Learn Sustainability with Colin

Plastic-Free July

  In case you didn’t know, it’s Plastic-Free July. The intention for this month is to help millions of people across the world be part of the solution to plastic pollution and the effect it has on the planet. Being plastic-free is a big part of our key messaging here at The Cheeky Panda – whether we’re talking about our plastic-free range of products, our bamboo straws or our microplastic-free wipes. We’re passionate when it comes to reducing our use of plastic. We’re also passionate about being honest and transparent, especially with our fans and customers (you lovely lot).  And...

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In case you didn’t know, it’s Plastic-Free July.

The intention for this month is to help millions of people across the world be part of the solution to plastic pollution and the effect it has on the planet.

Being plastic-free is a big part of our key messaging here at The Cheeky Panda – whether we’re talking about our plastic-free range of products, our bamboo straws or our microplastic-free wipes. We’re passionate when it comes to reducing our use of plastic.

We’re also passionate about being honest and transparent, especially with our fans and customers (you lovely lot). 

And when it comes to plastic, we’re not perfect.

But we’re trying.

 

The good, the bad and the plastic

First: The Good. Always start with the good, that’s the rule, right? 

Since switching our 4s and 9s packs of toilet roll, we’ve saved 6.95 tons of plastic. That’s equivalent to around 46 GIANT PANDAS-worth of plastic. 

That’s a lot of plastic.

How did we make the decision to switch from pesky plastic packaging to purely paper?

Well, back in 2020, we decided to Be Brave.

Until then, when we started selling sustainable solutions in 2016, our toilet rolls arrived at your door and in store in plastic. At this point in time, we were selling on Amazon, and we began to get some negative reviews for the amount of plastic in our packaging.

We’re a sustainable company, right? Why are we wrapping eco-friendly, bamboo loo rolls in Earth-damaging plastic?

Well, the plastic we used IS recyclable, but we wanted to do better.

And rather than just accept bad reviews and criticism and continue as we were, we took the feedback from our audience and got to work. 

Paper, please


We forged the fancy paper packaging you now see wrapped lovingly around our bamboo loo rolls to both reduce our plastic usage and to improve our sustainable credentials.

This wasn’t necessarily an easy swap for us. Our old plastic toilet rolls had a lot of positive reviews on Amazon and were a bestseller.

Taking them off to create a new listing with the new paper version meant we’d lose all of those amazing reviews from happy customers and meant we’d have to start from scratch with the new version.

But we did it, because we needed to be brave and make the switch, not just for reviews, but for the planet and for you, too. We believe in sustainability, and we put people and planet above profit.

Now our rolls are lovingly wrapped in paper, which not only helps the Earth, but looks and feels much better, too. Plus, you can reuse it for things like origami or colouring in.

Can’t do that with rubbish old plastic, can you?

THE BAD


Now, the bad. It was inevitable, we tried to avoid it but here we go.

We tell you the bad because we think you deserve to hear it. It’s not something we hide behind, it’s something we’re working on, we can be better, we can be more sustainable. 

Our wipes (facial, baby, antibac) are still in plastic packaging. This is purely because we haven’t yet figured out how to change the packaging to keep the wipes fresh - but we’re working on it.

The issue is keeping the wipes wet, because nobody wants a dry wipe (we have a product already for that, but those are MEANT to be dry).

Yes, our wipes are in recyclable plastic. But that’s not necessarily good enough to help the planet as much as we want to.

As we grow as a business - from humble beginnings to where we are now - we will continue to improve ourselves and find new ways of being better, greener and cleaner. So bare with us and we’ll work hard toward eradicating our plastic use. 

Another good thing!

 

We couldn’t end on a bad thing. The GOOD thing about our wipes is that they contain no microplastics.  

You know that stuff that’s floating around the ocean? Microplastics end up in our water and in our food supply. It’s even estimated that we eat one credit card of microplastic a week Reuters

Yeah, gross right?

