It’s been a very ambitious year for me with evolving Pretty Connected to now include an accessories line and while there are days I’m spread so thin, I never want to lose site of my passion projects and using my voice to help make change. Mental health and how we treat ourselves, others and the environment has become a big priority for me. I’ve partnered with Claudine DeSole on a new ‘Instead of’ project where we aim to build a positive community that can be a resource and share ways to better ourselves, our work environment and promote sustainability while highlighting brands and individuals making real change.
‘Instead of’ is a social media movement (follow us @insteadofmovement) that is all about taking small (to big steps) to make a major impact and create a more mindful community. The movement is less about telling you what to do and more about keeping our audience informed and offering resources so they are aware of the impact and ways we can be more mindful. It’s about community, sharing ideas and resources. ‘Instead of’ will be a year-round program highlighted online through social media, this website, events and eventual podcast (coming soon).
The kick off event was hosted at the Gregory hotel, where guests could meet different green brands and learn about everything from composting, solar energy, to reversing your carbon footprint. Braid bar by Caravan Stylist Studio and Aveda, Nourison curated the carpets and gifting was provided by Hello Products, MPOWERD, Tribute, Dropps, Dope Naturally and Aveda. Guests enjoyed cocktails, Harmless Harvest, and Williamsburg Pizza, while designer, Ariana Ost was also on hand to chat with guests about chakras and how to be more mindful. More on our sponsors and activations below!
The event also debuted out video series featuring various actors, brands and individuals sharing their ‘instead of’ hacks when it comes to being mindful to of the planet. Everything form using reusable straws, how to sustainably recycle packaging, Christmas trees and beyond!
Meet our contributors:
- Alysia Reiner, actress, activist, producer and co-founder of Livari
- Toni Trucks, actress on Seal Team on CBS
- Annie Jackson, Co-Founder and COO of Credo Beauty
- Nicole Rechelbacher, co-owner of Intelligent Nutrients
- Mike Indursky, former President of Bliss and CMO of Burts Bees
- Dr. Terry Zickerman, Founder of Love Sun Body
- Mike Korchinsky, Founder of Wildlife Works
- Tabitha St. Bernard-Jacobs, Co-founder of the zero waste clothing line Livari, and the Women’s March Organizer.
- Rebecca Gregory, VP of education for Simply Organic Beauty
- Nicholas Reichenbach, Founder and CEO of Flow water
- John Salzinger, founder of MPOWERED
- Jessica Schreiber, Founder of FABSCRAP
- Sylwia Wisenberg, Founder of Dope Naturally and Bawdy Beauty
- Ben Larkey, Founder BAL Associates
- Antoinette Beenders, Global Creative Director of Aveda
- Jonathan Propper, Founder of Dropps
- Steven Phan, Founder Come Back Daily
- Joy Reese, Vice President of Skinny & Co.
- Nicholas Reichenbach Founder & CEO, Flow Water
- Keshia Hannam, Co-founder of Camel Assembly
- Lara Eurdolian, Founder Pretty Connected and co-founder of Share Your Beauty
- Claudine DeSola, Founder Caravan Stylist Studio and co-founder of the sustainable, zero waste clothing line, Livari
Special thank you to Tribute for helping us create this video!
More about the brands included in our Earth Day launch that are making a difference:
AVEDA – born in 1978 with the vision to bring beauty professionals botanical products that would be good for them, their guests, and the Earth and its communities. www.aveda.com @aveda #smellslikeaveda
Why they’re our heroes…
- Aveda was born cruelty-free, never tested on animals
- Aveda pioneered 100% post-consumer recycled packaging in the beauty industry and has won more than 20 awards for packaging innovations to date. They make every effort to avoid using virgin plastic and use 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) material as much as they can. When they can’t use it, they combine PCR with bioplastic – which is made of sugarcane and not detrimental to recycling systems.
- Aveda is a 100% wind-powered product manufacturer and more than 83% of their waste is reused or recycled in their primary manufacturing facility.
