Our Grove Collaborative Review: Making Natural Products Accessible

by | Sep 11, 2020

Cleaning products are not typically known for their positive environmental impact or their health-conscious ingredients. The same can be said for most household products. And while that may be the norm, it certainly doesn’t define the products that Grove Collaborative sends to homes across the U.S.

Grove Collaborative, founded in San Francisco, is a home delivery service for environmentally-friendly and health-conscious household products. They offer a wide range of goods from a number of socially responsible brands as well as some of their own products through both a monthly subscription and as-needed basis.

These products vary from everyday cleaning supplies to natural baby products and even makeup. And, as a certified B-Corp, everything from product testing to distribution is done with the planet and its inhabitants in mind. 

That’s why we’ve put together this Grove Collaborative review—to share the value, convenience, and comfort that comes from having non-toxic, environmentally friendly, and ethically sourced household necessities sent straight to your door.

Our Buy Ensemble Rating: Grove Collaborative Subscription Box

Product

4.5/5

Grove manages to provide home essentials that are eco-friendly and effective. Everyone can find what they need with their extensive list of products, not to mention the home delivery!

PEOPLE

4.5/5

Grove is a certified B-Corporation who focuses on making healthy household products more accessible to all and only partners with companies that share their values.

PLANET

5/5

Their commitment to environmentally conscious ingredients, sustainable packaging, and a vow to go plastic-free by 2025 really set Grove apart.

PRICE

4.5/5

While a little pricier than your generic brands, Grove’s generous free giveaways (especially for first-timers) combined with cheap shipping make it a pretty good deal compared to other natural alternatives.

grove collaborative subscription

Because of the current stay-at-home order issued by my Governor, I was looking for ways to get groceries, household goods, and other necessities sent to my house without me having to risk an adventure to the store (where there is not an abundance of eco-friendly products anyway).

Like many people, a few things come up in the must-have list for me when I’m buying home essentials: effective products that will keep my home clean and comfortable, and non-toxic products that are human-safe. Without being able to scour the grocery store aisles one-by-one for the “green” option, meeting this two-point criteria usually requires scouring the Internet product-by-product—the exact experience Grove Collaborative saved me from. 

Grove Collaborative is mindful of the environment and human health in every respect. Every product on their website is: non-toxic, 100% cruelty-free, has plant based-formulas, comes from ethical supply chains, and is made from sustainable materials. Their replenishment-based service solved the quandary of going out to the store. And while that may make an especially significant impact now, the amount of time it will save in the future that I won’t spend running out for an individual item here and there is also a pleasant bonus.

The array of items they sell is pretty astounding. Even their in-house product list is vast enough to cover most necessities, but through their partner program they offer enough home essentials and personal care to account for a clean and healthy house and body on a monthly basis. Their easy-to-use interface also makes customizing your Grove Co. orders incredibly easy, so you only get what you need! You can find popular brands like Burt’s Bees chapstick, Mrs. Meyer’s products, and Tom’s of Maine toothpaste as well as dozens of others you already know and love!

Throughout this Grove Collaborative review, we will detail what this company is doing to provide wider access to high quality, eco-friendly products through their home delivery service, and how you can start to take advantage of the perks of being a Grove Co. member.

Thinking about signing up for Grove? Here’s what to consider…

Grove’s recurring delivery service effectively eliminates going to the store for household goods. While that is vital particularly in today’s climate with the world being shut down and all, it will also be valuable well into the future. 

Those who are busy with work, play, or managing a bustling family will find the simplicity of Grove Co. to be a life-changer. And because you can cancel and delay shipments at any time for no fee, even those who live on their own can benefit from having their household needs sent to their doorstep.

What is the Grove Collaborative?

what is grove collaborativeGrove Collaborative is an online subscription service that delivers cleaning supplies, household products, and other essentials directly to their customers. While they do make some of their own products, they also offer a litany of reputable products in the sustainable space on their site as well.

They run on a subscription model, but make it extremely easy to customize each order. You can set up auto-shipments if that is most convenient or turn off the recurring orders and do it on an as-need basis. 

While some of the products they offer can also be found in local stores, the ease and convenience of creating your shipments, along with the amount of waste you save with their refillable bottles and sustainable packing, make shopping with them a lot better for your wallet and the earth.