Those can be found in a lot of bog-standard wipes. They’re out there, ruining oceans and destroying forests.

Our wipes, as you may already know, are made purely from that glorious material, bamboo. 

We’re a much greener, more sustainable option than other wipes out there, rest assured. And we’ll continue to improve so it stays that way, too.

So, we’re going to continue to champion our plastic-free credentials, while working on the other elements of our products that can be improved.

If you have any questions about our products, or you just fancy a natter just drop us a message on social media or via email (info@cheekypanda.com) and we’d be happy to have a cheeky chat.

As always, thank you for the support. And happy Plastic-Free July!

Love,
Team Cheeky Panda x

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Advice from bamboo

Bamboo isn’t just a nutritious panda snack. There’s a lot we can learn from this hollow herbaceous plant, things we can transfer into our daily lives and routines. So how can you take a leaf out of bamboo’s book and strive towards an eco-friendlier existence? Let us tell you exactly how. Stand tall and proud (and enjoy the view!) Bamboo is hollow on the inside, yet it’s still mega strong. It also stands tall and proud. You’re pretty solid, with all that muscle and bone, so you can and should be just as strong, if not stronger. Even if you’re...

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Bamboo isn’t just a nutritious panda snack.

There’s a lot we can learn from this hollow herbaceous plant, things we can transfer into our daily lives and routines.

So how can you take a leaf out of bamboo’s book and strive towards an eco-friendlier existence? Let us tell you exactly how.

Stand tall and proud (and enjoy the view!)


Bamboo is hollow on the inside, yet it’s still mega strong. It also stands tall and proud.

You’re pretty solid, with all that muscle and bone, so you can and should be just as strong, if not stronger. Even if you’re not tall, keep your head held high and act as if you’re the tallest person in the world.

And while you’re up there, enjoy the view! 

Take some inspo from this super-fast-growing grass and be strong. You can do this. You got this.
 

Be a natural beauty!

You’re a beautiful person, inside and out. Don’t let anyone tell you any different.

Bamboo doesn’t care if people criticise, bamboo is proud to be an all-natural beauty.


Rely on your roots



The perfect support system, which we all need, especially when things get a little tough.

Bamboo roots are a lot like family and friends – they keep you upright and grounded when things get a little rough and stormy. So keep yourself rooted firmly to the ground when things get tough.

Other favourite 'roots' (after friends and family, of course) are:

  • Dogs
  • Ice Cream
  • Books
  • More ice cream
  • A second dog
  • Looking at pictures of dogs
  • Reading a good book
  • Taking time for yourself

Learn to grow


Bamboo can grow 3 feet every day! Imagine if you were able to grow that fast? Spiritually, not physically. That would be absolute chaos.

But you CAN grow as a person in that time - all it takes is 24 hours to change your mindset. Maybe even less, if you’re a massive show off or in total control of your brain.

Try taking time out to check in with yourself and make sure everything is A-Okay every now and then. Sometimes all it takes is a chat with a friend or changing something slightly, it can make a big difference to your personal growth.

 

 

Be sustainable


We should all strive to be a little more planet-friendly - and making small changes to support the environment is the best way to achieve that.

By taking care of ourselves, we’re in a better position to take care of our planet, too. So be a little more bamboo, look after yourself, and let’s fight to make the world a better place.

We hope you’ve learned a little something from our friend bamboo.

 

Love,

Team Cheeky Panda x

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This summer will (hopefully) be the start of returning to some form of normality. We’ve all been cooped up inside, missing out on adventure, missing friends and family and overall lacking things to do. There’s only so many meal kits and lockdown activities you can do (anyone else’s house covered in clay and paint residue?)  But things are looking up. We’re all looking forward to potentially getting away while it’s warm to get some much-needed R&R. There’s a possibility that ‘Vaccine Passports’ will be a real-life thing soon, allowing for international travel, something that a lot of the population is...

