We had the pleasure of chatting with Phoebe Yu and Kat Dey of Ettitude about their sustainable bedding, towel, and sleepwear company. In the bedding market, organic cotton has reigned as the best natural option. Ettitude, which stands for eco attitude, is different. They make all of their fabric from bamboo fiber because it is more sustainable, breathable, and has minimal environmental impact.
How Ettitude Got Started
Phoebe Yu had decades of experience in textile supply chains in China but hadn’t learned much about the related environmental issues. When she moved to Australia, she was shocked to learn about the real environmental impact of textile production. The textile industry is now known to be a major polluter, and Phoebe knew she wanted to do something to reduce that impact. She founded Ettitude, which stands for eco attitude, as a way to bring environmentally-friendly textiles into people’s homes.
Kat Dey has always focused on improving people’s overall health, wellness, and lifestyle with her work. In early 2018, she tried Ettitude’s sheets and fell in love! She knew that she wanted to be part of a mission-driven company that wanted to make a difference, and so she joined Ettittude to help the company go global.
Brightly readers can get 20% off Ettitude by using code GOODTOGETHER
What Our Skin Absorbs Each Day
Consumers have been conscious of what goes into their bodies for a few years. But now, we’re all starting to consider what goes on our bodies, too. From cosmetics to clothing to bedding, our skin is in contact with a multitude of materials each day!
As our largest organ, our skin absorbs the chemicals and particles from whatever it touches. Considering that we spend, on average, ⅓ of our lives in bed, our sheets have a lot of contact time with our skin.
Buying sheets made of organic cotton is increasingly popular for this reason. Unfortunately, cotton production is limited. Without chemical pesticides and fertilizers helping it grow, organic cotton requires more water and more land to produce the same yield.
Why Bamboo Is Better
Bamboo is a super plant. It can grow up to 3 feet each day and requires no pesticides. It only takes ⅓ of the water needed to grow organic cotton and has a higher density per acre. Bamboo also regrows naturally. Harvesting bamboo does not require pulling out the root, so there is less soil disturbance. It’s a remarkably friendly plant to the environment.
Ettitude’s fabric is called CleanBamboo, which Phoebe spent five years developing. The raw bamboo is dissolved in a non-toxic solvent using a closed-loop system, which means that the solvent and water are reused up to 200 times. The resulting fiber is then spun and woven for Ettitude’s sheets, sleepwear, robes, and towels.
CleanBamboo isn’t the first fabric made from bamboo—rayon and viscose are both derived from the super plant. But these fabrics are made in a wasteful process using harsh chemicals. The CleanBamboo process is environmentally safe, sustainable, and creates soft fabric.
That softness led Ettitude to market their sheets as “vegan silk.” The sheets are soft and silky, of course, but bamboo fabric is also thermoregulating. Natural gaps in the fabric’s weave allow air to pass through the sheets to your body. The material is also moisture-wicking, so hot or sweaty sleepers can stay cool.
Sustainability and the Self-Care Movement
It’s hard to find time for yourself in our increasingly busy world, especially with a constant onslaught of media, our families to take care of, more work to do, and our personal lives. Slowing down can be one of the hardest to-dos to check off these days!
Sleep, in particular, gets jettisoned in favor of finishing other tasks. Quality sleep, though, is a vital aspect of self-care. We need not only a healthy amount of sleep but for our sleep to be at a comfortable temperature, with minimal tossing and turning. Plus, lack of sleep can make you feel foggy. Having great bedding, of course, makes it more enjoyable to go to bed and helps improve your overall sleep quality.
1% for the Planet
Phoebe is inspired by the innovation and commitment to sustainability of Patagonia’s founder, Yvon Chouinard. His primary ethos is that companies can develop better products and, at the same time, be environmentally and socially responsible.
Chouinard co-founded the 1% for the Planet initiative. Businesses that participate donate 1% of their annual profits for their entire brand, or for just a specific product line, to support environmental charities. Ettitude participates in this initiative because it is hyper-focused on sustainability.
Another foundation that Ettitude supports is One Girl, which provides funding to girls around the globe who do not have access to education.
Women and girl’s education is ranked #6 by Project Drawdown as a solution for climate change. The first step towards tackling the challenges of climate change is empowering women to safeguard the environment, which is best done through education.
Co2 Neutral Website
Lastly, Ettitude participates in the Co2 Neutral Website certification. Participating websites donate funds to support carbon reduction initiatives in an amount that corresponds to the emissions produced by their servers and website traffic.
With these three initiatives, Ettitude is working hard to cover every possible part of the climate change puzzle, along with their own manufacturing and commitment to sustainability.
What You Can Do
If you want to be more sustainable with your textile consumption, Phoebe and Kat recommend reducing your waste by reusing what you already own. You can be creative with upcycling or recycling the textile products that you have in your home.
Of course, when you do need to buy new textiles, do as much research as you can before buying. Many brands are more and more transparent about their manufacturing processes and their commitment to the environment, especially brands in the sustainable space.