How much good could a solar-powered watch really do in terms of sustainability? With everything happening in the world, it’s hard to imagine that small changes like how you buy your timekeeping accessories can move the needle. But think about this: what if every company that sells a retail good dedicated a portion of that revenue to sustainability or a cause that made the world a better place? That one small pivot in intention would have ripple effects worldwide. That’s at least what Solios believes, and it’s a belief that’s at the core of Solios watches.
University friends Sam Leroux and Alex Desabrais were sure they wanted to build a business together. Both are passionate about our planet’s future, so Solios was born from a blend of those interests. Their new solar-powered watches attempt to positively disrupt a long-standing industry with an attractive design wrapped around sustainable engineering principles and ethics.
Have they gone far enough?
Solios Watches are Future Focused
Planned obsolescence is a design strategy that attempts to create something attractive enough to buy now that will eventually need replacing later. Solios tries to buck the planned obsolescence trend in several ways, first with their construction materials. Premium quality stainless steel, tempered glass, and very durable straps were all selected because of their classic look and feel but also because this ensures the longevity of the timepiece.
Solios went with an ionic coloration process to give their metals the look of black, gold, and dark stainless steel. According to Solios, this process is often more expensive than traditional coloration processes for metal, but one of the main benefits is durability. No longer will you have to worry about excess movement in your wristwatch, fading the copper tone of the strap. Also, utilizing this coloring process creates no toxic wastewater or excess chemical waste after the metal has reached its desired color.
Hidden beneath the watch face is a small solar panel. In just two hours of direct sunlight, your Solios watch reaches full charge, good enough for a full six months of continuous use. Most office lights will do the trick as well. Solios wants to eliminate 300 million batteries from landfills, which is a lofty goal, but this solar-powered, quartz-driven watch is a great start.
Organizations are said to be either mercenary or missionary companies. Solios intend to be a cause for good in the world. So, they take great strides to build a sustainable product that looks good. They also want to use their company’s excess revenue positively in the world. For each watch that Solios sells, they contribute enough money to restore one acre of rainforest land through the David Suzuki Foundation.
For a limited time, Solios has taken on a project to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation as well. Their limited edition blue and gold watch benefit the cause with $50 per unit directly donated. This model is the only watch Solios sells with a navy blue face and matching band, wrapped in gold or stainless metal. The run on this particular timepiece is 500 units and retails for about $269.
The rest of the Solios lineup hovers right around $257 with options for both men and women. The men’s lineup features black or white facings, gold, silver, and black ionized metal finishing’s and two different bezel widths, 36 and 40-millimeters. The women’s line has a near-equal number of color combinations and offers a slightly more narrow band design.