- Giving back is very important to Aveda – over the last 20 years, they have raised over $60M during their annual Earth Month campaigns, which has been donated to various environmental and clean water initiatives. This year, they are partnering with charity: water to provide clean water to communities in India, Nepal, Madagascar and Ethiopia.
NOURISON – Nourison is a proud partner of Wools of New Zealand®, supplier of the finest wool in the world, and a supporter of the Sustainable Furnishings Council. Over 85% of Nourison products are manufactured in sustainable fibers, making them naturally renewable, biodegradable, recyclable and energy efficient.
Nourison uses eco-friendly fibers such as wool, jute, sisal and bamboo, which are good for both the home and the environment. Nourison.com @nourison
Benefits of Wool : Wool rugs are naturally hypo-allergenic and do not promote growth of bacteria or dust mites, or give off chemical emissions. They naturally absorb and filter airborne volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which are unwanted toxins and odors that can cause irritation. Wool area rugs and carpets are flame resistant and stain resistant. Wool area rugs and carpets prevent heat loss and reduce heating energy requirements. In the summer, they prevent heat from rising through the floor and keeps your room cool and comfortable.
MPOWERD –MPOWERD was founded on a sustainable business model that allows the brand to provide our clean and safe solar lights to people in developing countries at prices they can afford. With the help of our principal inventor Jason Alan Snyder, MPOWERD created Luci®, the first inflatable solar light with the goal of making an affordable clean-energy product that people could use in any situation. As a social enterprise, they reinvest a majority of the company’s gross revenues to achieve sustainability, grow our reach, and ensure the fulfillment of our mission. www.mpowerd.com @mpowerdinc
HELLO PRODUCTS –Hello toothpastes are free of dyes, artificial sweeteners/flavors, parabens, triclosan, microbeads, and gluten. our toothpastes are also vegan, cruelty-free and made in the usa. Hello intentionally sought out high quality sustainable ingredients, such as using bamboo charcoal instead of coconut shell charcoal, plus traceable farm-to-tube premium mint, sourced from 4th generation farmers in Willamette Valley, Oregon, to deliver superior flavor. www.helloproducts.com @helloproducts
WARDROBE – a peer-to-peer marketplace for the rental of designer, high-end and vintage fashion. Wardrobe’s 36 Hubs located in green dry cleaners across the city offer rental pick-up/drop-off locations that are safe, secure and convenient. Most recently, Wardrobe has partnered with The Gregory Hotel to introduce their first partnership with a hotel- which will allow guests to rent garments that will be available upon their arrival.
PRETTY CONNECTED –Founded by Lara Eurdolian, Pretty Connected started as one of the first beauty blogs in NYC over a decade ago. Since then, it has expanded into a multi-platform brand covering content across categories including fashion, lifestyle, pets and travel and a highly coveted accessories line. Capitalizing on this success, Lara and her team were able to implement a beauty donation program, Share Your Beauty, which helps to provide beauty and hygiene products to shelters and teen centers in NYC, and the tri-state area. To date over 130,000 beauty products have been sustainably donated through the program. www.prettyconnected.com @prettyconnected / @prettyconnecteshop
LIVARI – a zero waste womenswear label made ethically in New York. Using the art of fashion as a medium of activism and hope, LIVARI is a collaborative space where the voices of women are celebrated and uplifted. The brand was founded by Alysia Reiner (Orange Is The New Black, Equity), Claudine DeSola (Caravan Stylist Studio) & Tabitha St. Bernard-Jacobs (Tabii Just, Women’s March). www.livariclothing.com @livariclothing
