Today we head to Denmark to speak to Isabel Aagaard, who describes herself as a designer by trade but eco-conscious by nature. Frustrated by all of the single-use products out there, she decided to design innovative solutions to wasteful habits that make a lasting positive impact. She was a co-founder of LastObject in 2018 with the first product launched last year LastSwab – an alternative to the everyday cotton swab. Made from TPE, PP, and stored in a bio-based carrying case, one LastSwab is meant to replace 1000 single-use cotton swabs. And earlier this year, LastTissue was bought to life an eco-friendly alternative to paper tissues. Now Isabel and the team are launching Lastround, a reusable and sustainable alternative to single use cotton pads. A mother to a little boy, she stands by her products and hopes to inspire others to adapt to living sustainably.
Luke Upton (LU): Thanks for the time today, what’s the origin of LastObject?
Isabel Aagaard (IA): My two co-founders and I founded LastObject with the aim to create alternatives to single use products that would put a dent in an industry that creates unnecessary waste and pollution.
LU: And tell us about the development of the product range?
IA: We prototype a lot. The product, the packaging, the content. Everything is made and edited hundreds of times while constantly being tested. We try to get our designs in our hands even though most of our work is on a computer. It’s really important for us not to sit on our ideas and think we know best.
LU: Do you think products influence consumer behaviour, or is it consumer behaviour that leads to new products?
IA: As Henry Ford once said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” I think that products do influence consumer behaviour as they afford a specific usage, but that consumers need to be ready for change.
LU: What led you down the Crowdfunding path to launch rather than reaching out to a large companies or going down a licensing route?
IA: We use Kickstarter not only as a financial tool but also to validate our product so we can save ourselves from going the wrong way. It’s the perfect way to see whether people are willing to spend money on your product and if there are any changes you should make.
LU: Do you have any advice for another sustainable company looking to launch through Crowdfunding?
IA: Have a strong pre-launch campaign where you collect emails, this will help get your Kickstarter off on a good start and get a sense of how well your product will do.
LU: What inspires you when it comes to sustainability?
IA: Sustainability is a complex predicament. Designing something of quality and usefulness is my biggest goal. We are inspired to create one product that will replace thousands of its counterparts.
LU: What’s next for LastObject and how can people get in touch if they want to get involved?
IA: We will keep creating sustainable alternatives to single use items. People can connect with us through our Social Media (@lastswab) and by email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
If you want to get involved in Crowdfunding Isabel and the team’s latest project, LastRound, then click here.