The Importance of Kindness.
Today, the 17th February, is a day dedicated to Random Acts of Kindness.
What a fantastic thing to dedicate a day to, I mean, when we have a day for mermaids, unicorns, even doughnuts and pizza, surely there's enough room in our already packed calendars for a day dedicated to just being kind. We are all over that....the other days too but we'll leave those for now.
We're always, and I mean always, (sometimes we need to calm down a bit) worrying mainly about what kind of impact we're having on the planet.
You probably already know, but we are just two sisters from Barry who happy to be lucky enough to run this amazing brand, which we created from our garage in Barry. But...now that we have this platform, one of the main and most important things we want to do is encourage others, to be kind to animals, be kind to our environment, and kind to each other...
Imagine, if we all did that how amazing the world would be.
So we've spent an hour already this morning worrying about how manufacturing our products impacts on the environment, and thinking about how we can streamline production and packaging, which we've already made lots of progress on, but there's always room for improvement.
Instead of worrying for the rest of the day (because worry = stress, and no one wants that), we thought we'd put a little kindness out there in the form of a blog post with some small steps we can all take daily towards a kinder world.
On being Kind to animals.
Animals are incredible creatures, and they are so important for our planet and our well being - ever come home and just cuddled your cat or dog after a long day and felt instantly better?! - Yeah us too. But it's not just domesticated animals we need to be kind to.
So this isn't about going whole hog and preaching about one of our brands core values - Veganism - that's a lot for everyone to try and commit to if you're just not ready or just not into it, but there are little things you can do easily and won't have a big impact on your daily life or diet.
Try coconut milk in your coffee. We have a coconut milk flat white every day to get us started, and it's honestly delicious, full fat coconut milk might sound naughty, but at least it's not got any hormones in it and no cows are harmed in the making. If you're getting a take away, score extra kindness points for using a keep cup, you'll feel better and even slightly smug, we promise.
Try meat free Mondays. If you're not already part vegetarian, which lots of us are, then cutting out meat at least one day a week is a small step towards being kinder to animals, and a chance to try something new for your tea, who doesn't love that? Here's one of our favourite vegan recipes of the moment, it's easy. Little tip, we blend the sauce together in our nutri bullet to make it seriously smooth and creamy, and add a little kick with some mustard seeds.
You could thinking about becoming a PETA member if you love animals and want to see action being taken.
We started our membership in 2017 and have renewed for 2018, and you don't get much in terms of annoying e-mails, but you do get the odd letter in the post which usually contains information which is really insightful and highlights certain ways in which there is hidden animal cruelty that you might not think about. One thing, the trend for puffa coats...look for ones with sponge filling rather than feathers, they're just as warm and no ducks are harmed. We learned that from a PETA newsletter.
One of our staffie babies Twiggy giving us heart eyes.
You'll be pleasantly surprised that you don't have to pledge a huge amount either. You can follow a link to become an PETA member here
If you just information and not to join an organisation, then the One Green Planet newsletter is an amazing source of recipes, news, and inspiration. You can sign up here
Lastly, and we're not just saying this, it's now becoming so much easier to purchase beauty products that do not harm animals in the process. You don't have to spend a fortune either. There are so many amazing brands that don't test on animals or have a great selection of products that are cruelty free, and hopefully we'll see an increase on vegan cosmetics *spoiler alert* we're working on it. We'll leave you with that thought.
On being Kind to our environment.
This one is huge for us at the moment. Anyone else cry at Blue Planet II? More than once? We feel you.
So you've probably already seen our post on what we've done so far to improve our packaging. We've managed to reduce it down from 3 layers of plastic to just one. Here's a pic of our old packaging on the left and our new on the right, notice the naked brush inside the plastic? That's the best way for them to be shipped out with minimal packaging. The plastic is as thin as we can get it without depriving our products of a protective layer whilst in transit.
Our next step to improve on this again is to see what we can use instead of plastic, there are new plastic sleeve options being made all the time, one we've looked at is made of chalk, one is made of seaweed, both of which are kind to the environment in production and don't result in excess waste. The difficulty is maintaining our margins, as we don't want to be un-kind by passing off our higher costs onto our customers, we're not about that. So watch this space for less plastic!
Why don't we use cardboard? That's one question we've asked ourselves...but cardboard needs trees, and the production of paper pulp and cardboard is 4 times more harmful to the environment than plastic production, so it's just working with a plastic type material that is ultimately biodegradable or easily recyclable which is our goal.
Other ways we try and be kind to our environment is by making our Boots packaging re-useable. Each of the little pink sleeves has a popper fastening, so when you pop into Boots to pick up a new brush, or set, you can keep your packaging to either store your brushes in, or anything you want really. If anyone reading this is also packaging obsessed like we are, we know you'll keep it anyway :)
Here's one of our Boots brush sets from the front and the back, so you can see the popper which makes it re-useable. Another *spoiler alert* we have 7 new lines launching in Boots stores and online from March, including this 3 piece Contour & Glow set for £19.99 :)
Other little ways we try and help the planet which any one can do include:
- Sharing lifts (we always do this it's just nicer travelling together).
- Organising your recycling properly, don't forget you can't recycle most film plastics, these need to be taken off the plastic trays and placed in the bin otherwise they contaminate recycling.
- Make considered purchases, don't over consume, choose products which have longevity and won't end up in the bin in less than 6 months.
On being Kind to our each other.
They say to be kind you need to love yourself first, and that self love is the best love, and to be kind to yourself etc....we are the worlds worst at this, so we'll try and take our own advice.
Be. Kind. To. Yourself.
- Do not beat yourself up about your appearance (what's normal now anyway?! The definition of beauty is always evolving).
- Do not work without a break. You need a break, especially if you're starting your own business, take 5 and you'll come back with a clear head. Walk around, get some fresh air, it does help we promise.
- Do not starve yourself. You need to eat. We're guilty of this still but we're better than we were when we were in the garage. Vegetables are your friends, but if you haven't got time to have a smoothie at the ready every day, snack on nuts or have something close to hand that will give you energy. But seriously, go home and make yourself something decent to eat, it doesn't have to be complicated, (we can't cook) but you can always try a quick stir fry?! (Our hump day go to).
- Do sleep. You need your full 8 hours more than you need to get up at 6 in the morning and hit the gym. Rest.
- Do exercise, yes well not at 6 in the morning, but what we try and do is half an hour 3 times a week or so, it's not that bad, we really don't enjoy it but always feel better when we've done it. Coming from two non gym lovers, you can do it.
- Do congratulate yourself on your victories, no matter how small they are, if you make progress or have some good news, write it down and look at it, to remind yourself when you achieved it.
- Do have fun. If you watch our insta stories you'll see us having fun, cocktail in hand fairly often. It's important to work hard, and play hard.
We'll leave it there for now lovelies, we don't want to bore you, plus it's Saturday and we're going to walk the dogs now.
Lots of love,
Sophie & Hannah xxx