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This summer will (hopefully) be the start of returning to some form of normality. We’ve all been cooped up inside, missing out on adventure, missing friends and family and overall lacking things to do. There’s only so many meal kits and lockdown activities you can do (anyone else’s house covered in clay and paint residue?) 

But things are looking up. We’re all looking forward to potentially getting away while it’s warm to get some much-needed R&R. There’s a possibility that ‘Vaccine Passports’ will be a real-life thing soon, allowing for international travel, something that a lot of the population is super keen on.

We’re here to tell you that you don’t need to go abroad to enjoy a holiday. That’s right, we said it.

Think about it – waking up at 4am for your flight, airport queues, only being able to bring a tiny amount of moisturiser? Plus, not sure about you, but we always feel like we’re hiding something when we go through security even though we’re not. The unexplained guilt is very surreal.

Now, if you choose to go abroad this year, we won’t judge at all. Chances are some of our staff members will be heading somewhere on their holibobs. We’re just here to tell you that there are alternatives and why staying put can be a great thing, not just for you, but for the planet too.

We’re championing the UK Staycation this year, and here’s why.

Keep your carbon footprint low

During lockdown, the UK’s carbon footprint went down by an incredible 17%. The main reason for this is that we’re travelling less (not by choice, mind). Less travel means less carbon production. Simple.   

This is good news for the planet in the fight against Climate Change, but we can’t just rely on pandemics to reduce carbon footprints. By reducing our international travel, we’re reducing the impact on the planet. We’re not saying you shouldn’t go and explore the world (China is particularly lovely, AND there are pandas), but taking the year off and seeing what the UK has to offer can be just as good.

CarbonFootprint.com have handily calculated the carbon cost of travelling abroad and offer alternatives to flying. Either take the train instead or if you have to fly, offset your carbon by travelling light, using ‘non-stop’ routes and electronic tickets, to reduce paper waste.

 If you’re making a conscious effort to reduce your carbon footprint, this might be a good alternative for you.

The UK is BEAUTIFUL

Devon! Norfolk! Edinburgh! Manchester! Cornwall! London!

All of these incredible places on your doorstep, and you want to get on a plane?! Okay, British weather is the peak of unpredictable and we can’t argue that a cold drink on a hot beach in a foreign country is bliss.

HOWEVER. The UK is full to the brim with magical places. You might find yourself discovering a hidden British beach, or (responsibly) sipping whisky in the Highlands, or exploring ancient forests and lakes. 

You could have a barbecue with friends or a plastic-free picnic – don’t forget to bring our brand new bamboo Sip and Shake Straws along to make it super sustainable, too!

Saveonenergy.com have listed the most Instagrammable, eco-friendly places to visit in the UK. So, check ‘em out and book yourself a sustainable Staycation.

Visit some friends of ours…

The UK is also home to a couple of our favourite black and white bears, who you can now go and see in real life, not just on Panda cam…

Yang Guang and Tian Tian reside at the world-famous Edinburgh Zoo, which is now open to visitors from across the United Kingdom under government guidelines. They’re making it as safe as possible to provide you with an incredible day out, seeing some amazing animals.

The zoo is easy to get to from Edinburgh City Centre as well as from most places in the UK by train. While you’re there, you can check out what else the Scottish capital has to offer. 

These are just a few reasons why we think you should take part in a Staycation for your holidays this year. There are some more, but we don’t want to nag.

Whatever you choose to do and wherever you choose to go, we hope you have the planet in mind when you do it. It needs us now more than ever, and small changes can make a huge difference.

But at the same time, we all need a bit of a break, right? 

Love,

Team Cheeky Panda x

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Not a day goes by that this blog writer doesn’t use the word ‘bamboo’. Even at weekends, even on days off, EVEN during sleep, the B-word resides at the forefront of our brain.That’s because when you become a certified Cheeky Panda, bamboo becomes a significant part of your vocabulary. We love the stuff, partly because it gives us something to talk about, but mainly because it's given us the opportunity to make eco-friendly essentials for you lot to enjoy. But how is bamboo sustainable? Why is bamboo eco-friendly? Why is this miracle material so gloriously good for the planet? Easy...

