• National Clothesline Article On Rent The Runway

    rent the runway

    Disruptor of Dry Cleaning

    Imagine a competitor with a 200,00-sq.-ft. plant that can process 5,000 pieces per hour, targets high income customers in the 25 to 40 age group. This competitor has already raised $130,000 million to fund its growing business and has the goal of capturing 10 percent of the $7 billion U.S. dry cleaning market. 
    This is not an imaginary competitor. It’s Rent the Runway, which aims to replace the closet in the home with a closet in the cloud.
    A look inside this operation was provided by Charles Ickes, former chief logistics officer of New York-based Rent the Runway, who spoke during the National Cleaners Association’s Texcare event in Secaucus, NJ, in October.
    The company was started in 2009 by two Harvard Business School classmates, Jennifer Fleiss and Jennifer Hyman, who thought women might be interested in renting rather
    than owning high-fashion attire.
    The company was still relatively small by the time Ickes joined it in 2011, handling 150,000 pieces per year with all the dry cleaning outsourced. He brought with him a background in dry cleaning having worked for Madame Paulette in New York and Dependable Cleaners in Massachusetts.
    Now he said the company’s dry cleaning facility near Secaucus is the largest in the world with enough business to keep its 78 dry cleaning machines spinning through two shifts a day with four million pieces cleaned in 2017.
    Rent the Runway’s customers can make their selection on-line at or at one of the company’s brick-and-mortar stores in New York, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco and Los Angeles. The price of the rental is a fraction of what it would cost to buy the garment outright and that price includes shipping to and from the customer and, of course, the dry cleaning.
    “Dry cleaning is not something that is really important to Rent the Runway,” he said. “It’s something they do on the side. They’re really out to disrupt fast fashion but you, the dry cleaner, will probably be collateral damage.”


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  • Tips for living plastic free in 2018

    plastic free

    Tips for living plastic free in 2018

    By: Garry Knox

    1 – Bring your own shopping bag

    Even though in some countries there is a charge for getting a carrier bag from your store, many people bring their own bags JUST for groceries. Start bringing a bag for clothes and other products too. A great way to achieve this is to take a back pack everywhere you go, and store a couple of fabric bags in there too!

    2 – Carry a reusable water bottle

    Again, most back packs have a place to store a bottle securely. And keep an eye out for water fountains wherever you are, so that you can top it up easily, and you’re not tempted to buy a bottle whilst you’re out… you’ll be saving cash too! Add fruit or a sprig of mint and place the bottle in the fridge for an hour before you go out, to make it more refreshing.

    3 – Bring your own coffee cup

    You can buy reusable coffee cups quite cheaply now from stores and coffee houses and again, can be stored in that back pack. You can either make the coffee before you leave the house but also, lots of coffee houses now offer a small discount if you use your own mug.

    4 – Pack your lunch in reusable containers

    Depending on what you have for lunch, most plastic containers are great for keeping your food fresh. Most say that they are dishwasher proof but make sure they are on the top rack, so that they keep their shape. Alternatively wash them by hand.

    5 – Say no to plastic straws and cutlery

    Unless you can use plastic cutlery time and time again, say NO. I do have a spork (spoon and fork) that I was given in a food store in Amsterdam and have used many times but generally, plastic cutlery breaks easily. Have your own cutlery ready and reduce the demand for plastic.

    I hate straws in drinks anyway but, always look to see if they have them in the bar when you arrive and just say “No straws please” when you place your order. You’ll soon get into the habit.

    In most fast food places, straws are optional now, so just lift the lid off and sip away!

    6 – Skip the plastic produce bags

    Most fruit and veg is easily weighed or scanned without a bag. If not reuse the bag for as long as you can. If you go to a local fresh food market, the store staff can just put it into your bag for life for you when they’re done!

    7 – Slow down and dine in

    If you stay in, you are of course going to avoid plastic a bit more easily. Save money and eat more fresh and organic food.

    8 – Store left overs in glass jars

    Firstly, it’s great NOT to waste food, so try to cook just the right amount. But if you want to store left overs, have some glass jars of different sizes handy or some ‘microwave safe’ glass dishes.

    9 – Buy a backpack

    It’s been a recurring theme amongst these tips, of how useful they are. Get yourself one for shopping and storing. And perhaps walk to places a bit more, stopping for water and coffee along the way, to enjoy the view!

