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Episode 085. Integrating Ethics into Our Purchases with Naupaka Owner Lauren Manwill

Episode 085

Getting into ethical fashion—you have to give yourself grace.

Part of growing as moms, as people, and really elevating motherhood is to gathering new information, listening to stories, and considering perspectives that maybe we haven’t heard before. This is one of those episodes that is going to gift us with new to us information about how our purchases impact others (including other moms) around the world.

My guest today Lauren Manwill is the owner of Naupaka—a thoughtfully curated online boutique that focuses on fair trade and ethical fashion & products. Lauren is here to share stories and insights about how our dollar can be used to make powerful purchases for social change (a timely topic given that the holidays are upon us). There’s also a lot of inspiration to be found in how she got started and the stories she shares about how she balances motherhood, owning a shop, and homeschooling.

Lauren is a gracious voice and really brings her kind heart to the table as she gently educates us on why purchasing ethically made and fair trade items matter. She brings just the right mix of grace and encouragement that we need to grow and move forward with this new information so that we can step into our power of creating change through our purchases.

She’s going to teach us about what it mean for something to be “ethically made.” Unfortunately, in today’s world not everything is made with fair labor standards and in safe conditions. An ethically made item is made by adult artisans or laborers in safe working conditions, who are treated kindly and are paid fair living wages.

This episode has all the classic themes that keep showing up over and over again here on the show: connection, aligning our action and values, slowing down, and giving ourselves grace as mothers. It’s also a lovely compliment to last week’s interview with Obakki creator Treana Peake.

Lauren’s Bio: Lauren Manwill is the owner and co-founder of Naupaka, an island boutique offering a stylish and creative curation of ethically made and fair trade goods. When faced with the many ugly truths of the Fashion and Retail Industry, she set out to become part of the solution rather than adding to the problem. Lauren spends her days at home with her two young sons and husband on the island of Maui.

In this episode, Lauren & I talk about:

  • What “ethical” means
  • How her business got started
  • The charming story of what naupaka is
  • Thinking beyond our
  • Examining our consumer culture habits
  • Raising awareness
  • Making small shifts to how we purchase and gift
  • Fast fashion—what it is and how
  • Accepting the new knowledge that will
  • Aligning our actions and values
  • How advertising has told us there is a certain way we need to be…and how we can unlearn those messages and move beyond them
  • The journey of learning—progress over perfection
  • Changing our mindset about money & cost
  • Beautycounter, Primally Pure, Branch Basics, Ojai Energetics and other conscientious brands
  • Feeling conflicted and confronted with this new information
  • The marathon: one step at a time
  • Putting the terms “ethically made” in front of your online searches
  • Suggestions for ways we can change
  • Documentary recommendation: The True Cost
  • The push for consumerism
  • Bringing sweatshops and what they are into focus
  • Healing the disconnect with fashion and clothing
  • Sharing the stories of the artisans Naupaka carries
  • Going down the rabbit holes of where our goods come from
  • The slow pace of growth and understanding
  • The pace of life, shipping, creating, purchasing—all of it seems too fast
  • Global Mamas
  • Understanding the remembering the way of life in other countries is often different than ours in the Western world
  • At the end of the day, it’s really about the people and not profit
  • The importance of asking for transparency
  • Ethical is becoming the new sustainable
  • Spending our dollars more wisely and intentionally
  • Asking stores to carry what you want and need
  • Taking initiative and starting the change
  • Lauren’s favorite resources: check out ethical fashion bloggers (Heidi at Fair Ethical Frugal, Leanne at Change the World By How You Shop); podcasts (Molly Stillman with Business with a Purpose)
  • Practical tips for getting started and change our buying habits
  • The most ethical piece of clothing is the one you already own
  • Finding balance as a working homeschool mom with two kids
  • Advice for shop owners who want to include ethically made/sourced products
  • Slow art instead of fast fashion—it is doable

Lauren’s Links: Website USE CODE: YAYA10 for 10% OFF your order and Instagram

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Beautiful & Simple: Today’s episode is sponsored by Beautiful & Simple. An online boutique I’ve created and filled with products that remind us to slow down, practice self-care, & focus on the meaningful parts of our day: the beautiful & simple moments. One of my new favorite mugs is the Christmas one that says “Heaven & Nature Sing” in beautiful script. It’s a sweet reminder to lean into the season and what’s important to me and my family. It’s also oversized at 15 oz—leaving plenty of room for frothing all the holiday goodness. Go check out the collection of mugs, shirts & bags currently available at

MUTU System: Thanks to MUTU System for supporting today’s episode of Elevating Motherhood. MUTU is a medically recommended, online exercise program that is designed to support mothers postpartum. And it’s not just for moms who have new babies. I started using MUTU 2.5 years after my third baby was born. My hip issues and unresolved diastasis recti were continuing to get in the way of my exercise attempts and everyday comfort level. I decided to do something about it and MUTU was the support I was looking for. I started to experience relief after just one week of using the program. I highly recommend it as a way to boost your strength and confidence! It’s gentle, do-able, effective—and you can use it at home. Buy it once and it’s yours for life. There’s more information over at And you can hear more from the founder and CEO Wendy Powell in Episode 41. Go check it out after this episode!


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