Happy Earth Day! In honor of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, I've decided to feature some of my favorite earth-friendly products. I've featured them at one point or another on my blog, and I use them not just for Earth Day, but Every Day -- that's because they're great products in their own right. The fact that they're kinder to the earth than most products is icing on the cake.
ionator HOM. We have two of these in our home now, one for the upstairs and one for the downstairs, and they are really all we need to clean our home! This device uses nothing but tap water, and introduces an electrical charge to ionate the water molecules and turn them into lean, green, cleaning machines. I love that my kids can use it to clean up their own spills, yet it's so safe for them that they can spray it into their mouths!
ReUsies. Breaking the plastic sandwich bag habit has been really hard for me, but having these ReUsies cloth sandwich bags really helps. My kids love them because they come in such fun designs, I love them because they are so easy to clean, and the earth loves them because they can be used again and again and again, and they don't end up clogging landfills.
CafePress SIGG water bottles. SIGG water bottles have been instrumental in cutting down our plastic bottled water habit! I love how the aluminum keeps the water inside cool for hours. And being able to design your own SIGG water bottle -- how cool is that? I'm hoping never to have to lose a SIGG bottle again now that I have my own personalized one that I designed on Cafepress. Trust me, you do not want to be around me on a day that I or one of my kids has lost a SIGG water bottle.
Makana Candles. You don't think that something so small and pretty and sweet-smelling as a scented candle could actually be bad for the environment, but it's true. I had no idea that burning paraffin candles was so bad for the environment, but if paraffin is made from diesel byproducts then it does make sense. Burning candles made of natural ingredients like soy or beeswax is much safer for the environment, and that's where candles like Makana Candles come in. They're soy candles that look and smell beautiful, and they're kind to the earth in every way, from the natural oils used to scent them, down to the eco-friendly packaging it comes in.
Paper Culture. There are lots of online stationery companies around (and I love quite a few of them) and many of them have eco-friendly, recycled paper product lines, but I have to hand it to Paper Culture for really promoting a green culture from top to bottom. Their entire line is printed on 100% post consumer recycled paper that's produced with wind power. Their packaging and envelopes are recycled, and they're a carbon-free company. Not to mention a company that has some really chic and stylish paper designs.
BABIES AND KIDS
Piggy Paint. If there's ever an area where going earth-friendly and non-toxic is a no-brainer, it's kids' products. Who wants nasty chemicals going anywhere near our kids, right? So when I tried out Piggy Paint nail polish, I was delighted to note that it's made of non-toxic ingredients, yet is cute and bright enough to appeal to any little girl's heart.
Bummas Baby Cloths. You don't need to have babies to appreciate Bummas Baby Cloths. They are great for wiping up any kinds of spills around the household! Just buy a whole bunch and throw them in the wash after you've wiped up a spill. The earth will thank you for using less paper towels! And if you've got babies, Bummas are so wonderfully soft -- unlike baby wipes, which can really irritate babies' skins -- you might just find yourself reaching for a Bummas cloth again and again.
Love the Earth. I'll recommend a Sesame Street DVD any day, and this one is the perfect way to celebrate Earth Day with young kids! Who better to teach our children to be kind to the earth than everyone's favorite 3-year old, Elmo? The story is simple and sweet -- Elmo, Zoe and Baby Bear learn about keeping nature beautiful while searching for a rare bird in Bearn National Park -- really teaches kids simple, practical earth-friendly habits. The DVD case even has some great "love the earth" tips for parents.
Zippity Doo. The main purpose of this line of haircare products is to prevent lice, but there ain't no lice anywhere near our kids, and we're still using Zippity Doo shampoo, conditioner, hair gel and detangler! That's because these products smell so wonderful and fresh (and so does your hair when you use them!). They're also made with natural and organic ingredients so you know they'll be gentle for your children. But not gentle for lice. And that's fine with me.
Baby Bunch Egg Nests. I love the thought of organic cotton on a baby's skin -- no pesticides, no insecticides, nothing but soft cotton on his or her soft little skin. Just a few years ago organic cotton was out of reach of many people's budgets, but now it's more affordable than ever! Take, for instance, this adorable Baby Bunch Egg Nest. The socks are made of 100% organic cotton, it's cleverly packaged to look like a birds' nest, but at $19.99, it's still an affordable (and stylish and practical) baby shower present.
APPAREL AND ACCESSORIES
Cafepress organic tees. Who says only babies get to have organic gift items? Kids and grownups deserve affordable, good quality organic clothing too! That's why I was delighted to discover that Cafepress has so many unique gift items made with organic cotton, like these American Apparel organic tees that The Pea and I reviewed. They're soft and stylish and oh-so-earth-friendly.
Twisted Orchid Animal-friendly tote. I've never understood what people see in genuine animal fur. Wearing a beautiful animal on one's back has never appealed to me, no matter how beautiful it makes me look. I admit I don't feel pangs of guilt wearing leather shoes, but to hunt and kill crocodiles and snakes and chinchillas just for their skins? No thanks. Faux animal skin accessories like my new Twisted Orchid animal-friendly tote are just fine with me. More than fine ,actually. Make that just great!
FOOD AND DRINK
Morningstar Sausage Patties. Discovering these veggie-based sausage patties couldn't come at a better time! More and more is becoming known about the effect that raising livestock has on carbon emissions -- I've read on many occasions that eating less meat is one way we can really have an impact on our carbon footprint. It's better for our health, too! These yummy sausage patties are great when you're just craving the taste of pork :)
Steaz Teaz. It's not often that I find a store that carries Steaz Teaz (I'm considering picketing the nearest Target until they actually carry some of this yummy flavored iced tea), so when I do I stock up and treasure each refreshing sip. Steaz is also one of those companies that incorporates stewardship of people and planet into their culture. They don't only focus on profits, they care about people people (Steaz is fair trade certified) and the planet (Steaz uses only organic ingredients.
Disclosure: Although I have previously reviewed some of the products included in this post, I did not receive a sample or monetary compensation for this post. The views and opinions expressed here are my own.