Northern Beaches Mums Group
Northern Beaches Mums Group

The ethical brands mums are loving

Living on the Northern Beaches, we are definitely spoilt for choice in terms of outdoor activities that are available right on our doorsteps. We have access to National Parks, the Manly Dam, the beach and the bay which makes options for walks and hikes endless. 

In addition to enjoying the great outdoors and making our experience out there even better, more consumers are becoming conscious of the environment and being mindful of the ethical nature behind the brands that we are purchasing. As such, here are some of the best brands that mums are loving right now.

Step One

Step One is an Aussie underwear brand that has earned cult-status by selling a pair every 8 seconds across Australia, US and the UK. With over 50, 000 positive reviews on Google, 65% of purchases are from repeat buyers because they are just that good!

The concept was developed by Sydney-based Greg Taylor after a particularly uncomfortable hiking incident that left him chafed! Greg couldn’t find any underwear suitable to make hiking more comfortable for himself so he set out to fix the problem for those fellow chafers everywhere so they can better enjoy the activities that they want to do.

He created a pair of underwear with a bespoke “UltraGlyde” technology which is placed where the legs rub to stop irritation. He also chose FSC Certified, organically grown bamboo viscose as the key fabric in the underwear due to the fact that bamboo grows faster and use less water than cotton and Step One bamboo does not contribute to natural habitat loss or destruction. Additionally, stats showed that 22% of men wear their underwear more than once before a wash! Bamboo has natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, plus it is breathable.

Step One’s packaging is 100% certified home compostable and doesn’t contain toxins, it’s actually made from corn starch! Greg also visited every factory that he considered working with, reviewing over 20 factories to ensure ethical standards were maintained. He was on the look out for fair labour, fair wages, fair conditions and even such small details as padded chairs to sit on and other amenities like refrigerators and clean bathroom for workers to use. Every factory must have be certified by a third party such as BSCI to be an official Step One supplier and those certifications must be kept up to day.

So if you are sick of the dreaded chafe, or you just want amazing underwear for yourself and your family, you can’t go past Step One.

Red Paddle Co

There is no doubt that stand-up paddle boarding is popular in the Northern Beaches, but one brand really stands out when it comes to not only being convenient (as they are an award winning inflatable brand that can be stored easily in a unit) but also very ethical.

From the very beginning, Red Paddle Co’s company ethos has been to “never compromise” when it comes to the performance of their inflatable paddle boards.

As passionate water users, it has always been important to the brand to look after and have as little impact as possible when enjoying the outdoors. This determination is also reflected in other vital areas of the company, such as the safety of paddlers, the reliability of their products and a duty to protect the future of our planet. Here are a few key areas they are focussing on…

Responsible and circular design

Red Paddle Co’s design ethos is to deliver a creative and responsible design which embodies circular economy processes. A circular economy concept is designed to ensure the materials used can be recovered and re-used, so they are not added to landfill.

Built to last

Everything the brand creates, from boards and fins to accessories is designed with a purpose: to go the distance. Their skilled designers put a huge amount of time and thought into crafting products with real longevity. 

All of their boards are made primarily from composite materials, however, to be more responsible Red Paddle Co make these boards last as long as possible. And Red Paddle Co boards are designed to last.

Every board made is produced in their private facility using a unique manufacturing process and it takes an average of 72 hours to create each paddle board. Using their MSL™ pressure lamination, Red Paddle Co boards offer the very best in reliability and durability, resulting in warranty rates of just 0.5% globally – that’s equivalent to the aerospace industry – which means Red Paddle Co boards are out there being put to the test and are lasting a long time!

Packaging and production

Red Paddle Co’s in-house team of designers are constantly evolving how they approach production and design to reduce waste, adhesives and dyes.

One of their first projects was to remove glue from the packaging and utilise mechanical fastenings. As a second iteration, they wanted to try and make the packaging completely compostable by looking into grown packaging, soy-based inks and corn starch PE replacements. 

Red Paddle Co’s board production facility is now 100% waste free; their paper and card packaging are 100% recyclable and they have also educated their suppliers about circular economy and are making a genuine difference with the products brought to the market.

BCorp Pending 

For Red, being sustainable is a way of life, not a PR stunt. Last year they gathered all this data to hold themselves to higher standards of transparency and accountability. The brand is currently in the process to become a certified B Corporation business. This is an exclusive group of just over 4,000 for-profit companies creating a more inclusive, sustainable global economy. It’s not an easy process, but B Corp certification will enable the brand to go bigger and bolder, designing and making new sustainability and diversity-focused products.

To find out more about the brand and to read their full Positive Impact report visit:

Totem Eco

Now with all that activity and adventure, odds are deodorant will also be on our shopping list. Deodorant is generally a highly toxic product, but there are some exceptional ranges coming onto the market.

Totem Eco is an Australian brand the makes award winning All Natural Australian Deodorant Pastes that are free from aluminium, sweat blockers, parabens and other nasties. 

Infused with beautiful Australian Botanical Essential Oils and formulated with only the best Australian and locally sourced ingredients, Totem Eco’s vegan friendly, cruelty-free deodorant pastes contain antimicrobial properties to keep you smelling fresh as a daisy all day long.

Scents are created using Australian botanical essential oils and they include Honey Myrtle, White Cypress and Unscented.