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Not a day goes by that this blog writer doesn’t use the word ‘bamboo’. Even at weekends, even on days off, EVEN during sleep, the B-word resides at the forefront of our brain.

That’s because when you become a certified Cheeky Panda, bamboo becomes a significant part of your vocabulary. We love the stuff, partly because it gives us something to talk about, but mainly because it's given us the opportunity to make eco-friendly essentials for you lot to enjoy.

But how is bamboo sustainable? Why is bamboo eco-friendly? Why is this miracle material so gloriously good for the planet? Easy question. Here’s EXACTLY why, straight from the panda’s mouth.

It grows suuuuuuper fast

Bamboo is the fastest growing plant. In. The. World.

In the perfect conditions, it can grow three feet in 24 hours, so you can actually watch it grow, if you’ve not got much else on, that is. This is technically the case for any plant/tree/bush, but if you go into your back garden and stare at your rhododendrons, waiting for them to grow, you’re going to there for a while.

This rapid growth means it’s really renewable - it can keep up with our demand for paper products, whereas trees just can’t.

When we harvest, we don’t cut the roots. Since bamboo is technically a grass (not the kind that tells on people) it’ll grow back again as quick as a flash, ready to be chopped and pulped again for loo roll and wipes.

But when trees are cut down, they’re gone forever. No growing back, nothing. Nada.

See? Renewable. Keeps coming back, like the Need For Speed sequels. Try and stop it, you can't.

30, 30, 35…

…are the magic numbers.

Bamboo grows 30 times faster, produces 30% more oxygen and absorbs 35% more carbon than your traditional tree.

We’re a little annoyed that those numbers aren’t all 30, but we’ll let it slide because 5% more carbon absorbed per bamboo shoot is much better. It’s a fair trade.

So, the more bamboo we plant, the more oxygen we get. Meaning we can all breathe easy.

Plus, more bamboo might mean less carbon on Earth. Carbon is the stuff that’s making the world hotter, we don’t want too much of it, so more bamboo could help us balance things out a little bit by absorbing more of it.

Trees try their best, and we love them for it, but they can’t stand up to mighty bamboo. That doesn’t mean we should get rid of them, though. Quite the opposite, we need trees. What else are we going to read under and swing from?

Plus, bamboo doesn’t mind being made into loo roll. Trees do though, they’re sick of it.

It grows like MAD

We source our bamboo in SE Asia, where it grows like you would not believe. It’s basically like those weeds in your garden or your nose hair when you get older (what’s THAT all about anyway? We'll cover that in a different blog post).

Our lovely co-founders went on a trip to China and found that the bamboo growing wildly on the mountains was going to waste. So, they did what most people do – turn it into toilet roll and other eco-essentials. Why wouldn’t you?

It’s also worth noting that we don’t take bamboo from the hungry mouths of pandas. They only like a certain kind, they’re super picky. The cute little rascals.

 


Reducing deforestation

This one’s an easy one.

By using bamboo, we’re not using trees to make loo roll. PanDUH.

27,000 trees a DAY are cut down to make paper products, and that’s way too many. Think of all the animal homes destroyed and all the forests reduced to nothing. Sad, right?

Use bamboo, save trees, feel good. Easy.

Bamboo Tree


We’ve used the word ‘bamboo’ 20 times in this blog, that’s enough for the average person per month (not a real statistic).

However, that’s a normal amount per day for THIS blog writer.

Hopefully these words inspire you to use this miracle grass in your daily life more often. Remember, a small switch can make a world of difference.