    10 – Share

    Last but not least, is to share these tips. We as individuals can make a difference by making small changes to our lives but educating other people on how to live plastic free by sharing the article or social media posts can have an EVEN bigger impact. Why not do it now?!

    Happy New Plastic Free Year!

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  • Another GreenEarth Affiliate Making Waves

    Corporate/Hospitality Division Created at Lapels

    Formed to better serve hotels and restaurants, company notes

    HANOVER, Mass. — Lapels Dry Cleaning recently announced the formation of a corporate/hospitality division. The new division was formed to better serve hotels, restaurants and corporate accounts that require and/or offer dry cleaning services for guests and staff, it notes.

    “Several of our locations serve large corporate accounts like Intel, Google, Starwood Lodging and others,” says Kevin Dubois, CEO of Lapels Dry Cleaning.

    “Our new corporate/hospitality division will serve as a resource for our franchise owners to better serve these types of clients.

    “This includes providing the training and systems to serve corporate and hospitality customers as well as the marketing tools needed to attract corporate businesses, hotels and restaurants.”

    The company’s new division equips each of its plant to serve restaurants, hotels and other guest-oriented businesses with its full range of dry cleaning offerings. This will include same-day and 24-hour dry cleaning, tailoring and more, the firm points out.

    Lapels indicates it has, “pioneered an eco-friendly dry cleaning experience over the past dozen years,” Adding that there is no hazardous waste in their process.

    “When you’re on the road and you want your clothes cleaned, you’re not necessarily thinking of the long-term effect on your clothes,” says Dubois.

    “All our locations serving corporate accounts use GreenEarth® solutions,” he adds. “Consequently, our cleaning process has no odor and is gentler on clothes, thus lengthening the life of clothes. That’s a comforting thought for business travelers.”

    The company writes that it has same-day service and pickup after 5 p.m., and also “offers a ‘car hop’ service where customers can drop off and pickup their clothing without ever leaving their cars.

    See full article here.

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  • Another great story on a GreenEarth Affiliate

    Classic Cleaners is your GreenEarth Alternative

    When Janice Gray opened Classic Cleaners, nearly 20 years ago, she never dreamed she would still be operating a dry cleaning business.  After the business sold several times and operated successfully for many years before closing by a former owner, Janice decided to reopen the business.

    Classic Cleaners is unique in that it is the only cleaners in Statesboro that operates using the GreenEarth® cleaning process which specializes in eco-friendly cleaning methods without costing more.

    Clothes dry cleaned with GreenEarth have absolutely no odor.  Your clothes are fresh and clean right out of the bag, so there is no need to let them “air out” before you wear them.

    GreenEarth solution is so safe you could rub it on your skin.  In fact, you probably already do.  That’s because GreenEarth solution is pure liquid silicone, the same base ingredient found in everyday shampoos, conditioners, skin lotions and antiperspirants.

    Allergies or sensitive skin?  No worries.  GreenEarth is non-allergenic and non-irritating.  Best of all, it leaves fabrics silky smooth, with no static.  Wools are not itchy.  Sweaters feel soft. Fabrics drape nicely again. Clothes just feel good.

    Read full article here.

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  • Waste not, want not!

    waste not

    Waste not, want not!

    By: Garry Knox

    We often find ourselves in a situation where we are appalled by the amount of food that is thrown away. Not just by our loved ones but by fast food companies and supermarkets too. Often it can be food hygiene regulations, certainly where fresh food is concerned, that stops that food going to a good cause.

    Not only could the amount of food going to landfill be reduced but equally it could be put to good use by the vulnerable people in our societies.

    Well now a U.K. supermarket, Co-operative, have started to make some in-roads to redress the balance with a pioneering new initiative to sell food after its “best before” date. The East of England Co-op says it is the first major retailer to start selling products beyond their best before date with the aim of significantly reducing food waste in its stores.

    The retailer will now sell products over their best before date in its 125 food stores for a nominal 10 pence charge. The majority of products that use best before dates will be included, such as tinned goods, packets and dried food.

    The Food Standards Agency (FSA) advises that products past their best before date are safe to consume. Also, by selling perfectly edible food, 50,000 plus items every year in the U.K. which would otherwise have gone to waste, can be consumed. WRAP estimates that the U.K. throws away £13bn worth of food each year.

