Our ECOMAX Brushes are handmade in Sri Lanka by a small family run business that prides itself on crafting beautiful, sustainable, handmade brushes whilst providing much needed employment and skills training for local women.

Alongside the main factory located in Wattala, just north of Colombo, two new factories has been added in the rural area of Kurunegala. Both of these facilities provide a safe work environment featuring large, open spaces allowing adequate light and ventilation with separate dust free areas for packing. The women are trained in each area of the brush making process from twisting the natural fibre heads to lacquering the wooden handles and all the bits in between. Combing the long shanks of raw fibre, cutting them to the correct lengths for each style of brush, trimming and finishing the final product, tying of cords and labels and finally packing them into these boxes to ship to us.


The women artisans earn a living wage and have access to a bonus scheme to encourage progress, while additional money is also put aside for their retirement. The needs of the women are catered for throughout their working life by providing easy transitions from work at home, part-time and full-time work. These opportunities allow women like Rukmani to raise their children, care for their elderly and look after their families at all stages of their life.

When the business first started, they set out to provide employment opportunities to a group of women living in a nearby, flood prone, shanty town sandwiched between the railway line and a new express way close to Wattala. Using some money set aside from the Fair Trade premiums paid on the ECOMAX Brushes and after extensive negotiations with local government the women and their families have now rebuilt their homes on new land that is not flood prone and with better access to facilities.

Free school books has been a huge benefit for Deepa and her three children

As the sales of ECOMAX Brushes has grown, so too has the workforce. There are now women of all ages crafting our ECOMAX Brushes, from Sachini at 17 to Kumarapeli, who at 72 years of age is our oldest member of the team. Kumarapeli’s 20 years of brush making experience means she is an invaluable asset and able to pass on the art of hand twisting fibres to those less experienced team members.


Though the difficult years of COVID and the financial crisis and IMF bailout of 2022-24 we have continue to support our producers. Nobody lost their job and all our women producers continued to receive their wages throughout the lockdowns over the COVID years. Basic foods hampers were issued to everyone when inflation rose in excess of 50% more than doubling the cost of everyday staple products for Sri Lankan families.

Along with offering respite care for women in crisis and medical attention when needed we continue to support our producers and their families in whatever way they need it.


Our children’s programmes provide free educational needs, by supplying each child’s books and materials list for each school term, ensuring every child has all the resources they need to succeed at school.

In late 2024, this programme is to be expanded to English language classes by using a donation of 20% of profits of our new ECOMAX KIDS range launching at this years Reeds Gift Fair. Although taught at school the teachers are usually not proficient in English themselves so having a well trained English language teacher will improve the outcomes for the children. Having good English written and verbal language skills will offer better opportunities for our artisans children at university and in future employment.



Fair Trade makes a difference to our brush makers and with your support you have helped to fund these programmes. Together we can create a zero-waste and more ethical world.