sustainable living for everyone, not just the sustainable people
The Sustainability Lab, TSL, is an e*-commerce shop and digital platform that makes sustainable living the easy, smart choice. We scout for first-mover products and ideas with sustainable DNA so our customers have a one-stop, curated shop for the best available and the most cutting edge products.
*e stands for environmentally conscious
We are Elle and Josh, two Yale grads deeply concerned about the climate crisis and environmental pollution. Friends since the seventh grade, we have long recognized the high costs of our consumer culture and shared a vision of a low-carbon, zero-pollution society as the alternative to climate catastrophe. Our individual and collective choices over the next ten years matter more than ever and we believe that our everyday decisions will create/determine the future. We can either continue down this path of ecological degradation or choose a better way—for our actions today will reverberate across our communities and impact future generations to come.
Our current world setup makes it hard to make environmentally-sound decisions. Things are designed to be convenient and instantaneously gratifying without considering the consequences on our shared planet and health. It’s no surprise that it's hard for people to evaluate whether or not brands are actually sustainable, as many of those same brands add sustainability to their marketing without making meaningful, necessary changes. People don't want to sacrifice on quality or pay extra to find eco-friendly products; most people aren’t able to drop everything for a new zero-waste or vegan lifestyle.
To realize our vision, we can’t rely on a small group of people doing things perfectly. We need everyone to make some meaningful changes. Sustainability must be inclusive and accessible to all because we all depend on each other to make those meaningful changes, together.
We’ve launched The Sustainability Lab as an e-commerce shop and digital platform to make sustainable living the easy, smart choice. We scout for the best products on the market with sustainable DNA so our customers have a one-stop, curated shop—without sacrificing on quality, price, or aesthetics. We also recognize that consumption is only one element of our lives. We’re constantly adding new resources, organizations, and ideas via The Lab so we can live sustainably in other ways, too. Let’s create the future we want, together.
Elle and Josh
"The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it."
Expert in environmental + climate policy, cleantech, and sustainable business operations
MPA in Energy & Environmental Policy, Columbia University
BA in Economics, Yale University
Expert in the built environment, materials innovation, and sustainable design
BA in Architecture, Yale University
+ sustainable shop
one-stop curated store of products that make sustainable living easy and accessible.
+ starter guide for sustainable living
list of ten of the most impactful actions you can start taking today to minimize your environmental footprint and make a difference.
+ resources library
collection of things to read, watch, and listen to; links to communities and networks of sustainable people; plus a give list of vetted nonprofits to consider donating to.
+ the lab
our center for innovation where we test out products and ideas that will help us live more sustainably.
+ climate voter pledge
commitment for our community to pledge to vote in every election and make the environment a top voting issue, through our partnership with The Environmental Voter Project.
+ sustainability concierge
a place where you can ask any and all questions about sustainability. Our team will provide you with an answer, resources, or connect you with an expert.
why we're different
not your average sustainability shop
our products are better + they happen to be sustainable
There's this notion out there that in order to be sustainable, you have to buy stuff that's expensive or ugly.
We've done the work to find excellent, high-quality products that people love. And because we refuse to sell products that pollute the planet or harm your health, everything for sale on our site goes through a verification process:
+ Thoughtful production and end of life design
Does the product support circular economy product design? It it made using renewable production processes and re/upcycled, biodegradable, nontoxic, and/or plastic-free materials? At the end of life, can the product be composted, recycled, or upcycled?
+ Reduces wasteful, single use consumption
Does the product encourage use of high-quality, long-lasting products over single-use (usually plastic) products, so we can buy less stuff overall and prevent unnecessary waste from going into landfills and our oceans?
+ Challenges the status quo practice
Does the product offer a new or better way of doing something that has far less environmental impact than business as usual?
we care about the environment & climate change + we walk the walk
We sell to you with intention. Buy things that will reduce your environmental footprint, but also buy things to invest in the ecosystem of brands that share your values and push for systems change.
But our mission is greater than to sell you stuff. We want to start conversations, share knowledge, and build momentum for you to make meaningful changes that lead to collective action.
With all the greenwashing in the world, it's hard to know if brands actually prioritize the planet. Sustainable business operations are a given for us.
Some of our integral practices include:
+ Using used and reusable shipping materials
We reuse existing shipping boxes and mailers, as well as mailers made from recycled materials. We encourage our shoppers to reuse any shipping materials we send.
+ Providing carbon-neutral shipping on all orders
We pay to offset those emissions created in the process of having your order delivered to you, so that you can feel good about shopping online with us.
+ Partnering with only the best
From our brands to our vendors, we make sure we work with, invest in, and amplify responsible partners that share our vision for a low-carbon, pollution-free future. Even our bank is a certified B-corp.
we're creating an inclusive community for all
Sustainable living — clean air and water, access to healthy food, ability to take safe and modern public transportation, and access to clean and reliable energy — is a human right.
We need a lot of people, rather than a few, to make some meaningful changes — and speak up — to have the kind of collective impact we need to secure that right.
While we hold great respect for those that are part of the zero waste movement, are vegan, or live off the grid as homesteaders, 99% of America can't drop everything and adopt a completely new lifestyle, especially when our systems and policies are designed to make sustainable living challenging.
We believe sustainable living is not niche; everyone should have access. We offer a space for you to be a little more sustainable than you were yesterday—no matter where you are in your journey. We're here to support you, encourage you, and learn from and with you.
We build an inclusive community by:
+ Providing a more diverse product mix so that you can make sustainable choices in areas that work for you.
+ Offering affordable products so that everyone can vote with their dollars.
+ Including and amplifying diverse voices and perspectives through our brands and our research and communications.