Focusing on shopping sustainably
By now, a lot of us feel the need to live a little more sustainably, and as you’ve stumbled across this blog, you’re most likely one of them! There’s more pressure than ever to take action towards saving our planet and its eco-system, but there are so many factors to consider when trying to make good choices that it sometimes becomes overwhelming. Second to that, the jargon around sustainability can be both misleading and depressing! It’s easy to use words such as ‘harmful’, ‘damaging’ and ‘destroying’ because times feel desperate, but eco-shaper are here to help you get excited about a greener tomorrow, and actively make positive decisions amongst all the negativities. Typically, what we choose to focus on will multiply itself, therefore when speaking of our planet, we’re trying to turn the negative narrative on its head and focus on actions which would help make a sustainable future a reality.
By saying no to negativity, we want to break down sustainability into 5 different focuses, which you can use as both a general sustainability guide, but also keep in mind when choosing brands and companies to purchase from. It’s as hard for brands to focus on all areas of sustainability as it is for consumers, so even just by focusing on one area, you and the brands you choose, are making a positive impact.
1. Stable Climate
Companies that are contributing to a stable climate, are being proactive about measuring their impact and / or committing to 1.5°c. This includes being proactive with initiatives to lower their carbon footprint and achieving a carbon neutral status. They may be doing this by using renewable energy, offsetting their carbon or streamlining their processes. Look out for key words such as:
- carbon neutral,
- carbon offsets,
- energy efficient
- and committed to net-zero.
2. Clean Planet
This is a key focus when shopping for household brands. Achieving a clean planet means reducing the amount of plastic used and producing less waste. Brands that are contributing towards a clean planet will put recycling, composting, upcycling and waste reduction at the top of their priorities. Look out for key words such as:
- plastic free,
- reduced plastic,
- recycled plastic,
- recyclable packaging,
- and home compostable.
3. Responsible Resourcing
Earth’s resources are finite, so being responsible means making the most out of the resources available to us as well, this is a key focus for food and clothing companies. Resources are needed for all stages of production such as water for growing or cleaning, material for building, fuel for transporting etc. A circular economy is a model of production and consumption, which involves sharing, leasing, reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling existing materials and products for as long as possible. It focuses on reusing what we already have rather than using more of the little that’s left. This is a great focus point when shopping for brands, alongside other focuses such as:
- locally sourced,
- waterless products,
- water and water efficient.
4. Health & Wellbeing
Sustainability isn’t just about our planet; it also involves the wellbeing of its people. Not only are companies focusing on environmental responsibility, buy social responsibility too. Social responsibility is particularly important for the health and beauty industry, as it involves providing products that support healthy lifestyles and putting consumer health it its forefront. If public health is thriving, then so will our planet. Moreover, the kind of ingredients used to make kind products, will also be kind to the environment; it comes hand in hand. Key words to look out for are:
- natural ingredients,
- 100% natural and clean beauty.
5. Animal Welfare
For true sustainability, we need to protect the species that we share our environments with. Biodiversity and healthy ecosystems are vital for the longevity of our planet. Brands that are working hard to protect animal welfare and habitats will focus on being vegan friendly, cruelty free, palm oil free, 100% vegan, reef safe, and sustainably sourced. These are the key words to look out for and the industry’s that tend to focus on this area are:
- beauty and food.
At eco-shaper, we drive action on climate change and streamline carbon footprinting. For example, we can help calculate emissions across the entire ecosystem that companies work across and produce automated reporting based on outcomes. It’s like Xero, for sustainability. Contact us to be part of our research group on