How does Grove Collaborative Work?

To get started, all you need to do is enter your email and create an account with Grove Collaborative, no credit card necessary (until you want to start making purchases!). When you create an account, you get a bunch of free stuff along with access to the market to start placing orders. 

The default is recurring shipments for accounts, but it is super easy to customize shipment frequency, skip shipments, and even completely opt-out of our recurring service at any time.

You can opt-into their VIP membership as well. It costs $19.99/year and supplements your account already created with the company. VIP membership gets you free shipping on each order, and they send you 4 free gifts a year to supplement your auto-shipments, usually new products! You’ll also get early access to new products, and free returns!

You can still opt-out of auto-shipments at any point per your schedule. Shipping usually costs $4.99, so depending on how many times you order, this deal could be really valuable (plus, the freebies are always a win)!

They offer a 60-day free VIP trial and make sure to notify you before the trial is up so you can cancel if you need to. We are all familiar with the experience of a forgotten free trial sign-up leading to a surprise monthly fee, leaving you feeling scammed. But not with Grove! Their transparency and communication gives you a very welcome reminder to make sure you’re getting only what you want.

grove collaborative free gift

 When you sign up, you get this free starter kit offer from Grove Collaborative

How Much is a Membership with Grove?

Becoming a member of Grove Collaborative is absolutely free! However, as we mentioned before, shipments on orders under $49 cost $4.99, unless you are a member of their $20 a year VIP program, then it is always free.

Because their business model keeps the environment in mind, they do have minimum orders. They don’t want to simply ship out a single product. Their order minimums are as follows: $30 for first time orders, $25 for auto-shipments, and $39 for “Ship Now” orders.

What Can You Buy with Grove?

Grove offers a wide array of products from their online store, from toilet bowl cleaners to reef-safe sunscreens.

They offer:

Household products like:

  • Cleaning Accessories
  • Dish & Hand Soap
  • Dishwasher Detergents
  • Air Fresheners & Candles
  • Multi-Surface & Concentrates
  • Wood & Glass Cleaners
  • Floor Cleaners
  • Bathroom Cleaners
  • Specialty Cleaners
  • Laundry Essentials
  • Trash & Recycling Needs
  • Food Storage
  • Pest Control

Personal care products like:

  • Bath & Body Care
  • Oral Health Essentials
  • Period Care
  • Sexual Wellness
  • Hand Sanitizers
  • Vitamins & Supplements
  • Immunity Aids
  • Cough & Cold
  • First Aid Products
  • Essential Oils
  • Probiotics

We think you get the point. No matter what your household or health need, chances are that Grove has it.

Is Grove worth it?

Yes! In addition to the benefit of not having to leave your home, their wide variety of products give a Grove membership extreme value!

If you have children, roommates, pets, or just spend time in your home, then you know the endless loop of purchasing products like hand soap, laundry detergent, and natural cleaning supplies along with body and skincare essentials like toothpaste, shampoo, and soap. Grouping these purchases all together saves you dozens of trips to the store, and having them on an auto-shipment that fits your lifestyle makes sure your supplies replenish just before they run out.

Grove also offers a price match guarantee. If you see one of the products they offer being sold for less elsewhere, you can send an email to [email protected] with the listing and they will apply the lower price to your order! No scam here! You’ll never have to worry about paying a premium.

We recommend giving it a first month’s try: worst case scenario, you will get to try new, clean home products, and enjoy so many free gifts with your first order (and likely a cleaning caddy to organize your new reserves).

Can You cancel Grove? Is It Easy to Cancel?

Because Grove does not require you to have a monthly shipment, canceling Grove is not necessary. But let’s say that you sign up for the 60-day free trial for their VIP membership, then how easy is it to cancel? 

Well, they send a reminder email of your commitment to pay on day 57 (3 days before your payment goes through). Cancelling is as simple as sending an email to [email protected] and notifying them of your intent to cancel. If you would like to completely remove your Grove account, then you need to send an email to [email protected].

You can check out their FAQ page for a full walk through on how to cancel.

