Le Jardin Retrouvé: Eco Friendly in Eight Ways
From its humble family beginning in a Paris family home, one principal has always remained completely central to the ethos of Le Jardin Retrouvé: sustainability. A family business that celebrates nature in all that it does would never want to impinge upon the planetary garden that supports so much life and beauty. Every care has been taken to ensure that minimal waste and the smallest possible carbon footprints have been taken when producing and designing every product.
From its inception in 1975, to its current business model, one core value remains steadfast and can be seen in every product. Le Jardin Retrouvé is an eco-friendly business that champions sustainability in everything they do.
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The initiatives taken by Le Jardin Retrouvé are second to none: from a Made in France philosophy that helps support small business and reduces carbon footprint, to a range of refillable fragrances that are certified vegan.
“Finally, we decided to follow (my father’s) vision: break the rules of perfumery. This is what led us to the concepts of Le Necessaire and La Re: Source. Why buy a perfume bottle that you throw away when it is empty? Why throw away a pump and a cover? Why have extra packaging? “
- Michel Gutsatz
Refillable bottles, the first imperative.
Like many people, Clara and Michel disliked having to throw away any kind of single-use bottle or container. This was particularly prevalent in the perfume industry. Pretty glass bottles were binned and replaced as soon as they were empty. At the time, there was no other solution because atomiser bottles were "crimped" that way, making it impossible to reuse them. When Clara and Michel relaunched Le Jardin Retrouvé, they were keen to source refillable bottles, large and small. Each Le Jardin Retrouvé perfume bottle, be it 50ml or 15ml, is now refillable. Storing them in a refrigerator can help the fragrance last for several years. When the bottle is empty, simply order the 125ml flask to refill it again and again. But Clara and Michel didn't stop there. “Reduce, reuse, recycle” was one of the brand mantras, leading to an invention that no other brand had previously thought of.
The invention of Le Nécessaire
The innovative Le Nécessaire was invented in 2016 by Clara and Michel and was an essential part of the brand’s values, very much ahead of their time.
The "Le Nécessaire" set contained:
- A 125 ml aluminium flask of the selected Eau de Parfum
- A glass perfumer’s funnel
- An empty 50 ml silk-screened glass bottle with a removable and leak proof lid.
- An empty 15 ml screen-printed glass bottle with a removable and leak proof lid
The final product gave the customer their own at-home refill station. As an incentive to be more eco-friendly, it also worked out as very good value for money, providing two large and just over one and a half small bottles. No other brand had a similar set. The flask can be placed in the refrigerator where it will keep for years (perfectly!). It can be recycled or refilled once empty.
Our packaging is environmentally friendly
Le Jardin Retrouvé perfumes are available in two packaging styles. You can choose the traditional recyclable cardboard box with recycled packaging, or a recycled textile pouch. The fabrics are part of the personal collection of Arlette Gutsatz, Yuri’s wife.
Arlette Gutsatz’s fabric pochettes: a "no-packaging" offer thanks to clever upcycling
Arlette, co-founder of Le Jardin Retrouvé, imported many reams of fabrics from India in the 60s and left behind hundreds of high-quality fabrics and patterns. Once upcycled and assembled, they became the beautiful pouches/pochons that are used as eco-friendly packaging. They are used as a packaging option for perfume bottles as well as for discovery sets and lately, the L’Oracle du Jardin. Nothing has been wasted and no fabric went to landfill, instead it is enjoying a functional second life.
The pouches themselves encapsulate a second story of usefulness. They are made by an Etablissement Médico-Social de Travail Protégé, which enables the integration of disabled people into the working community. Each pouch is unique, and no two sides are alike. You may have a plaid/checked fabric on one side and perhaps a floral or abstract design on the other: a homely touch from a family business.
By choosing this type of packaging, you are also benefitting the planet, by limiting waste. We avoid the use of plastic when sending our products, using only recycled and recyclable cardboard to reduce our carbon footprint as much as possible.
“As you can see this is not green washing: we have values and as a small family brand we try, day after day, to respect the environment and move one step at a time. “
The quality of ingredients is one of Le Jardin Retrouvé’s main priorities. Great care is taken to select the raw materials directly from the producers. This choice is in line with the eco-responsible approach that is particularly important to the brand. In addition, certain components that are harmful to the environment and to health have been replaced and better alternatives have been sourced.
1% For the Planet: The more you buy, the more we send
We are very proud to be a member of the 1% For The Planet movement, and to donate a portion of our monthly turnover to associations that work for reforestation initiatives, conservation programmes, and global protection of the oceans.
“This is not philanthropy. This should be a cost of doing business.It’s paying rent for our use of the planet.”
- YVON CHOUINARD Founder of Patagonia and 1% for the Planet
Reusable Scented Candles
Just like empty single-use perfume bottles, a phenomenal number of used candle holders are also disposed of in similar fashion. Clara and Michel made a firm decision that this would not happen to Le Jardin Retrouvé candles and came up with the idea of making them too much of a keepsake to throw away.
As well as providing a tranquil glow, Le Jardin Retrouvé scented candles delicately fragrance the home for approximately fifty hours. Each candle is contained in a specially designed Limoges porcelain jar, enamelled inside with colours that match their fragrances. The outside is decorated with Gingko leaves and finished in a matte “biscuit” glaze with a Jura wood lid embossed with the brand logo. Clara and Michel are always thrilled to hear what kind of second life their customers have given the empty candle holders: from plant pots to jewellery boxes.
All candles are vegan and made in France. When the wick is completely consumed, the candle jar can be reused. To do this, place it in the freezer for about an hour. The remaining wax will come out easily. The empty jar is dishwasher and microwave friendly and can safely be used for food and drink.
“An object for the home that combines design, fragrance and defence of our planetary garden”
Maison & Jardin Actuel on the Scented Stem collection.
Reusable Scented Stems: a green revolution in home fragrance
Our scented stem home diffuser received a warm reception from press and consumers alike when they were launched in 2021. Like Le Jardin Retrouvé candles, they consist of Limoges porcelain decorated with a raised Gingko leaf pattern. The magical touch lies in the fact that the actual diffuser is a highly porous porcelain rose stem rather than the black throwaway willow sticks favoured by other brands. The porcelain stem can be reused endlessly, and you never need to dispose of it. Topped with a beech lid from the Jura region, the scented stems fit elegantly into the décor of any room and are available in the same fragrances as the candles. Made in France, they contain 92% natural ingredients, and one flask of fragrance will last up to twelve weeks. When it’s time for a refill, the porcelain stem can simply be soaked in domestic alcohol (sometimes called rubbing alcohol in the UK) overnight allowing you to start all over again.
“Beauty Bible Loves… a ceramic diffuser from Le Jardin Retrouvé, an indie, French family-owned brand, with five fab smells to choose from – and just as importantly, a beautiful design we’re proud to show off. (Unlike so many diffusers.)”
– Jo Fairley, co-founder of The Beauty Bible UK and The Perfume Society.
Le Jardin Retrouvé Core Values
As you can see, eco-responsibility is at the heart of Le Jardin Retrouvé. Clara and Michel were delighted and proud that Le Jardin Retrouvé won the Victoires de la Beauté 2022 award for their perfumes and are even prouder to be able to offer their valued customers sustainable quality products, that respect nature and our beautiful planet.
No greenwashing necessary!
Many companies have been accused of greenwashing, that is, making false claims regarding sustainability in order to attract customers. Le Jardin Retrouvé has never needed to greenwash since all their green initiatives are robustly authentic and proven, and go back a long, long way.