The Future of Good Design Principles



The Future of Good Design Principles



Memorable design is rooted in innovation. It’s a reflection of what a designer sees in the world and what a designer wants to change. It’s a statement and a stand to make better things in an imaginative, forward-thinking fashion through intentional artistry of design. Here’s the thing about things - we take what we’re given. We absorb what we are offered. We walk through life surrounded by things that other people create. The power of good design can encourage questioning of how we lead our lives.

That’s a lot of influence in the hands of designers and thought leaders. So, of course, we expect it to be good. We take note on the various sustainable practices we can adopt in designing our Noéma’s Activated Essentials range.

We’re creating an unparalleled micro-range of activated essentials. Find out how you can co-design your own natural skincare range with leading experts – and get it free for an entire year.

2019 has us giddy about the direction design is going. From easily accessible sustainable cutlery, to a rise in alternative (and effective) packaging, to quality refillable bottles, this year has been a testament to the power of creative minds. We’ve compiled a list of good design that we’re ogling over, nay worshipping. Explore and enjoy.

The ones questioning traditional packaging

Meet Flexi-hex packaging

The basics? Recycled cardboard turned into sustainable and biodegradable packaging. 

Transporting goods (think Amazon) is notorious for encouraging plastic waste. Often, when you open a package, it’s more packaging goodies than the actual product. In 2018, National Geographic reported that 40% of plastic produced is used for packaging - after one use it is discarded.  According to Fast Company, about 165 billion packages are shipped (in the US) per year, packaged with about 1 billion trees worth of cardboard. 

Innovative packaging wins our hearts because it reduces plastic use and encourages conversations about how we transport things as well as the ludicrous amount of waste we use. 

The concept behind Flexi-hex packaging is simple. Perhaps too simple. Using something we already know is environmentally friendly, the team reimagined its use. The company layers paper glued strategically into a honeycomb shape, which creates effective and safe protection. The design is also highly flexible and malleable, making it useful for transporting items like bottles, surfboards, and industrial goods.  

Image via Kjaer Weis

Image via Kjaer Weis


The ones with a sustainability agenda

The internets answer to sexy and aesthetically pleasing sustainability. Kappi Reusable, an Australia based e-commerce company, offers simple products with an elegant approach. Think reusable razors, shopping bags, bamboo cutlery, and water bottles. They’re like a one-stop shop for taking the next step to sustainability.  

Kappi comes from a desire to create effortless products that are well-built and well designed to last a significant amount of time. Additionally, the minds behind Kappi emphasise the fact that their products have a positive end of life - meaning that once they are returned to the earth, there is no negative effect. Kappi products keep affordability and accessibility in mind - which in the world of sustainability, is often overlooked. According to Kappi, they provide “only the most durable, best designed, and fairest prices reusables on the market.” 

The ones disrupting an industry

You’ve heard us lament about the state of the cosmetic and body care industry: see here and here.

That’s why we love Kjaer Weis makeup, an organic cosmetic and skincare brand that not only provides high-performance products, but has developed an innovative refillable packaging system. It also helps that Kjaer Weis tapped influential designers to create pretty and aesthetically pleasing packaging, so the refilling system is not only good for the environment, but a downright pleasure.

Here’s how it works: Kjaer Weis products are packaged in strategically designed compacts/mascara wands/lipstick casing. Once you’re done with the actual product, there is a place to push it out of the compact, and replace the compact with a new product. The same physical packaging plays the same role, it’s just the product that is replaced. 

Too easy. 

Image via Kappi

Image via Kappi


The ones encouraging conversation (especially at events)

On April 28th, the London Marathon made history. Not because someone beat a world record, but because it was the largest trial run for the Ooho capsules - biodegradable pods made from seaweed.

Events are usually a minor environmental disaster. For some reason, when an event is on, it give people (participants, vendors, and spectators), prerogative to use disposable bottles. It’s just a norm. 

In an attempt to encourage conversation, test out a new technology, and hydrate runners, over 30,000 edible drink capsules were handed out. Pods could be consumed whole or bitten into release liquid. The discarded wrapping naturally decomposes in a few weeks, with little to no effect on the environment. 

Ooho pods are made from brown seaweed, a regenerative resource that groups up to 3 feet a day and contributes to deacidifying the ocean. It’s robust enough to maintain liquid and is incredibly pliable. The company behind Ohoo, Notpla, has created technology not just suitable for events and beverages, but for food packaging and delivery. Down the line, we wouldn’t be surprised to see them partnering with the beauty and skincare industry to package liquid products. 

Key Takeaway

As you can see, there are a myriad of ways for us to explore good design for our Activated Essentials range. We want to explore elements of each of these principles - from refillable product to using eco-materials, down to the ability to repurpose your vessel. What we’re excited about is that things are changing in the market, and people are asking for the changes.

We’re considering the product’s life cycle, it’s durability and adaptability to your life, as well as the formulation inside. 

Katherine Guerrero 2.png

Katherine Guerrero
Content writer /
Environmental policy


Co-Design Your Activated Essentials —

Here at Noéma, we’re busy researching the best ingredients - so that we can make the best activated essentials for you, with you. We’re taking a radically new direction in skincare; we use you as the key ingredient.

By collaborating with industry experts such as naturopaths, biochemists, product specialists and formulators, our aim is to create an Activated Essentials product range with the best ingredients, formula and design.

We’re taking applications from our diverse community to contribute to co-designing an essential micro-range of products right for them. Get involved in upcoming events and workshops covering wellness, self-care and design.


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