FAQs

Gimme 5 Recycling

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Will you accept medicine bottles?

We do accept prescription medicine containers--so long as they're clearly stamped with a #5 recycling symbol. If they have a sticker or paper label on them, please make your best attempt to remove it (soaking in water helps) before dropping it in a Preserve Gimme 5 bin or sending it to us. We appreciate your help since paper labels are the hardest contaminant for us to handle during the recycling process!

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Do you accept contact lens containers?

Through our Gimme 5 recycling initiative, we now accept all clean, stamped #5 plastic—any brand, any product.  We will sort and recycle your #5 items to give them new life as Preserve products. If your contact lens containers are stamped with #5, we will take them! Please help make sure that foil on the top is removed, and that the plastic is clean, as it makes the sorting process much easier. Thank you!

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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What #5s do you accept? Will you accept #5 plastic bags or film through Preserve Gimme 5?

We will accept any stamped, clean #5.  Of course, some #5 plastic is easier to recycle than others. We prefer rigid containers (like yogurt cups, food storage, etc.) and other approved #5s (check out the list here).  One exception to stamped items are plastic caps.  We do accept those, even though they may not be stamped with a number.

Unfortunately, the material properties of #5 film (used in bags, for example) are quite different from the properties of rigid #5 plastic (dairy containers, for example). We're currently unable to recycle #5 film.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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My community collects #5s. Why should I recycle #5s with Preserve?

Here's why: With the Preserve Gimme 5 program we sort your plastics and ensure that they are recycled. Many towns and communities that collect #5 are struggling with economics that force them to mix #5s with other plastics. This mixed plastic bale is of limited value and is often shipped overseas to an unknown end of life. Check your local recycler on their practices.

You also might be interested to know that some products that we accept in the Gimme 5 bin are not accepted in municipal recycling, even if your town collects #5s and doesn't create mixed bales.  Products such as Preserve toothbrushes contain more than one kind of material so aren't accepted in curbside. Very small products (such as lip balm tubes) are so tiny that they literally fall through the cracks of most recycling sorting facilities.  By putting these products in the Gimme 5 bin, you're ensuring that they really do get recycled.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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How do I get my local food coop to participate in Gimme 5?

If your local food coop is interested in joining Gimme 5, please have them contact us directly at gimme5@preserve.eco for more information.  The type of solution that we propose depends on the operational specifics of each coop or independent store.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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How clean does my #5 plastic need to be before I drop it off or mail it to you?

That's a great question! Essentially, clean means nothing that will contaminate the collection and make it unusable. The materials don't have to be pristine, but they should be free of food remnants - think of something that you wouldn't mind handling in 3-6 months with a pair of gloves, because that's what we will be doing when we sort your #5’s!

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Do you accept Brita filters for recycling?

Starting in January, 2016, Brita began offering their consumers a different recycling solution for filters and because of this, the Gimme 5 program can no longer accept Brita filters or other water filters.  To learn more  about recycling a Brita filter, please visit: https://www.brita.com/recycling-filters/

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Why doesn’t Preserve pay for shipping for recycling?

Nothing would make us happier than to be able to pay the shipping for every person willing to collect, clean, pack, and send their used #5 plastic to us. However, as a small, growing company, we are not able to financially support this type of program. We are doing everything we can to help consumers divert plastic from landfills, but the shipping costs for a mail-back recycling program are prohibitively expensive.

A number of Whole Foods Markets and some food co-ops have partnered with us to host Gimme 5 collection bins in communities around the country. The efficiencies found in gathering hundreds of pounds of plastic at a time makes this program cost-effective for us.  As we learn from this program, we hope to expand it to additional retailers.

We absolutely understand why you may choose not to mail your #5 plastic back to us. We've made the Gimme 5 mail-back program available because there are individuals who are frustrated by their inability to recycle locally, and are willing to partner with us to assume some of the costs of recycling.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Why isn’t my Whole Foods involved in Gimme 5?