Presenting the Product

presenting the productGrove collaborative presents an entirely new way for people to get the household & cleaning products they need. Instead of one-time use plastic bottles filled with harsh and harmful chemicals, Grove delivers a variety of non-toxic, natural products in a sustainable, plastic-neutral way. 

By creating a profile with them, you are allowed to update the products in your cart to be shipped on an as-needed basis, meaning you never waste any money with them and only get what you need with each shipment. With easy opt out and customization options, the shipment service isn’t really a hassle and making changes to your next delivery is incredibly easy.

Because they allow for such easily customizable orders they cater to a wide variety of potential customers—the parent who can barely keep up with all of the products they need to keep their house clean and family healthy, as well as the person living alone who just wants to get rid of emergency toothpaste runs.

Not to mention, they offer so many free items and perks that even if you are only ordering from there four times a year, you make the $20 VIP fee back on free shipping alone. If you don’t know what you want, then simply reach out to a Grove Guide on the site and get recommendations and assistance by email or text from a Grove expert!

Grove does not sell food, which is important to keep in mind. So even with all of your natural home essentials taken care of, Grove is not a one-stop shop for everything in your pantry.

Lastly, in circumstances like we have now with COVID-19, when trips to the store should be reduced as much as possible, knowing that you will have all of your household goods sent directly to your home offers a peace of mind that cannot be understated.

👍 The Good & Bad of Choosing Grove Collaborative 👎

 PROS

  • Wide variety of household and cleaning products.
  • Straight to your door delivery with sustainable packaging, refillable products, and affordable prices.
  • Unmatched customer service. VIP Members get their own service rep, and you can always reach out to a Grove guide for recommendations and help!
  • Every product on their site is ethically sourced, sustainably packaged, and non-toxic.

 CONS

  • Items can go out of stock. This is rare, but it does happen.
  • You have to double check your cart before you place an order. Grove will place items in your cart that they think you will want based off of previous orders.
  • Shipping times can be slower than you’re used to.

Our Complete Grove Collaborative Review: Making Natural & Non-Toxic Products More Accessible to All

Making Natural & Non-Toxic Products

Several members of the Grow Ensemble team have Grove Collaborative memberships and really love it. I joined the ranks recently when I went through the process of creating a VIP membership and ordered some products from the site. 

My first purchase was originally around $40…but then Grove threw in an additional $16.62 worth of products as a bonus, covered shipping (because of the VIP membership), and even provided an additional $5 discount to the order.

Because of extremely high traffic and orders due to the coronavirus, they noted that shipping may be delayed an additional 5-7 days upfront. However, the shipment arrived only one day later than expected.

From the initial purchase to actually utilizing the products, the experience with Grove has been exceptional. I was immediately sent an email letting me know my order was being processed. After my order was shipped, Grove reached out and notified me of my next shipment date with an easy link to manage my subscription. This was exactly one month before the next shipment date, which left me plenty of time to modify this order.

grove contact 3 ways

When my order arrived all of my products came as advertised, as well as a handy pamphlet detailing how my next shipment would work, what I could expect with the service, and 3 different ways to get in contact with a Grove Guide.

I had ordered several Grove Collaborative products such as laundry powder packs, facial tissue, bar soap, 100% recycled trash bags, and a set of 2 Walnut scrubber sponges, as well as some other brands like Method toilet cleaner and Mrs. Meyer’s hand soap, dish soap, and surface cleaner.

Simplicity

SimplicityEverything from ordering to managing your subscription to getting help with Grove is incredibly simple. Their product layout is easy to navigate and finding what you need is straightforward. Not having to wander down aisles looking for the smallest section in the store that houses sustainable and healthy products, and instead having a plethora of options and brands to choose for delivery is an exciting change.

Also, there were no questions once I had actually placed my order. Grove is extremely communicative during the process and very accessible to their customers at all touch points of the process. In fact, they have even won awards for the top level transparency, efficiency, and sustainability in their shipment practices! 

Their recurring service effectively eliminates the hassle of writing down a list of what you need and going out to get it. Instead, small edits can be made to your next shipment order on your profile and you don’t even have to think about it after that!

Incredible Variety

Grove offers an extensive list of products for almost every household need imaginable. And they are continually expanding what they are selling on their site. From lotion to diapers to pet supplements, everything that keeps a house humming can be ordered from their site.

