Cork yoga blocks
Every year, billions of bottles of wine are consumed worldwide, and many of those corks end up in our landfills. But cork, which comes from cork oak trees, is a versatile raw material that can be given a second life through upcycling. In fact, its durable, moisture-wicking, lightweight quality makes it perfect for those blocks we use to balance in yoga class! One company, ReCORK, encourages people to discard their wine corks in specific cork recycling bins, and partners with vineyards that bottle their wines with natural cork. ReCORK then grinds down the cork and uses it to develop new products.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, every piece of plastic ever manufactured still exists. That’s why some businesses are coming up with innovative ways to upcycle plastic and integrate it into their products. The clothing company Everlane, for example, has a new line, Renew, made out of discarded plastic bottles. Everlane sorts and washes the compressed plastic bottles, shreds the material into tiny flakes, and melts it into molten plastic. That plastic then goes through several stages of being compressed and pulled into strands, eventually forming precise threads that can be spun into yarn or knit into sheets of polyester, fleece, fabric or insulation. Everlane uses this spun plastic to create chic outerwear like pullovers, puffer jackets, and parkas.