Spotlight on Ursa Major

The holiday season is in full swing and we’re shining a bright Member Deals Spotlight on a local body care company that offers a fabulous lineup of gender-neutral products that make great last-minute gifts for the natural skincare enthusiasts on your list! All Ursa Major products are 20% off for member-owners from December 22nd – 28th. Read on to learn more about this forest-infused, adventure-inspired body care company and the folks behind the brand who remain steadfastly committed to a fresh take on skincare:


Ursa Major (the ‘Great Bear’ in Latin) is the largest visible constellation in the northern sky and has long been used to find True North. To the folks at Ursa Major skincare, it’s a powerful reminder to follow your inner compass and forge your own path in life. It was in this spirit that founders Emily Doyle and Oliver Sweatman started their “supernatural” skincare brand a decade ago after leaving New York City for the pastoral hills of Waterbury, Vermont. Inspired by adventurous days on the trail, they created Ursa Major to help others – no matter where they live – get that “healthy mountain glow”. Pure, powerful, and refreshing, their forest-infused formulas harness nature’s most effective ingredients to help you achieve clear, healthy skin.

Ursa Major founders Emily Doyle and Oliver Sweatman

Their website reminds us that they’re not some “huge, soulless company churning out cost-optimized products to maximize their bottom line”. Rather, they pursue this path because they’re obsessive about the craft of making stellar natural skin and body care products and will accept nothing less. In keeping with this ethos, they also avoid the typical marketing-driven launch timelines, only launching a product once it checks all the boxes, no matter how long it takes. 

They also offer a fresh take on the tired skin care binary, instead offering gender-neutral skin care products in recognition that skin is skin. Whether you want a fantastic sulfate-free face cleanser, a natural deodorant that you can really count on, or a face wipe to reboot skin on the fly, they’ve got you covered.

When you purchase their products, you can feel confident that they’ll contain powerful, active ingredients with refreshing natural aromas and lightweight textures. What you will not find are harsh additives such as petrochemicals, SLS, SLES, parabens, synthetic fragrances, colors, silicones, or PEGs. 


As a Certified B-Corp, Ursa Major takes their commitment to people and planet seriously. 

  • All of their products use only healthy ingredients keeping your skincare routine and our waterways clean.
  • All full-time employees have stock in the company. Ursa Major believes this enables and inspires a more meaningful relationship with their work.
  • When not working from home, their company headquarters are 100% carbon-neutral.
  • All Ursa Major employees participate in a volunteer program aimed at giving back to their community and surroundings. Their goal is to dedicate 20 hours per employee each year.
  • Over half of the Ursa Major leadership team identify as female.

They’re also committed to smart, sustainable packaging and are constantly evaluating and looking for ways to optimize packaging materials and production methods. Whenever possible, they max out on post-consumer recycled content and use renewable energy to manufacture and source from within the United States to lower their carbon footprint. Many of their products are offered in recyclable glass, they recently transitioned all 8 fl oz bottles to at least 50% PCR content, moved to FSC-certified paper stock for the majority of their secondary packaging, and they produce over 90% of their cartons at a carbon-neutral facility with 100% renewable energy.

They are proud to be one of the first Plastic Negative clean skincare brands. In partnership with rePurpose Global, they remove two plastic bottles from the environment for every bottle they sell.

If you’d like to check out their full B-Corp Impact Report, click here

Giving Back 

To help offset their impact, Ursa Major partners with a range of organizations, many of which are located right here in their Vermont community, to protect and preserve the planet while promoting accessibility to the great outdoors. In the past year, their team participated in 11 events and put in 243 hours of community service.  In addition, to date, your Ursa Major purchases have funded projects at the Rokeby FarmZeno FarmOutdoor Afro, the Sierra ClubNational Wildlife FederationNational Park FoundationClean the WorldVermont Land TrustOne Tree Planted and Outward Bound for Veterans (and more). 


The Ursa Major team volunteering at Rokeby Museum.




Spotlight on Dr. Bronner’s

This week’s Member Deals Spotlight shines brightly on Dr. Bronner’s! Member-owners can enjoy a 20% discount on all Dr. Bronner’s products from February 25th – March 3rd, so it’s a perfect time to stock up and save. Read on to learn more about this mission-driven company and its deep commitment to social and environmental responsibility.


