( ENSPIRE Community Spotlight ) With The Use of Sustainable Materials and Donations Towards Important Causes, MamaP is The Socially and Environmentally Conscious Brand You’ve Been Looking For
ENSPIRE Contributor: Adriana Georgiades
What if you could contribute towards making the world a better place with something as simple as a toothbrush? MamaP, a brand of sustainable bamboo toothbrushes, aims to inspire consumers to start with small changes, like ditching your plastic toothbrush. With proceeds from each purchase donated towards various social and environmental causes, the company was built on a threefold mission: to take care of our health, to be kind to the environment, and to give back to the community.
Each year, over one billion plastic toothbrushes end up in landfills in the US alone. Disturbed by this fact, CEO and founder Suzan Hernandez decided to buy a bamboo toothbrush but was disappointed with the result. The bristles were rigid, it was uncomfortable to use and it started growing black spots after the first use. It also arrived in plastic packaging. “I wanted something better for my health, that felt good using, that looked beautiful, and had sustainability built in from start to finish. So I decided to make my own,” she says on their website.
MamaP toothbrushes were designed with a circular economy in mind. From the toothbrush itself to the packaging it arrives in, only recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable materials are used. The toothbrush handles are made from bamboo and non-toxic paint, and the DuPont nylon bristles can be recycled at specialty recycling locations. The packaging is made from undyed, kraft paper with soybean oil ink, meaning not a single part of MamP toothbrushes will end up in a landfill one day.
With co-founder and CCO Jay Sueno, MamaP is a woman- and minority-owned business that runs on the principles of diversity and integrity. The toothbrushes come in 5 different colors that each corresponds to a matching cause, to which 5% of proceeds will be donated. This includes yellow for “Save The Bees”, blue for ocean conservation, rainbow for LGBTQ+ Equality, red for women’s rights, and green for mental health. “Customers are very connected to the colors because they mean something. They’re a daily reminder as to what they care about,” says Hernandez.
Hernandez uses the term “intersectional environmentalism” to describe the core of MamaP’s give-back commitment. It refers to an inclusive version of environmentalism that advocates for both the protection of the people and the planet, recognizing that environmental injustices also cause social injustices, especially for marginalized communities. Hernandez’s mission was triggered during the 2016 election cycle, while she was living in Hell’s Kitchen, New York, a diverse and progressive neighborhood. “The community was pushing for so much: equality and human rights, healthcare, and the environment, but it felt like an uphill battle,” she says. “I realized people are inherently passionate about helping, but they feel stuck not knowing which path to take.” For this reason, MamaP has made giving back a little easier for her customers.