But what is a refill shop? What do they have at them? And how come Douglas County and Parker, CO, totally need one? I shall tell you.
What are Refill Shops?
Refill shops are pretty cool. The idea is simple. Instead of getting a new bottle of shampoo or dish soap, you bring your empties into the shop and fill them up. There are all kind of good reasons for it, not the least of those reasons being you have a lot of bottles and jars and containers and things that you can use more than once. What's so fun about throwing that stuff away? We don't know. So we're giving those bottles and jars and things the chance to live a longer and more fulfilling life.
Okay, but Why Does Douglas County Need a Refill Shop?
We're opening a refill shop in Parker, CO, for a few good reasons. The first one is that we live here. We want to contribute to our local economy. That's important to us. We'll go more into how much we care about our local economy in a second.
Also, since we live here in Parker, it means there aren't any refill stores nearby. There are some refill stores in and around Denver. They're pretty cool. The nearest one is a half-hour away, though. There's a need for low waste shops like ours. And our mothers always gave us funny looks when we pointed out a problem without also trying to find a solution for that problem.
All right, mom. I will try to fix this problem.
What Products do Refill Shops Carry?
Our products fall into two basic categories: refills and swaps.
The bulk of the shop is full of barrels and carboys with pump tops on them. Those are the refills. Refills are usually disposable products that you can reasonably buy in bulk. We carry a range of cleaning products and hygiene products, like soaps and detergents.
You won't necessarily find familiar or big box brands of these products at the Refillary. There's a good reason for this: we buy local. More on this in a minute.
The other category of stuff you can buy at our shop are what we call swaps. You might have seen the hashtag #healthyswaps trending on the 'grams recently. Though that hashtag usually applies to food and cosmetics, I think, we mean it in the same philosophical vein. We carry products that you can swap with products you already use, and ours are either more ecologically friendly or more reusable.
Eco-friendly products we carry include...
Plant-based loofah (to replace plastic sponges and loofah)
Reusable products we carry include...
Reusable silicone products to replace one-use plastic products (silicone straws, zip-able containers, etc.)
Net-bags for vegetables
And we're just getting started. We're finding more cool low-waste and no-waste products every week. If you've read this far, odds are you're our kind of people. Tell us about it if you've heard of some cool low-waste or no-waste products that you love.
One of the things that matters to us is contributing to our local economy. To that end, within reason, we buy as much of our product from local vendors. Almost all our vendors make their products within a radius of about a hundred miles of our physical address. (Hey, we live in Colorado: the term local neighborhood has its own meaning here.) Even though there might be a cheaper option out there sometimes, as much as we possibly can we work with vendors from as nearby as possible.
Know what we figured out? There are a lot of people in Colorado making this stuff. We're sort of confused now why we only ever see big box brands at the supermarket. There are companies that make shampoo, like, down the street. We'd rather work with them anyway.
Join the Refill Revolution
Swing around the shop sometime. At the moment of this writing, we're in the process of getting the shop all the way together, but we should be up and running within a few weeks.
In the meantime, if you share your email address with us, we can keep you posted. We will send you a note as soon as we have our Grand Opening scheduled. Signup below or here.