Category: Lifestyle

Kukena candles: Eco-friendly and handmade in Cornwall


Kukena candles: Eco-friendly and handmade in Cornwall

Handmade on the Cornish coast, Kukena candles are eco-friendly, made with soy wax and pure essential oils. Designed and produced by surf and swim coach Kate Sparks, these candles encapsulate the fragrances of the coast, setting the scene to unwind in your sanctuary. We spoke to the founder to find out more about the brand.

Why Candles?

Candles set the scene to unwind like nothing else, I feel like once a candle is lit, its tools down and the moment to dedicate some serious time to looking after yourself. I’ve been making them for six years now and love how they give off a gentle, flickering and most of all, natural light.

What are the ingredients?kukena candles 2

I make all the candles using soy wax, which is good because as well as being natural it burns slowly. I don’t use any artificial fragrances – just pure essential oils, which are the oils directly from plants. The bonus is that these oils have many therapeutic properties such as the uplifting effects of rose geranium.

Why did you set up the business?

I wanted to bring together my passions for surfing, the sea and natural living through an outlet which I could channel my creativity and entrepreneurial spirit in a way that truly represents what lights the fire in me.

What does ‘Kukena’ mean?

Kukena is Hawaiian for the continual movement of water. The essence of Kukena is the freedom of enjoying things we love, from surfing with its Hawaiian origins, swimming to simply living naturally.

kukena 3


‘The Coconut Bee’: A natural beauty and skincare alternative


‘The Coconut Bee’: A natural beauty and skincare alternative

The Coconut Bee – Our Home Grown Natural Revolution…

Hand crafted on the north coast of Cornwall in the UK. The Coconut Bee offers a unique organic range of 100% natural skin & hair care alternatives tailored for coastal living.

Sick of reading the back of plastic cosmetic skincare products to find a long list of chemical preservatives, additives and perfumes. I started creating homemade alternatives when I was a teenager. Coming from a family with an aromatherapy and holistic background I have always turned to the remarkable ability of natural remedies. It was only in 2017 that myself and partner Anthony decided to take the big step and share these with the world. After 2 years of hard work and development we finally launched ‘The Coconut Bee’ in December 2018.

A company dedicated to producing all natural, chemical & cruelty free products from sustainable and fairtrade sources. 

It’s not only the chemicals we wanted to remove for our customers, living so close to the sea here in Cornwall it is impossible to not be overwhelmed with the amount of plastic pollution we see wash up on our beaches. The environmental impact of the beauty industry is staggering so being able to offer consumers a plastic free alternative is so important to us, especially now people are becoming more aware they can make more Eco-friendly choices.

I’m sure I can speak for a lot of people when I say starting a business is one of the hardest things to take on, especially when you want to stick to your guns and not let any of your core values or standards slip along the way. Myself and Anthony founded The Coconut Bee from humble beginnings with nothing but an ideal and not a lot in our pockets. We are so grateful to have made it this far only with the help of people who share our beliefs, friends and other absolutely legendary Cornish businesses by our side.

Passionate about the sea, our products have been developed to repair and nourish skin and hair exposed to the elements. Not only that our blends have been created to uplift the spirit offering a fresh & individual take on natural beauty. Whatever your vice in life we have your covered!

At The Coconut Bee we believe life is full of choices. We choose to create products with zero chemicals. A range not tested on animals, containing only ingredients from sustainable and fairtrade sources. One with no palm oil or microbeads that are harmful to our planet. We choose a clear conscience. Not only that, we choose a product that really works to our lifestyle, Naturally.

Empowering Women through Surfing

We think women rock! Obviously guys you rock too but this ones for the chicks! One of our core initiatives is to support women on waves of all abilities, shapes and sizes. We have a key goal at The Coconut Bee to use our platform and social media to highlight the many benefits of surfing to women all over, focusing on body & image positivity. Keep your eyes pealed for future Coconut Bee events bringing women together through surfing, because we all need our own tribe.

Thank you..

It has always been my mission to create something pure without feeling pressure to adhere to convenience and the market ‘norm’. Since we launched I have been overwhelmed at the support and kindness we have received for our range. It’s freaking awesome to see so many people ditching the chemicals and reaching for something better. So much love & thanks to all of those who choose organic, local and eco friendly brands.

coconut bee

Surfing x Sustainability


Surfing x Sustainability

Words by Izzy Harden @windandwavesjournal

Surfing and sustainability. Sustainability and surfing. It is easy to assume that the two are distinctly separate. Surfing takes us across the globe searching for that perfect adventure while sustainability encourages us to lead a pro-environmental lifestyle to ensure future generations are able to meet their needs. So how are they linked? The intersection between surfing and sustainability is one that reveals a relationship between people and the natural environment.

Thinking back to the origins of surfing in Hawaii leads us to a surfing legend, Duke Kahanamoku. Born in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1890, Duke has often been hailed as the ‘father of modern surfing’ who resurrected surfing as we know it as the sport began to spread across Hawaii to mainland USA, Australia and New Zealand.


