These Home Brands Are On A Mission To Reimagine Ocean Plastic

mbg Sustainability Editor By Emma Loewe
mbg Sustainability Editor
Emma Loewe is the Sustainability Editor at mindbodygreen and the author of "The Spirit Almanac: A Modern Guide To Ancient Self Care."

Photo by Richard Silver

As World Oceans Day approaches (mark your calendars for this Friday, June 8!), the health of our global waterways is getting some much-needed attention.

Along with problems like overfishing, ecosystem loss, and rising water temperatures, plastic pollution continues to pose a huge threat to the future of our oceans.

There's likely more than 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating around our oceans right now, and if we're not careful this number is projected to triple by 2025. If we want to reduce the amount of single-use plastics in this environment in any meaningful way, it will require a massive mindset shift. First, we need to start looking for durable, reusable products whenever possible. And when we do buy single-use products, we should support brands that breathe new life into the plastic that's already in our waterways.

One such company is method soap, the creator of the world's first bottle made using ocean plastic, which debuted in 2012.

"The whole intention of the product was to raise awareness of ocean debris," Ryan Williams, head of sustainability at method, tells mbg. To source its ocean plastic, method partners with organizations doing beach cleanups off the coast of Hawaii. "We wanted to take advantage of what was essentially a waste stock in these communities, get it off the island, and convert it into a new product."

Since the plastic trash method uses has been left out for years at a time, it's brittle and finicky to work with, so it's combined with a blend of post-consumer plastic taken from curbside pickup in California. In the end, the entire line of hand, body, and home soaps continues to be made of 100% recycled plastic, which is pretty unheard of for the industry, especially for a company of this size.

Method's continued innovation—this summer, one of their designers is joining the crew of eXXpedition, an all-female group of scientists who sail the world surveying the trash in our oceans—has opened the door for other companies to find the economic value in ocean trash. Signs of progress are popping up across the consumer goods space: Procter & Gamble started incorporating beach plastic into Head & Shoulder bottles in Europe (an innovation that won them a UN Climate Change award), Adidas sold 1 million pairs of shoes made with ocean plastic last year, and our waterway trash is starting to show up in clothing and sunglasses. Here's to a cleaner, greener future both on land and at sea.

Another annoying piece of trash that ends up in our oceans? Plastic straws! Swap them with these reusable options.

And are you ready to learn how to fight inflammation and address autoimmune disease through the power of food? Join our 5-Day Inflammation Video Summit with mindbodygreen’s top doctors.

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