OF THE ISLANDS
While the world is changing around us at lightning speed, our bodies have stayed pretty much the same – except that our fast-paced modern lifestyle has distanced us from nature in the way we grow food, what we eat and how much pollution and stress we are exposed to. The resulting insomnia, anxiety and weight gain are just some of the new ailments we have learned to live with.
Amsterdam-based Alla Feldman, founder of Of the Islands, has built a company that supplies pure 100% natural magnesium oil, gel, scrub and flakes harvested from the ancient Zechstein Sea in the Netherlands. Of the Islands also provides magnesium massage training and treatment development for professional spas and personalised, immersive, island-based treatment experiences. Of the Islands magnesium-based products are also available to buy from the website.
Magnesium is the ninth most abundant element in the universe, the eighth most abundant on earth and the third most abundant mineral in seawater. Cells need magnesium to absorb nutrients from food, to eliminate toxins and perform over six hundred crucial enzymatic functions.
Of the Islands Sea Brine is a multi-use product that can be used as a natural deodorant, moisturising dry oil after a shower or a nightly foot detox spray. Applied to skin, it immediately relieves sore muscles made tense by a sedentary lifestyle and gives a boost to the body’s immunity, helping skin to detox from pollution and encouraging deeper sleep.
In 2015, unemployment rates for young women in the West Bank region were as high as 63%. Darzah, a not-for-profit ethical fashion brand specialising in Palestinian tatreez embroidery, aims to provide training and job opportunities for some of the most marginalised individuals in the northern region, where poverty rates are especially high.
Tatreez is a centuries-old art form traditionally passed down from mother to daughter. Each piece (the brand makes shoes, handbags, accessories and homewares), is hand-embroidered and 100% handcrafted in the West Bank.
Darzah’s mission is twofold: first, to create economic opportunities for refugee and low-income women artisans, and secondly, to celebrate tatreez embroidery and Palestinians’ cultural heritage.
Darzah is a project of Child's Cup Full, a women’s economic empowerment initiative based in Zababdeh, a village located in the northern West Bank. The brand is fair-trade certified by the Fair Trade Federation, meaning it is committed to paying fair wages to employees, implementing sustainable manufacturing practices and supporting marginalised communities.
All of the leather in Darzah’s products is sourced from a family-run leather manufacturer in Khalil/Hebron. Artists in the Zababdeh region collaborate with highly skilled shoe and bag makers in Khalil/Hebron to create unique products that are 100% locally produced.
As Darzah continues to grow, they hope ultimately to be able to send their artisans to technical school to participate in an apprenticeship in, for example, shoemaking, enabling them to create these beautiful handmade products from start to finish.
LUNETTE MENSTRUAL CUP
Lunette is revolutionising the future of period care
A Finnish company – one of the first to create the menstrual cup – Lunette is led by women with a mission: to motivate period positivity by having honest, inspiring conversations about menstruation.
Lunette Menstrual Cups are made of soft medical-grade silicone and are BPA-free and vegan, so there’s no production of yeast, bacteria or odour.
In addition to providing women with up to twelve hours’ easy, worry-free use, everything Lunette does is sustainable, ethical and taboo-busting. All Lunette products are designed with the environment in mind – they are plastic-free, compostable and inexpensive.
The menstrual cup is available in six different colours, and Lunette’s range also includes cleansing products for the menstrual cup – FeelBetter Cup Cleanser and Cupwipes, which are very useful when you’re out and about and using public toilets.
Lunette purchasers have the added benefit of knowing that they are supporting period positivity globally and through locally driven, impactful women’s rights movements, such as the Cup Project in Kenya and Yennenga Progress in Burkina Faso. These projects educate school-age girls about menstruation and their general and sexual health. Offering the girls a reusable means of sanitary protection means they don’t have to miss school whenever they have a period.
The most eco-friendly garment care specialist in London
BLANC is an award-winning natural dry-cleaning, tailoring and laundry service with deliveries across London and concept stores located in Marylebone, Notting Hill and Chelsea (and very soon in White City). In-store and online, the brand also sells a range of specially curated natural laundry and household products.
BLANC staff clean and care for your clothes naturally, and ‘always with love’. Their mission is quite literally to ‘clean up’ the dry-cleaning industry, considered to be toxic for people’s health and the planet. Unlike conventional dry cleaners, who soak clothes in toxic solvents (one of which is petroleum-based 'Perc'), which they then evaporate at very high temperatures, BLANC use Woolmark-approved ‘wet clean’ technology.
BLANC’s specialists first hand-treat fabrics with the expert use of non-toxic stain-removing products. They then wet clean garments with pure water and biodegradable detergents. Don’t think this process is the same as washing clothes at home. This professional precision technology (which is EU-certified to the latest specifications and thus uses significantly less energy than traditional clothes cleaners) calculates individual gentle cycles based on the fabric, design or how delicate a garment is. It leaves garments softer, brighter and fresher – and much more thoroughly cleaned.
BLANC staff also promise convenience in everything they do. They deliver to your home within most central London areas. You can book a collection online in four simple steps. Should you want to drop off your clothes in person and discuss something specific with one of their expert consultants, you can visit one of their London stores, open seven days a week. The Marylebone store even allows you to drop off and pick up your clothes 24/7, thanks to their self-service kiosk system.
BLANC has won several awards, and has been named London’s Best Dry Cleaner by the Evening Standard and Our Favourite Dry Cleaner by Vogue magazine.
Launching as a kick-starter in 2012, with the goal of transforming the sunglasses industry, Panda uses sustainable bamboo to create beautiful sunglasses and watches that are as kind to the community as they are to the environment.
Since launching, Panda have expanded their collection to twelve unique frame styles in a variety of colours, including limited Special Editions.
Being made from bamboo means that each pair of sunglasses is naturally super-lightweight and comfortable. The unique woodgrain pattern ensures that every pair feels like a one-of-a-kind art piece.
Panda is also committed to helping the global community. Each pair of glasses sold gives the gift of vision to someone in need, through Panda’s partnership with Optometry Giving Sight (givingsight.org), changing someone’s life for good.
Rosie Khandwala grew up in Tanzania and worked in a beauty salon, where sugar waxing was one of the most common treatments provided. After moving to the UK, and unable to find sugar waxes, Rosie began to make her own. She found a gap in the market and introduced sugar waxing to the UK.
She and her husband, Hafiz, soon started manufacturing on a larger scale, and for eighteen years supplied their sugar wax to The Body Shop. In 2010 they launched their own brand, Sugar StripEase, on to the market. Having always had an eye on the ethical and environmental aspects of manufacturing, they wanted to ensure that this ethos was continued through their new brand.
Sugar StripEase is a 100% natural sugar waxing product made from only sugar and water. The special blend of sugar syrups creates an effective and gentle product that works on all hair types.
Sugar StripEase sugar wax is completely water soluble and biodegradable. The strips can be washed and reused, and every element of the packaging is recyclable. Sugar StripEase is certified as cruelty-free and vegan by Cruelty Free International, The Vegan Society and PETA.
Sugar StripEase works in the same way as regular waxing. The product is applied warm and removed with a strip. Due to the natural ingredients used, it is suitable for use on all parts of the body and all skin types, even sensitive skin.