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About us: Cycle Technologies is a technology and consumer products company creating brilliantly simple innovations that focus on women’s health. Our mission is to prevent unplanned pregnancies and prepare women to have families if and when they are ready. We also feature inspiring ideas, global health solutions, and breakthrough technologies that empower and enrich lives. To learn more about us, visit www.CycleTechnologies.com.

The Summer’s Brilliantly Simple Innovations

Photo by: Cycle Technologies

Photo credit: Cycle Technologies

Hello, Summer! We’ve selected a few brilliantly simple ideas we think you should know about:

ROTHY’S SHOES

Beautiful, comfortable shoes made out of discarded beverage containers? Yes please! The San Francisco-based Rothy’s Shoes has found a way to use some of the more than 2 million tons of water bottles discarded in U.S. landfills each year. Made from 100% recycled water bottles, these breathable, washable, and durable shoes are crafted by an innovative, patent-pending 3D knitting process. As of now, there are two styles and a few colors from which to choose.  Co-Founder, Roth Martin says the limited color-palette speaks to their emphasis on simplicity.  Send samples please!

 

WARD + ROBES

Can a hospital gown be couture fashion? When top designers collaborate and leverage their creative talents, it can be. Starlight Children’s Foundation of Canada and Ward + Robes are redefining the hospital gown to ease the sulkiness of staying in the hospital. Check out the video and see for yourself the impact this is having on these young lives. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you really understand your patients’ needs.

 

TACKLING OBESITY WITH DESIGN

Cycle Technologies Features Work of Hayden Peek on The Brilliantly Simple Blog

Photo credit: Hayden Peek

Do you know what’s in your grocery basket? Reading labels gets tedious, but if we’re going to fix the obesity epidemic we need to find a way to make people more conscious of what they’re consuming. Hayden Peek, a British designer, has come up with with “a ridiculously simple way” to cut through the noise and educate us; a simple graphic that would print at the bottom of every supermarket receipt, with color-coded symbols for things such as calories, sugar, and saturated fat.  Color-coded symbols on your grocery receipts could alert you if there is too much sugar, fat, sodium…you get the idea. What do you think? Would this change your shopping habits? 

 

These “innovations at work” have the potential to address some of the most challenging problems we face today. Connect with us regularly and don’t forget to follow us on twitter, facebook, and email. If you have an innovation or idea that may help address a global problem, please contact us!


Cycle Technologies is a socially minded, consumer and technology company that creates brilliantly simple global health solutions to help address complex needs. To learn more about us, visit www.CycleTechnologies.com

Condom Embarrassment?

 

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While researching my post on eco-friendly sex products for the CycleBeads blog, I recalled the term, “condom embarrassment.”  It’s an actual thing with research behind it.  It refers to people’s embarrassment around purchasing, using, disposing of, and storing condoms, with purchasing being the most embarrassing.  Unfortunately, it has been shown that condom embarrassment can cause people to use condoms less frequently.  This is not good, as it could put a person at risk for STIs and/or unintended pregnancy.  If relative anonymity is important to you, then ordering online is perhaps the most discrete.  However, what if you can’t wait for shipping time?  Then you may have to go into a store to buy them.

I decided to go incognito into the local Whole Foods to see what affect it would have on any condom embarrassment.  That’s me above in the photo! (lol)

If you’re shorter than 5’ 6”, you may not be able to purchase condoms at this Whole Foods!  Why are the condoms way up there?!

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Whole Foods does not have a wide selection of condoms, but they do carry eco-friendly brands, so that’s great.

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It turns out that no one paid any attention to me and what I was purchasing.  If the cashier noticed or thought anything, I don’t know.  The only embarrassment was the incognito look!  Next time I’ll go without the dark shades and be proud of my purchase.  :-D

Ann Mullen is Director of Health Education at Cycle Technologies

Ann Headshot - cropped

 

 

January’s Top ​Picks for Sustainable Development Technologies

(c) Cycle Technologies

(c) Cycle Technologies

Happy New Year! We’re in full swing here at Cycle Technologies HQ offices working on our own brilliantly simple innovations that help address unmet needs in family planning and contraception.

We also want to applaud others who are committed to sustainable, innovative technologies on The Brilliantly Simple Blog. We think many of these organizations and exciting “innovations at work” have the potential to address some of the most challenging problems we face today.  Connect with us regularly and don’t forget to follow us on twitter, facebook, and email.

Here are our January favorite picks for sustainable development technologies.

​1. ​Odon Device

The BD Odon Device assists child births in settings where caesarians aren’t an option. It was included in the Innovation Countdown 2030 report as a technology that can save lives and has  “great potential to accelerate progress toward the proposed SDG health targets.” Cycle Technologies featured this innovation in 2014 on our blog. Check it out!

​2. ​Hippo Roller

Millions of women and children struggle daily to access water. They often collect water by carrying heavy  containers on their heads in order to survive. The Hippo Roller is a drum with a handle that can be easily rolled along over rough terrain. It allows users to carry 5x more water (up to 24 gallons!) with less effort.  Anyone can get involved in this project. Take a look at their website to learn more. Now that’s Brilliantly Simple!

3. Ashudinashak

​Swati Bedekar was teaching at rural schools in Gujarat, India when she discovered that girls were absent and often dropping out of school altogether, due to their menstrual cycles. She worked to provide them access to sanitary pads, but even when the girls could get sanitary pads, they weren’t using them.  Why? Because they couldn’t dispose of the pads in a discreet, safe way.   Seeing the issue, Ms. Bedekar’s husband invented a cheap, ecofriendly machine that could burn sanitary pads safely and hygienically. They called this terra-cotta “hearth-like” machine Ashudinashak. To date, the machine has already been installed in +2000 schools in rural India at a cost of less than $30 per machine.

Check back with us next month and follow us on facebook and twitter for the latest updates. If you have an innovation or idea that may help address a global problem, please let us know by dropping us a line at info@CycleTechnologies.com

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Cycle Technologies is a socially-minded, consumer and technology company that creates brilliantly simple global health solutions that help address complex needs. To learn more about us, visit www.CycleTechnologies.com

Featured Innovation: Ooho, The Edible Water “Bottle”

While some reviewers have complained that it looks like a “breast implant” or a “jellyfish”, this blob is actually a cool way to package water.  It’s goal? To replace billions of plastic bottles used worldwide each year. Called Ooho,  it’s made from seaweed and is edible. There are still a few issues to resolve – How do you distribute this to a mass market? How do you keep from spilling water when you drink?

But Ooho just won a Sustainability Award from the EU so hopefully the people behind it at Skipping Rocks Lab will figure out those details. Wouldn’t it be great if we could get rid of plastic water bottles once and for all?

A few recent articles written on Ooho:

Smithsonian Magazine

The Guardian

Fast Company