Welcome to the first in a series highlighting, and diving a little deeper into some of the products that we sell at The Bare Alternative, and talk a little more about the ethics of the businesses behind these products. Under the spotlight in this first edition we have The Green Woman. Manufacturer of the Fit Pit and Green Cream range.
Fit Pit was a range that I had heard about before opening the shop and seen so many positive reviews from a variety of sources around the internet so I had no hesitation in adding this to our line up in May last year, and it quickly became a best-seller.
A very frequent request that we had in the shop for a long time of new products was a moisturiser refill, so when the Green Cream product was introduced we brought this into the shop when we reopened after our refit in July.
Ever since first making contact to start supplying The Bare Alternative, I've always found the team at The Green Woman to be super nice to work with and I really appreciate that Eve Carnall, Co-Founder of The Green Woman, who has an MSC Chemistry and a Masters in Environmental Decision Making, took the time out of her busy schedule to be part of this article by answering a few questions I had to find out more about the business and their products.
Please tell us a little more about The Green Woman and the products that you make.
We are an independent family-run natural skin and body care company. Everything we make is 100% organic, plastic-free and vegan. We launched our multi-award winning Fit Pit Natural Deodorant in 2014. Our Green Cream moisturising range came out in 2019, which includes a day cream, night cream and indulgent body creams. All our products contain no parabens, BPAs or any nasties of any kind, just 100% plant-based active ingredients. Six years on we have over 100 stockists and many more products in the pipeline. So watch this space!
What motivates you to make sustainable products?
Real change in our times is only possible by changing the systems and institutions that run our society, by continually trying to make our business as sustainable as possible we can have more influence than we can as individuals and we can help other people have better choices too. Modern products are so harmful to the environment as the norm, so we need to do everything to change that and how we use the planet's resources.
What's your personal favourite product from your range?
My favourites are Fit Pit Love Natural Deodorant and Green Cream Love Aphrodisiac Body Cream. They are both scented with frankincense, jasmine and rose and together they make me smell delicious and feel gorgeous from head to toe.
What's your number one tip for living a low-impact lifestyle?
Definitely buying less. Just as with waste, there is a hierarchy of preferences (reduce, reuse, recycle) you can use before getting new possessions. First, can you do without it entirely? By delaying getting it you may find you don't need it after all. Next, can you borrow one or share one? Many household items from cars to kitchen appliances sit unused the majority of the time. By sharing with others we also encourage feelings of trust and understanding and reduce isolation. Can you get it second hand from friends and neighbours or using sites like Gumtree? If you do need to buy it new, think twice, buy once, going for the ethical and higher quality things that will last.
What's something you are working on outside of The Green Woman to live a more eco-friendly life?
I've had good success with a lot of areas (switching to more environmentally-friendly banking and energy supply, working from home and I share a car with neighbours) but I would still like to buy less, especially clothes. It's so quick and easy to buy things, but it takes a special effort to slow yourself down and take the longer road. I did the Marie Kondo tidying method with my possessions a few months ago and it was great to see them all laid out! Doing a clothes swap with some of my neighbours was a nice way to get fresh things without adding to the environmental impact :)
I very much agree with Eve's statement of "Real change is only possible by changing the systems and institutions that run our society" and by providing products such as theirs into the marketplace, and supplying directly to shops like us, it gives the choice to consumers to buy that type of product if they wish to, similar in the way that at The Bare Alternative we provide the alternative of package-free shopping, and without us, there wouldn’t be this way for the local community to shop this way.
I respect that many of our suppliers already use paper tape alternatives and reused card boxes for shipments, and The Green Woman is no exception. It makes it easier for us to handle any waste created from the delivery, and I have specifically mentioned to some suppliers (even though they may not always be supplying to ethical businesses) that they should look to swap to using paper tape due to the impact of plastic tapes. However, The Green Woman take this one step further by shipping products wrapped in the used sheets of labels from their products that would otherwise just be discarded which totally makes sense for shipping a fragile product.
But, one of my favourite things about stocking The Green Woman's products is that they actively promote the return of the jars used for their products (which gives a discount of 30p for large and 10p for small jars) and was one of the reasons for me to create the Support Circular Economy Initiative to highlight products from manufactures that go the extra lengths to really support an ethical and low-impact supply chain. I've now lost count of the number of jars returned for refill and reuse, but it really is a win all round as it saves on valuable resources by not using more new glass jars, but saves money for everybody too.
We also keep hold of the label sheets that jars were sent to us in and use them to wrap up the jars to be returned for reuse, which means that the sheets can then be used again for our next order to be sent to us.
Check out the Fit Pit range available to purchase in-store or on our online store to order for collection.
Check out the Green Cream range available to purchase in-store or on our online store to order for collection.