When creating Urban Oreganics, I had three goals in mind: 1. Stay home with my new baby, Milo, while also contributing to our household income; 2. Share my knowledge of natural skin care by creating products that align with my lifestyle, and 3. Continue to live an eco-friendly lifestyle. And so far, this brand has allowed me to do all three.
Early on I made the decision to package my products in eco-friendly containers, even using friends' baby food jars for the first few batches! I kept the containers and labels minimal so the packaging reflected the simple, clean ingredients inside.
After spending months collecting and sanitizing baby food jars, I began brainstorming more permanent and professional packaging solutions. Urban Oreganics was flourishing on Etsy, and I knew I needed to continue to build and refine my brand to be successful. The concern with using plastic packaging (what most skin and beauty products are packaged in), is actually two-fold. This packaging is typically non-recyclable, a deal-breaker for me. Additionally, harmful chemicals actually leach from the plastic into the product itself. By using glass containers, our handcrafted products are safe from any additives that would counteract the clean ingredients inside.
Since our products are packaged in glass, I was initially challenged by how I would actually safely ship orders (without using plastic). I could have easily given in and switched to an “easier,” and more lightweight container, or padded the boxes with bubble wrap. However, it was important to me that my products & packaging served more purpose than what was on the inside. In the beginning I was using my dad’s recycled/shredded paper to cushion the packaging. Eventually, I decided on recyclable paper for wrapping the glass containers, and crinkle paper for the box fill. I always encourage my customers to reuse these materials for their own shipping or gifting needs.
When you’re finished enjoying your UO products, you can get creative repurposing the container, recycle it (check with your local stations), or send them back to us for credit towards your next order.
There are a variety of ways to repurpose our glass containers. Our jars can be used as a succulent planter, or to store small sewing kits, bobby pins, hair ties, coins, spices, etc. Our bottles can serve as a vase for a small floral arrangement reed diffuser, or herb garden. I am amazed at the uses our customers come up with. How do you reuse your Urban Oreganics containers?
Don’t forget, our shipping materials are also reusable! Hold onto that paper to ship your own items or to ship containers back to us under our recycling program.
Since most of our products are packaged in glass, we are able to actually reuse containers for future orders. I created our recycling program to help aid our efforts in creating minimal waste. The process is so simple! Please be sure to rinse out any unused product from your containers. These containers must arrive to us intact, so please take care in preparing to ship your empties by wrapping in layers of paper and in a box with cushioning (this is where the original shipping supplies will come in handy)! We cannot accept returns with broken glass for safety reasons. Empties must be sent back in increments of five. For every five containers that meet the criteria above, you will be given back 1500 points to your rewards account ($15 shop credit)! Not only will you be gifting something to Mother Earth, but you will get a bonus on top of it.
For more information about our recycling program, please visit this page and read the full guidelines. All returns must accompany our recycle form in order to be credited.
We would love to see your empties being repurposed. Tag us on Instagram (@urbanoreganics) for a chance to be featured.