In this day and age, the notion that any product could last more than a few years, much less forever, may sound too good to be true; however, you may be surprised to learn that many companies actually do still design products that are built to last.
Motivated by a desire to help the environment and to put consumers, rather than profit, first, these companies are really paving the way towards a better business model.
The fact of the matter is, most products sold today are specifically designed to break down, and as a result we are living in a “throw away culture.” How else is a company supposed to get repeat business? While this is an excellent business strategy, it is extremely inefficient and contributes to the global waste epidemic we are facing today.
If you have not yet seen the short video The Story Of Stuff then I highly recommend it as it provides some excellent insight and information in the production and lifespan of many of the products and goods that are being put out today. Some of the information may surprise you. The video is posted at the end of this article.
Buy Me Once was founded by Tara Button (pictured above), and it is a website which sells only products that have been made to last. The idea first came to her after she bought ceramic cookware that was guaranteed for life. She thought to herself, “why aren’t more things like this?” After searching the web, she soon discovered a glaring niche needing to be filled: a website that strictly sells products you can use for a lifetime.
“I tried hard to ignore the idea, but it wouldn’t go away,” Button told mnn.com. “It kept on coming back up in my head. When I would read the news about the environment and about the waste we produce, I felt almost sick. I would get this visceral, itchy feeling inside that told me: ‘You can do something about this.’ I finally got to the point where I was like ‘I have to make this site.’ “
The following list is from her website, and represents her long-term goals for the site:
- Pair with an ethical credit company to provide customers with credit so they can make good choices.
- Challenge manufacturers to build products that last longer than the current products on the market.
- Become a symbol of longevity (e.g. this is a “BuyMeOnce” blender) to help people choose well.
- Change our throwaway culture to a “keep” or “pass on” culture.
What Kind OF Products Will You Find On BuyMeOnce?
When you consider the fact that we have been able to make rocket ships and satellites, it seems silly that engineering something designed to last would be all that difficult. Pretty much anything that you can buy today can be made in a different, more practical way. Aside from products that don’t deteriorate or break down, the site also offers products that come with a lifetime guarantee or products from companies that offer to fix the items for free should it break or tear. These products include: wooden children’s toys, stuffed animals, nail clippers, tweezers, razors, hairbrushes, cookware, kettles, utensils, clothing, bags and backpacks — you name it! More products are always being added to the website.
In addition to the hundreds of products with lifelong guarantees, BuyMeOnce also features informative articles on how to make items last and how to reduce the amount of waste you produce on a day-to-day basis.
Yes, These Products Are Generally More Expensive
The products that are sold on Buy Me Once are generally more expensive, but when you consider that in most cases you only have to buy them once, rather than replace them every few years, it could actually save you a great deal of money in the long run. When you buy things that are cheap, you literally get what you pay for — a cheap item that will soon break because no quality or care was factored into its production. When you purchase products that will stand the test of time, however, you do a great service to the environment, essentially opting out of the “throw away culture” mentality and taking responsibility for your actions.
Buying items that are built to last from ethical, sustainable manufacturers is the ultimate way to VOTE WITH YOUR DOLLAR and encourage more companies to follow this same business model.
The Story Of Stuff
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