Dr. Bronner’s was founded in 1948 by Emanuel Bronner, a third-generation master soapmaker from a German-Jewish soapmaking family, who spent his life renouncing hate and war on a personal mission to unite mankind. He used the labels on his superb ecological soaps to spread his message that we must realize our transcendent unity across religious & ethnic divides: “We are All-One or None!” Still family-owned and run, Dr. Bronner’s honors its founder’s vision by making socially & environmentally responsible products of the highest quality—and by dedicating their profits to help make a better world.

Dr. Bronner’s founder Emanuel Bronner

Emanuel passed away in 1997 due to complications from Parkinson’s Disease, though his legacy lives on through his family who continues to run the business and carry out the social and environmental missions that Emanual held dear. The torch was initially passed to Emanuel’s sons Ralph and Jim, along with Jim’s wife Trudy, though, by 1998, Jim was battling cancer and began to train his son David (24-year-old Harvard graduate, mental health counselor, hemp advocate) to run the company. On Jim’s passing, David, along with mom Trudy and Uncle Ralph, began running the company, and in 2000, David’s brother Michael rounded out the team by joining the family business.

David, Trudy, and Michael Bronner


Intent to carry on Emanuel Bronner’s passion for the care of people and planet, Dr. Bronner’s has continued to dedicate themselves to using their business as a force for good. In 2003, Dr. Bronner’s became the largest personal care company certified under USDA’s National Organic Program. They pioneered the first 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles, instituted progressive business practices, including the implementation of a 5-to-1 compensation cap between top salaried employees and their lowest-wage warehouse position, and provide 100% free health care coverage to their entire team, along with profit sharing. All profits not needed for the business are allocated to progressive causes and charities. Dr. Bronner’s was instrumental in funding and coordinating the hemp industry’s battle to defeat the DEA’s prohibitive hemp regulations and they’ve been outspoken advocates for the labeling of products produced using genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Click here to check out Dr. Bronner’s blog to read more about their advocacy and activism.


Dr. Bronner’s has been Fairtrade certified since 2007, B Corps Certified since 2015, and they recently became one of the first companies to receive a Regenerative Organic Certification (ROC) from the Regenerative Organic Alliance for their coconut oil. This designation is given to products that meet the highest standards for soil health, animal welfare, and farmworker fairness and Dr. Broner’s is committed to eventually having all of their products receive this certification. The ROC and Fairtrade certified coconut oil that goes into Dr. Bronner’s products is produced by a sister company, Serendipol, located in Sri Lanka.

A coconut farmer harvesting the Fairtrade Regenerative Organic Certified coconuts for Dr. Bronner’s products

The palm oil used in Dr. Bronner’s products comes from another sister company, Serendipalm, located in Eastern Ghana. The palm oil is produced ethically from sustainably-harvested palm fruits that come directly from 500 small organic family farms. These farms were developed without the widespread clear-cutting of rainforest and the resulting devastation to local primates that are common with many of the newer, larger-scale palm oil plantations. The farmers, along with the 250+ workers in the oil mill (primarily local women) are paid a Fairtrade premium price and enjoy working conditions that are uncommon in this industry so marked by exploitation. The Fairtrade premium has been used for a range of community development projects, such as drilling wells and installing tanks to provide community-operated water systems, building public toilet facilities, rebuilding a pedestrian bridge, installing lighting, and providing school supplies.

The women of Serendipalm processing the ethically and sustainably-harvested, Fairtrade, Organic palm fruits to produce the palm oil for Dr. Bronner’s products

According to their website, “Dr. Bronner’s has always been an activist company, dating back to when Emanuel Bronner was calling on the human race to unite from street corners and auditoriums, selling his peppermint castile soap on the side. Carrying forward that same activist spirit, it is our mission to continue to use the company today to fight for and financially support causes we believe in: regenerative agriculture, fair trade, animal advocacy, industrial hemp and drug policy reform, and living wages, among others. We call ourselves the “fighting soap company,” and are committed and strategic in the causes we fight for.