How it all started
The easy and effect of online shopping
The idea of askBelynda came to Irete after moving
to the USA in 2018 from Israel, and getting drawn in to
the endless possibilities of online shopping. As the empty boxes started piling up, Irete grew conscious of the adverse effects a product's ingredients, packaging and sourcing has on the environment. She began conducted in-depth research on these products, their impact and better alternatives to replace them. Her search for environmental-friendly products began with looking for better laundry detergents and other personal care products and later expanding into other categories. During the research, she grew aware of all the time, energy, resources and information it takes to find a high quality sustainable product.
askBelynda is the solution for customers who want to make simple, hassle-free, conscious decisions. The askBelynda team looks for products that are not only sustainable but are also of high quality. The team has vetted thousands of household and personal care products, and are continuing to expand into other product categories. askBelynda focuses on supporting companies that were founded to provide sustainable alternatives. Irete believes these companies have more merit than the bigger corporations that succumbed to producing sustainable products due to current trends and pressure. It’s not an easy job to figure out when a company is genuine or just greenwashing. She stresses the importance of thorough research and closely examines:
The companies behind the products, their credibility, environmental values, certifications, and emphasis on sustainability.
The ingredients that go into the product.
A close focus on minimal and recyclable packaging.
Social aspects of the manufacturing companies
The overall quality and functionality of the product.
How their employees are treated
If the companies have carbon offset programs in place.
Along came Stanford
Numerous discussions later, Irete found
that there are many like-minded people
who care about the environment as much as she does. The common thread in those conversations was the difficulty and frustration in finding the information they need. Irete identified the gap between the conscious choices people want to make and the information readily available to them. This coincided with the Stanford Rebuild Innovation Program in the summer of 2020 and led to the foundation of askBelynda. To bring this idea to life, Irete poured all her knowledge, expertise and research into askBelynda so that consumers can make smarter choices effortlessly. She built and developed askBelynda, initially as a Google Chrome extension, to save the customers from all the time, research, energy and frustration of manually skimming through companies they’ve never heard of before and information they don’t understand. Through askBelynda, Irete encourages people to take a step towards a better environment without having to lose their minds, interest and time.
An 8-week guided innovation sprint
The right products, at the right time