We’re excited to welcome Mother Mother to The Sustainability Lab!
Mother Mother designed the highest-quality, safest, and most sustainable options for—guess who—expectant and new mothers. That’s a tough customer to please, and for good reason! And now we can all benefit from the rigorous R&D and product sourcing Mother Mother has done to make the sustainable choice the easy one. Whether it’s for PPE (plant-based hand sanitizer with aloe and essential oils!), self-care (skin balm or herbal bath mixes), or a quick dry shampoo instead of running water for a full shower, Mother Mother’s got you covered!
Here’s what we love about Mother Mother products:
- Organic, all-natural ingredients.
- Sustainable packaging.
- Accessible price point.
- The stuff works!
Read below for our exclusive interview with Mother Mother founder Jodi Day:
Tell us what made you want to create this product — did something in your life serve as inspiration or an experience you had? A book you read?
My pregnancy and postpartum experience was the inspiration for the entire Mother Mother brand. At the time, I could not find a brand or store that specifically catered to the complex care of mothers, which was also aligned with my values.
What gaps in the market did you see, and how does your brand/design fulfill that need? Why do you think that gap exists?
At the time, most products for moms did not consider sustainable packaging, or elevated design at an accessible price point — things I looked for in products outside of motherhood. Products for the motherhood journey felt like a disconnected afterthought. There is also a lot of waste in the postpartum product space, so I wanted to make sure our products could be reusable, refillable, or multi-use.
How do you want customers to feel when using your product? Or what do you want them to think?
Tell us a story about your product development: What is something that happened along the way in your design/production process that we might not expect? What was the biggest roadblock you had to get through?
From the start, I had a clear idea of what I wanted to create, but I had no idea how to take my ideas and make products. My background is in UX design and web development, so I had the research skills, and did a lot of googling. I have loved getting out of my comfort zone and challenging myself to learn new things. Finding manufacturers, skincare labs, designing packaging, etc. Outside of my brand design, logo/color palette (shoutout to Donica Ida) I have done e v e r y t h i n g. The biggest roadblock overall has been the cost of scaling production, as Mother Mother is a self-funded brand.
How has developing your product changed your views on sustainability? (Harder to achieve than thought possible, easier, people more receptive than expected, etc.?)
It's definitely harder and more expensive to produce products sustainably. There is so much more to consider than avoiding single-use items / plastic packaging. I have found it challenging at times, especially when there is a product I want to develop that seems impossible to make sustainable. As I continue to learn, I make updates to products, but there is always more I can do.
- Banning single-use plastic packaging would make eco-conscious brands more competitive in the market. Before starting Mother Mother, I didn't know why so many brands used plastic bottles as it seemed like a no-brainer to use glass. Turns out the cost of glass is A LOT higher. At the very least, there should be a large tax on materials that damage our planet to discourage companies from using them.
- I'm originally from Canada and some cities have already incentivized reducing waste. In Vancouver, compost and recycling are picked up weekly, and garbage is picked up twice a month. This has made a huge impact on waste reduction. I am surprised this hasn't happened in LA (where I live).
- I think brands offering more information around product 'end of life' is valuable to the consumer and we are currently working to update this on our website (cleaning bottles/separating materials before recycling etc).
What are you excited about next in sustainable design? What new materials, new processes are you looking to work with in the coming months/years?
Some things Mother Mother is considering for future iterations:
- We have been exploring product packaging that is also the shipping box.
- Working with our retail partners to offer our products in bulk.
- Offsetting carbon emissions produced by Mother Mother and working with suppliers that do the same.