Opus Mind delivers a classic sustainable backpack to last a lifetime. Classy beautiful leather that will be a part of our family for life. It is sleek, intrinsically handcrafted and simply put: a classic. When speaking to Kathleen Kuo I was so impressed in her attention to detail, every aspect of the way she is running this brand has been thought out.
Kathleen used to work at Chanel in her previous life and was so distraught as to how much was actually wasted in production. This inspired her down the path of sustainability. Opus Mind’s bags are handmade in Italy, and the leather used to make them is actually the scraps from a factory that makes gloves. How cool is this?
Recycled from scraps to make these exquisite pieces. I have to say I am already looking forward to owning the Saddle Crossbody when I am back in the city.
I truly cannot emphasise enough the quality of these bags. The detail in the craftsmanship is superb. These bags are functional and match any occasion. A day out in the city or a day at the beach, this bag looks good wherever you take it. The thought that the scraps that are used to make this bag would have ended up in landfills polluting our planet, instead you get to treasure it and pass it down to your kids, just like your grandfathers old classic briefcase!
Mine still looks brand new and I look forward to seeing how it ages. Send us pictures with you and your ¨Opus Mind¨ we would love to share them.
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It has taken me years to find a sustainable laundry detergent I truly aligned with. When it comes to laundry detergent the most important thing is really that it works. For years every single time I bought a plastic container I would get frustrated with myself and try new detergents in a box (which would get moist and sticky and not really clean my clothes) you name it, I tried it. Even trying to make my own, but honestly as eco-friendly as I want to be I am not willing to walk around in stained clothes. So even all these eco conscious brands packaged in plastic was just not cutting it for me.
Then I discovered Tru Earth, they sent me a sample package, to be honest I was a bit sceptical at first. So I did not post about the product until I tried them all and washed my dirty toddler clothes with it. Well to my surprise I have finally found the brand that works for me on every level.
I now have plenty of room in my laundry room, no sticky gooey laundry spills. It is efficient, works well and when I have finished using the strips I recycle my thin cardboard envelope and voila- zero waste! Also the shipping leaves a minimum carbon footprint. Go ahead purchase a yearly bundle and feel good about your zero waste laundry journey!
I am sure by now you have heard the term ¨Zero Waste¨ and we know it can sound daunting and overwhelming. Firstly I would like to explain the concept: it is based on a set of principles focused on waste prevention. Ultimately when waste ends up in landfills, incinerators and the ocean, it emits toxic gases that are detrimental to our environment. So the zero waste concept encourages the redesign of resource lifecycles so that products can be reused, repurposed and kept out of landfills. To give you an idea, plastics instead of being thrown away can be repurposed to build furniture, bricks and things that are more durable and long lasting.
I would like to remind you that the main goal is to simply take baby steps. It is not about perfection but about taking initiatives towards a better future. Here are 5 steps in the right direction that make a very big difference in the amount of waste that we produce.
Eco Couple uses affiliate links. We promote products we have tried ourselves and truly believe in. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running.Allows us to keep the content free for readers.This motivates us to stay on our mission of inspiring conscious consumerism
1-Water Filtration Systems
Investing in some type of water filtration system is essential. You can avoid thousand of plastic bottles ending up in the oceans and landfills. Ultimately it also saves you a great deal of money as you will never have to buy another bottle again.
After lengthy research on under the counter filters, this is the most affordable and efficient one we found. You can spend thousands of dollars on other options but this one delivers perfect water to your home and has proven the test of time. Use code: ECOCOUPLE for your 10% discount
This is by far one of our most loved systems because you can catch water at the source and filter it or even catch rain water in case of an emergency. The Travel Berkey is super convenient and we are really happy with ours.
2- Water Bottles
We have used quite a few over the years and have our preferences for several different occasions. Some are easier to clean than others, while others the water simply tastes better. So we have included our selection of top 3 water bottle brands.
1- Blue Bottle Love– We always have one in our fridge as well as the gallon one for back up water at home. This bottle makes the water taste the best and is by far my top choice.
2- Yeti – Since having a toddler glass bottles can get a little dangerous so sometimes it is better to have something a little sturdier and being out all day it can be nice and refreshing to have something stay cold for hours.
