Where to start with our final catch up for the year? With Autumn on the way we crossed our fingers for dry weather so smolfest (our yearly get together) could continue in the wilds of East Sussex. There was no need to fear, the rain held off and a wonderful day unfolded. More on that below.
This newsletter has a slight bias towards what we can do to help others and for that we make no apology. YOUR kindness has helped us smash our Suds in Schools target and having just celebrated National Hygiene Week we're offering even more FREE washes for The Hygiene Bank until the end of the year... read on to find out how you can keep those free washes flowing. Ok, on to the smol talk...
Did you know we have over 90 employees working at smol HQ and remotely across the UK and beyond? smol fest is our annual big meet up to come together and celebrate everyone’s hard work.
A day full of fun, wellness and friendship was in order so we spent the morning talking about smol’s impact - from exciting future plans and how as a business we can grow and adapt to do better for the planet. This was followed by an afternoon of food, mindfulness and activities.
We all know that smol things make a big difference and so we thought we’d share a few of the choices we made during the planning process that made smol fest as positive as possible....
🔋 we partnered with PowerQuad to provide 100% renewable energy in all of the three structures smol used, saving around 330 kg of carbon emissions.
🚲 we raised £360 for our Suds in School campaign - which will be matched by crowdfunder - through the team’s pedal power.
🌿 there was no single-use plastic used on site.
🤝 we offered products from like-minded brands we love: Karma Drinks, Lucky Saint, NICE wines, Oatly and Candy Kittens.
📍we locally-sourced the drinks for our smol bar from independent companies: Chapel Down Estate, Tonbridge Brewery, Anno Distillers, Lakedown Brewing Co. and Owlet Juices.
🌻 we used flowers from our Supply Chain Manager, Hannah’s garden and the surrounding wildflowers rather than buying cultivated ones.
🪧 we made, or reused signs and decorations from last year’s event, and brought props from home wherever possible, minimising buying new.
🚗 we encouraged carpooling and minibuses to the venue, with almost ⅔ ‘s of attendees travelling in this way.
🫂 88 colleagues met each other, had fun and made new connections!
A crisp winter’s morning sure looks beautiful (if cold) however you’re not going to see much if your windows are covered in water droplets whenever you wake up. Not to mention the mould and mildew that can grow from the damp collecting on the frame. But there’s a simple hack using washing up liquid that’s going to put an end to all that and our plant-powered washing up liquid is perfect for the job.
Simply pump one drop onto a dry cloth (and yes our cloths made from plants are also perfect for this task!) and rub it over the glass.
The washing up liquid creates a barrier on the window pane which prevents water vapour from sticking and then condensing as it cools.
Do this once a week and you’ll be condensation free!
P.S. This method also works in the bathroom for those moments when you step out of a steamy shower and can’t see yourself in the mirror!
Here's the lovely Emma! She is our Social Media Manager (and self-titled photoshoot DJ / resident Geordie!) so let's find out a little bit more about her...
can you give a brief description of your job?
I manage all of our social media accounts, bringing new and current customers our latest hacks, product releases and sharing everything that is smol and what we believe in. I work with a fabulous team to help build our community online.
what’s your favourite smol product and why?
I am obsessed with the dishwasher tablets. They work sooo well! I love the fact they make my dishes and glasses sparkle but I can also use my dishwasher tablets to clean lots of different things in my house... especially those that attract grime (the oven cleaning hack on smol's Facebook Group 'smol hacks' blew my mind! Check it out if you haven't already!).
what’s the best bit about your job and working for smol?
I love working for a brand that puts the planet first! We also work with some amazing charities so to be able to help spread the word makes me feel passionate and proud about my work.
what’s a handy eco-friendly tip you can share for household cleaning?
To clear my drains I love to use a combination of baking soda and vinegar! If I have ran out i will pop a smol dishwasher tablet in the sink and add boiling water, it makes my sink gleam and helps remove any odours from the drain.
it’s the weekend... where will we find you and what are you doing?
You'll find me by the coast! I'm so lucky to live next to the beach. I love to walk and chat with my friends or my partner with a coffee and a sweet treat! It's like a reward! Or I'll be visiting a National Trust site with my mam and our dog Murphy who just loves to run and fetch sticks even when they're double his size!
In the words of one teacher:
Children should never have to face bullying, feel left out, have nobody to play with or sit next to, feel humiliated and have their school work suffer just for want of some clean clothes. But that’s exactly what happens when they are experiencing hygiene poverty. And over 3 million of us here in the UK are now living in poverty and hygiene products are one of the first things we forfeit.
Working with The Hygiene Bank over the past few years has helped us formulate exactly how we (as a laundry capsule company) can help. And so Suds in Schools began back in 2021, helping hundreds of families across the UK with free-to-use mini-laundrettes sited at their children’s schools. And with YOUR help, we just completed another successful round to raise money for EVEN MORE Suds in Schools sites.
THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.
"I was so happy when we found out our school would be getting a new washer and dryer. This is such an asset to school, as we can support pupils with clean uniforms. Thank you."
We've raised over £33k which will allow us to set up at least another 33 schools with our washer dryers and free laundry capsules so that children and their families can more easily access clean school uniforms and games kit. Everyone deserves to feel clean, and your kindness is helping to make that happen.
From October - December 2023, we're donating ONE FREE wash to The Hygiene Bank for every new laundry or dishwash plan started.
So if you've ever been tempted by the FREE TRIAL on our award-winning laundry or dishwash … perhaps now is the time? Or if you're already a laundry and dishwash convert, maybe now's the time to introduce your friends and family? It’s a super easy way to send a little help where it’s needed. Remember, each new plan that starts means another FREE wash finds its way to those who need it.
Of course, if you're already a laundry or dishwash customer, our donate a wash scheme can be added ongoing onto your plan and thousands of our customers choose to take part. It's sent well over HALF A MILLION washing capsules to those who really need some help and those free washes are really making a difference to families who find themselves struggling with hygiene poverty. Our customers love that they can switch the scheme on and off (and back on again) as often as they like so you're always able to decide if you want to give that extra 30p (2 laundry capsules) or not each time an order processes for you.
Want to find out more about hygiene poverty and the impact it's having on over 3 million of the UK population? Find out more here.
That's all for now, but if you're in the mood for some more smol talk just head to our socials. Our Facebook community group smol hacks:tips and tricks is growing by the day and if you want to share tips with some like-minded smollers there's really no better place on the net! As this is our last #smoltalk of the year, we'll wish you (a very early) very peaceful festive season and a happy New Year! And we'll see you all in 2024.