The Mt. Sinai Children’s Environmental Health Center (CEHC) honored co-founder Jessica Alba with the Champion for Children Award, recognizing her as a leader in the children’s environmental health movement. In front of a crowd of almost 800, Jessica shared how her personal experience with childhood illness—like severe asthma, allergies, and even kidney surgery—inspired her journey to ultimately advocate for toxic chemical reform and create The Honest Company.
“It made me determined to create the safest, healthiest environment for my two little girls and children everywhere,” Jessica said. “The CEHC and director Dr. Philip Landrigan’s groundbreaking research have been a true source of inspiration for our work at Honest and my and new book, The Honest Life…. With [their] vision and commitment to the cause, we’ve been able to turn research into real action — providing solutions to childhood disease and spearheading meaningful regulatory reform.”
In their desire to discover and resolve why today’s children are suffering from diseases that were virtually unheard of a generation ago, the CEHC and Dr. Landrigan have made great strides in researching and identifying the environmental factors that cause them:
As leaders in the children’s environmental health movement, CEHC and Dr. Landrigan have truly made a difference.
The Honest Company was proud to sponsor and participate in the Greening Our Children Benefit Luncheon, work alongside other like-minded vendors at the Green Expo, host a Q&A with bloggers, and support CEHC initiatives through a silent auction. The afternoon was a great celebration of the CEHC mission, one Honest will continue to advance by exemplifying and promoting social, corporate, and government responsibility in children’s health.
My days are all so different! To give you a better idea, I have outlined 3 possibilities below.
Possibility #1: The day starts at my desk in Santa Monica. I spend the morning catching up on the latest news in sustainability, cause marketing, and corporate social responsibility. I email with our non-profit and B Corp partners and prepare spreadsheets to track the growth of our overall community involvement. I meet with team members to better understand their departmental goals (product launches, new site features, etc.) and help intermix “social goodness” into their projects. Throw in the creation of new volunteer opportunities for our employees (we have a blood drive for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles coming up next!) and it is a very full day!
Possibility #2: The day begins at our Honest Warehouse in Montebello. I crawl amongst boxes and pallets to find ways to reduce our environmental footprint throughout this part of the supply chain. I join our warehouse team in determining which products can be donated versus recycled and how to best implement that process in a scalable manner. Likewise, I look at our energy usage and determine the amount of Renewable Energy Certificates we will need to purchase to offset our ongoing electricity usage at both our warehouse and corporate office. By the end of the day, I will usually load up my car with Honest products to be delivered to a non-profit partner or event.
Possibility #3: Other mornings begin at the headquarters of our non-profit partner, Baby2Baby. There, I volunteer in community gatherings for deserving families in the area or I help to plan upcoming Honest-sponsored events. I coordinate the donation and delivery of Honest products from our warehouse (the last one was over 10,000 pounds of product!). These days are definitely some of the most rewarding because I get to see our products going directly into the hands of deserving families.
Social Goodness Manager. I love my title and all the meaning behind it. Not many companies have an entire department dedicated to being good; to being the most responsible company that we can be. Titled “Social Goodness,” this department coordinates across all internal teams to ensure that we are delivering the safest and most sustainable products, that we are making decisions that benefit both people and planet, that we are giving back to the community through non-profit partnerships, and that we are constantly evolving with mindful workplace practices to ensure the wellbeing of our employees.. My ultimate job is to ensure that we are benefiting people and planet first, profit second. It is pretty awesome!
Honest candles! I love the warmth that candles give to your home, and I think they can make even the most boring environments more inviting. Even better, Honest candles are handmade in the US, use non-GMO soy instead of beeswax, come in rad recycled glass tumblers, and smell amazing! My favorite scent is probably the Gardenia Jasmine, but the Lavender Mint comes in as a close second.
I truly believe in the Honest lifestyle (one of the many reasons I work for The Honest Company!) and so I try to bring non-toxic and environmentally-friendly considerations into everything that I do. I eat vegetarian and try to purchase vegan products. I read labels before I buy something new and I look for certifications I trust (B Corp certification, Cradle to Cradle, USDA Organic, etc.). At this point, even my dog is bathed with all-natural soap and eats responsibly raised food. On a larger scale, my husband and I purchased a hybrid vehicle and have installed solar panels on our home to take advantage of green power initiatives. I’m still learning as I go and making mistakes along the way, but going eco has definitely been a challenge worth taking!
Wrestling my Great Dane for space on the couch to watch HGTV! I absolutely love home projects; so DIY networks like these are great for inspiration. My husband and I are really interested in residential real estate so we spend time doing our own home renovations, researching new neighborhoods and design trends, and saying hello to our friends at our local hardware store. We are building up our skills to become professional home flippers, so I am even getting my real estate license! It brings me satisfaction to take something that most people would overlook (a run down house or discarded furniture) and restoring it to its former glory. Most things just need a little elbow grease and paint (zero VOC paint, of course!) to make them like new.
I hit the alarm snooze button five times (no joke), then start the day with my morning ritual of enjoying a cup of coffee with my husband while walking my dog — taking in the peace and quiet before the craziness of the day ahead. I rush to get ready and head to the office, getting my daily dose of NPR on my delightfully short Santa Monica commute.
I get to enjoy about 15 minutes of quiet while I catch up on e-mails from all of our partners back east who have been emailing me since 4 am. Then it’s off to the races. No two days are the same. Some days I’ll be off to a press check for a new round of labels, or drive across town to our batching and filling facility to check out the new filling equipment and be on site while they are batching and filling our product.
