In the blink of an eye, summer has come and gone, which means… hello fall! The next few months not only bring pumpkins, sweaters, and hot chocolate but also provide a new opportunity to incorporate sustainability into our seasonal choices. So, let’s take a look at three eco-friendly trends to follow as we bid farewell to 2022 and welcome 2023 in a short few months.
1. Natural Ingredients
First up on our list of trends is fundamental for sustainability, and that’s natural materials. If you’re unsure what this means, think of it this way: if it grows in nature without the help or intervention of humans, it’s a natural ingredient. Materials such as wood, clay, or wool are natural mediums that can be more sustainable than synthetic materials like acrylic or polymer. Natural materials also completely biodegrade, unlike the plastics that pollute our landfills and waterways. When shopping for the remainder of this year, consider opting for natural, biodegradable products over synthetic alternatives.
A natural and versatile material to look out for is cork. As one of the best alternatives to leather and plastic, cork is durable while also acting as a renewable and biodegradable material. Not only that, but its unique look makes for a really chic aesthetic.
For a hustling professional on the go, you can’t go wrong with a durable cork briefcase. The hypoallergenic, waterproof, and antimicrobial surface is perfect to keep your laptop and important documents safe on your commute. For smaller-scale protection, keep your cash and credit cards safe and in a lightweight cork wallet. It’s vegan, handmade, and the perfect substitute for leather or nylon.
Ready to ditch the plastic or nylon lunch bag? Look no further and swap it out for a reusable organic cotton lunch bag. This one is food-safe, durable, and machine washable for added convenience. It doesn’t contain toxic chemicals, added dyes, or bleach, and ships in recycled (and recyclable) packaging. What a win-win!
2. Conscious Color
The lovely autumn tones of burgundy, beige, and harvest orange bring us to our next vibrant trend. While color trends change year after year, what’s essential to keep constant is the sustainable value behind the products you choose to buy. So how can you incorporate eco-conscious color into your autumn look?
Whether you opt for a bold shadow, eyeliner, or lip, spice up your fall beauty routine with a pop of color in your makeup. Cosmetics are a great place to start in making more sustainable product choices. For a perfect pink pout, this beeswax lip stain is paraben, sulfate, phthalate, and toxin-free. It’s also packaged in recyclable aluminum, making it a more eco-friendly alternative to plastic products.
Another paraben and phthalate-free beauty must-have is the Glitz Eye Color Pencil. Made from certified organic ingredients, this eye pencil is both vegan and cruelty-free. Not only that but it’s shipped in recyclable and compostable packaging. Pair it with a plastic-free cheek tint for a vegan, organic, and versatile blush alternative. As an added bonus, this cheek tint includes SPF 15 to help protect you from the sun, and you can use it on your lips and eyes as well!
Aside from rosy cheeks and a bold lip, a more inclusive way to incorporate color into your look is through your eyewear. Makeup may not be everyone’s favorite priority, but that doesn’t exclude you from this trend! One option is opting for a colorful yet sleek pair of eyeglass frames to add a little personality to your everyday look. Choose between prescription glasses or non-prescription blue light options for those computer-heavy days. Not only can it add color, but can also act as an eco-friendly alternative to daily contact lenses.
But how exactly can eyewear be sustainable? Well, first off you should look for buzz words like carbon-neutral, climate-positive, leaping bunny certified, or B Corp when choosing where to purchase eyewear or any other everyday items.
- A carbon-neutral business offsets its emissions by investing in green energy. For those that go the extra mile, a Climate Neutral certification is awarded to the companies that offset all business emissions each year.
- Climate-positive companies offset their emissions and then some, further reducing their impact.
- Leaping bunny certification is important to protect our animals from cruel animal testing.
- A B Corp is certified as a leader in social and environmental values, accountability, and transparency.
By purchasing products from companies with these kinds of values, you’re supporting their greener, more conscious mission!
3. Recycled Materials
Sometimes, products can’t reasonably be made out of all-natural or organic materials, and that’s to be expected. However, there are some innovative goods out there made from other products, which brings us to our last and final trend: recycled materials.
Between polyester made from recycled water bottles and glass upcycled into jewelry, there is a diverse range of recycled products on the market. For athletes into yoga, pilates, or cycling, replace your activewear with a more sustainable alternative. The Tommy Sports Bra from Girlfriend Collective is supportive, flattering, and eco-friendly. Made from 10 recycled plastic bottles, this bra repurposes the plastic that doesn’t biodegrade in our landfills. Combined with its plastic-free packaging and end-of-life recycling program, this bra is making a difference!
Staying on the athleisure train, upcycled footwear can also make a big difference in reducing unnecessary waste. Complete your yoga look with a pair of flip-flops made from recycled tires. This vegan footwear option made from natural rubber and recycled tire soles makes a perfect addition to your new sustainable outfit. For the days you’re getting your steps in, swap the flip-flops out for a pair of vegan sneakers. Also made from recycled materials, these SAOLA sneaks are made of a mixture of recycled water bottles, cork, and organic cotton. Not only stylish, but sustainable as well!
Aside from clothing and wearable accessories, there are other innovative recycled products on the market. Have you ever heard of a single product made from recycled fabric, cork, aluminum, and silicone? It exists, and all of those materials form a waterproof Bluetooth speaker. This device has all the bells and whistles—built-in microphone, aux input, charging capabilities, and 16-hour battery life—while repurposing a variety of recycled materials. Talk about a creative, functional, and eco-friendly way to turn “trash” into treasure!
Trends come and go each season, but one thing remains the same: the Earth must be protected. Our planet has been very generous, but it’s time to give back before we push her to her limits. Educate yourself on the materials and companies making a positive change, make conscious purchasing decisions, and give Earth the breath of fresh air it deserves.