Cora Hilts: Merging Sustainable Business With Sustainable Living
Posted on June 19 2020
Merging Sustainable Business With Sustainable Living by Cora Hilts
This week we share a piece from Cora, one of our lovely stockists in the UK whom we've been lucky enough to be working together for over one year now. Cora is someone who we admire and look up to as a source of inspiration when it comes to sustainability and business ethics. We hope you enjoy, with love xx
My name is Cora Hilts and I am the co-founder and CEO of Rêve En Vert - the platform for sustainable living. At Rêve En Vert, we curate the best of ethical and conscious brands within fashion, beauty and lifestyle. Supporting small, independent designers that create their goods with the utmost respect for the environment and their manufacturers is at the heart of the way we look at retail, and we love to supplement this with beautiful and informative editorial content.
2020 has been an incredible time in human history - it’s been unsettling, moving and at times, overwhelming. But before any great change there is great turmoil, and we have never needed sustainable change so badly. I truly believe that we as humanity are being asked to think about how we can all contribute to a better world at the moment by a greater power that has brought all these hardships on us this year, and it’s our job to respond and react with grace and intelligence.
Sustainability can be a big topic, but at Reve En Vert we have always believed that simplifying it and making it a beautiful part of your everyday life is the key to success in living a more conscious lifestyle. So here I am breaking down for you how I make each part of my life as sustainable as possible, without sacrificing aesthetic for ethics!
Fashion: The first thing I always have to say when talking about having a conscious wardrobe is that unfortunately fast fashion will never be a system to me that is sustainable. Cheap and disposable garments that were made in unsound factories contribute to environmental and social injustices, and supporting these companies isn’t our best option! My suggestion with fashion is to invest in items that you will wear for years and years, try not to consider trends too much but rather, your own sense of style and what makes you feel confident. Also, try and support smaller businesses with transparency and founders/CEOs that you believe in. They will likely do more with your money that you believe in than major corporations. Also, always try to go for natural fibres and avoid synthetics made from plastic (petroleum!) as they leave a much lighter environmental footprint.
Food: With food, it’s really quite simple how to eat more sustainably - seasonal, local and organic. Get to know the people behind the food you eat as well, try and go to farmer’s markets whenever you can. It’s also a great way to cut down on your plastic intake as often it’s easier to take your own reusable bags with you to these markets. If organic seems more expensive, try to cut down on meat and dairy items which will always cost you more and take your savings to invest in organic pulses, grains, fruits and vegetables.
Beauty: For me there are two things within my beauty routine that I never compromise on: organic ingredients and plastic free packaging. My favourite brand for make-up is Kjaer Weis because all of her packaging is refillable, and her beautiful makeup is organic, vegan and delicate. For skincare, I like experimenting with smaller brands but I love working with oils as I find they are easy to use, leave me glowing and not needing much else. At REV, we always say simple is best within beauty and also that helps a lot with sustainability. Also, get all reusable things like cotton buds and cleansing cloths so you are not disposing of things like wet wipes or plastic batons that end up in oceans or landfill.
Home : My husband and I are thrilled to have just purchased our first home, on the seaside in Maine where I grew up we bought a cottage that we have been fixing up over the past year. It is true that it costs a bit more and takes longer to make your home a sustainable entity, but I don’t think it will be something anyone ever regrets when they have a beautiful, conscious, low impact home. Our go to resources have been vintage markets for furniture, Etsy and ethical home shopping places like The Citizenery.
Waste: I am trying my absolute hardest to live a zero waste lifestyle, and it has just been made a lot easier that a zero waste store has just opened close to me in East London. I am now going there once a week to refill all my cleaning products, spices, grains, etc. (Called Fin and Earth for any Londoners reading!). I also use bar soaps, and invested in a water filter so guests will always feel happy to fill up water bottles and drink from the tap. Plastic water bottles are my least favourite invention of all time, so getting rid of these is one of my top missions!
Social/education: In terms of keeping inspired and engaged, I have tried to fill my life with people and resources that speak to the things I am passionate about. There is so much noise, for instance on social media, that I have really kept the people I follow to a minimum and made sure that the people that I do are purveying messages that offer good advice to people and respect and embrace our planet. I have been listening to the Rich Roll, Sakara Life and the Doctor’s Farmacy with Dr. Mark Hyman for podcasts, as well as having the privilege of recording the Rêve En Vert podcast myself. I am reading the non-fiction work Why Women Will Save the Planet, and also Overstory which is a beautiful novel that speaks to our connection as humans with the natural world.