Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Eco Friendly Earbuds

What a funny word, earbuds.
But it's not headphones that my daughter needs to replace, it's earbuds... the ones with rubber on the tip that go in your ear. Hers broke and it's time to replace them, and I decided that we were going to do it right.

A week or so ago, when we were out and about looking for eco-friendly school supplies locally, I got this weird drive to go into staples... just to see what recycled products they could offer us. The door opened and we walked into the most plastic smelling store ever. I know that sounds crazy, but even my kids noticed how smelly it was in there. I mean, it was so bad that I was thinking that it's got to be a work hazard to have to smell plastic off gassing like that all day. The weird thing was that no one else seemed to notice.

Anyway, staples totally failed to offer us anything that we needed made from recycled product. They had a few notebooks but we didn't need a notebook. Funny, online it seems like they are kind of into offering recycled products... but I guess that's not really the case. However, my daughter did find one thing that she "needed" - a new pair of earbuds. They were packaged in tons of plastic (of course), which I pointed out, so she put them back and we quickly left the store.

I tried to forget that she needed new headphone and continued on in my life until yesterday, when she asked me if she could go back to staples and buy those earbuds. That's when I sat down and looked online for other eco-friendly options to satisfy her need. I found so many!

Stand4green earbuds were my first choice, mostly because they were the best price I could find. But there were lots of other options out there to check out.

Iwave  has a grassroots collection with some nice ones, but they don't have easy access to pricing.

Thinksound has some great looking stuff, but is really pricey.

These earbuds from the House of Marley are nice and price-wise seem reasonable enough for the quality.

Just for fun, these Aria headphones from Ashcroft Design show that things really can be recycled and turned into something awesome - these are made from wood recycled from acoustic guitars, the earcups are made from reclaimed aluminum, and the leather are reclaimed from bags, jackets and other articles of clothing from musicians.

Ok, I think I've proven my point that stuff like this is out there - and we can choose to make conscious decisions while still having our luxury items (or "necessities" for our teenagers). We just need to do a little legwork to feel good about what our hard earned cash supports.

And if you are wondering what we ended up with, check out these babies:
We found these on ebay for a mere $13. They are made from eco-friendly wood that is reclaimed from tress that have come down due to storms, urban development or insects and disease. Also, the packaging is made from 85% post consumer materials... which makes me feel SO much better than supporting that crazy plastic off gassing at staples.


  1. Wow, that just goes to show that for almost anything new you might need, there is an eco-friendly option out there.

    Your observation about Staples is so right! I think it's all the toxic plastic binders - those things have got to be the worst plastic possible!

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