We chatted to founder Sandy Ronalds about her brand Nativ, an Australian owned clothing brand that specializes in women’s underwear. Their briefs are made from recycled and sustainable materials, and are designed for maximum comfort for the everyday woman. 

Sandy decided to set up Nativ after she became a mum and wanted to make a difference for her daughter, and the world.

Here, we chatted about her passion for sustainability, her brands accomplishments, and if ethical beauty will ever rule the world. Grab a coffee or a cup of tea and join us for our Q&A with the Founder.

  1.       How did you start your cruelty-free journey? 

 I would say that I started my cruelty-free journey over 2 years ago, and I suppose what triggered it was my experience coming from a background in the business world. I’ve seen first-hand the amount of waste that goes into the everyday products we buy, and it’s shocking. Also, becoming a mum and raising my daughter made me want to do whatever I can to make a difference to our world and her future.

  1.       Why do you find it important to share this journey with other women? 

I think it’s important to share this with as many people as possible, because it really is such an important issue. At Nativ, we definitely don’t lecture anyone because we know that we’re far from perfect. Instead, we like to share each and every small win hoping it will inspire others to make a change, no matter how big or small it is.

We also see our customers as two different types of women with different levels of awareness of sustainability.

Some of our customers don’t know much about the issues, and Nativ is simply attractive to them as a super comfortable, affordable and attractive product. We don’t aim to cram our own corporate social responsibilities down their throats, but inadvertently we are helping the planet by serving their needs. Some may also learn about issues of sustainability through Nativ, which is an added bonus for us and the planet.

Other customers are women who are extremely educated and passionate about issues of sustainability. Nativ aims to provide these women with products that offer both physical comfort, as well as a level of comfort in the reassurance that they are buying the best possible product we have been able to develop with sustainable interests. These women are also an invaluable group to the constant growth and development of Nativ products. We seek and greatly value feedback from Nativ customers, and treat all feedback with the respect it deserves. We are all in this together and we can all continue to improve, sustainably. That’s why it’s important to share our journey with everyone.

  1.       How can I find sustainable products? How do I know if they are really eco-friendly? 

 This can actually be really hard, as there is a lot of so-called ‘greenwashing’ that can happen in this market. My advice would be to start by checking out the brand’s website. See if they’re being transparent and honest about their supply chains, CSR and certifications. Personally, for Nativ I did over 1 year of just research on what materials, factories and processes to use. I have met in person the people I work with and continue a close relationship with them.

  1.       What are your favorite/go-to products? 

My compost bin lol.

  1.       Do you think that ethical beauty/fashion will ever rule the world? 

I really hope so, and I hope it actually becomes the norm. I think many companies are trying to do better, which is great to see. I think as consumers we should encourage these companies even if they are making small changes. Being an ethical, sustainable company is a lot harder than what people may think.

Unfortunately, however, unless we see a dramatic change in global attitudes and economics, I fear that ethical beauty/fashion will continue to be seen as a niche product – with a premium needing to be paid for the assurance of sustainability. This will unfortunately limit the ability for much of the less fortunate world to access ethical products.

In the current world, unethical and unsustainable businesses can operate with lower costs and higher efficiency. They will always be cheaper and more available to the less fortunate. There is no avoiding this hard and fast fact.

Nativ briefs start from $14 and have a buy 2 get 1 free offer. Their size range is 8-16 and you can shop the range here.