3- Hydroflask– same same, a really good option a bit cheaper and just as good. I personally love having my cold water when I exit the ocean after a windsurfing session, and the same bottle can be used to keep the water warm so that you can prepare some tea for when it gets cold. Amazing!!
This is a very simple concept, do we really need all the things we buy? Stop and think for a moment, is this essential? What will happen to this item down the line? Do I need it or could I maybe borrow it from a friend? Try to stop using single use items, obviously in emergencies we sometimes have to buy things we don’t align with but if you think about it most of the time we really do have a choice and we really need much less than we realise. when it comes to fashion it is nice to have something new sometimes, but it does not have to be ¨New¨ it can be new to you. Swap clothes with friends every once in a while.
4- Bring Your Own Bag
In most stores you can either bring your own bag or ask for boxes at the counter that you can then recycle. We definitely can refuse plastic bags. Also bringing your own tupperware and cutlery set is simple and really effective. There are such nice sets out there you may as well have one in your bag and an extra set in the car. I guarantee you will be saving hundreds if not thousands of plastic spoons, knives and forks ending up in a landfill.
This can sometimes feel the most difficult. It is true that I personally wanted to compost for years in my head before I actually went ahead and did it. I kept thinking I needed to live on a big piece of land. In actual fact you can compost anywhere and really do nature a favour by doing so. I wish I had started sooner now that I realised how simple it actually is and how much waste I reduce from that simple act. We absolutely found the system that was right for us. The Bokashi saves you from needing to turn and churn and have worms in your compost. This is clean and efficient and can be done form anywhere. For more info read our post ¨Eco friendly Sustainable Gardening Tips¨ or you can head over to our instagram and check ¨Our Garden¨ and watch how we did it.
Thanks for reading and please do pass these tips along to encourage others to be more ¨Zero Waste¨!
Thank you for your interest in living more sustainably. The very first thing I believe we should ALL do, is invest in some type of water filter, be it an under the sink filter or on the counter, whatever you are most drawn to and is in your budget. Not buying plastic bottles of water already reduces a huge amount of waste in each family. If you would like to know which filter we like to use read our blogpost ¨Our Favourite Water Filter¨
This is a quick guide for some simple changes you can make in your every day life that can be truly beneficial for our planet. It is as simple as switching out your plastic scrub brush for this beautiful brush made from bamboo, and coconut, 100% biodegradable.
The more we learn about plastic pollution the more sense it makes to replace our plastic items for sustainable versions. There are very simple steps we can take towards creating less harmful waste and you really do feel better about yourself when you notice how much less trash you are adding to the plastic pollution. Here are a few helpful tips and brands we discovered and wanted to share.
Lunch Boxes are imperative in our lives right now, having a toddler means you have to be ready with a meal on hand at all times. Well I did not want to use plastic and glass seemed a little dangerous while on the road. We came across the perfect solution, stainless steel. Sustainable safe lunch boxes for on the go. Look how practical and convenient these beautiful lunch boxes or should I say circles are. I absolutely love them. There are so many more amazing plates and sets I look forward to purchasing and sharing with you soon.
I have already been asked about my storages boxes twice by random strangers… they really are quite special, and this particular one has a beautiful mandala printed on the top.
It is so wonderful to see all the innovative ideas that are coming to fruition these days. This household cleaning brand makes trying them ultra easy. They have an awesome Starter Kit.
What is smart about this system is that you receive several bottles and then you basically just refill these with refill caps. This naturally saves a lot of plastic, as well as minimising the carbon footprint of shipping just the little caps as opposed to full bottles of liquid. You add your own water to the product with one of the caps when you are ready to use it. El Cove was co-founded by 17 year old Stacia and she is on a mission to be a part of the refill revolution and we absolutely support her cause.
Thank you for being so inspiring, Stacia, and bringing this project to life.
We are thrilled to come across this brand right before it launched. If you are looking for a more eco conscious way to live in your kitchen, this starter kit gives you a nice nudge in the right direction. It includes a bamboo scrub brush and a loofah sponge.
Both are biodegradable which means you can compost the brush and sponge when you are done with them. I look forward to testing that out in my bokashi, see our ¨Gardening Post¨! It also includes some BPA free lids that you can literally use over any pot or bowl or even put right over half a fruit or round vegetable. And lastly it has a beautiful mesh shopping bag to inspire to leave the paper, or even worse plastic bags, at the register.