That’s a great question – let’s get them involved!  Each Whole Foods store is part of a larger region (for example, stores in the Southern California area are part of the Southern Pacific region) and, to join Gimme 5, they need to enroll as a region. So please ask your local store to contact their regional Green Mission Coordinator about joining.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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I don’t have a printer – what can I do?

If you have a Whole Foods Market or natural foods co-op near you that participates in our Gimme 5 recycling program, it is easiest to simply drop off your used Preserve Toothbrushes right at the store in their Preserve Gimme 5 bin.  This bin is typically located in the front entrance of the store where other recycling collection bins are kept.  You can find a participating location here.

You can also mail your toothbrushes back to us for recycling without using a printed label.  Please note though that due to the set up of our sorting facility, packages that arrive without the printed label will not be credited toward our online store coupon program. Please mail toothbrushes to:

Preserve Gimme 5
823 State Route 13
Cortland, NY 13045-6574

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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How do I participate in Gimme 5?

Start collecting those used yogurt cups and takeout containers! You can then drop off your #5 plastic at many Whole Foods Markets and other select retail locations, listed here.

If there is not a Gimme 5 location in your area, you can also send your #5 plastics to: 
Preserve Gimme 5
823 State Route 13
Cortland, NY 13045-6574

We have assessed the environmental impact of this program, weighing the carbon cost of shipping against the benefits of recycling, and it is quite important that you choose ground shipping; putting the containers on a plane severely decreases the environmental benefits the program.  Please also ship in a reused box if at all possible!

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Is Preserve a recycler?

Preserve does recycle, but first and foremost, we are a sustainable consumer products company. We make everyday household products like toothbrushes, cups and plates, cutting boards and food storage containers, using sustainable design principles and 100% recycled materials. And now for our role as a recycler: Because so many communities do not collect and recycle #5 plastics, we decided to create our own recycling program (Gimme 5) to allow more people to recycle their #5s. We then use those recycled yogurt cups and other #5s in our products. Pretty cool, huh?

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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What is the best way to recycle in bulk?

One suggestion for saving a bunch of toothbrushes without worrying about extra work: Go ahead and print out the shipping label and stick it on a bottle or envelope that you put under the sink in your bathroom.  You can then simply stick each used Preserve toothbrush in the package as it wears out.  Once the bottle is full, just add postage and send the whole thing in the mail. 

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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I have lots of toothbrushes saved up. How should I recycle them?

Though we no longer pay for the postage to send Preserve toothbrushes back to us for recycling, we have two great options for you.

If there is a Gimme 5 location near you, you can drop your Preserve toothbrushes and any other #5 plastics in the Gimme 5 bin.  This has always been the most environmentally friendly way to recycle your Preserve toothbrushes. 

You can also mail your toothbrushes to us for recycling.  As a thank-you for paying the postage, we will give you a $6 coupon to our online store when you mail back six Preserve toothbrushes.  Since you already have a collection of toothbrushes, you are well on your way to big savings!  Just visit our site here and print a mailing label that includes recycling tracking information. Then, attach it along with postage to the packaging of your choice.  When your shipment is processed in our recycling facility, you will receive an email indicating how many toothbrushes we received.  Once you hit an increment of six, we will send out your coupon via email. (Please note that due to high volume in our recycling facility it may take several weeks from the time you mail your toothbrushes to the time you receive your email).

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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I'd like to mail some #5 plastic, where should I send it?

To send your clean, #5 plastics to us in the mail, please use this address:

Preserve Gimme 5
823 State Route 13
Cortland, NY 13045-6574

•To help make this program a win for the environment, please send your plastics back to us via ground shipping (as opposed to air). Reuse a box if you can! Please make sure the plastic is clean as it will help make the sorting process much easier!
•Please include your name and address on the package in case we need to contact you.  Although we unfortunately can't thank everyone individually for sending in their #5s, please know that we really appreciate your efforts!

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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How do I properly recycle caps?

