Cleaning the oceans and waterways through bags and accessories.
United by Blue, founded in 2010, promotes and helps in the cleanup of the nearly 14 billion pounds of trash that accumulates in our world’s oceans each year. UBB is a for-profit company with ideals that make a concrete environmental difference—over 1,000 volunteers have removed a staggering 156,000 pounds of trash thus far.
While the Philadelphia-based United by Blue team now has a flagship store in their home city and a great team to boot, founder Brian Linton began the company out of a love for the world’s oceans. Born in Vermont, Linton moved to Japan as a child, then to Singapore where he developed an appreciation for all things water. In 2006 he began a company selling a line of sustainable jewelry, but he wanted a more holistic approach to helping conservation efforts. And then, United by Blue was born.
“We live on a blue planet, so everything is united by blue. You and I and the frog and the fish and the bird and the bacteria, we all need water to survive,” Linton says. “The oceans are great connectors of all life and all cultures. They are 71% of the planet, and they are the most neglected part."
For each product sold, UBB removes one pound of trash from the ocean. They call themselves a “fun, engaging, community-focused brand,” a statement that is supported by their mission to connect people and get them involved in the movement. Having removed trash from more than 20 waterways in the U.S. and Taiwan, Linton and his team host cleanups every month—bringing complete strangers together. Uniting them by blue, if you will.
Why we love them
It’s hard not to love United by Blue. Continuously working to make a living and do the right thing, UBB’s products are exceptional and their mission is inherently valuable. They make products we want to use everyday, and they make a real, tangible impact.
UBB also reminds us of things we can do to make a difference for our world’s waterways and oceans—namely, to recycle. “One of the most common plastics we find [during cleanups] is the plastic water bottle," said Linton. "Asking people to think more about single-use plastics is a great way for people to tackle the water pollution issue without too much effort on their part.” From 2010 to 2011, UBB reduced their own plastic use by 80% by using banana fiber packaging and hangtags made from elephant dung. They really talk the talk and walk the walk. We like that.
As a Certified B Corporation brand, United by Blue is dedicated to doing the least amount of harm in everything they do. Their team, mission and products are a phenomenal example of the driving force behind the sea change in consumerism, and we’re proud to bring their items to our Men’s Shop this holiday season.