Duke Kahanamoku


It was during this time in Hawaii that surfing was very much connected to the ancient Gods with many surfers chanting for the deliverance of big waves and safety in the water. An interaction between surfers and ancient Gods represents the relationship between humankind and the natural environment, for it reflects the desire to become harmonious with the water. The dependency of surfers on the natural environment implies a strong feeling of attachment with the ocean, suggesting surfers are more likely to feel passionate about protecting their environment. Although in some cases this protection may be expressed through localism (the practice of territorialism over a surf spot), the awareness can be incredibly positive.

Being in the water most days surf coaching, I am constantly confronted with the issues of plastic pollution in the ocean that continues to threaten coastlines across the globe. The continual exposure I have to this environmental problem means I find it almost impossible to ignore, and I think those of you reading who spend a substantial amount of time in the ocean will share this feeling. If you’ve already read my previous post on plastic pollution you will have read the slightly terrifying statistic that across the globe every single minute we collectively buy 1 million plastic bottles, 1 million disposable cups and 2 million plastic bags. This is a hugely alarming statistic, although becomes even more alarming when the average person uses a plastic bag for just 12 minutes. 12 minutes of use versus 500 years + degrading in landfill (or in the ocean). Ask yourself, how long do you use a plastic bag for? How long does it take you to drink your morning coffee in a disposable cup or to drink a bottle of water?

It is apparent here that the rise of single-use plastic in our everyday lives is a rise of consumerism encouraged by convenience. Rising demand means rising production and as a result, the global market of plastic products is forecasted to have reached USD$1.2 trillion by 2020. The huge profitability made from this production of plastic poses the question of who loses when we exercise our consumer power and stop demanding plastic? The invention of celluloid (plastic) by John Wesley Hyatt in 1869 had the goal of replacing elephant ivory that had been used previously for the manufacture of items such as piano keys. Hyatt himself ironically claimed that his invention would ‘eliminate the need to ransack the Earth in pursuit of substances which are constantly growing scarcer’. The environment does not only suffer from the prevalence of plastic itself, but from the amount of oil needed to produce plastic. According to National Geographic, 8% of the world’s oil production is used to make plastic, but this figure is expected to have risen to a staggering 20% by the year 2050.

If this is a problem of consumption, then we need to reflect on our individual consumption habits. I can sense you may be wondering how one individual will make a difference when we are a planet of over 7.7 billion people, but that is exactly the point. Collective change is a reflection of individual change. What if 7.7 billion people made small changes towards a consumption that is greener? Primary steps towards a greener consumption may begin by eliminating single use plastics from your everyday life. A few purchases that may aid this transition include:

– A reusable water bottle

– A reusable coffee cup

– A reusable shopping bag (or a few!)

– A metal lunchbox

– A metal, reusable straw

– Beeswax wrap

A personal interest in this topic of ocean sustainability led me to conduct research with over 200 surfers for my undergraduate dissertation in Human Geography. The research aimed to gauge whether surfing had the capability to evoke sustainability and if so, why. After wide academic reading on the topic, I conducted in-depth interviews and distributed a questionnaire online in order to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the relationship between surfing and sustainability. The inspiration for this research followed a surfing trip to Indonesia that really highlighted just how much plastic is affecting our oceans. Below are a few photos from this trip.

Surfing and sustainability

My research concluded that surfing had a positive correlation with sustainability. Gender, duration of surfing and surf ability were all explored as variables that may influence response to the statement ‘surfing has raised my environmental awareness’. Results found that the longer participants had been surfing for, and the more advanced their surfing ability, the stronger they agreed with the above statement. This suggests that the more time spent in the water, the more environmental awareness is created.

Interestingly, it was found that surfing influenced women’s relationship with sustainability more than men’s. A reason for this was that studies show women have more altruistic traits than men which is the value most closely associated with pro-environmental attitude and behaviour. In other words, women are more likely to value sustainability, sorry guys. In addition to the findings already outlined, 80% of surfers in the study stated that discarded food and drinks packaging were frequently found at their local surf break. While 99% of surfers identified plastic as the main contributor to marine pollution. Although these findings are bleak, the research did suggest that surfing had the ability to positively inspire environmental stewardship as surfers possessed local knowledge of their changing local marine environment.

Environmental charity ‘Surfers Against Sewage’ (SAS) is a leading example of the power surfers have to initiate change at the national level inspired by their experiences with the ocean. Since their launch in 1990, SAS have successfully encouraged 403 communities to achieve a plastic-free status, with Canary Wharf being the latest to make a pledge. Just last week, SAS headed to Parliament with a 15ft model of a sea creature to make their mark for World Environment Day. The sea creature represented the unknown species present in our seas that are yet to be discovered but still experiencing the damaging effects of plastic pollution. The creature featured in a campaign film by SAS earlier in the year that urged politicians to support the fight against plastic pollution, climate change and the protection of our oceans (Watch the video here: )

This illustrates just one example of surfers having an influence on both awareness and policy making within the topic of ocean sustainability. With surfers continually exposed to the changing marine environment, it is apparent there is a degree of responsibility to share such experience with others in order to inspire positive change.