So many people constantly ask me what I use in my household, to clean. It's taken me a long time and honestly, it was the hardest out of all things, to do cruelty free. When I saw Common Good on Gilt City, I checked the prices online, to see if it would even be worth investing in. Something to take note of, Common Good isn't the most inexpensive product, but the quality, the brand, and everything they stand behind, is a reason to support.
I have honestly fallen in love with the Tea Tree All Purpose Cleaner, and although I have another cleaner to use after I'm done with my second bottle of this cleaner, I'm probably going back to it. It's that good. I also love that they have refill stations in NY and NJ. Less waste, to protect mother earth!
I wanted you to really understand why you should support this brand and think more about the products you are using in your home (as these are safe for pets and kids), so I hope you enjoy this Q&A with Sacha!
Common Good is such a simple name, for a simple company, what inspired the name?
I founded my company in hopes of making an impact for the good of the planet, my community and my family, for the common good of all those things I cared about and knew others cared for too.
The company has been around since 2011, what has been one of the biggest struggles and one of the best experiences the past 6 years?
I love seeing my community refill their cleaning products at my local refill station here in Brooklyn. It’s a small thing, but it gives me hope that there are like-minded individuals out their hoping to reduce their impact and staying conscientious of their own plastic consumption. And to that end, one of the biggest struggles has been navigating how to scale that experience---the community refill station---it’s such a different way of thinking about consumption that it takes a lot of education on the part of the retailer, the customer, etc.
Prior to creating Common Good, how did you go about cleaning and buying products in general?
I still use all-natural remedies where I can. Lemon and salt are essential to my cleaning cupboard! Of course, before Common Good, I tried to buy the most sustainable, products I could find at my local store, and one of the reasons I founded Common Good was because I saw the plastic recyclables piling up in my bins. I wanted to reuse my detergent and soap bottles, but I couldn’t find refills anywhere in my neighborhood!
How do you choose the right essential oils for each product and why not keep them unscented?
Firstly, we only work with manufacturers that sustainably source their essential oils, that is a priority to us. When deciding scents, we usually look at what that essential oil adds to the formula to make the cleaner more effective. For example, we use tea tree oil in our all-purpose cleaner because it anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. We expanded our offerings to scented products because there as a demand for cleaners that had a fresh, light smell, and we wanted to offer them that. Speaking with customers, we found that they enjoyed learning about essential oils and how we use them.
Speaking of essential oils, what are your top 3 essential oils you recommend people start with at home, and why?
Great question! Tea tree for the reasons above. Lavender oil is the most versatile: great for soothing infusions, effective anti-bacterial agent. Peppermint oil is a great defense against pests (wards off ants and other insects and mice can’t stand it).
What brought you to create a product that focuses on recycling and refilling as much as possible?
Habit, initially. I grew up in Sydney, where refillable laundry detergent is a thing. Refillable containers for cleaners are common in homes. After arriving in the states and starting a family of my own, I realized how much detergent a household consumes and how that translated to many non-reusable containers, dispensers, etc. piling up in the trash and recycling each week. I live in a city where space is so important and scarce, and I wanted to limit and simplify what cleaners came into my home.
On the topic of refilling, how do you get your products and refill station, at locations? Do companies find it strange?
When we first started introducing the refill stations to the neighborhood we thought it may be hard to change people’s behavior. But actually, people responded really well. And that’s how we knew we were onto something!
On a lighter note, you're from Australia and reside in Brooklyn now, what's something you miss about Australia, and something you love about Brooklyn?
Obviously the beaches, just being able to stroll down for a swim for half an hour before work, or a quick dip in the afternoon, just thinking about it now makes me homesick. And as for Brooklyn - the energy, the endless possibilities, the spontaneity, the people, that’s what keeps me here.
As someone who worked with for brands like Target, Pottery Barn, Food & Wine and Real Simple Magazine, how do you think these companies are doing with featuring and showcasing green and clean brands?
Programs like the Spring Wellness event we participated in at Target really help raise awareness of sustainable brands, particular smaller ones - and bring them to a larger audience.
If there was one thing you could change about the cosmetic, bath, and home brands, what would it be?
Greenwashing of their products and prioritizing sustainability holistically, not just in the product form - from packing and shipping to company culture.
On a regular day, what are the things you choose and want to do?
Getting through my to-do list, and drinking Kombucha.
Do you also incorporate clean eating into your life? What's a typical meal day for you?
I try to bring lunch from home, rather then go out or buy take out which comes with a lot of excess plastic packaging. I start my day with a coffee, and whatever breakfast my children didn’t finish. When I come into work, it is generally roasted almonds, wasa crackers, an avocado with lemon and seasonal fruit.
What has been the best advice or quote you have received or read?
That it is always better to get something done and get it out there, rather then wait until it is done perfectly.
If you could give any piece of advice to the readers, what would it be?
If you are think about starting a business, surround yourself with people with moxie, enthusiasm, perseverance and willingness to take risks, it will make the whole experience a lot easier.
Lastly, what was the last book you read, and what's your mini review of it?
I just finished The Rules Do Not Apply, Ariel Levy’s amazing memoir - as a woman, a wife, a mother, a daughter, I found it was so insightful, funny, moving, heartbreaking - just read it.
There you have it, one of the most educational Meet The Maker I have ever had, and truthfully, a post that was needed on this site.
Too many people ignore how much plastic they pile up, and we need to be more concerned with how we are treatinf our home.
I highly encourage trying Common Good, and recommend all the products in my photo, especially the all purpose cleaner and linen water, those are my favs! My bf loves the bergamont hand soap.