Usually, in the afternoon I’ll receive a package with some kind of surprise — new essential oil scents for our upcoming room & fabric freshener, a prototype of an upcoming top secret product, a new exciting bottle and sprayer for our cleaning sprays (holy moly it’s 3 pm and I still haven’t had lunch!), a sample of our new deodorant formula for us to test drive (yes! you spoke and we heard..coming soon!), you name it. I’ll work on new product ideas, research ingredients, brainstorm packaging design, and constantly work with my amazing colleagues on exciting new campaigns and initiatives around the company.
Just how much goes into developing a product — and how it would make me feel at the end of the day. I knew there were a lot of moving pieces, but just how many, I never knew. And no two projects are alike. I feel like the exciting thing about what we’re doing at Honest is that we’re doing so many things for the first time. I like to think we get better the more we do it, but there is never a shortage of challenges — and on the flip side, rewards. There is nothing like putting six months of time, thought, and countless hours slaving away at a project, and then hold the product in your hand and know that it’s going into thousands of homes and being used on children for a healthier life. It’s truly one of the most rewarding things I’ve experienced professionally.
Well, seeing as how I’m intimately involved with making all of them, I’m entirely biased! I love them all. But, if I had to pick, it might be the laundry pods and dishwasher pods. It blows my mind how amazing they are. I recently got married and my husband and I got beautiful new dishware and soft, fluffy towels. It brings me such joy every time I unload my dishwasher and everything is so sparkling clean – or unload my laundry to find delightfully soft towels.
Small changes? Huge changes! Before I worked at Honest, I considered myself a fairly eco-conscious consumer, but working here, especially in products, has truly opened my eyes. I know more about the ingredients on the back of a label than I ever thought I would. I thought I’d been making smart purchasing decisions, but I took a second look, and realized there was so much I never knew about things that I’d been using for years. After working here for a few months, I did a massive overhaul of all my cleaning and personal care products, and now I have an Honest home.
If I weren’t at work, I’d be doing something with my hands. I sit in front of a computer most of the day and am constantly on the phone, so I crave being outside and doing something with an entirely different part of my brain. I’d be off hiking with my dog, or gardening, or working on the latest home improvement project with my husband. Like our desk that we built! That was last fall’s project. This spring…outdoor furniture.
I’ll play LetterPress or read the news as I walk from our parking lot to our office. It’s a ten-minute leisurely stroll, so it’s a great chance to wake up. Once I get in, I’ll head upstairs and be greeted by our cheerful CS team.
After a daily engineering stand up, I’ll then check in with our lead designer Tim. We talk about any issues, ideas for our apps, or question about our current designs. It’s a really collaborative experience and it’s fun to see him put our thoughts and words and turn them into something visual.
After that, I’ll look through download stats, bug reports, and news for HonestBaby. The rest of the day is spent coding, testing, and documenting various issues related to our apps.
Sporadic coffee and Kombucha breaks will go on throughout the day. As the day winds down, I’ll head out to the gym for a quick workout and then head home.
Hands down—Honest Stain Remover! This has got to be the best stain remover on the market. It works on wine, food, and even car grease. I’ve yet to find a stain it can’t remove. During this past Halloween, I had dressed up as Ironman and I spilled a bit of wine when navigating through a crowd at a bar. A couple of squirts totally cleared it up.
I think you hit a certain age where people around you start having kids — a lot of kids. When you’re walking, you start to notice kids everywhere. You also start to notice that people are talking about kids all the time.
At work, a few of us thought it’d be cool to create a friendly, modern app to help parents track different events in their children’s life. A casual meeting turned into a brainstorming session where we talked about an app that could track things parents really care or worry about.
At that moment HonestBaby was “born” and we went straight into development.
Almost every visual control was custom built and a lot of time was spent on the interaction and navigation, so it was a fun exercise building a unique, custom experience for our HonestBaby users. It was also fun to integrate Push Notifications and incorporate features not available on the current site. On a broader level, it’s fun to see accessible technology find it’s way into another area of our lives.
If I wasn’t making apps, I’d want to be doing something where I could build physical things for people to appreciate (Mechanical Engineer, Chef) or I’d want to be a Teacher.
My day starts early with a quick run on the treadmill (I am training for my first full triathlon in September). After getting ready, making lunches, and, of course, making coffee, I help my two kids get ready for school. Then I head to my office (NutritionWise) or to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.
I spend my workday seeing patients/clients, teaching classes, and staying up to date on the most current information on my practice as a clinical dietitian and lactation counselor. In the evening after my little ones go to sleep, I write reports and articles and check in with social media and emails. It’s a long, but exciting day without a dull moment. Usually, I wish there were more hours in the day. I love what I do!
Making changes to one’s diet can be very overwhelming, especially if you try to do too much at one time. I find that the best advice is to make small attainable goals for yourself.
Most of the time, these small changes have very large impacts on your health. Instead of being frustrated by not being able to stick with a plan that involves too many large changes, you will be motivated to continue after you are successful reaching your first goal. Try this and I guarantee success! Remember, we must walk before we run.
I love food and think that eating should be enjoyable. It’s one of the great pleasures of life. One of my favorite indulgences is a good piece of dark chocolate…that and a great cup of coffee. I love my morning coffee!
Honestly (no pun intended), this is a hard one. I use and LOVE so many. I am seriously addicted to the shampoo and the conditioning mist. I can’t get enough of them. Sometimes, I don’t share them with my kids if we are running low—but that’s our little secret .