At Rubicon®, we are firm believers in using our purchasing power to make conscious consumer decisions to help brands that are helping others.
In celebration of International Women’s Day 2021, the Rubicon Women’s Affinity Group has curated a list of four women-owned sustainable brands that touch on the facets of self-care during a time when we all need it most.
1) Alabama Chanin: Florence, Alabama
Natalie Chanin is not only a visionary, she is also the brains behind sustainable fashion powerhouse, Alabama Chanin.
One of the most celebrated sustainable brands in the south, Chanin’s Florence, Alabama compound has become a safe-haven for local patrons of the zero-waste fashion movement. Chanin got her start by selling one-of-a-kind reconstructed shirts at Fashion Week. After successfully selling out of her “eco-chic” designs, Chanin planted her roots in her hometown of Florence where she began salvaging materials in the hope of creating gorgeous garments. Chanin was focused on creating by-hand designs with an emphasis on community fashion using recycled and reusable textiles.
With a sense of responsibility in every aspect of her business, Chanin has hired an incredible team of local seamstresses to bring her designs to life. In addition to her retail store, the Alabama Chanin kingdom also includes her design studio, manufacturing facility, workshop space, machine manufacturing center, and cafe. The cafe boasts a local and organic menu with locally-sourced ingredients.
2) White & Elm: Fort Collins, Colorado
Just because a product is plant-based and eco-conscious doesn’t mean it can’t still cater to the beauty needs of the “savvy modern woman.” If there is a company that is proving this is possible, it’s White & Elm.
According to Founder and CEO Sherelle Reed, “[White & Elm] recognized early on that the reach and impact of our operational decisions had an amplified effect on our community and the environment. We had the power to do some good in the world and it became very important for White & Elm to be socially and environmentally responsible in every possible way. Becoming a B Corp was a natural fit for us. We are excited to join the B Corp community (certified in 2017) and will continue to impact the Indie Beauty space in a positive way.”
Based in Fort Collins, Colorado, a RUBICONSmartCity city, the brand boasts 100 percent recyclable glass packaging, fully compostable packaging filler, and cruelty-free products that are never tested on animals. This sustainability is equally focused on the global environment and the personal one and is just one of the reasons they are EWG VERIFIED™.
3) The Green Yogi: Berkeley, California
When a new shop owner takes over their new space, they often make it home by changing and redesigning the guts. This process can create a lot of waste when old flooring and old walls are tossed out to make way for all things new and shiny, but if you have sustainability in mind, like The Green Yogi, then you embrace the space to save the waste. Keeping the walls and flooring was only the first of many green steps founder Mary Strong-Sullivan took to keep her yoga studio as green as possible.
For any new remodel materials needed, Strong-Sullivan used FSC-certified wood (environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, economically viable) and low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint.
According to Strong-Sullivan, “Every time [they] make a decision, the environmental impact is considered.” This is why you will not find paper or plastic bags used for in-studio purchases, their garden eliminates water waste via fake grass, and their check-in process is paper-free.
4) Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams: Columbus, Ohio
What if there was an ice cream that could bring people together, maintain high social standards, strive for exceptional environmental stewardship, and maintain full accountability and transparency along the way? Oh, and what if that ice cream was also seriously tasty? Don’t worry; this isn’t some fever dream that doesn’t exist, it’s Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams!
When it comes to their ice cream, the word perfection seems most appropriate. Jeni’s stays true to simple ingredients that help to keep textures smooth and flavors real. Jeni’s wears their heart on their sleeve so you will never see synthetic flavorings, off-the-shelf mixes, or dyes in their pints. They take pride in the fact that their labels are free from common stabilizers and emulsifiers. They have also been B Corp certified since 2013.
Since their certification, Jeni’s has been going above and beyond the call of duty with their ice cream and their dedication to social responsibility. They do this all while staying true to their belief that you can “grow a business as a community of people, with artful attention to detail and the customer experience, and get continuously better at the same time.”
To learn more about Rubicon’s work transforming the entire category of waste and recycling, be sure to download our inaugural Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Report.
Editor’s Note: References made to businesses/companies in this post are not meant to convey affiliation with or endorsement of Rubicon by those companies in any way.
Stacie Moore is Vice President of Human Resources and Women’s Affinity Group Leader at Rubicon. To stay ahead of Rubicon’s announcements of new partnerships and collaborations around the world, be sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, or contact us today.