Pangea Organics's cosmetics, from its French Rosemary with Sweet Orange toner to its Japanese Matcha Tea & Goji Berry facial mask, are made with a chef's care and an eco-activist's sensibility. Joshua Onysko, 30, a globe-trotting high-school dropout, founded the company six years ago to fund his travels. "My mom freaked out when I told her I'd bought a one-way ticket to Bombay," Onysko recounts, "so I appeased her with a mother-son soap-making project." Today, those handcrafted bars are sold in 18 countries and made with ingredients sourced from all over the world, including organic olive oil from Tunisia and shea butter from a women's cooperative in Ghana. Products come in ingenious zero-waste packaging: When the fiber boxes are moistened and planted, embedded seeds sprout herbs like basil. Operating out of a wind-powered office in Boulder, Colorado, Pangea's staff eats lunches made with produce from a sizable on-site organic garden. Onysko has such respect for his ingredients, he's found a second use for the açaí and goji berries used in Pangea's face mask: At home, he makes them into ice cream.-Jen Murphy
More and more furniture dealers are selling eco-friendly designs, but not all their pieces are tempting enough to lure buyers. An exception: The online furniture retailer Vivavi (vivavi.com), founded in Brooklyn, New York, four years ago by 35-year-old Josh Dorfman , finds designs that are irresistibly modern and sleek. Adopting the slogan "Live Modern. Tread Lightly," Vivavi seeks out hip yet functional designs like Material Furniture's Flipper Screen, made of certified sustainable wood, which can be used as both a room divider and a shelving unit. The indoor-outdoor Spoon Lounge makes creative use of liana vines, an aggressive weed. Vivavi also offers a companion site, Modern Green Living (moderngreenliving.com), which lists environmentally responsible interior designers, contractors, even apartment buildings. This spring the resource guide was expanded into a book, The Lazy Environmentalist, covering everything from organic crib bedding to retailers of cardboard coffins; it will also serve as a companion to Dorfman's Sirius Satellite Radio show of the same name. He believes environmentalism will succeed only if it appeals to the laziest, and he counts himself among the most inert. "I love long showers, and I hate sorting the recycling," he admits.-Emily Kaiser
The Pacific Northwest is known for fanatical coffee roasters who travel the world in search of the best sustainably grown beans. Now there's a new eco-minded food obsessive in Seattle: Theo Chocolate. Launched last year, it's the only 100 percent organic and fair-trade chocolate manufacturer in the U.S. (The Fair Trade Certificate goes only to eco-friendly products made by workers who are paid enough to cover basic needs and reinvest in their operations.) Theo's conscientious chocolates are delicious: nuanced and intense, like its dark, single-origin bars from cacao-producing nations like Ghana and Madagascar. Founder Joseph Whinney, 40, is so passionate about chocolate that he hired a biologist to genetically map Theo's beans. Not all of Theo's endeavors are so serious: 3400 Phinney bars, named for the factory's street address, come in whimsical flavors like the salty-sweet "Bread and Chocolate" with bread crumbs; it's perfect with afternoon (preferably fair-trade) coffee (theochocolate.com).