Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

Why you should care?

No matter what your school experience will look like this year, make sure you have all the school supplies needed to succeed and make an impact. See our curated best ethical and sustainable Back-to-School supplies for Fall 2020!

by Kate Houser

The school year is upon us and parents and students around the country are choosing the best approach for back-to-school learning that fits their situation. While some are opting for a hybrid learning experience by spending half of the time in school and half at home, others are adopting 100% distance learning by turning their homes into classrooms. No matter which choice is best for you, you will still want to make sure you’re prepared. We’ve rounded up our fave Back-to-School supplies for Fall 2020!

Hybrid vs Distance Learning

Hey Social Good polled its audience and found that 67% of parents with elementary school students and 53% of high school students are opting for distance learning over hybrid this semester. For parents, this means turning your basement or living room into a classroom, hosting a reading hour in your backyard or turning your kitchen into a lunchroom. So, let’s stock up on all of the items you will need to turn your home into a safe, clean, and sustainable “schoolhouse”. Our curated best choices are all from social good or sustainable brands to help make every purchase count.

College Students: Online & On-Campus

And for all you college students out there, you’re either heading to campus housing or going full scale online for your Fall classes. The NY Times reported that “more than a quarter of U.S. colleges plan to begin Fall instruction fully or mostly online, but many are still opening up their dorms”. For those of you going online, make sure you have the best remote environment to succeed and focus. If back-to-campus is on your horizon, make sure you stock up on all the protective supplies and gear needed to keep you safe and healthy all semester long.


Best Back-to-School Supplies Fall 2020

Although this year’s “Back to School” shopping list might look a bit different, we still curated the best quality supplies needed to have a healthy, safe and educational Fall semester. Here are our best sustainable and ethical back to school supplies for Fall 2020!

1. Face Mask for Every Outfit

Flipside Hats – Bronze Giveback Medal

Turning waste into fashion and keeping excess fabrics out of the landfill is Flipside Hat’s goal! WE LOVE the diverse face mask prints this Oregon based brand has to offer. Their commitment to keep our planet free from textile waste is inspirational! Whether you like your face masks in a chic solid print or a fun printed pattern, they’ve got something for everyone (and every outfit)! Snag yourself a matching hat made from reclaimed fabrics to really elevate your style this semester.



AthletaSilver Social Good Medal, Gold Giveback Medal & Bronze Sustainability Medal

Snag your child the perfect pack of five printed kids sized masks in an assortment of prints and colors. Help them feel unique every day of the school week! WE LOVE Athleta’s commitment to donating 100,000+ masks to healthcare professionals, their “Power of She” program to empower women and girls, and their sustainability commitment to ensure 80% of materials used are sustainable by December 2020.

Sustainable Back to School Supplies Fall 2020

Headbands of HopeSilver Giveback Medal

WE LOVE this brand’s mission of bringing a smile to a child’s face. For every purchase made, Headbands of Hope donates a headband to a child with cancer so they can feel beautiful again. Currently, they are selling three packs of adjustable masks in various printed themes. And, with every purchase they’ll donate a mask to a healthcare professional.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

2. Sanitizing Spray for Hands, Masks & Dorms

Molly’s SudsGold Giveback Medal 

We’re sure this hand and fabric sanitizing spray is going to be a new essential in your backpack this year! After a long day of classes, spray your face mask down with this non-toxic fabric and hand cleaner made from earth derived ingredients and free of harmful chemicals. It’s important to ensure your masks are sanitized in a safe way and this awesome spray will do just that! For college students, check out their new room sanitizing spray to keep your dorm and your respiratory system clean and healthy as well! 

LISTEN to the inspiring story of how founder, Monica Leonard, created Molly’s Suds. Think toxic chemical fighting wonder woman. Check out Good Smack for the Planet Podcast episode.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

3. A Backpack That Gives Back

State Bags – Silver Giveback Medal

Whether your child is going back for Hybrid or Distance learning this year, keep their materials organized and routine as normal as possible with one of these cute backpacks! These are perfect to carry to school or for an outdoor lesson in the backyard. WE ABSOLUTELY ADORE the fun collection of children and adult backpacks from State Bags, and their commitment to giving back. For every backpack sold, they donate to various organizations helping children and families in need.

Bixbee – Bronze Giveback Medal

With a social mission of “One Here, One There”, Bixbee collaborates with local and far-reaching nonprofits that provide children in need with better access to education. From the U.S. to Rwanda to Thailand, your purchase gives back to children around the world and WE LOVE their unique selection of fun backpacks for kids of all ages. Your kids will be excited to head back to class this year, even if it is in your living room.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

4. Best Headphones for Distance Learning

LSTNSilver Giveback Medal

If there are students in your home opting for Distance Learning this year, make sure they have the right equipment to help focus. With multiple children, students and people working at home, you’ll need headphones to keep the peace. Keep everyone focused and the home classroom quiet with a quality built headphone from LSTN. Their kid’s headphones come in blue, pink or white and automatically limit volume output to 85 dB (which is the World Health Organization’s safe listening standard). This way, anyone can listen damage-free for up to eight hours at a time. And, to sweeten your purchase impact, every purchase results in proceeds donated to help hearing challenged individuals, hear for the first time.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

5. Fun, Sustainable Desk Calendar, Planner, Notebooks, etc.

Yoobi Silver Giveback Medal

When teachers spend on average $560 of their own earnings to ensure kids have the best school supplies, it’s a big deal (and impact) when a company donates school supplies for every purchase made to students, teachers and schools. Check out their awesome selection of supplies in fun prints for boys and girls. Whether you’re a teacher or a parent turned teacher for distance learning, you’ll want to grab these give back and affordable school supplies! From notebooks, pens, pencils, art supplies, index cards, facemasks, sanitizer wipes and more, they’ve got school supplies covered.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

Paper Source – Bronze Sustainability Medal

Paper Source is one of our editor’s personal favorite sustainable brands. They offer an amazing selection of fun-themed paper products, desk calendars, planners, notebooks, posters and more. This paper brand shows their commitment to sustainability by partnering with (1) responsible and sustainable forestry mills; (2) donating, reusing, and recycling all of their scrap paper; and (3) using sustainable shipment options and packaging materials. Order online or make a socially distant trip to one of their locations to see their beautiful displays!

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

6. Coolest Eco-Friendly Thermometer

Temp-N-TossCurrently Being Assessed

Ensure the best health for your school day with these awesome disposable thermometers made from paper! Plastic thermometers often contain materials harmful to the environment such as mercury, but Temp-N-Toss developed a more sustainable alternative. We just discovered this alternative to traditional plastic and mercury based thermometers, and had to add them to our list for providing a better sustainable alternative to conventional choices. Check back for your final Social Good Medal Rankings. You can currently find their products at Target or Walmart.

Best Sustainable Back to School Supplies for Fall 2020

Keywords: backtoschool2020, backtoschoolFall2020, homeschoolsupplies, backtoschool, distancelearning, healthandwellness, remotelearning, reopeningschools, hybridlearning, backtoschoolmusthaves, mypandemicsurvivalplan, homeschoolingsurvivaltips, homeschooling, Flipside Hats, Athleta, Headbands of Hope, Molly’s Suds, State Bags, Bixbee, LSTN, Yoobi, Paper Source, Temp-N-Toss

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