    Food for thought indeed!

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  • SBA Update No Cause For Concern


    SBA Update No Cause For Concern

    By: Zarah Eads

    The Small Business Administration (SBA) recently announced an update to its Standard Operating Procedure regarding Lender and Development Company Loan Programs. And once again, being a GreenEarth Affiliate pays off.

    *Cue hair flip*

    It will go into effect Jan. 1, 2018. However, loans that were approved prior still fall under the previous SOP edition.

    The new policy concerns dry cleaners’ use of solvents. Any on-site cleaning facilities that have used chlorinated solutions, like tetrachloroethene and trichloroethene, or petroleum-based     solutions, will now be subject to a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment.

    Phase I also still applies, requiring a historical audit of the premises. This might include interviews with current or past landowners, an on-site visual inspection as well as a written report. If Phase I comes back showing a possibility of contamination Phase II begins. Here, the business could undergo surficial and sub-surficial soil analysis, the installation of monitoring wells, and indoor air sampling. If a positive test for hazardous substances, investigators will begin Phase III, site remediation, which can be the most costly for owners.

    Since our solvent, D5 liquid silicone, has been proven environmentally non-toxic, the SOP won’t apply (YAY!).

    Affiliates like Jack Alquist, who owns Guild Cleaners in Lodi, California, experienced first-hand the repercussions of contamination before switching to GreenEarth.

    “For the last 16 1/2 years, I’ve been involved in environmental issues on a number of fronts,” he told us. “Now I use a solution that will not put us in that situation. The GreenEarth solution is definitely one of the best business decisions I’ve ever made.”

    Yeah, we’re pretty cool like that.

    On a more serious note though, there is truly peace of mind in knowing that this process is safe for customers, their clothing, and the planet. Plus, we believe it cleans just as effectively, if not better.

    Thank you to our Affiliates for your commitment to this solution. Our job is better because of you. While we didn’t initiate this SBA update, we’re happy to share that rewards are evident at a store level too.

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  • Sustainable Customers

    sustainable customer

    Sustainable Customers

    By: Ron Benjamin

    How can we build a world that is sustainable now?   How can we insure that our children’s children can continue to enjoy today’s world tomorrow?

    Recently on October 20th, Professor Lorynn Divita of Baylor University, an author, fashion merchandising expert, textile specialist, and futurist, made the following comment to the National Cleaners Association:

    “Today millennials see fast fashion as the #2 polluter behind oil!”

    That’s a big statement. And a big view given that the world of fast fashion, where garments are made to be worn just a few times and then disposed of, targets millennials as their customers.

    How often do we misread our customers? How often do we give customers what they are really wanting?

    Many of today’s customers and tomorrow’s customers seek sustainable goods and services. Millennials are known for their demand for fast response times, easy access to services, minimizing the use of cars and gasoline and wasted travel time, and their concern for a sustainable future.

    At GreenEarth we offer a cleaning process that allows for maximized sustainability. Do those customers who seek maximized sustainability know what we offer? And do we make it easy for sustainability seeking customers to access the sustainability we offer—in ways other than driving to our door?

    Sustainable operations plus sustainable customers should equal a sustainable future!

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  • Get Clean Here!


    Get Clean Here!

    By: Joe Blaha

    GreenEarth Cleaning since 1999 has championed the introduction of the only truly sustainable, environmentally non-toxic, non-hazardous, affordable, and effective alternative to all those solvents available that are built upon a carbon based petrochemical foundation.

    The GreenEarth solution is pure liquid silicone and not an organic petrochemical solvent…it is uniquely different!

    Being a completely different chemistry has led many in this industry to question the viability of this solution to clean as effectively as those traditional solvents whose method is to solubilize oils, greases, stains, and other soils directly into solution. This traditional method necessitates the need to distill the solvent with its solubilized contaminants to effectively separate them to be left behind in the still waste.

    The path taken by GreenEarth is very different. With its unequaled low surface tension GreenEarth works by utilizing proprietary non-toxic additives that can penetrate the fibers rapidly, flushing and whisking away the contaminants without dissolving them before they head to to the filters or a distillation unit.

