The Ultimate Guide to Ethical and Eco-Friendly Diaries, Planners and Organizers [2021 edition]

The Ultimate Guide to Ethical and Eco-Friendly Diaries, Planners and Organizers [2021 edition]

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It’s that time of the year again when it’s time to choose the best diary, planner or organizer that will be our 12-month long companion for the coming year. For many people, this is almost a sacred ritual as if the particular item you choose will dictate what 2021 holds for you. With so many options, it can be pretty overwhelming to choose the right one. But here’s an idea – why not choose an diary that’s eco-friendly? This way, you’ll be starting 2021 with a good deed for the planet and hopefully it carries on through the rest of the year.

Why invest in a diary, planner, or organizer?

So many of us just want 2020 to be over and done with so we can welcome 2021 with high hopes and achieve our goals and fulfil the dreams that we just couldn’t this year thanks to the pandemic. Now that the economy is opening up again, vaccines are being approved and we’re trying to bring back some normalcy in our lives, we will need to plan our course of action for the coming days and months.

Having a diary, planner, or organizer will help you do that. Of course, some would say why bother getting one when you can download an app on your smartphone that helps you do the same thing? While this is a great idea, for some people, nothing beats the traditional pen and paper way of scribbling down our plans, thoughts and observations. We couldn’t agree more with what Dingbats founder Jamal Bekdache said:

“I passionately believe that there’s still a place for this most traditional of materials in today’s high speed, digital world. Sometimes you need something that’s more tactile – more personal.”

To see our thoughts, reflections, plans and schedules written down on the pages of this little book dedicated to one year of our life is satisfying and offers feelings of nostalgia.

The benefits of using a planner, organizer, or diary

According to Psychology Today, there are many benefits of using a daily planner. It helps us with time management, improves our productivity, and keeps a record of our activities, notes, and appointments. Furthermore, it has physical and mental benefits. We are “often stressed due to a hectic schedule, having too many demands, or just putting too much on our plate.” Using an organizer helps us keep track of our goals and achievements whether it relates to our business or career, health, diet and exercise. It also helps reduce stress and anxieties as we see our progress, cross out what we’ve accomplished in our to-do list, or just simply write down whatever’s on our mind. Throughout this process, we are able to maintain a healthy emotional intelligence.

Journaling the eco-friendly way

No doubt you’ve heard about trees being cut down to make paper. Studies suggest that 17 billion cubic feet of trees are deforested each year, roughly 60% are used to make paper. The Environmental Defense Fund reports that the clearing of rainforests contributes up to 20% of global annual greenhouse gas emissions. Purchasing eco-friendly products is a way to help mitigate the problem and conserve and sustain our natural resources.

So want to do your bit? Here is a list of environment-friendly planners, organizers, and diaries for 2021 to check out:

1. Ponderlily

These stylish eco-friendly organizers and planners are printed and ethically manufactured in Europe from Forest Stewardship Council certified recycled paper and high quality materials which will make you want to write on them over and over again. The design of their journals and planners show how they’ve combined functionality with thoughtfulness and flexibility so that you can feel free to express yourself in each page. You can select the cover’s color, and inside, there’s a section for your daily intentions, weekly notes, and a reminder for you to celebrate the little things so you can recharge yourself. We also love that they’ve allotted a space for you to reflect on your progress and develop positive habits each week. Just think how fruitful your 2021 will be with this kind of mindset.

Shop here.

2. A Good Company

A Good Company prides itself in being a carbon negative company by using sustainable and recycled materials, ensuring climate positivity and that their products are compostable or recyclable after use, following clean production processes and climate compensated shipping. They released what is considered the first climate positive diary in the world. Their diaries and journals are available in different cool colors and sizes. The pages are made from stone paper which makes use of calcium carbonate, a byproduct of marble mining, which they combine with recycled plastic. You can personalize the diaries by putting your name, favorite quote, or logo. The inside pages can be dotted, lined, or blank depending on your preference.

Get 10% off A Good Company purchases with discount code JENNIFER10. Shop here.


