REI

Since 2015, the outdoor gear giant REI has gone the opposite direction of most retailers on Black Friday. Instead of slashing prices and advertising sales on the biggest shopping day of the year, REI has closed its doors, shuttered its online sales, and encouraged would-be shoppers to go outside instead. Employees are still paid as if it were a work day.

For the past four years, the #OptOutside campaign has taken people from crowds and consumerism to the simple joys of nature. But this year, they're taking the idea one step further. Through more than 100 organized clean-up events, REI is asking people to "Opt to Act" for the environment.

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Courtesy of DoneGood

While Thanksgiving is meant to celebrate all we have to be grateful for, it's also the unofficial kick-off to the holiday shopping season. Last year, Americans spent about $1 trillion on gifts. What if we all used that purchasing power to support companies that reduce inequality, alleviate poverty, fight climate change, and help make the world better?

Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the coming days will have spending on everyone's brains. But in an effort to promote the companies doing good for the world, DoneGood founder Cullen Schwarz created Shop for Good Sunday (which falls on December 1 this year.)

Dubbed the "Alternate Black Friday," Shop for Good Sunday is dedicated to encouraging people to shop brands that do good for people and the planet. It also serves as a reminder to support local businesses making a positive impact in their communities.

While Shop for Good Sunday technically falls on a single day, this year, participating ethical and sustainable brands are running discounts for the whole week prior.

Where you invest your dollars matters, and there's great potential to put that money to good use if you know how. Check out these six brands that sell amazing products while also making a positive impact on the world. You'll not only be getting your loved ones meaningful gifts, but also making the world a brighter place along the way.

Isn't that what the holidays are really about?

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via Amazon

The common misconceptions surrounding eco-friendly products is that they are inferior in quality or more expensive than those made from unsustainable materials, but that's far from the truth.

There are plenty of sustainable products for everyday around-the-house use, such as eating utensils, paper towels, and freezer bags, that are just as affordable as those that are damaging to the planet. Many of them can be reused over and over again, saving you money over the long-run.

The key is to break the single-use mindset and to start purchasing products that can be reused. Over the past twenty years we all learned to use recycling bins. Now it's time to rethink single-use products by giving reusable options a chance.

Reusable bamboo utensil set

Next time you pick up food from a drive-thru or have a picnic, forget the plastic and use disposable knives and forks instead. You can reduce plastic waste and help the environment with this biodegradable bamboo travel cutlery set, which comes with a knife, fork, spoon, chopsticks, straw, brush, and eco-friendly travel pouch.

Delihom Reusable Bamboo Utensil Set, $8.98; at Amazon

Reusable paper towels


One of the biggest ways to fight back against global warming is by planting trees. However, over 50,000 trees are cut down every day to be made into disposable paper towels. These reusable bamboo paper towels are soft, washable, and reusable. One roll of bamboo towels can replace up to three months of disposable paper towels. How much money will that save you?

ECOLifestyle Reusable Bamboo Paper Towels, $6.90; at Amazon

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What if you could walk into a store, take what you need, and pay whatever you want for it?

And what if you could help others and save food waste by doing so?

That’s the premise behind The Inconvenience Store, a unique supermarket that opened in June 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. The store collects produce that stores plan to throw away because it’s not fresh (or pretty) enough to sell and "sells" it by donation.

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