We truly wish you the best in this beautiful community you have entered and look forward to supporting you along the way. Thank you for creating products that aid us in living more sustainably.
This is so simple and so rewarding, we purchased a glass bottle for our dish soap a while back. I purchase these very cool and sustainable refills by Clean Cult that come in carton packaging. I really love the lemongrass smell but have yet to try the others.
I get to recycle the bottle and it makes me feel so much better about my purchase than just buying another plastic bottle (with nowhere to go) full of soap! Join the #refillrevolution and let’s put and end to plastic.
Not only does Tru Earth make a great laundry detergent, but it comes in strips in a tiny cardboard envelope. It is completely zero waste and eco-friendly. Honestly it does not get more sustainable than that, even their carbon footprint with shipping is minimal. This is one of the eco swaps I am most proud about in our home.
Nowadays you can even buy biodegradable sponges to do your dishes. Another really easy switch is your plastic toothbrush. If you look around your house you will find that most of your disposable plastic items can be replaced, when they are no longer of use of course, with something eco-friendly, ethically made and sustainable. Every time you spend money towards anything you are casting a vote: Vote for a better world.
It all makes a difference it all makes an impact.
Thank you for showing interest in our eco friendly blog, we are on a mission to leave a better earth behind for our children, if you read this YOU are too….. THANK YOU! We look forward to meeting you along the way. We would also love to hear about some of the eco-friendly options you have come to discover and love.
We have been blessed with the opportunity to have traveled to Maui, Hawaii for almost two months. Iñaki was competing in a windsurfing contest, The Aloha Classic (IWT), a life long dream, and I was blessed to enjoy motherhood and continue researching eco conscious brands. Upon arrival we came across a wonderful photographer…that took some of the pictures in this article….who not only did the shoot with us but also recommended some of the amazing brands we ended up collaborating with. Thank you Chelsea! If you are headed for Maui it is definitely worth it to capture this stunning place with some beautiful photographic memories.
Maui was especially fun as we not only came across really inspiring brands but also made friends for life. Our first stop was Mana foods, of course we had to stock up for our adventures. Surprisingly the prices are quite similar to Los Angeles. Mana foods is also the place you can be quite entertained simply standing in front of the store, you may be serenaded by a harp or find yourself philosophising about God and the world, you know what I mean if you have been there. This is where we found our water source now we just needed to find the right container.
We were so very blessed to meet Kayden, of Blue Bottle Love, we were taken into her humble abode. Surrounded by beams of sunlight filtered by the cobalt blue bottles ….making her home and workspace even more magical. Our meeting turned into a 5 hour extravaganza, including everything from Meditation to the whole story of how Blue Bottle Love came about.
From that day on… at least one blue bottle (1 gallon:-) made it with us wherever we would go. The water tasted clean, conscious and simply delicious.
Iñaki was windsurfing every day and getting ready for the competition, now the sun is strong in Maui so it was imperative we found the right sunscreen, that was reef safe to keep us all protected while making sure we were not harming our environment. That is when we came across Raw Love Sunscreen Jenna also received us in her home and explained to us about all the harmful ingredients sunscreens use and how they damage the reefs and coral. We were so excited about this knowledge that we decided to speak to the people of IWT (International Windsurfing Tour) and got Raw Love Sunscreen to become a sponsor for the event, thereby educating and keeping us and the nature around us safe.
We also came across a very innovative brand located right in Paia. Ellemer we wrote a separate article on them check it out for a discount code.
One of the brands we were very happy to find was was Green Toy. You can purchase them at the organic food market ¨Down to Earth” – really close to the airport and Kanaha beach. Being on Maui and having fun toys for the beach is imperative and these ones are made from recycled milk bottles, how cool is that, so we had to get in touch with the brand and test them out. Atlantis, our son, loves them, they are perfect for the beach and the bath tub. The boat even turns into a watering can.
