Q & A with Martha & Mike Robinson:
1. City of residence: East Aurora, NY
2. Place of birth:
Martha: Guelph, Ontario
Mike: Buffalo, NY
3. In under five sentences, define your business: We help individuals reduce the number of chemicals used in the home by making it easy to create simple, safe and effective cleaners using ingredients most people already have. Everything we sell is designed to be reused and contain little or no plastic. Cleaning Essentials’ products exist to help reduce single-use trash, reduce chemical exposure, and help support a zero-waste lifestyle.
4. What social or environmental impact is your business making? The cleaning product industry is incredibly dirty – and we want to clean it up. Vinegar, baking soda, Essential Oils are fantastic cleaners and have far fewer chemicals than ordinary commercial cleaners. By reusing a cleaning bottle, even once, you’re cutting the waste generated by ½. After three uses, you’ve saved enough to cover the cost of the bottle and everything else is a bonus. We’re also a proud member of 1% for the Planet and pledge 1% of our gross sales to non-profit organizations focused on environmental causes.
5. What is the best part about the work you’re doing? Why? I really believe in our products and use them all the time- or at least as often as I clean! We never set out to create a business – we simply wanted to do things differently, and we found that we’re not alone! We love hearing from our customers around the world telling us what they think of our products – good and bad – and working to create better products.
6. Out of all the products you produce, which is your favorite? Why? Our blue spray bottle- it’s our original product- I use ours all the time and it’s what started this whole adventure.
7. What book(s) are you currently reading?
Martha: Simplicity Parenting
Mike: The Golden Spruce
8. Quote you (try to) live by?
Martha: Every journey begins with a single step.
Mike: It’s never too late to have a happy childhood.
9. Using one word, how would you describe yourself?
10. What is one random fact that most people don’t know about you?
Martha: I spent many years as a canoe trip leader in Northern Ontario, Canada. When you’re in charge of a dozen girls in the middle of nowhere you need to feel prepared for anything- bear, drunk fisherman, chipmunk (they sound bigger at night). To this day – when camping- I always sleep with a canoe paddle in my sleeping bag, just in case.
Mike: Skiing is a huge passion of mine, I’ve been skiing all my life, Martha and I met on a ski hill! I spend every weekend in the winter coaching young ski racers to be better, faster, create lasting friendships and learn to love the best sport in the world.