Love,
Team Cheeky Panda x

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In case you didn’t know, reader who has stumbled upon this blog, The Cheeky Panda’s core values as a company are as follows: Innovate, Impact, Inspire. Not in that particular order, but those are the main things we try to do as we grow and evolve. On the surface, those are just words. But they do actually have meaning, they’re not just something we say to make ourselves look good. But what do we mean by them, exactly? Well, our Impact comes from our passion to provide you with products without harming the planet. While we try to Inspire you...

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In case you didn’t know, reader who has stumbled upon this blog, The Cheeky Panda’s core values as a company are as follows: Innovate, Impact, Inspire.

Not in that particular order, but those are the main things we try to do as we grow and evolve. On the surface, those are just words. But they do actually have meaning, they’re not just something we say to make ourselves look good.

But what do we mean by them, exactly? Well, our Impact comes from our passion to provide you with products without harming the planet. While we try to Inspire you through fun, cheeky content in an effort to convince you that a sustainable lifestyle doesn’t have to be difficult or scary, because it doesn’t.

But what about that other word? Innovate.

We like to think of ourselves as the innovators of the hygiene and home essentials world. Whatever product we create has people AND planet in mind (as well as profit, without that, we wouldn’t be able to pay this blog writer to write this blog post, specifically).

Let’s dive into how we, as a business, have used innovation to bring you sustainable essentials that don’t cost the Earth. Because there are a few beneath the surface that you may not know about, and we want you to, because you deserve it and we’re very proud of ourselves.

BAMBOO!

First up, predictably, is bamboo.

It’s predictable because 90% of anything we talk about is to do with bamboo, if you don’t know that by now, you’re not paying enough attention.

Bamboo really is a miracle material – it grows super-fast, making it really sustainable. Not only that, but bamboo naturally contains less tissue dust and lint, meaning it’s amazing for sensitive skin and people with allergies. Plus, there’s less bathroom mess to sweep up.

Manufacturing magicians

 

Our processing plant is a lot like Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, only there’s 100% more bamboo and 95% less chocolate (our workers love chocolate, which accounts for the 5%).

During the manufacturing process, our toilet paper is made into a ‘solid roll’. 

What does that mean? It means that no air gets trapped between the sheets of tissue, meaning we save carbon by not shipping air.

That’s clever, right? We thought it was. We’ll pat ourselves on the back.

 Plastic-Free Pocket Tissues

Did you know that our pocket tissues were the first ever to be made without plastic wrapping? Crazy that it had never been done before, right? 

Instead of pesky plastic, we use cool cardboard. It’s great because it can be recycled super easily and won’t stick around for long before either being made into something else or biodegrading naturally.

So, before you slip a [leading brand of pocket tissues] into your bag or rucksack, think about where the packaging is going to go once you’ve blown your nose a bunch of times, because it’ll probably stick around and cause havoc in our oceans and woodlands. 

Biodegradable Wipes & Nappies!

 

Biodegradable, {adjective}: capable of decaying through the action of living organisms.

Basically, anything biodegradable can break down back into the Earth without causing any long-term damage. Our wipes contain no plastic (in the wipes themselves, that is), meaning you can chuck them in the compost without a care* in the world and they’ll disappear amongst your old eggshells and banana skins.

Our nappies are also 2/3rds biodegradable (we haven’t figured out how to make the strap compostable, yet…).

And our amazingly versatile Dry Wipes are totally biodegradable – packaging and all!

*Especially if that care is whether they’ll end up in our oceans or at landfills, like most wipes do…

Bacteria-beating wipes!

Our bamboo Antibac Wipes not only biodegrade naturally, but they also kill 99.9% of bacteria.

And we’re not just saying that – they’ve been EN1276 certified. We’ve got the certificate to prove it, it’s stuck up on our VERY clean fridge.

 

So, these are the reasons why Innovation is one of our core values. Big list, right?

We aim to continue to innovate in an effort to safeguard our future for generations to come.

If a bunch of cheeky pandas can do it, then you can help too.

 

Love,

Team Cheeky Panda x

 

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