“To serve is beautiful, but only if it is done with joy and a whole heart and a free mind.” — Pearl S. Buck
Outer Beauty + Inner Beauty
As a consumer, I attempt to shop consciously. I purposefully avoid spending money at companies that exploit and/or violate the human rights of mankind to make a dime. Thus, I was happy to meet a number of social entrepreneurs at Magic Marketplace in Las Vegas, Nevada whom have started something that matters – and allow you to save the world, one item at a time.
I truly believe that their products will allow you to show your outer beauty, as you will feel wonderful wearing their comfortable, beautiful creations, while, at the same time, empower your inner beauty to shine, as you are saving the world just by purchasing their products – by choosing to be part of something that matters.
1. José Alejandro Flores, Founder & Jimmy Flores, Marketing, VOS Flips.
José and Jimmy both intended to attend a panel on social media at Magic Marketplace, where we accidentally met. Thinking that they were from the Silicon Valley, I asked, “Are you from San Jose?” No, they are not from San Jose! From Texas and with the motto of “afford to care,” VOS Flips creates soft and comfortable flip-flops made out of genuine rubber from Hevea Brasiliensis (natural rubber trees in Guatemala).
VOS Flips allows you, the consumer, to change the world, to care about the world around you, to make your world a better place. In fact, VOS means “you” throughout Central and South Africa. Thus, you are empowered to make a difference – by simply purchasing a pair of flip-flop.
VOS Flips saves the world not only by aligning with the United Nation Global Compact in its business practices, but it also cares by building on site schools in its sourcing community, providing educational supplies, establishing its first health clinic and of course, making sure everyone’s feet is happy.
(A pair of VOS Flips)
(Source, VOS Flips, providing school supplies).
(Source, VOS Flips, educating children in the community)
2. Christian and Steven Cremer, Founders, B Frog.
I asked Christian and Steven the meaning behind “B Frog” when I first met the brothers at Magic Marketplace. In the Mayan culture, frogs are a symbol of good luck. Therefore, “B Frog” means “Be Lucky.” I was lucky to have gained deeper insights into the company, as Christian perfectly arranged the positioning of each piece of clothing for a photograph, proudly displaying his creation.
Because the brothers desire to mix contemporary designs with traditional textiles and fabrics from around the world, they launched first with traditional Mayan handmade textiles as they were born and raised in Guatemala. And the apparels are nice. I would wear a B Frog polo with dashes of the colorful and silky fabric of the Mayan culture in the pocket details – for work or for play. And I would be proud that by purchasing this polo shirt, I am vicariously giving back to the community, as Christian and Steven were inspired to care after reading “Start Something that Matters” by TOMS’ founder, Blake Mycoskie.
With a motto of “You Buy We Give,” B Frog provides fifteen (15) meals to children in need for every product sold. And the company provides the meals directly to the children in Guatemala, a country where one of every two children under the age of six suffers from chronic malnutrition, one of the highest rates of malnutrition in the world. It implements a School Feeding Program that delivers meals with high nutritional value along with training and supervision for its staff. It asks us to “B Caring!”
(Polo and Bag – B Frog)
(Christian at its B Frog Booth, Magic Marketplace)
(Source: B Frog, Christian and Steven in B Frog shirts, providing meals to children)
(Source: B Frog, Christian and Steven in B Frog shirts, with the children in the community)
3. Steven Weinreb, Founder and Chief Inspiration Officer, Civic Duty.
The sneakers at Civic Duty stood out among millions of shoes at Magic Marketplace crying for attention. Not only are they cool, they are made out of Tyvek – a lightweight, waterproof and recyclable material. I carefully studied a pair of the Civic Duty sneakers: comfortable, light and durable.
But beyond the shoes is a man who cares about the world we live in. I could sense Steven’s passion as our conversation led to a discussion on the pursuit of the things we love. Every year, Civic Duty, with a motto of “conspire to inspire,” designs an exclusive shoe for an American social cause and donates 100% of its profits to the charity.
(Sneakers – Civic Duty)
(Steven at the Civic Duty Booth at Magic Marketplace)
(This year, Civic Duty donates 100% of the profits from the sale of this pair of shoes to Common Ground Relief)
Have a beautiful day! – And let your inner beauty shine!
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