the honest company
This month I had the pleasure of chatting with Christopher Gavigan, Co-Founder of The Honest Company – a fabulous initiative that was started by a mum (acclaimed actress Jessica Alba) and a dad (environmental health leader Christopher Gavigan) who, like many modern parents, had become increasingly concerned about poorly regulated products laden with questionable chemical ingredients. But, the alternatives they found were often expensive, inaccessible, bland, or ineffective.
It all started a few years ago when Jessica had a dramatic reaction to a laundry soap and thought “if I’m breaking out in this, it can’t be good for my baby!”
Not long after, Jessica met Christopher at his book launch party for Healthy Child Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home, and so begun their passion and drive to ensure that parents have access to non-toxic, eco-friendly, beautiful family products that don’t break the bank. Jessica and Christopher created The Honest Company to encourage a healthy and sustainable future for our children by providing exceptional products and family support that promotes health, happiness and community. They offer a monthly subscription service of customized product bundles delivered directly to your front door and are launching with a product line that mums across the country* choose based on what they use everyday: diapers, wipes, baby bath and skin care, and home cleaning products.
*currently available throughout the United States of America.
Christopher is a nationally recognized environmental health leader, author, and speaker, and the former CEO / Executive Director of Healthy Child Healthy World, a national nonprofit focused on protecting children’s health through sustainable, nontoxic family lifestyles. He sits on the Board of Directors of Mount Sinai Hospital’s Children Environmental Health Center, is a Chief Advisor to the Green Product Innovation Institute and on the Advisory Board of UCLA’s Environmental Health Sciences Department.
BE NATURALLYOU: What are your top 5 tips for parents, to help promote the health of their babies?
CHRISTOPHER GAVIGAN: 1: Understanding and being wise with the use of plastics, in regards to the type of baby bottles you use; what you’re putting on your baby (i.e. if the product is petrochemical based); and not using plastics in microwaves.
2: Be smart with indoor air and indoor air quality. Consider what products you are bringing in to your home: wall paints, couches and chairs filled with formaldehdye laden foam, air fresheners, fragrance plug-ins, scented candles, scented room sprays. Open your windows and doors, even if it’s only for 5 minutes a day, it will help.
3: Consider what you are putting inside the body: choose organic foods where possible, raw and unprocessed, unrefined, unpreserved. Choose fresh veggies and eat from the rainbow. Ask the question, “Has my child had these colours in their diet today?” Try to cook as many meals as possible. This also starts when mum is pregnant.
4: Be attentive to what you’re putting on your babies skin, as 60% of what goes on the skin, goes inside the body. Choose natural products without parabens and SLS. Read the ingredients and understand what they are. Reduce petrochemicals.
5: Stress. Take the pressure off yourself, and take the pressure off yourself as a parent. Do the best with the resources you have. Spend time with your child in a relaxed positive state. And please try not to judge yourself. No parent can do everything.
BE NATURALLYOU: What are your top 5 tips for creating a healthier and more sustainable environment in which we share?
CHRISTOPHER GAVIGAN: 1: Get involved in your local issues. Raise your voice. Be aware of what’s happening on a political and social level in your community, and get involved. Just last weekend I did a beach clean up with my son and it was such a wonderful experience.
2: I’m a big promponent of air quality issues. Reduce your use of the car, especially with short distance trips where you can. Ride a bike. Get some walking shoes.
3: Support local farmers markets and growers. Eat seasonally and locally.
4: Reduce and reuse. The nature of our culture is that we have an impact on the earth, everything from the shoes we buy, to the food, to the house we live in, so become aware of your choices and consumption.
5: Reduce energy consumption. I really think about how I use energy. I got a thermostat in my home (NEST learning thermostat). It learns your habits in your home and helps you to reduce 40% of your consumption.
BE NATURALLYOU: What currently inspires you?
CHRISTOPHER GAVIGAN: I have been really inspired by the power of mums to get things done. There is and has been a changing in the guard of business today. The mum is so vocal and controls the majority of household spending. The feminine energy is also so inspiring. The power of the mum is driving cultural change and how we operate business. So for this I am very happy to be contribution via The Honest Company to help solve their needs.