CARAVAN STYLIST STUDIO – Located inside The Gregory Hotel, Caravan Stylist Studio is a liaison for brands to connect with actors, actresses, musicians, bloggers, editors, and other creatives. Founder Claudine DeSola wanted to create an experiential way for brands to sample their products and educate guests by creating a buzz within a physical environment and social media outlets. Caravan’s goal is to be a more sustainable and efficient option for brands to market their products & services in a green & sustainable way with IRL experiences, curated product delivery and brand education. www.caravanstyliststudio.com @caravannyc / @caravangirlnyc
THE GREGORY HOTEL – The Gregory Hotel first opened its doors in 1903 as “The Gregorian,” catering to the overflow of guests coming to the Waldorf-Astoria. Following a complete renovation of the space, The Gregory opened in July of 2015 as a new 132-room boutique hotel at the heart of NYC’s fashion district. The hotel delivers an authentic NYC experience tailored to the needs of the young, cultured traveler while also paying homage to its past. Drawing from the vibrancy of its buzzing neighborhood, The Gregory’s interactive lobby has been intently designed as a gathering space and has been home to numerous fashion activations, attracting guests and locals alike. It is also home to Caravan Stylist Studio, an innovative sustainable beauty studio. www.thegregoryhotelnewyork.com @thegregorynycN
HARMLESS HARVEST – Established in 2009, Harmless Harvest is a producer of organic and fair for life coconut water. The brand envisions a world where nutritious, clean, organic and healthy food and beverages are the standard rather than the exception; where all people involved in creating the product are treated with fairness; and the planet is treated harmlessly. In 2014, Harmless Coconut® Water became the first coconut water to achieve Fair for Life certification. www.harmlessharvest.com @harmlessharvest
WILLIAMSBURG PIZZA –Williamsburg Pizza is a staple in the Brooklyn community and an award winning pizzeria that has expanded to Manhattan to include five locations: Williamsburg, Crown Heights, Bowery, Upper East Side and Lower East Side. Did you know that pizza is the most sustainable takeout meal? Think about it… paper plates and cardboard boxes.www.williamsburgpizza.com @williamsburgpizza
LAVAZZA –Established in 1895 in Turin, the Italian coffee company has been owned by the Lavazza family for four generations. Among the world’s most important roasters, the Group currently operates in more than 90 countries through subsidiaries and distributors, with 63% of revenues coming from markets outside of Italy. Lavazza employs a total of over 4,000 people with a turnover of €2.0 billion in 2017.
The Giuseppe e Pericle Lavazza Ngo Foundation promotes and implements economic, social and environmental sustainability projects, to support coffee producing communities around the world. To achieve meaningful results, the Foundation undertakes development projects in partnership with private citizens as well as international organizations, and NGOs. It is only through teamwork that the living conditions in coffee-producing communities can be effectively improved.www.lavazza.com@lavazzausa
Dope Naturally – Eat dope. Look dope. Live dope… Be Dope.
Beauty is not applied. It comes from within. Dope Naturally powers a woman’s beauty from the inside out through pure, potent and nurturing ingestibles. We believe your beauty is a big part of your strength – powerful, personal, and the embodiment of everything you are. Our beauty and wellness products are clean and honest – rich in nutritive super-fruits, super-vegetables, and super-food extracts from organic seeds, fruits, and vegetables.
