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Discovering Sustainable Brands: How to Find Eco-Friendly Products

Consumers are motivated to find sustainable products. More people are actively seeking eco-friendly products with increasing awareness about our environmental challenges. Many companies are eager to make greener claims. If you want to support sustainable brands, you’ve come to the right place!

Eco-friendly companies prioritize ethical practices, environmental responsibility, and social impact. However, with an abundance of options available, it can take time to identify the right sustainable brands for your needs. But how can you find these brands that align with your values?

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Understand Why Sustainable Brands Matter

Recent changes in weather patterns paint a grim picture of the potential impacts of climate change. Sustainable brands are important because they help protect the planet, treat workers fairly, and improve communities. These companies are dedicated to reducing their environmental footprint, promoting fair trade and labor practices, and positively impacting the planet. By supporting sustainable brands, you contribute to a greener future and align yourself with ethical values.

However, with many options available, it can take time to identify the right sustainable brands for your needs. You’re not alone if you realize you want to purchase more sustainable brands. A new study by Talkwalker identified that 82% of consumers want businesses to take action by putting people and the planet before profit. If you’re new to sustainable living, check out our article on How to Eat a More Sustainable Diet or The Food Sustainability Series to get started.

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Identify your Sustainability Goals

Sustainability has become a word that’s associated with environmental consciousness and eco-friendly products. However, the world of sustainability is filled with trade-offs.

With anything considered sustainable in one criterion, another category discredits it. For example, while nuts are a great example of sequestering carbon from trees, they are incredibly water intensive. Some farms may even take resources away from local communities for the benefit of higher productivity.

Tradeoffs are why sustainability strategists focus on tackling one sustainability criterion at a time. At the very least, they focus on the criteria that can have the most impact. Think about what matters most to you when it comes to sustainability. Is it reducing waste, using renewable energy, or treating workers well? Knowing what you care about will help you find brands that share your values.

I grew up in a town that had chemical pollution in our waterways from a well-known company. I grew heavily invested in learning about what chemicals are safe to consume or use in your home and environmental preservation. Particularly because chemicals and waste streams can adversely affect the environment or even your health. This is particularly relevant in home cleaning, personal care, and food categories.

While this is important to me, other areas might be more relevant to you, such as reduced carbon emissions or better farming practices. Defining your criteria will help you narrow your search and find brands aligning with your values.

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Use Some Simple Search Tricks to Look for Sustainable Brands

When you find a brand that catches your interest, do a little research to make sure they’re truly sustainable. You can start by visiting the brands’ official websites. Look for information on their sustainability initiatives, certifications, and transparency reports. Some brands have pages dedicated to their eco-friendly practices. You can also check if they adhere to recognized standards and participate in sustainability programs or partnerships.

Their websites often promote certifications or memberships to specific organizations. Look for logos or mentions of certifications that show the brand follows sustainable practices. However, there are over 400 eco-related labels, so ensure the claim is legitimate and impactful. You can use a platform like the Eco-Label Index to help you identify what these claims mean. Alignment with reputable eco-seals is an excellent way to ensure they’re doing what they say.

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Another research tip for discovering sustainable brands is to look for reviews on websites. Ask friends and family about their experience with the brand, too. User reviews and ratings offer insights into the credibility and authenticity of sustainable brands. Search for independent review websites or platforms where consumers share their experiences with different products and brands. These firsthand accounts can help you assess a brand’s sustainability practices and overall quality. Keep checking the Made to Sustain website for reviews on sustainable products.

The last thing you can do to identify a sustainable brand is check for any legal actions against the company. Any issues with greenwashing or unethical practices in recent years are a quick way to spot a phony sustainable brand. A quick Google search for “Company name + Lawsuits” is a great first step to understanding a company’s ethics. For example, Tide was in trouble for greenwashing with its Tide PurClean line, and Nestle for using slave labor in its cocoa supply chain. While companies make improvements every day to move past these types of malpractices, it’s important to support brands that are not operating unethically

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Start Small and Local to Support Local Sustainable Brands

Consider supporting local and small businesses that prioritize sustainability.  These brands often have a smaller carbon footprint, support local economies, and maintain closer relationships with their suppliers. This practice ensures ethical practices throughout the supply chain. You can find local, sustainable brands at your local farmers’ markets, small shops, or craft fairs in your area. More established brands will share their product’s story with you on how it’s making an impact. Don’t be afraid to have conversations with the booth either!

Discover Sustainable Brands!

Finding sustainable brands is an exciting adventure that allows you to make a positive impact on the world. By following these simple guidelines, you can easily discover sustainable brands that care about the environment and treat workers well. Embrace the power of informed decision-making and support brands that are dedicated to creating a greener and more sustainable future for all.  Together, we can make a difference!

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