Buy for Life, Buy for the Environment
Happy Earth week, from all of us at Vitrazza. We’d like to extend a thank you to those of you who have already supported the health of our planet by investing in a Glass Chair Mat! Which brings us to the main topic of this blog. Here’s a little behind-the-scenes of how we do our part keeping the planet green and healthy:
By now, you probably know about the Lifetime Transferable Warranty that Vitrazza offers on our Glass Chair Mats, but you may not realize that such a warranty cuts back on earth-damaging resources. Here’s how:
- Vitrazza Glass Chair Mats not only offer a limited lifetime warranty but also last, on average, four times longer than a traditional office chair mat (vinyl or polycarbonate, which often last only 2-3 years). Vitrazza Glass Chair Mats will last a lifetime, certainly, well over 15 years when well-cared for!
- Vitrazza Glass Chair Mats help protect your flooring, extending the life of your floors and therefore reducing the need for materials for more frequent repairs or upgrades.
- Glass has a smaller eco-footprint than plastic or vinyl.
- Our Glass Chair Mats do not off-gas and yield zero micro-plastics.
Let’s start with a question: “What is the benefit to the environment when furniture and/or other durable consumer goods last longer?”
Longer-lasting goods mean less production, thus reducing the load on our already burdened environment (there are over seven billion of us now, after all!). While it may seem basic, it’s a concept many industries are moving away from. Goods are increasingly being produced with cheaper, non-renewable resources in industries selling cheap, consumable products, some of which are intentionally created for “planned obsolescence” (i.e., when a product is created to be worn out quickly). “Fast fashion” is a trending concept that embodies these manufacturing methods. The result is products that have a lifespan of one or two uses before they inevitably end up in a landfill. This same philosophy is applicable to the chair mat industry too. You know those plastic and vinyl mats commonly seen at big box stores or found on online retailers? They too will result in rapid wear rather than longevity.
Think about it this way: for every Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat purchased, one would likely purchase seven plastic chair mats during an identical use life. That’s seven different production practices and seven different types of materials that likely won’t be reused but simply disposed of. This scenario doesn’t even take into consideration the burden on your wallet!
Additionally, think of the secondary wear-and-tear happening outside of the mat itself. We recently published an article that outlines how a Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat is superior for preserving hardwood floors. Check it out here and keep in mind, Glass Chair Mats don’t just help the environment directly, but indirectly as well! They’ll keep your home in better shape for longer, which also helps the planet by requiring less resources for replacements in other areas of your home.
Eco Footprint and Healthy Production Practices
Quiz time! Do you know the difference between products designed for “wear-in” vs “wear-out”? Do you know what off-gassing is? How about micro-plastics?
These are some buzzwords commonly used in production industries. Here’s a quick overview to get you up to speed.
“Wear-in” (synonymous with “break-in”) means: “an initial period of operation during which working parts begin to function efficiently” (source).
“Wear-out” means: “to make useless especially by long or hard usage” (source).
“Off-gas” means: “a gas that is produced as a by-product of an industrial process or that is given off by a manufactured object or material (source).
“Off-gassing” means “the emission of especially noxious gases (as from a building material)” (source).
“Micro-plastics” means “a very small fragment or piece of plastic specifically: a piece of plastic that is five millimeters or smaller in size —usually plural.
“The Mariana Trench contains the highest levels of microplastics (most likely from clothing, bottles, packaging and fishing gear) yet found in the open ocean, offering irrefutable proof that plastics have penetrated even the most remote places on the planet.—Rina Li” (source)
So, what does this quick vocabulary lesson have to do with a Glass Chair Mat? Let’s examine a few facts about Vitrazza and how our chair mat production practices fare considering these definitions:
Our Glass Chair Mats are intentionally and strategically designed to be products you “wear in” not “wear out,” ensuring fundamental sustainability practices. This means that our mats are designed to get better with time, and in our case, that means they stay smooth and durable for the duration of their life.
Outside of the “wear-in” style of our products, Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat production practices do not produce off-gasses. None! That means we are not releasing toxic fumes into our environment that would damage our planet. In fact, we cut, shape, edge, and polish each Glass Chair Mat using advanced technology and water. Curious for more information? Check out the process here.
In addition to our better-for-the-planet production methods, the actual material, glass, boasts a lower carbon footprint than its plastic and vinyl counterparts. This in turn means that we produce zero microplastics, which are “one of the most serious environmental justice threats of our time” (source). Seriously toxic to both the land and your body, microplastics are rapidly becoming a global catastrophe. An easy way to reduce microplastics in the environment is to purchase less plastic, less often. Buy a Glass Chair Mat to do both!
Need More Reasons?
In addition to having a smaller environmental footprint, glass is easier to clean than plastic and more aesthetically pleasing. Every Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat order includes our Stabil-a-Dot Bumper System™ so that it can be used on all types of flooring, including vinyl, hardwood, and carpet. It’s a clear frontrunner for your office and/or home office!
Ready to take an environmental step forward? Reduce, reuse, recycle, and invest in a Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat today! As an added bonus in honor of Earth Day, we’re offering 15% percent off, just use code GlassPlanet during check out.