A company that GNN began supporting in 2017 when they were making fashion-forward scarves that filter the air at the level of N95 or higher, has gone above and beyond, producing a new single-use mask that closes the lifecycle loop for every wearer concerned about the environment—especially since the coronavirus has created so much landfill waste.
The company, G95 (formerly Bioscarf) is so committed to sustainability, they began developing a special version of their filtration material after seeing the damage that discarded PPE was doing to our oceans since the pandemic began.
Everything related to the newly developed Oceanshield mask—from the ear loops to the nose bridge—is made entirely using plant-based PLA materials which is 100% biodegradable. This includes the bags they ship in, the individual wrappers for each product, and the G95 filtration technology built-in.
But how they’re “going beyond” is the best part. When you are done with the mask, instead of throwing it away, simply put it in the envelope that it arrived in, and mail it back to the company for free—and they will recycle them into new masks!
If any of the masks do happen to reach the landfill or waterway, because they are 100% made out of plant-based materials, they will fully biodegrade in approximately 90 days.
“Lab-tested & certified!” says the company’s founder, Carlton Solle, talking with GNN. “It’s the world’s first single-use mask made using 100% plant-based materials.”
And they will give you a $1.00 store credit for every Oceanshield mask that you return for responsible disposal.
Also, because Carlton and his co-founder, wife Hazel Solle, are serious about preventing masks from ending up polluting the ocean, you can send them used masks from ANY other manufacturers and receive a 25¢ in G95 store credit for each one shipped back.
Insane brilliance, right?
How to close the lifecycle loop
When you receive your shipment, carefully open it by using the tear strip on the back. Keep your bag because you’ll need it to mail back your used masks. At the end of each day, simply put your used mask into the bag, together with the wrapper it came in.
When you have used up all of the masks, put them into the bag, place the enclosed mailing return sticker over the old sticker on the front of the bag. Be sure to fill out the enclosed card with your contact information and write in how many masks you are returning to receive the store credit mentioned earlier.
“We’ve spent years developing these, and are really passionate about it,” says Solle. “Given the state of things, it will be a real game-changer.”
Their founding story is as good as the product
During a business trip to China, Carlton Solle became ill, most likely due to complications related to air pollution. As an alternative to wearing an ugly mask to protect himself, he turned to fashion. Back in Atlanta, his wife Hazel came up with the idea to design a product that would work both as a scarf and also a filter. (You might have seen the photo of our GNN founder wearing one during the wildfires in California when the air was so bad.)
For people traveling outside the US, these masks are FFP2 rated, and they have been submitted for FFP2 and CE registrations, so you can use them all around the world. Some European airlines may insist on FFP2-rated masks for boarding passengers.
The company, G95, is currently shipping their products within 1-2 days for FREE—using USPS Priority Mail in the US—and they now ship international orders over $100 FREE via UPS.
Discount code for GNN readers gives 20% off
If you enter the code GNN20 at checkout you will get a 20% discount on any order over $100.
The G95 website has a number of products that filter with their G95 technology, which they say is “like N95 on steroids.” Their hoodies and pullovers are designed to turn up to filter nose and mouth, and their gaiters and masks can be washed 50 times and still retain an N95 rating. They also have an informative FAQs page here.
The Oceanshield is available now and sold in packs of 30 for $79 USD via the G95 website.
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