And while they do make their own high-quality products, they also offer brands that people know and love like Seventh Generation cleaning products and Burt’s Bees chapstick. Because everything that they sell is natural and non-toxic, there is no dark corner of their site with unhealthy products—everything you’ll find is a healthy product you can feel good about buying.

Grove is always innovating and creating new natural products to add to their store. Even if you don’t feel like purchasing a new item in your order, chances are that they’ll add it in as a free gift set for you to try out as a VIP member.

Incredible Variety

Focus on Sustainability & Natural Ingredients From Start to Finish

Because cleaning products aren’t regulated by the FDA, they are not required to list their ingredients on their packaging. However, the EPA does mandate that active disinfectants or potentially harmful ingredients do get listed clearly. But, as you’ve probably already grasped—Grove isn’t a bare minimum kind of company. They list all of their ingredients on their packaging for you to see.

Grove has made their supply chain more sustainable by partnering with Amfori, a leading business association for free and open trade, and ensuring that not only do they reach certain environmental standards, but that the people who make this happen are treated ethically as well.

But that doesn’t stop at their own in-house products. Each of their partners are held to the same rigorous standards as this B-Corp. 

Their model also allows for a lot less waste. By sending out a reusable container for their cleaning products when possible, subsequent shipments can contain just the product refill. That means a significantly less amount of single-use plastic and a lot less waste going into landfills. 

They currently tout being plastic neutral, meaning they collect and recycle an ounce of plastic for every ounce of plastic they sell.  The company has vowed to be completely single-use plastic free by 2025!

Lastly, because all of their products are non-toxic—you don’t have to worry about what’s going down your sink or possible negative health effects from using their products.

focus on sustainability

Supreme Customer Service

Grove puts a premium on making their customers happy. Their VIP program is 0 commitment, meaning that you can cancel at any time, with no fees. They have a generous return policy which allows customers to return the product and request a refund within 30 days of delivery. 

Their Grove Guides are experts on their products, and if you have questions you can call, text, or email at any time. Twenty-four hours is the maximum time you have to wait to hear back, but it never takes that long.

They are also upfront about next payments and shipments so you don’t get stuck with a box that you didn’t want or need, further reducing waste. They even developed an app so that you can quickly edit orders and upcoming shipments from your phone. 

Sometimes online shopping can be an even bigger headache than traditional retail because of the lack of transparency and difficulty getting in touch with the company, but that is simply not the case with Grove.

Focus on Quality

Maybe most importantly, their products are excellent. Because they only partner with amazing brands and create their own brand offerings as well, they don’t sacrifice any quality by having such a dense variety of products.

The myth that natural products don’t work as well as their chemical-rich counterparts has long been busted, but Grove might have put the nail in that coffin anyways. From their cleaners to their supplements, they put a large focus on ensuring that what they sell works. And remember, if you think it doesn’t, then simply return it for all of your money back. 

They don’t have to deal with the logistics of running multiple retail outlets, so all of their time is spent on creating high-quality products and keeping their customers happy. Whether tackling serious stains or trying to keep a little one healthy, Grove is the one-stop shop for natural, nontoxic products.

What I Didn’t Love about Grove Collaborative

While there’s a lot to love about this awesome shopping experience, there were a couple of things that didn’t shine so brightly. One is that you really have to double check your cart before you place an order since Grove will place items in your cart that they think you will want based off of previous orders. 

If not monitored, this can potentially lead to some unwanted purchases and spending. Luckily, like we explained, they do have an awesome reminder system that will notify you before your next order is placed, so it’s easy to adjust your cart as needed ahead of time or turn off recurring orders. They also have a really generous return/refund policy, so not too many risks there.

Shipping time was a bit slower than I’m used to, but I think it’s definitely worth the wait since you know that as a B-Corp and socially responsible company, they’re treating their employees right and minimizing their environmental impact, unlike many other online retailers (*cough*cough*, you know the ones I’m talking about).

A Few of My Most Highly Recommended Products

These are some of my favorite (and repeated) products I’ve discovered through Grove Collaborative.

What’s the Word About Grove Collaborative?… 💬

Other Grove Collaborative Reviews

People all around the United States love Grove. After scouring the Internet for Grove Collaborative reviews, it seems that people are exceptionally pleased with the products themselves, as well as the customer service Grove offers on the back end. 

