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Building a Sustainable Business

We live in an increasingly throwaway world, but we don't have to. At Skylark, our environmental stewardship begins with our non-toxic cleaning processes, but it doesn't stop there. We strive to incorporate sustainable practices throughout our business, from how we process garments, to the packaging materials we use, and even to the efficient way we structure our free delivery routes.

An Antidote to Destructive Consumption

That favorite sweater. We all have one. At Skylark, we are most proud of our ability to renew and revitalize your favorite clothes, extending their lives for years and years to come. This in itself is a beautiful thing.

But it is also a beautiful thing for our Earth. Producing garments generates waste, uses energy in both production and international shipping, and the garments themselves are often made of non-renewable materials (petroleum). And they fill up landfills: In the U.S. alone, 21 billion pounds of garments get thrown away each year, much of this waste being non-biodegradable. So you can feel very good about hanging on to that favorite sweater.

Check out our partner The Sustainable Apparel Coalition to learn more about sustainable practices in the garment production industry.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle...And Reduce Some More

Our commitment to the Earth does not stop at our environmentally-friendly cleaning methods. We work hard to incorporate sustainable practices throughout our business. From reusing thousands of hangers and eliminating plastic packaging, to using less water, steam, solvent, or detergent, we are continually searching for ways to minimize our environmental footprint.

We Recycle (and Reuse) Plastic and Hangers:
Send your hangers and plastic back to Skylark with your dry cleaning pickup, or drop them off at our store. We reuse metal hangers, over one hundred thousand per year in fact. We estimate that every year our hanger recycling program eliminates the need to manufacture (and ship, and dispose of) over five thousand pounds of metal hangers,


Less Packaging = Less Waste
Better than recycling of course is not using it in the first place. Skylark's precision autobagger and low-mill, wide-gusset bags minimize plastic consumption. We also offer nifty reusable garment bags (get a coupon here) and our Skylark Laundry Club uses 100% reusable totes and bags, completely eliminating disposable packaging.

It's About the Process
Dry cleaning and laundry use energy, water, detergent, solvent, and other resources, creating many opportunities to do better. Skylark heats water with recycled steam, our state-of-the-art dry cleaning equipment purify and reuse solvent, we use recycled water to cool our dry cleaning machines, and we minimize heating and cooling needs through careful use of ventilation and air flow. Skylark works with MnTap and Xcel Energy or minimize energy and material usage in every aspect of its process.


We Even Recycle Buildings!
No kidding. Skylark's main production plant in St. Paul began life in the 1970s as an auto parts store and repair shop. In 2012, Skylark cleaned up and remediated the long-vacant building, transforming it to a state-of-the-art production facility and store, and bringing over two dozen new jobs to St. Paul.

 

Saving You A Trip to the Cleaners

Not only does our convenient and free delivery service save you a trip to the cleaners (two trips, in fact), but it saves fuel and reduces CO2 output as well. That's because we use an efficient route based delivery system, allowing our drivers to cover over a hundred delivery locations in a day, and serve several thousand customers in a week. That's a lot fewer cars on the road, a lot fewer fumes in the air, and many, many more hours of free time for our delivery customers.