Today we’d like to introduce you to Maricruz Carrillo.
Hi Maricruz, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I am Maricruz Carrillo, I was born in Rosarito Baja California right here 30 min south of the border. I am passionate about empowering people to realign with themselves which I believe will lead them to realign with nature and take care of our planet. I also am a low-income student so I understand that sometimes other things take priority but I am doing my best to set an example and inspire others through my company Menos Waste.
It all began when I started looking into a plant-based diet. Sounds completely unrelated but once you start caring about what goes into your body, you start caring about everything else! I began to notice things in myself that I hadn’t before, a constant bliss knowing that I was doing good for myself while not harming any other animal.
Along with the health benefits, I learned how my choices were actually really good for the environment too! Which brought me even more joy! Then I started learning about the chemical farming, pharmaceutical industrial complex, environmental racism and realized now that I had this knowledge, I had to do something. Furthermore, my friends and family began to notice the positive changes in my life and began to ask me about my new habits. When I would tell them I am living a more plant-based/sustainable life, the first thing I would get as a response was: “Oh no, I’m too broke for that” or “Maybe when I have more money”. I have been low-income all my life and having lived this lifestyle for over a year, I knew for a fact that this idea of needing money to live healthy and sustainably was false, but the media shows otherwise. I realized that most of the “sustainability” and “vegan” and “natural lifestyle” pages I followed on Instagram were of white or white passing people that appeared to have a higher income. I wanted to create a brand and community that showcased a lifestyle that can be good for YOU, your WALLET and the PLANET which became my motto and the start of Menos Waste.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
It has been pretty smooth so far. I think the pandemic hit us all pretty hard personally but for my business, it helped me because it really allowed us all to rethink the way we live. Particularly, people had time to go within and really examine their personal choices. More and more, I see my community returning to a life that is more aligned with mother nature and that makes Menos Waste and I thrive since that is ultimately my message. The hardest thing so far has been getting the word out so I am super grateful for the opportunity to do this interview with you!
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I am actually an Engineer. I am currently in my third year of a PhD program in mechanical engineering at San Diego State University (SDSU) and University of California, San Diego (UCSD). My research is on the 3D printing of ceramics to be used for bone implant replacements. Once I finish the PhD, I plan on becoming a professor.
Menos Waste has become my passion project. I love teaching and learning constantly. This business has allowed me to teach and learn about sustainability, the community and business in the best way possible, first hand! I specialize in personal care products because I truly believe all growth starts from the relationship we have with ourselves. When I hear that someone uses my Everyday oil on their feet every night before bed to ground and relax before bed, it reminds me why I started this project. I am here to empower people to take their health into their hands while not breaking the bank and not hurting our mother earth. So when I hear that one of my Menos Waste Tip Tuesdays tips helped a mother save money on her children’s gifts or that someone had zero food waste the past month because of a tip I posted or that someone tried my plant-based pudding recipe and are never going back, those are my proudest moments!
What sets Menos Waste apart is the transparency. With each purchase, I give you the recipe and directions on how to make it yourself! That is because my mission is to truly save you the most money while creating the least amount of waste. Not to mention, I believe that if we take responsibility for making something as simple as our toothpaste, it will create an awareness into what goes into our body that will eventually lead you to a more healthy lifestyle which is also my mission particularly for members of my community.
What quality or characteristic do you feel is most important to your success?
Being authentic. That is very hard to do on social media, there are all sorts of pressures from Instagram algorithms, trends, sponsorships, etc. I think staying true to myself, my products and my message has allowed me to create a community (mostly local to San Diego) that actually appreciates me, my products and the content I put out. Along with that is the quality of my products. I only sell products that I have been using for myself for a while and know them to be the best! I always source everything organic and from sustainable but keep sources and so to keep the costs low, I focus only on a few products. Sticking to my motto!
- Free pick-up in San Diego
- Tips and entertainment are free on my instagram!
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/_menoswaste_/
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClKjcptGYiKKF3wSoKQRoPA
Dominique Diaz de Leon