3. Papier Diaries

Founded in London in 2015 by Taymoor Atighetchi, Papier is a leading British stationery brand, known for creating beautifully designed, personalized stationery, diaries and writing paper. It has one of the broadest ranges of beautiful diaries and planners on the market; supporting and collaborating with many leading illustrators and artists across the world. And the wonderful news is that they have also implemented some sustainability initiatives to make their exclusively designed diaries eco-friendly. The pages are made from 100% FSC-certified paper meaning they are from European sustainably-grown and managed forests. All packaging is recyclable (no shrink wraps), all products are made-to-order to reduce waste, and the business also encourages their customers to recycle and upcycle.

“Our paper is always sourced from FSC-certified forests. This means we only ever work with paper suppliers who deal with forests that comply with the highest social and environmental standards.” – Papier

Papier diaries are also customisable to make it an extra special gift. Browse their broad selection here.

4. Earth Greetings + Negin Maddock

This collaboration between Earth Greetings and Australian illustrator Negin Maddock has resulted in a masterpiece. The diary and wall planner are both beautifully crafted using 100% post-consumer recycled paper and vegetable-based ink.

The diary’s hardbound cover comes in blue with a cockatoo print subtly debossed for a classic look. Magic happens as you turn the pages and you see more of Maddock’s inspiring works of art featuring Australian flora and fauna. This diary encourages you to write your goals for each month then the pages are lined and dated weekly where you can write down your daily appointments or short notes. It also comes with a bookmark that’s also made from recycled paper. When you buy this diary, 10% of the profit helps fund different environmental organisations and makes your purchase go even further in supporting planet Earth.

Shop here.

5. Dingbats

With the tagline “notebooks with personality”, Dingbats notebooks are available in various designs and colors so that you can choose one that perfectly fits your personality. These can be used as a diary or journal that you’ll want to bring with you anywhere. This is a brand known for being eco-friendly. Their notebooks are vegan and come certified from no less than the Forest Stewardship Council; that’s why you can be sure that the materials used in their notebooks come from “responsibly managed forests that provide environmental, social, and economical benefits.”

Buy here.

6. Brazen Prints Art Planners

These planners feature a unique and artistic cover designed by Brazen Prints which makes it very inviting to write on. The cover is made with high quality G.F. Smith colour plan paper and the inner pages are made from 100% recycled paper. You’ll need two planners for the whole year as each one only comes with 26 weeks of double spread pages to plan half of your year. You have a space to write your daily agenda and weekly notes. Each page has a dotted design to add style to your writing pad.

Shop here.

7. Green Dreamer Planners

This is not your usual eco-friendly planner; this is a planner that aims to guide you on your path to “holistic healing, ecological regeneration, and true abundance and wellness.” Green Dreamer Planners have already noted the important eco-awareness dates in your calendar and they feature inspirational quotes, suggestions for your overall wellbeing, and guides for your short and long term goal setting. You also have a space for weekly reflections for you to develop self-love and gratitude. The two-toned covers are available in shades of blue and red. There’s a monthly planner and weekly spreads and the pages are made from 100% recycled paper and printed with soy-based ink.

Shop here.

8. Sasha Kretova Journals

These artsy notebooks can be used as planners and journals. Skillfully designed by illustrator Sasha Kretova, she uses only eco-friendly materials for all her products, the cover and paper for the inside pages are made from recycled materials and she uses 100% cotton thread for the binding. Each notebook is responsibly printed (fairly paid workers) in Estonia. The covers come in different designs and colors. You can also choose if you want the inside pages to be dated or blank depending on your art of journaling.

Shop here.

2020 may be notoriously remembered as the year when nothing went according to plan. Many of us learned and relearned that we have much to be thankful for: having a supportive family, good health, a job, a home, internet access, access to food, the attitude and mindset to overcome obstacles. But none of this would be possible without the planet we collectively call home. So let us help it our own little way such as buying ethical and eco-friendly diaries, planners, and organizers and making 2021 our most impactful yet!

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Disclosure: Details are correct at time of publishing. This curated list does not fully take into account all the ethical considerations that are unique to each individual. Before making a purchase, we encourage you to do your own research paying particular attention to the supply chain and your own particular set of ethics. Click here to read more about our policies. Cover image via Ponderlily.

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