Chelsea suggested so many other local brands that are fully green-eco; on an Island you especially realise how important it is to consume less and make wiser choices. All and all we are so happy to have had the chance to experience Maui and visit its gems like Lumeria (best home made veggie burger I have ever tried), or the lavender fields, the local farmers market, also if you invest in a fruit picker and have a good eye you can eat fruit right from the trees, a must try the local banana bread on the road to Hana (We recommend you download a guide before heading out in the very early hours of the morning, as you will lose reception and there are many magical stops to make), taste the orange passion fruits and the delicious papayas, there is also a local Kombucha brewery in Haiku…but be warned too much kombucha and you might get a booch high as they like to call it (don’t drink and drive)……. Last but not least our favorite restaurants by far…. Nuka sushi in Haiku…. Go for the elaborate rolls…. And for a delicious organic pizza…. Flatbread company in Paia is the place to go!
Lastly we came across a really special store and brand, in Lahaina, they have the most beautiful swimsuits made of recycled ghost nets….. They are very original in their designs and I absolutely love mine!!!!! Kelley Chapman the owner of Manakai is a true eco goddess and lives and breathes a sustainable lifestyle…. Please check out her blog and amazing projects! 💕
One really great insider tip: at the Kuau store, if you wait to the end of the day, you can get their Ahi Poke for half price, and it is DELICIOUS!! If you have been to Maui you know it isn’t cheap to eat…. So that is a good one…. Speaking of savings… It is absolutely worth it to get a costco card…. The gasoline is waaay cheaper and they have lots of delicious organic food in bulk!
One more thing, don’t miss the sunsets on the south side of the island, or the sunrises for that matter, thousand peaks for example. So many things pop into my mind… Try the Açai at Choice, and the Fish tacos at the Fish Market….. It is a place to revisit for sure!
Thousand peaks is also a great spot to go surfing for anyone…. From beginner to advanced, there is a peak for everyone…. Hence the name.
As for the windsurfing spots…. This island is a playground for all levels… . For the more advanced windsurfer you can pretty much find conditions at ho’okipa every other day… And for the not so skilled, kanaha works pretty much every day! Both places are about thirty minutes apart.
If you are visiting maui with children we highly recommend the Maui Ocean Centre…. The tunnel is an experience to remember, especially for the little ones, and they have a lot of amazing info on helping and preserving marine life.
To finish this article we wanted to share an experience we had: During the IWT Windsurfing Competition, we participated in an ocean clean up: in Ho’okipa this can be tricky: We were only a few people and it was about to be cancelled due to the big swell that was hitting the spot. Both Boujma and me (Sanny) decided to do it anyway, and in the end most of the people decided to get wet and join us. We ended up collecting about 60 masts, and some booms, fins….. the point is if you are enjoying the island, leave it cleaner than you found it so that future generations can enjoy it as much as we did.
For extra exclusive Maui tips….. feel free to write to us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org we may hand out a phone number or two!
Thank you for stopping by our blog…..and feel free to leave comments and help us grow!
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Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers
Lo primero que nos llama la atención de la web de Tapp es el contador de numero de botellas de plástico que al usar filtros como éste, dejamos de consumir. Nosotros estamos usando el modelo Tapp 2 Twist, con Recambios biodegradables. Los filtros de agua TAPP 2 Eliminan más de 80 contaminantes del agua y reducen otros 50 a la vez que deja pasar los minerales que son beneficiosos para la salud.
Es muy cómodo llenar tu botella de cristal de agua del filtro antes de salir de casa; el combo de agua filtrada en botella de cristal me parece perfecto. Si somos como el 70% agua, como no prestar atención al agua que bebemos?
Con cada cartucho puedes filtrar unos 1500 litros, esto es mas o menos 2-3 meses de consumo de agua diario; si bebes agua mineral haz el cálculo de lo que ahorras a tu bolsillo. (El filtro y los 4 recambios te cuestan unos 100€ al año). El ahorro para el planeta en términos de menor uso de plástico es incalculable.
Si tienes la opción de recoger agua de un manantial y filtrarla, tienes cubiertas tus necesidades de agua de una forma limpia, responsable y sana para ti y los tuyos. Las opciones son muchas, creemos que merece la pena darle una pensada y que cada uno elija, todas serán opciones mejores que comprar agua embotellada en plástico que entre otras desprende micro partículas al agua que ingieres.
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Eco Couple uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase using a link we may receive a commission. Such revenue helps keep this website running, helps us pay our growing core team and allows us to keep the content free for readers.