Why does sustainability matter?
Before embarking on the monumental headache of choosing packaging for a new product, I knew there was one aspect I wasn’t willing to forego - sustainability.
Ahead of sourcing any materials, sustainability and environmentally friendliness was at the forefront of my mind because it’s a core value of the entire brand.
All too often we see every aspect of our lives becoming ‘disposable’ - clothes, shoes, appliances, friends, lovers and even marriages. Some misguidedly believing that newer will always be better.
But that’s a whole other debate for another day.
From inception to execution, I knew I didn’t just want to make a great supplement. I wanted to make a great supplement, with a great ethos and a great impact.
I’ve seen the challenges other companies have faced by trying to catch up and then have to spend eye watering amounts on campaigns to let customers know about their new environmental initiatives.
I wanted to integrate sustainable packaging from the start. I wanted all of my packaging designs to consider the environment, not just one aspect of the company or product line.
Rather than asking myself "how can I add in sustainability?", I asked, "how can I make this process sustainable?". It wasn’t a piece of the decision, but rather it’s what guided the decision.
With 90% of the worlds plastic never recycled and the ocean being flooded with plastic waste, Elle Sera had to integrate sustainable packaging from the get go.
There was a personal aspect too, having spent five weeks living on a desert island as part of TV show, Treasure Island with Bear Grylls, I saw first hand the shocking amount of plastic waste and pollution which had managed to reach that tiny remote land in Panama.
I saw how the garbage ruined the landscape, how marine life became entangled in the debris and heartbreakingly, how the birds mistook the disregarded plastic as food and gave it to their young.
When I returned home, still upset from what I’d witnessed and pessimistic about the future of our planet, I began researching all aspects of pollution and how I could potentially change my behaviour to help in the fight back against sewage.
Did you know that 1 in 3 fish caught for human consumption now contains plastic? Even if that fact doesn’t stun you - you should care because its bad for you too. In seawater, plastic absorbs chemicals like PCB’s and DDT’s which are inextricably linked to endocrine (hormone) disruption and even some cancers.
With this in mind, there was no doubt about it, when I commenced work on Elle Sera, I was going to try and be as sustainable as possible from start to finish. I didn’t want to overlook what has become a key factor in the world’s plastic waste crisis.
But with recycling rates significantly low, could I really make a big impact by offering a container that would be reused? Could I design a container that people would be proud to have on their nightstand or dressing table?
I had to try.
The sustainability aspect also allowed me a chance to make this packaging stand out from the crowd, improve customer experience with superior design and give the consumer an enhanced look, feel and functionality to the product.
After many sketches, some good, some bad and some downright ugly and several months of trial and error, the little pot of gold was born.
The engraved fully-brass container which keep your supplements safe is not only durable and reusable, but it’s beautiful to look at.
I also kept the environmental issue in mind with every other aspect of the packaging, from the labels, to the monthly subscription bags and the box, everything was either 100% - 90% made from recycled material.
Not only that but Elle Sera is also vegan, non GMO, gluten and not tested on animals.
Elle Sera is both functional and a way for our consumers to talk about sustainability and the positive impact they’re trying to make in our environment.
It’s a conversation starter for conscious consumers who are going green, and a way for people to continue integrating sustainable practices into their everyday life.
I hope this will get you thinking more about sustainable packaging and how you can ask yourself these questions when it comes to the products you purchase and the packaging you use at home. Lead with sustainability, and everyone’s a winner.