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An enterprising way to reduce plastic pollution

By March 25, 2021Blog
M y name is Jan Pierce and up until last summer I was a headteacher in Derbyshire. I have been in education my entire life and to make a change was quite scary however, I am always one for a challenge and I have a drive to always find my ‘what next’.

For the past 5 years as a family, we have been really keen to ‘do our bit’ to save the planet and change/challenge the impact humans are having. In our home, we reviewed both our recycling and food shopping and made many changes including using plastic containers as re-fills for washing powder, washing up liquid, cleaning products and hair products.

I also began to reflect on the gifts I bought for family and friends. I looked for alternatives to anything wrapped in plastic. Then in July 2019 two colleagues left my school and I decided to make a leaving present. This didn’t go too well so I enrolled on a course to learn how to make handmade soap.

For Christmas 2019 I gave presents of handmade soap and shampoo along with sisal bags and bamboo soap dishes to family and friends (whether they liked it or not!). My message was clear – stop using soap in a dispenser or bars wrapped in plastic, stop using shampoo bottles, plastic shower puffs and plastic soap dishes.

The feedback I got was so positive and wholeheartedly people encouraged me to go into production and sell my products.

Once I had researched the safety reports needed to sell cosmetics in the UK/EU, I trialled making natural deodorant. Being a Headteacher at the time, I realised that children got through a lot of glue, so I asked the children to collect glue sticks. After a thorough clean and sterilisation, I re-used them to put the deodorant in. This idea came to me after having bought deodorant in cardboard tubes that go soggy around the edges.

Then in March 2020, I decided that I was going to leave education, to pursue my dream of creating products to encourage people to not use single use plastic. I am also a life coach looking to support teachers to help them find their true potential by focusing on their own well-being.

I resigned from my job in early March 2020 after a 30 year career in education and in September 2020, I launched Heart and Soul by JP.

It has been a steep learning curve however, as a headteacher I have gathered many skills so learning how to be an entrepreneur was a just another ‘next step’ for me.

Useful links

If you are interested in learning more about my products, then please visit my website www.heartandsoulbyjp.co.uk/shop

If you are a teacher and are interested in my coaching support the please visit my website www.heartandsoulbyjp.co.uk/life-coaching

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