Caps are one of the most frequently found forms of trash in the world’s oceans and on beaches. Our goal is to keep caps not only out of the ocean, but out of landfills as well.  Although caps are made from materials that are very recyclable (high-density polyethylene and polypropylene), their small size can make them difficult to recycle.  When tossed into recycling bins on their own, caps cannot make it through an automated recycling facility and often “fall through the cracks.” To ensure your caps get a new life, you can either:

1. Leave caps on: This entails leaving caps on highly recyclable plastic containers such as soda and water bottles before recycling them.  These bottles are typically marked with recycling codes #1 and #2. The size of the bottle provides a “carrier” for the cap and allows it to move safely and fully through the recycling facility.  You can reach out to your local recycling facility to inquire whether they are able to support caps-on.

2. Recycle caps with Gimme 5


Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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What happened to your Keurig pod recycling program?

After working with Preserve Gimme 5 since 2013 to recycle their #5 pods, Keurig Green Mountain® discontinued their Gimme 5 mail-in program in 2017 and began directing recyclers to put their clean #5 brewed pods into their municipal recycling.  To learn more about Keurig Green Mountain’s changes, please see: http://keurigrecycling.com/

What if I don't have access to #5 recycling in my town? You are still welcome to recycle your #5 Keurig pods with Preserve Gimme 5, but please note that we stopped sending out coupons in May 2017. Brewed pods should be clean and dry for recycling.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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I want to start Preserve Gimme 5 at my school/community center/store.

We are glad to hear that you are excited about recycling #5s! 

We know of a few schools and other locations that are doing exactly what you're describing. Unfortunately, we don't have extra recycling bins to send you, but you can definitely get creative! You can make signs and also create your own bin (you might use large cardboard boxes or reuse an old trash can, for example). 

Also, consider visiting your local Whole Foods to ask them if you can drop your collected #5s at their store, so they can add them to their own Gimme 5 collections. You also can send all of your #5s directly to our collection facility at:

Preserve Gimme 5

823 State Route 13

Cortland, NY 13045-6574

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling
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Can I recycle my Preserve razor blades along with the handles?

We would be happy to take your Preserve razor handles for recycling! (No handles from other brands, please!)

Unfortunately, we are not able to take any brand of used razor blades. It is our goal someday to have a razor blade recycling program.

Category: Gimme 5 Recycling

Ordering from Preserve

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How do I cancel an order?

If you need to cancel your order, it is quickest to do it by logging into your account. Alternatively you can call us directly at 888-354-7296. Our customer service and fulfillment team is only available Monday-Friday 9am-5pm EST, so if you need to cancel an order over the weekend, we will get back to you as soon as possible Monday morning. 

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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How do I make a return?

We do accept returns, but we ask that you first contact us to determine the particular return process for your situation.  Please contact us at 888-354-7296 or at info@preserve.eco.

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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How quickly will my order be shipped and when can I expect my order?

Orders are typically shipped within 1-2 business days from the date the order is placed, though if we are running a large promotion we do occasionally experience delays beyond this. If you order on the weekend we will ship out the following Monday or Tuesday.  Orders ship from Massachusetts and their arrival time will vary based on where you are located.  USPS First Class mail typically takes up to 10 days to arrive.  UPS and USPS Priority Mail typically take 2-5 business days to arrive after shipping, again dependent on your location.  Once your order ships, you will be emailed a shipment confirmation with tracking information.

If you need an order by a particular date, it is best to contact us directly when you first place your order through emailing us at store@preserve.eco or by calling 888-354-7296.  This will allow us to best determine whether or not the order will be able to ship in time to meet your deadline.  

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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Do you ship orders internationally?

Yes!  We recently upgraded our e-commerce platform and are pleased that we are now able to ship internationally.  Please note that full shipping rates apply.  We also unfortunately cannot offer any free shipping deals outside of the U.S.

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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How do I enter a coupon code?

You can add a coupon or promo code when you are at the 'cart' stage of the order process.  The discount code box is at the bottom center of the cart, to the left of the green “proceed to checkout” button.  Click 'apply promo' once you've entered the code and you will see the discount taken off of your total. Easy!

