction!
This is the main thing that sets us apart. Instead of using the typical petroleum-based, non-recyclable plastic like most toothbrushes, we use bamboo. Beautiful, natural bamboo. Our brushes work just as well, and last just as long as the typical brush. So why not go natural?
WooBamboo toothbrushes are made with the same type of high-quality bamboo that cutting boards are made from: moso. It’s organically-grown in the bamboo-rich mountains of China, and crafted in a family-owned workshop. Moso bamboo is also naturally anti-microbial, which is awesome for a toothbrush!
Our toothbrushes are packaged in recycled and recyclable materials. The backing cards are made with post-consumer waste, and are (re)recyclable. The plastic used is called polyethylene terephthalate (PET): arguably the most easily recycled plastic commercially available. Unlike other plastics that can be recycled once only, PET plastic is not only thinner than other plastics, but can be continuously recycled many times over.
But why use plastic at all?
Great question. And trust us, we get it. But there’s a reason. Several, actually.
1) Sterility. It’s a toothbrush, so you’ll inevitably be putting it in your mouth. The safest way to guarantee these puppies are clean is to deliver them to you sealed in our plastic blister packs.
2) Retail-friendliness. Every time someone decides to buy one of our eco-friendly toothbrushes, its one less plastic brush ending up in a landfill. So: We can only change the world if people actually buy our toothbrush. Sure, we can put them in a 100% biodegradable box instead of our blister – but they’re nowhere near as appealing to consumers. We feel that most of the decision is made when people can see how beautiful and natural our brushes are. And sitting on a shelf gathering dust in a paper box isn’t doing anything for the world. Is it a compromise? Yes. It is. Is it the most eco-friendly solution? No. But, again, looking at the big picture, our packaging is the best solution for the goal of replacing as many plastic toothbrushes as possible.
We print all of our collateral material and packaging on the highest percentage of post-consumer waste we can on as much certified sustainable paper as possible. Also, almost everything utilizes soy-based inks (including our packaging and even business cards). We don’t fax. We use paperless invoicing, and see no need for printed order forms.
We ship a lot, so this is something we’ve made sure to streamline as much as possible from an eco standpoint. The envelopes we use are from CareMail, an awesome company that makes biodegradable and recycled envelopes and boxes. Check them out here. Any stuffing we send in our boxes is recycled and biodegradable. If it’s ever NOT, it’s because we’re reusing stuffing that we received from someone else.
Also, what should be mentioned is that even when shipping to and from overseas, bamboo is much lighter than plastic, resulting in a smaller carbon footprint overall. Slight, true. But one of the messages we try to get across is that change is made not only by giant leaps, but also by small, innovative steps in the right direction.
We’re proud that our company cars are hybrids (and pretty cool ones at that)! Again – every little bit helps, right? 🙂