    Because the soils are suspended freely, GreenEarth alone can use unique activated clays to adsorb those soils and contaminates without the need for continuous energy-intense distillation and may be used most efficiently without the need for any distillation via a simple decanting system.

    The question of how well does GreenEarth clean compared to the petrochemical choices was addressed by the IFI (International Fabricare Institute) now the DLI (Drycleaning and Laundry Institute) in 2002 and that study reported GreenEarth to be “ as effective as perc with no environmental concerns”. In 2007 an independent IFI evaluation of alternative solvents rated GreenEarth as “excellent “ in the categories of cleaning and the ability to handle a variety of fabrics and trims.

    While there are those who cling to the notion that because GreenEarth cleans differently, it is not as effective as other methods. The evidence is compelling to the contrary and today the case is easily made that the gentle GreenEarth Cleaning System is uniquely effective and offers the most sustainable ( and lowest cost ) dry cleaning system in existence.

    Should the unconvinced be willing to survey the GreenEarth Affiliate network they will quickly find it is home to some of the largest and most successful operators in the world who would be happy to share their experience with GreenEarth Cleaning.

    And yes…it is possible to be different and better!

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  • Bringing The GreenEarth Family Together

    Bringing The GreenEarth Family Together

    By: Garry Knox

    The last weekend in September, saw GreenEarth® Affiliates come together once again in our home town of Kansas City, Missouri.

    It’s so nice to see lots of familiar faces and new ones too, where social gatherings and sharing knowledge and information take place. We had guests from far and wide within America as well as visitors from Canada and the U.K.

    The event started with an informal gathering at Martin City Brewery, where guests got to sample locally sourced beer and some culinary delights. Lots of opportunities to meet, catch up and network.

    The next day was varied in its content and the approach, with delegates getting the opportunity to find out more about developments within GreenEarth® from Tim Maxwell, who was unable to be there on the day, due to the support that he is giving in China but he was able to communicate from afar, thanks to the wonderful advances in technology! There was also the opportunity to find out the latest in maintenance and cleaning tips, the latest in Marketing support and techniques and the advances GreenEarth® are making with International Retailers and Manufacturers.

    The final speaker on the day was Karen Maxwell, GreenEarth’s Customer Service Director, talking about the many pillars of Customer Service. From how first impressions can have a huge impact on the customer experience to how encouraging feedback and acting upon it can drive loyalty for many years to come.

    The feedback for the day was fantastic, followed up by many of the delegates participating in ‘Top Golf’ in the evening… think driving ranges with targets! This was a fun way for people to relax and to get to know each other.

    Everyone at GreenEarth® loved being together with our affiliates for a couple of days and it was great to get the opportunity, to share all of our exciting developments. We look forward to seeing you next time!

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  • Oxxo Care Cleaners Story in Miami Herald!

    When Salomon Mishaan was a boy growing up in Colombia, he used to go to work with his father on Saturdays. There, in the family business, he learned the art of crafting yarn, weaving it into textiles and creating garments. Over the years, Mishaan worked his way up in the business, eventually become a managing director.

    Then his career took a different path, with a move into the plastics industry in Venezuela. Mishaan eventually became president and CEO of Polifilm, which manufactured automotive parts, food wrap and other plastics.

    In 2000, he moved to the United States, and Mishaan’s career pivoted again, when he saw a way to revolutionize the dry cleaning industry.

    “I had seen the advancements in dry cleaning in Europe and South America, but in the U.S., it was like the stone age,” he said. “There was no innovation.

    Mishaan started with an ATM that dispensed dry cleaning 24/7, an eco-friendly cleaning process that didn’t use harsh chemicals, and a hand-ironing system that did away with diesel-powered steam presses.

    The idea was pretty revolutionary in 2001.

    Mishaan opened OXXO Care Cleaners in Hollywood in 2001 after researching the concept and designing the equipment.

    “American culture is to want everything 24 hours a day, so I wanted a 24-hour ATM” that could accept clothing drop-offs, as well as dispense cleaned items to customers, he said. Customers use a card with a magnetic strip, similar to a credit card, to retrieve clothes that are bar-coded at drop-off.

    OXXO also was an early adopter of the earth-friendly cleaning movement, and began using GreenEarth cleaning solutions when the eco-friendly company was first starting out.


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