Modern Living

Home care that’s plant-based and probiotic

CULTURE VULTURE - Therese Jamora-Garceau - The Philippine Star
Home care thatâs plant-based and probiotic
Personal and home care: Wonderhome Naturals is a new, plant-based brand that offers the most complete, fully sustainable home-care products made in the Philippines.
STAR/ File

Thanks to the pandemic, many personal- and home-care companies started manufacturing disinfectants and hand sanitizers, but how many of them also decided to be sustainable, plant-based, and probiotic, innovating unique products like Organic Yoga Mat Cleaner and Organic Pre Poo Spray?

New local brand Wonderhome Naturals is changing the game by doing just that.  They took a good, hard look at the home-care sector, and saw that products meant to clean the home were actually dirtying the planet, contributing a significant amount to the plastic packaging polluting our seas.

Clothes call: Wonderhome Naturals laundry detergent lifts stains with bio-enzymes, cares for delicate fabric and sensitive skin and aids indoor drying with anti-bacterial, anti-odor probiotics.

“The Philippines is the top three ocean plastic polluter in the world, producing around 2.7 billion kilograms of plastic waste per year, and the contribution of homecare into this waste is around 5 billion units of homecare products in 2019, ” notes Bryan Chua, cofounder of Wonderhome Naturals and president of mother company BFI.  “And it is projected to grow to around 7 billion units of single-use packaging material that will end up in our oceans.”

Anna Oposa, executive director and “chief mermaid” of Save Philippine Seas, notes, “Zero waste is the aspiration but it’s not really realistic, so every year — people have resolutions — I have a ‘reuse solution.’  I look for more earth-friendly products from companies that are responsible for where their designs go afterward.”

Strong but safe: Wonderhome’s Natural All-Purpose Surface Cleaner is made from a plant-based, chemical-free concentrate that kills germs up to 72 hours.

Angel Mata-Jamilan, founder of The Low-Impact Filipina, adds that to lessen our carbon footprint, we should “buy less, buy local and buy ethically sourced.”

So, Wonderhome Naturals is leading the green revolution in local home care by making its products strong, safe, but most of all, sustainable.  Firstly, its packaging is made out of 30 percent biodegradable wheat, and 70 percent ocean-harvested, upcycled plastic.  The containers are modular as well, so products take up less space on the shelf and in the delivery box.

“Sustainable living is rapidly emerging as a mainstream movement and it should because of climate change, waste reduction and minimizing consumption,” observes mom-preneur Chal Lontoc-Del Rosario, who hosted the Zoom launch. “In terms of cleaning our rooms, there’s always this notion, though, that ‘natural’ isn’t enough to rid our spaces of bacteria, viruses and germs, so we continue to use cleaning products that have harsh chemicals.”

Chua debunked that notion by saying that Wonderhome’s plant-based formula was lab-tested to be hospital-grade and strong enough to kill viruses and bacteria, while remaining safe and non-toxic.

“One of the main ingredients that we use is Philippine coconuts, actually,” he says.  “We use a concentrated version of Philippine coconuts to clean the surfaces. But we don’t stop there, so we added plant probiotics, which is a first for a local product. After you clean the surface, we actually coat it with a probiotic layer that will further clean it and prevent bacterial regrowth for up to 72 hours.”

The Wonderhome Naturals line is currently composed of 10 core products, ranging from laundry detergent and bathroom cleaner to kitchen deodorizer and all-purpose disinfectant spray.  But the products that immediately caught my attention were the Organic Gadget & Desk Cleaner, Organic Yoga Mat Cleaner and Organic Pre Poo Spray.  What?

“We use it prior to using the bathroom,” Chua chuckles.

Made with organic eucalyptus and lavender oils, you spray it into your toilet before using it and the fragrant oil film will trap any unwanted odors.  You can also spray it on the toilet seat to disinfect and into the air afterwards to deodorize.  And it’s pocket-sized.  How creative and thoughtful is that?

The same goes for the yoga mat cleaner.  Chua and his wife got into yoga in a big way during lockdown, so they saw the need for this product, which you spray on your mat, wipe down, and it will kill 99.9 percent of germs without damaging your mat, remove any sweaty odor, and even care for sensitive skin!  “A lot of R&D went into it,” notes Chua.

Many of the scents of Wonderhome Naturals products are unique as well, thanks to the essential oils they use.  Fragrances like Wildberry Seaside Botanicals, Fuji Apple & Peach Grove, and Wild Woodsage are sophisticated enough to fragrance a spa.

But the most important aspect of the brand is its sustainable vision and mission:  “We make it a point to source product sustainably, we try to think circularly in terms of production design, and when we do ship our goods to customers, we try to reduce packaging by at least 30 percent,” Chua says. “When we do engage with our customers, we want to inculcate a circular way of thinking, encouraging and even monetizing customers to send the bottles back to us and have them refilled, reused and recycled.  It is our goal that within the next few years, we end up recycling or reusing more bottles than we actually produce.”

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Wonderhome Naturals is available at www.wonderhomenaturals.com and on Facebook and Instagram @wonderhomeph.


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