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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What is the Preserve Subscription Program?

The Preserve Subscription Program is available for Preserve’s personal care products including toothbrushes, razor blades and toothpicks. It is a convenient way to get replacements when you want them!   Check out the options at our Subscription page. Choose the subscription option on a product page and select your interval (1, 2 or 3 months). As a bonus, enjoy a discount when you subscribe. 

You will be charged for subsequent shipments when they are mailed out.  You can update your subscription preferences, shipping and billing information, or cancel your subscription at any time by logging in to your account

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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Do you ship Toothbrush Subscriptions to Canada?

Yes!  We are able to ship to Canada, though higher shipping rates may apply.

Category: Ordering from Preserve
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Why are there two listings for the Mini 4-pack?

Because the mini food storage has so many amazing uses, we have created a 4-pack bundle with an added discount for ordering 4 at a time! In retail stores, we display the 4-pack bundle in a recycled cardboard package. Since you are purchasing online, we suggest you order the Preserve minis in a 4-pack "without packaging" to reduce the environmental impact of unnecessary materials. In both cases, we will ship you the exact same food storage containers, but the "no packaging" option will not include the additional cardboard box. 

Categories: Ordering from Preserve,Product Details
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How can I change my subscription information before the next shipment?

You can log in to your account at any time to update the color and bristle type as well as billing and shipping info up to one week before the next toothbrush ships out!

Category: Ordering from Preserve

Other Questions

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Do you sell internationally?

Yes!  We work with a variety of distributors internationally.  If you'd like to know more about options for where to buy in your country, please contact us at info@preserve.eco.  Additionally, our online store does ship internationally (though higher shipping rates apply.)


Category: Other Questions

Product Details

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Why can't I recycle my Preserve razor blades with Gimme 5?

When we look at Preserve’s razors and their environmental footprints, heating water to shave with and the blades are the main drivers.  (The handle itself can be reused for years and when it’s done, you can drop it in a Gimme 5 bin for recycling.)  We offer some water reduction tips for shaving here

We are working hard to find a solution for blades.  It’s not easy and before we announce a plan, we want to make sure that we have one that really makes a difference.  Right now, there is no straightforward recycling option for blades due to a number of factors, but primarily the many different materials contained in a blade and the difficulty of separating those out efficiently when volumes are small.  We are investigating many options, from working with electronics recyclers who are used to separating materials, to waste to energy plants.   Our goal is to find a solution that is markedly better than the current disposal method – tossing your blades in the trash.  Unfortunately, we’re not there yet.  We appreciate your patience as we continue to investigate and weigh options. When we do arrive at a solution, we’ll be proud to share it with the Preserve community.

Category: Product Details
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What is the size of the Preserve Toothbrush head?

The Preserve Toothbrush comes in one size and the head is about 1” long and 0.5” wide, which is comparable to a size 35 toothbrush.

Category: Product Details
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Who designs your products?

We design all of our products ourselves and with the help of industrial design partners. Our Kitchen, Everyday Tableware and Food Storage products were created in partnership with our friends at Evo Design.

Category: Product Details
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Can I put hot liquids in Preserve cups?

Both the On the Go and Everyday cups can be used for warm beverages.  In general, polypropylene (#5 plastic) does not begin to soften until around 250F (which is far hotter than you'd want your beverage!)  Our Kitchen and Tableware items also meet the FDA standards for use with food up to boiling temperature.  Additionally, our compostable cups are suitable for hot beverages.

Category: Product Details
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What are the ingredients in the Flavored Toothpicks?

Preserve toothpicks are flavored using all-natural oils, with no sweeteners added.  There is an ethanol-based carrier used to carry the flavoring onto the wood.  In addition, the wood for our toothpicks is sustainably harvested white birch. The wood was carefully selected to minimize disruption to wildlife and to take into account long-term impacts on the forest ecosystem.

Category: Product Details
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Are Preserve products dishwasher safe?