At Dope Naturally, our core promise is to empower you to look better, live better, eat better – and be better. DopeNaturally.com @dope_naturally
COMMON GROUND COMPOST –Meredith Danberg-Ficarelli of Common Ground Compost is a Zero Waste expert and materials management enthusiast, working on and off the clock to transition our culture from one of linear consumption and waste to one of circularity: through reduction, reuse, repair, and when necessary, recycling. Common Ground Compost is a Zero Waste consulting company that helps businesses in NYC launch environmentally responsible waste programs – learn how to reduce waste, dispel myths, and take away valuable information about NYC’s recycling programs. CommonGroundCompost.com@CommonCompost
ARIANA OST – artist in The Gregory Hotel gallery. Ariana Ost is a design atelier based in New York City, whose mission is to elevate the everyday by creating decorative objects infused with soul, conviction and healing energy. www.arianaost.com@arianaostny
PLANTED IN BEAUTY – Co-founders Renee Tavoularis and Lynne Florio of PLANTED IN BEAUTY, a luxurious, efficacious natural, organic, non-toxic skincare collection – good for you and good for the environment. At the event, they will be demonstrating facial relaxation and skincare application techniques.wellwithinbeauty.com@wellwithinbeauty
SQUARE ROOTS –They are a seed-to-sales urban farm, connecting people in cities to local, real food. The farm team grows a variety of fresh and flavorful herbs in indoor, vertical farms, right in the heart of Brooklyn. They hand-harvest, self-package, and herb-trike-deliver to retail stores across NYC. They herbs are non-GMO, pesticide-free, and grown with love. They develop human-centered farming technology that surrounds their farmers with data, insights, and tools, so they can grow high quality food, all year round, using the fewest resources possible. Their cloud-connected, modular farms utilize a water-efficient hydroponic growing system, and are constructed inside refurbished shipping containers. This enables a distributed approach to farming—meaning we can grow food in the neighborhoods where our customers live and shop, providing deep connections between the consumer, their food, and the people who grow it.@squarerootsgrow
COOL EFFECT – Cool Effect is a non-profit organization based in the Bay Area with a mission to reduce carbon emissions. By combining science, expertise, and transparency, they are creating a community built around one simple vision: to give people the power and confidence to band together and ultimately reduce the carbon pollution that causes climate change. Cool Effect scours the globe to find the best projects that measurably reduce greenhouse gases. Working closely with project developers, they are able to ensure that each program is stable, sound, and capable of doing good for both people and the planet. Caravan Stylist Studio teamed up with them for the month of April to showcase how we should a bit more conscious when it comes to our “unboxings” and think more about our carbon footprint. www.cooleffect.org @cooleffect_
TRIBUTE –Tribute is the sustainable greeting card in a way – a video montage all done easily online. They partner with nonprofits that support these communities and allow them to create Tribute videos free of charge. They believe that Tribute can be a powerful force in the lives of those facing serious hardship and are committed to getting them the additional encouragement and support they need to face the challenges in their lives. https://www.tribute.co @wetribute
DROPPS – At DROPPS we’re proud to offer effective green cleaning products manufactured right here in our own backyard. We believe in supporting local jobs, communities, small businesses and fair wages. Our ingredients and packaging are sourced from suppliers that meet high quality standards and share our mission and values. Plastic bottles and pouches contribute to pollution in our oceans and waterways. Our packaging is a 100% recyclable, compostable, and repulpable box that doubles as the shipping container. https://www.dropps.com @dropps
WORLD CENTRIC –Did you know that traditional paper coffee cups have a petroleum-based lining and will end up in a landfill? Or that one of the biggest impacts we can have to reverse global warming is to eat a plant-rich diet? IWorld Centric®‘s mission is to provide sustainable products for a better world. The watchwords of sustainability – reduce, reuse, recycle – direct us towards our ultimate goal of a zero waste economy. In the meantime, in an economy that does produce waste, World Centric®’s disposable foodservice products are designed to transform waste into healthy, new soil through composting “Reduce, reuse, recycle.” Think hard before buying any single-use disposable product, even compostable ones. When choosing any product first consider how to reduce the amount that you buy and then consider whether the product is something you can reuse again and again. Finally, consider whether the product is something you can recycle when you are done with it. If after all those considerations, you still decide to purchase a single-use disposable product, we encourage you to choose a single-use disposable product that also is compostable.World Centric® products are made from materials that follow the cycle of life on Earth: beginning and ending as nutrient-rich soil. Products are made from a variety of compostable materials, which currently include: compostable PLA plastic made from cornstarch, wheat straw, and sustainable paper alternatives. http://www.worldcentric.com/countmein @worldcentric
The Better Packaging Co – Their mission now is to find the world’s most sustainable packaging solutions that consider the complete lifecycle impact of a product from raw material sourcing, right through to end-of-life disposal. @betterpackagingco www.betterpackaging.com