Because their products are healthy and safe and the packaging is sustainable (and sometimes reusable) folks usually only have glowing things to say in their Grove Collaborative reviews!

grove collaborative customer-review-3
grove collaborative customer-review-2
grove collaborative customer review

Not Sold On Grove Collaborative? Other Options to Explore… 🤔

Cleancult

Cleancult is a subscription-based company that sends out cruelty free, vegan hand and dish soap, reusable glass containers, and laundry needs. Their glass spray bottles are minimalistic and color chromatic and refills arrive in recyclable containers. In fact, their shipping process is completely carbon neutral!

They have partnered with Carbon Fund to audit their shipping process to assess their actual carbon footprint and have partnered with environmental agencies to plant trees to offset any carbon emissions from the shipping process.

They do not offer a VIP program, but purchasing their products in curated bundles can lower their prices gets you around $10 off for your purchase. You have to create a “Cleaning Plan” (an account) in order to start the process. 

They offer free shipping on a quantity basis, so if you buy 4 or more Evergreen glass products or 3 or more refills, then your order is shipped free!

Check out what you can get with Cleancult.

Puracy

puracy productsPuracy is an Austin-based company that ships natural care cleaning products directly to consumers. All of their offerings are 100% vegan and cruelty free. Their products are sold in Target, but like Grove, they also deliver based on a subscription or per order basis.

However, unlike Grove, they do not offer any sort of perks program with an account. While creating an account does create a more seamless shopping experience on their site, pricing remains the same, and shipping does not change ($7.99 for shipments under $35). So, while creating an account is free, it does not offer the free shipping or loads of free gifts that come with a VIP membership with Grove.

There are other pricing tradeoffs as well. Puracy’s pricing is a little bit more expensive than Grove as well. A refill of 64 oz. of hand soap is a little more than $20, while Grove offers the same quantity for about $13. But, Puracy does not have a minimum order amount.

Puracy has been mentioned in media outlets like The New Yorker, The New York Times, and ABC for their high-quality product selection.

Buy from Grove’s Partners Directly or Find Other Sustainable Brands

Buy from Grove’s Partners Directly Grove has a long list of partner brands they vouch for in terms of non-toxicity, sustainability, and ethical practices. If a subscription box isn’t for you, you can always buy directly from these brands and know your dollar is supporting businesses that are planet-friendly and people-healthy.

But Grove’s partnerships can’t cover every household goods brand on a mission to clean the planet along with your body! Our friends at Plaine Products are also part of the mission to eliminate single-use plastic from the world, offering vegan shower products (soap, shampoo, conditioner). You can learn more about Plaine Products in our podcast episode with their CEO, Lindsey McCoy!

Meliora is another company also tackling the waste-free, plastic-free mission. Run by “proudly uncool and perpetually curious engineers,” you can find nontoxic, natural cleaning products with all of the transparency you could ask for. The company’s Founder, Kate Jakubas, came onto the podcast as well to share about their company and their mission.

Conclusion: Grove Delivers the Goods

Maintaining all of your home needs in an orderly and consistent way is challenging. You have just enough dish soap, but not enough hand soap. And you are running low on toilet paper, but you’re fine on sponges. It is a delicate balance.

Instead of running to the store every time you need something, Grove decided to bring the goods to you. Their recurring shipments are easy to track and manage so that you are never out of supply. 

But what I loved about them most was their commitment to promoting sustainable living. Their sustainable business model seriously reduces the amount of single-use plastics and waste generated by these great products and their all natural, nontoxic ingredients give you peace of mind that what you are using is good for the earth and the oceans.

See what Grove.Co has to offer your household! Again, a first month’s membership is a great housewarming gift or a much-needed care package for that college student you know.

Henry Burgess-Marshall

Henry Burgess-Marshall

Contributor

Henry is an entrepreneur based out of Seattle, Wa. He is an avid reader, writer, and lover of nature. His passion for people and connection with others has led him to work with some incredible individuals and companies. He is always looking for the next exciting adventure, whether it be in his personal life or business pursuit. 
You can connect with Henry on LinkedIn and at his Company’s website here

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