Preserve kitchenware and tableware is dishwasher-safe.  We have tested Preserve products in commercial washers that run at around 160 degrees, with no ill effects.  Most home washers run at around 120 degrees.

Category: Product Details
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Are Preserve products microwave safe?

Our food storage products have been tested for microwave durability by a leading independent certifier and will not, break, crack, or overheat when used for reheating foods in the microwave. The plastics used to make our products also meet FDA approval for temperatures found during microwaving.  However, we still believe that the decision of whether or not to microwave your food in any plastic is ultimately a personal one, since there is still debate about the health risks of doing so.  While our other products have not yet undergone the certification process, they are made from the same FDA-approved plastics as our food storage containers.  Over time, we will continue to test our other products through independent third party certifiers.

Category: Product Details
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Why are there two listings for the Mini 4-pack?

Because the mini food storage has so many amazing uses, we have created a 4-pack bundle with an added discount for ordering 4 at a time! In retail stores, we display the 4-pack bundle in a recycled cardboard package. Since you are purchasing online, we suggest you order the Preserve minis in a 4-pack "without packaging" to reduce the environmental impact of unnecessary materials. In both cases, we will ship you the exact same food storage containers, but the "no packaging" option will not include the additional cardboard box. 

Categories: Ordering from Preserve,Product Details
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Are BlueAvocado products responsibly made in China?

Preserve has had a strong partnership with a fellow B Corporation, BlueAvocado, for several years as we share many of the same values to create beautifully-designed products from recycled plastic.

BlueAvocado products are responsibly manufactured in China, with a specialty line, Open Arms, manufactured in the United States.

We have chosen to sell BlueAvocado products alongside Preserve because their company is fully committed to being transparent throughout the supply chain. As a result, the company visits their Chinese facilities and audits its practices to ensure it meets environmental, health, safety and labor requirements.

To learn more about BlueAvocado's impact, visit http://www.blueavocado.com/pages/impact.html

As a reminder, all of Preserve’s products are made in the USA.

Category: Product Details
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What is the difference between the On the Go and Everyday Tableware lines?

Our On the Go Tableware is lighter weight tableware that is intended for hundreds of uses.  The Everyday Tableware is heavier weight and lasts for thousands of uses.  The Everyday Tableware line employs a number of sustainable design techniques to encourage reuse and lower environmental impact over the lifetime of the product.  Both lines, including the cutlery, are dishwasher safe and withstand repeated use very well.

Category: Product Details
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Why does the Preserve toothbrush have a curved handle?

The curve in the Preserve's handle promotes a more natural and comfortable feel to allow brushing at all angles. This ergonomic feature was designed with dental professionals to help you brush along the gumline and easily reach the forgotten areas where plaque hides.

Category: Product Details
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Are Preserve plastics Safe?

We believe strongly in making our products as safe and healthy as possible for you and your family. All of our plastics are tested for heavy metals and our plastic meets leaching requirements more rigorous than the standards set for tap water. If we don’t feel comfortable giving a product to our families, we won’t sell it to yours. Click here to find out more about Preserve plastic safety.

Category: Product Details
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What's in the lubricating strip?

Preserve partners with a U.S. blade manufacturer to source our blades which feature a lubricating strip with aloe vera or cocoa butter, a vegan colorant and vitamin E oil.  While our manufacturing partnership does not allow us to share the full ingredient list, we recognize that for some, it may be critical to know whether certain ingredients are contained in the blade or the lubricating strip.  In these cases we welcome you to contact us at info@preserveproducts.com and we can help you determine whether our blades are right for you.

Category: Product Details
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Why single-use tableware?

Preserve has made durable, reusable products from recycled #5 plastic for 20 years. So why add single-use, compostable tableware? Since 2003, Preserve has been researching plant-based tableware products, and we finally developed the right line! We also believe that the composting infrastructure has come a long way since 2003.  For some gatherings single-use products make sense, and we are excited to offer single-use products that are made from renewable resources and are lighter on the earth.

Category: Product Details
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Do your products contain BPA?

