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07 : 06 : 22

A dental company striving for more sustainable smiles, a skincare serum for the extremely online, and the growing demand for UK hygiene banks.

Electric toothbrushes get an eco-update


London – While sustainable manual toothbrushes are growing more popular, eco-friendly electric options are trailing behind. To tackle this problem, wellness company SURI has released an electric toothbrush that aims to make dental hygiene more environmentally friendly.

In compliance with the right to repair movement, the Sustainable Sonic Toothbrush has a plant-based head and a recyclable aluminium handle that can be easily disassembled and recycled or fixed for free by SURI. The company also offers a lifetime guarantee and a subscription plan that includes brush head replacements every one to three months. In addition to its environmental qualities, the toothbrush has 33,000 sonic vibrations per minute, ensuring a thoroughly deep clean.

Aiming to prevent electric toothbrushes from ever reaching landfill, SURI is building a more reciprocal relationship with its consumers. As consumers become aware of the carbon footprint of household appliances, they are turning their focus to the dental industry.

Strategic opportunity

How can other industries benefit from the right to repair movement? Consider how subscription schemes and repair services could make your business more sustainable.

An effervescent tablet to curb RTD packaging

Plink!, US Plink!, US
Plink!, US Plink!, US

US – While single-use bottles continue to dominate the RTD market, drinks brand Plink! is innovating with its effervescent, low-sugar tablets. Available in three fruity flavours, the tablets can be added to water to create flavoursome beverages. Traditionally associated with health drinks or vitamin supplements, the brand is using the tablet format as an alternative to conventional flavoured drinks.

Recognising that plastic recycling is often unreliable, and carbon-intensive, the brand’s packaging is kept to a minimum – with just aluminium and paper sachets carrying the tablets. Its vibrant branding and dynamic website also position Plink! as an appealing and relatable option that avoids the conventional cues associated with sustainable or health-conscious drinks. ‘It’s a bath bomb you can drink,’ says Max Luthy, co-founder of Plink!. ‘It’s experiential, it’s low sugar, low packaging, low carbon impact, and delivered by subscription, and it’s called Plink!’

Through this product innovation, the brand presents an eco-conscious solution in the ever-evolving ready-to-drink market. Looking ahead, more brands will need to consider ways they can minimise or eliminate packaging completely.

Strategic opportunity

Drinks brands should consider developing effervescent tablets that capture the taste of their main product lines, ensuring that vibrant and playful branding make the format appealing for loyal consumers

Nécessaire’s beauty serum targets ‘tech neck’

US – Skincare company Nécessaire has released a serum to combat ‘tech neck’, the horizontal lines and wrinkles that can develop as a result of looking downwards at screens for long periods.

The Neck Serum is a daily, multi-peptide treatment that helps stimulate the skin’s own collagen production. It contains ingredients like squalene and rosewater that hydrate, soothe and strengthen the skin’s natural barrier. The neck is one of the more delicate parts of the body, with fewer sebaceous glands causing a higher risk of premature ageing.

Because so many of us spend so much time in front of screens, 'tech neck' is a concern for many office workers. As personal care companies identify the next iteration of digital disorders, hyper-targeted products will continue to emerge in the market.

The Neck Serum by Nécessaire, US

Strategic opportunity

Instead of focusing on reactive care, how can technology companies design products and accessories that ensure that digital disorders don’t happen in the first place?

Stat: Cash-strapped UK citizens struggle to afford hygiene products

Pantys transgender and non-binary menstrual underwear, Brazil Pantys transgender and non-binary menstrual underwear, Brazil

With the rising cost of living increasingly having an impact in the UK, many citizens are struggling to afford hygiene products. This is resulting in greater demand for support, with information given to ITV News revealing a 50% surge in demand for hygiene banks since 2019.

The research also shows that 2,000 community organisations in the UK are giving out donated hygiene products, but 420 are on a waiting list to set up new hygiene banks. One charity warehouse in Telford has supplied more than 100,000 donated tubes of toothpaste and almost 400,000 cleaning products for distribution to those struggling with rising costs. These figures reveal the growing need for health and wellness brands to step in to provide more accessible product options, as well as working with charities such as Beauty Banks.

While we’ve recently explored the innovators working to mitigate the effects of food austerity, many other sectors will also need to take cues from such initiatives to provide greater access to everyday products and services.

Strategic opportunity

Health, beauty and wellness brands should consider developing apps or online services that guide people towards discounted or unwanted products

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