Demands on crew from guests are constantly changing. Many guests and owners are now much more aware of both the environmental impact of yachting on our oceans and on a more personal level, the possible dangers of harmful chemicals to their health and welfare.
Many people make conscious lifestyle choices to stay healthy, be it “eating clean” or by making informed decisions on the products they use, either on their bodies or around them in daily life.
If your guests, captain, or crew express concern about such important issues, or if you feel you would like to make some changes yourself, there are lots of little things you can do to make life on board more environmental friendly and minimize the everyday exposure to unwanted chemicals.
Good quality, natural toiletries are becoming much more widely available for you and your guests. In previous years these “natural” and “organic” products were often anything but, with little legislation governing their production and claims. The products themselves were often poor quality, thin in texture and really didn’t work well at all. New formulations, regulations and the realization that it is essential to use really good quality ingredients have led to the creation of some great brands to use onboard. Whether it is for total guest use throughout the boat, or to use alongside many of the well known mainstream brands, this little step can show your guests you are tending to their needs. Charter guests especially will appreciate your ability to be able to provide natural products if requested and it’s best to be prepared . You never know when a regular guest might change preferences due to health concerns and awareness.
One of my favorite natural brands is the beautifully packaged Bramley. It was created in the UK by a lovely lady who was originally involved with the creation of Cowshed (another fun, natural brand). Inspired by the beauty and therapeutic nature of plants, their simple product range and branding are a joy to behold. They contain no harmful or unethical ingredients. The essential oils used in production are fair trade, base ingredients are natural derived from sugar and coconut and most importantly they are biodegradable. The products themselves have individual fragrances, tied together across the range with undertones of citrus. I particularly love the natural zingy fragrance of the very effective shampoo and conditioner. These practical products which are available in different bottle sizes and are refillable, deliver on all levels! There is also a pump soap and hand lotion which would be perfect for any pantry or day head.
Voya has an entire organic range of products and skin care therapies made from sustainably harvested seaweed and was created in Ireland. They contain as much certified organic ingredients as possible (minimum 70%) and are free from nasty chemicals. The glorious deep-cleaning organic liquid soap and hand lotion with essential oils would be a welcome addition to any dayhead, with its soothing formulation infused with basil, clove bud, lemon, mandarin and lime. Small size guest amenities are also available.
Locally created Candelicious has a lovely range of natural guest amenities (also very biodegradable and made from the highest quality ingredients) and these chic toiletries can be monogrammed with the boat logo if required. As the name suggests, Candelicious also creates the most gorgeous natural soy candles which burn perfectly with very little soot.
Their texture is beautiful and amazingly they don’t melt in the sun (so can be left in your on deck hurricane lamps.) Citronella infused candles are also available to keep those pesky mosquitoes at bay on beach picnics.
Bramley and True Grace (another British brand) also have lovely fragranced candles in glass made with natural ingredients, as well as beautiful reed diffusers to give the boat a subtle ambient scent.
Other brands aiming to provide a “natural” toiletries solution include Bamford and REN. Elemis, although, not totally natural, avoid SLS, mineral oils, parabens, artificial colours and silicones in their products.
Sunscreen can be another cause for concern for guests and crew with the high levels of chemicals usually used to make them effective. The natural and mineral, Soleil Toujours range of sunscreens present beautifully and their cutting edge formulations are naturally based. They offer broad spectrum UV protection with enriching anti-oxidents and are anti-aging to care for the skin. They are also reef safe and biodegradable as well as being available in a number of clever sizes, including individual guest travel sizes and large format bottles with refills. These would be perfect for use on the swim-platform and tender, or indeed in the crew area! Personalized acrylic dispensers are also available for the large size.
Not to be forgotten, is the anything but humble, “Humble brush”. These award winning eco-friendly and caring toothbrushes have handles made of 100% biodegradable, sustainably grown bamboo and packaging made from recycled materials. These jolly little brushes are available in a host of super fun colours to coordinate with your onboard toiletries and even better, for each one bought another brush (or oral care) is donated via the Humble Smile foundation to a child in need. From personal testing these brushes deliver a super clean sensation and outlast a normal toothbrush. Of course, and more importantly, they wont create unwanted landfill and pollution.
Another very important aspect on board, are the cleaning products you use on a day to day basis. For both yourself,your guests and the ocean, it makes sense to use as few harmful chemicals as possible. I’m sure many of you still use lots of traditional products for cleaning like vinegar & water, alcohol (and even vodka is great for glass) and organic dish soap and water, but for shop bought products, Ecover is a long established “green” brand with lots of products available. You can find this is most natural food stores France (Bio in French). My personal favorite is the Method range which provides effective products with minimal chemicals. All the products are non irritating, non toxic, non allergenic and fully biodegradable – perfect for use on board. The effective wood cleaner smells divine and the washing up liquids have an equally delicious fragrance. With refills available for laundry detergent, washing up liquid and hand wash (perfect for crew areas) this also keeps plastic waste to a minimum. All products have a high percentage of naturally derived ingredients, contain no ammonia (unlike most glass cleaning products) no parabens, SLS’s derived from coconut oil and phosphate and cruelty free.
I hope you find this personal insight useful in helping make your life on board a little more “natural” for you and your guests, as well as helping to minimize some of the pollution that might happen from your yacht interior. Of course there are many more things you can do, but these are just a few simple ideas to start.
Visit me at www.shalenehutchinson.com for more information on the toiletries, candles and accessories available, or if you have any further questions contact Shalene.