Preserve products are made with recycled polypropylene (#5) plastic, which does not require BPA to achieve its necessary material properties. BPA is typically found in #3 and some #7 plastics.  Additionally, Preserve products have been tested for leaching by independent labs. These tests have consistently shown that our plastic meets leaching requirements more rigorous than the standards set for tap water.  These tests have also shown that Preserve products are BPA free. 

Category: Product Details
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What are the bristles on your toothbrushes made from?

The bristles on all of our toothbrushes are made from 100% virgin nylon.

Category: Product Details
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What is the white residue on my product?

Occasionally a white residue can appear on the inside surfaces of our products.  The whitening is usually either stubborn dish detergent residue or a physical deformation of the surface caused by the interaction of heat and certain environments over time, like strongly salty, acidic or basic conditions.  While it does not affect the performance of your product, it will not come off with repeated washings or scrubbings.  

Category: Product Details
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Are Full Circle products sustainably made in China?

Preserve has chosen to offer a selection of products made outside of the USA and brought to us by trusted partners. In these special cases choose products made outside the U.S. because of the overall commitment to social & environmental responsibility shown by our partners.  These selected products not only choose environmentally conscious materials that we support, they have great designs and are fun to use. In addition, the companies are mission-driven businesses which seek to create positive social change.

We have gotten to know Full Circle and are impressed with the care that they are taking to invest in their Chinese partners. The companies is taking many steps to improve manufacturing processes in China setting an example that can be replicated.

Most of Full Circle products are sustainably made in China. Full Circle was launched by four co-founders while living in China. Many of the products use bamboo, cellulose and loofah, all raw materials which grow in China. Full Circle is involved in everything from raw materials sourcing. Read Full Circle's Sustainably Made In China statement from Co-Founder, Heather Kauffman, for more information.

To learn more about Full Circle, visit http://www.fullcirclehome.com/ or e-mail info@fullcirclehome.com

As a reminder, all of Preserve’s products are made in the USA

Category: Product Details
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Can you tell me more about Full Circle and their products?

For any detailed answers about Full Circle and their products, please e-mail info@fullcirclehome.com.

Category: Product Details
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Are Preserve products vegan?

We do not test on animals and are recognized by Leaping Bunny as a cruelty-free company.  We seek to be vegan to the best of our ability but want to be as transparent as possible regarding the degree to which we’ve been able to verify.  We are able to confirm that the zinc stearate, used as a mold release agent for our plastic products is exclusively from vegetable sources.  It is important to note that since we use recycled plastic, however, non-vegan mold release agents may have been used in an earlier “life” of the plastic.  Additionally, much of the plastic we use comes from yogurt cups and other products that may have been used to hold non-vegan foods.

For products for which we source components through long term, trusted partners (specifically our razor) we have assurances from our partner that the cartridges and components are vegan.  There are no listed animal ingredients in their bill of materials, and we have been able to verify one step up in the supply chain, that the Vitamin E in the lubricating strip is derived from vegetable sources.  However, for the other plastics and metals that make up the shave cartridge, we have been unable to review documents that verify the specifications and processes behind their production.

Category: Product Details
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What are the ingredients in the Flavored Toothpicks?

Preserve toothpicks are flavored using all-natural oils, with no sweeteners added.  There is an ethanol-based carrier used to carry the flavoring onto the wood.  In addition, the wood for our toothpicks is sustainably harvested white birch. The wood was carefully selected to minimize disruption to wildlife and to take into account long-term impacts on the forest ecosystem.

Category: Product Details
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What are Preserve Blades made from?

Preserve razor blades are made from titanium-coated stainless steel in the case of the triple razor and ceramic coated stainless steel in the case of the Shave 5. The clip wires (on the ends of the cartridge) are manufactured using rolled aluminum.  The aluminum is then coated with plastic so it will not come into contact with skin.  Please note that nickel is a specified component for stainless steel razor blades and therefore may be present in trace amounts, but the amount is usually too small to detect with standard testing equipment.

Category: Product Details

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