Why Making A Statement With Your Dollar Is Crucial
As consumers, we have so much power to change the world by just being careful in what we buy - Emma Watson
What would you say is your style? Fashionable, stylish, elegant, casual, vintage, bohemian, artsy, comfortable, sporty... are probably the words most of us would use... But what about fast?
As a production term, "fast" refers to low-cost collections that arrive in stores quickly to meet new trends.
Often, we aren't even aware that retailers change their stock frequently to attract customers. The result is that manufacturers must produce goods as quickly as possible while reducing costs.
Cheaper products have a greater environmental impact and a greater impact on the workers who produce them. Cheaper materials like plastic, silicone, and rubber are used to speed up production. Additionally, many products are made with harmful chemicals and toxic dyes.
As our world becomes increasingly connected, we're becoming aware of how our actions affect others. Whether it's deforestation, worker exploitation, or cruelty to animals, it's hard for us to ignore the negative impact of our consumption habits.
Although it's true that companies are in business to make money, buying ethical products and services can change this narrative—proving that companies can do well for both the world and their bottom line at the same time.
Quite simply, EcoBlvd believes that people should be empowered to vote with their money and should be able to choose products that are made for the earth, from the earth, and that are less resource intensive.
Although we don't scale our processes like "fast" manufacturers, we use ethically sourced materials, so we can offer you products at an affordable price while paying a living wage to everyone involved in manufacturing and production.
Investing In A Better World With Your Dollar
Buying responsibly is less about being told "what we want" and more about demanding "what we need" regarding sustainability and ethical practices.
Sustainable products seem more expensive and inaccessible because demand for them hasn't reached the same levels as other options, so they cannot yet discount at the same rate as other options.
As an example, let's look at a hypothetical scenario:
It's an unbelievable deal; you've found the perfect phone case for only $15 online!
However, this $15 covers the whole cost of making the product, transporting it, and earning a profit for the reseller.
Because it can be mass manufactured, it's most likely made of synthetic, petroleum-based plastic that's cheaper than natural materials. Most likely, it was made abroad by a factory that pays its workers substantially less than a living wage. As a result, the factory may not take any steps to reduce pollution or ensure safe working conditions because those measures are costly. The process of manufacturing that phone case involves extracting raw materials, setting them into molds, assembling them, transporting them, and ensuring a profit for the reseller.
Through your purchase of that phone case, you are endorsing the practices of the reseller and manufacturer.
Essentially, you're allowing them to continue to do it as you are desensitized to want to buy differently since their costs are so low, so you value products accordingly.
You can make your values heard most effectively by purchasing sustainable and ethical goods.
Investing in a better world is like casting a vote with your dollar!
Why Materials Matter
The cost of quality does not come cheap.
To produce a high-quality item, more durable materials must be used, more skilled labor must be employed, and more time must be spent testing and inspecting the products.
The cost of all these things adds up over time, especially as we strive to make the future of plastic plant-based.
We try to obtain our corn, sugarcane, cassava, and other materials from ethical vendors so that we can create InnoMaize™, the proprietary material used in our Laguna and Sequoia collection phone cases.
Yet, even the main ingredients aside, the process of making InnoMazie™ requires more time than using plastic or synthetic materials as we need to turn these plant-based materials into a fiber.
To create InnoMazie™, we have to extract the starch from each plant and convert it into sugar and lactic acid. Fiber is then made by spinning the material and mixing it with activated carbon and dehydrating it in a vacuum oven.
These fibers also add to the strength of InnoMaize™ offering a better strength-to-weight ratio, durability, and reusability compared to plastics and other natural materials.
At the end of their lifetime, our phone cases can be used as compost when exposed to high temperatures and humidity, and completely break down in a composter within six months. As the materials break down, they become indistinguishable, and no toxic residue is left behind.
This is in stark contrast to conventional plastic cases, which are made without any additional materials that are able to be repurposed or recycled. Even those that include leather, metal, silicone, fleece, and vegan or synthetic leather cases cannot be repurposed as they all blend multiple synthetic materials.
It gets even worse: nearly 1.3 billion plastic phone cases are discarded each year, resulting in over 40,000 tons of waste. It may take up to 500 years before plastic phone cases degrade in landfills, despite being biodegradable. Also, plastic phone cases can end up in natural environments like rivers, oceans, and forests, which destroy ecosystems.
By choosing a sustainable option, you can make purchases less frequently, ultimately preserving resources and reducing waste.
It Is A Choice That Provides More Benefits
Purchasing from brands that use plastic or synthetic materials does not support any causes but simply ramps up production on the next batch to follow the latest trend. The cycle not only produces no benefit but also produces more waste and carbon emissions!
At EcoBlvd, taking from the planet without giving back is not an option. You are ultimately helping our oceans, forests, and deserts, supporting clean and renewable energy initiatives and funding environmental education when you shop with us.
As a member of 1% for the Planet, every purchase of an EcoBlvd phone case gives back to non-profit organizations that are doing admirable environmental conservation work, including the National Forest Foundation, Mojave Desert Land Trust, and The Ocean Conservancy.
Your Demand Drives The Prices
Choosing to buy a sustainable product means not only reducing your emissions by choosing not to purchase one that is less sustainable but also contributing to a greater demand that allows businesses to reduce their costs.
Our phone cases currently start at $45, but we frequently run promotions, offer discounts via social media, and send out newsletters.
We also offer a 25% discount on future orders for those who utilize our Roundabout Recycling Program by sending back their old phone cases, chargers, and charging cables using the pre-paid stamp included with your order.
Voting with your dollar is all about perspective.
Resetting our expectations is key to overcoming our dependence on waste-laden products.
It has become normal for us to buy items as cheaply as possible - to the point where $15 for a phone case is the norm.
For sustainable goods to be priced competitively, the first step is to reverse decades of conditioning that seeks the lowest prices possible.
Until you get there, there will be hesitance as you're comparing sustainable items against conventional ones rather than sustainable items against each other.
How willing are you to pay more for a sustainable future?