7 Easy Earth Day Tips


I think the key to lasting change is finding something that works with your lifestyle.  Not everybody can fit all their trash in a mason jar or buy a Tesla, but we all have the potential to make a difference for our planet. Here are 7 things to try this Earth Day:

Ditch paper towels
I still remember being at a friend’s house a few years ago and realizing paper towels were not a staple in her kitchen. I’m sure she had them around somewhere, but dish cloths and rags were her go-to clean-up products. We’ve since added a stockpile of rags and dishcloths to our household and use them for most clean-up needs.

Use handkerchiefs
Facial tissues. They’re rough on your face, they tear apart, and they fill up the trash. We’re dedicated handkerchief users at my house. For mild allergy sniffles I may use the same handkerchief all day, but with kid colds we toss handkerchiefs into the laundry quickly and wash them for the next day.

Use washcloths
No, I don’t mean just for baths and showers. Use washcloths instead of baby wipes, make-up remover wipes, or cotton balls. Adding a washcloth into my nightly cleansing routine means I use less water and get my face much cleaner. It gives me a nice bit of exfoliation, too.

Compost
I HATE throwing away food scraps. I imagine all that food filling up plastic garbage bags and then hanging out in landfills for hundreds of years. We’re not always great about composting food scraps, but we’ve been trying it off and on for several years. We keep two compost piles — one for scraps that will form lovely compost for our vegetable garden, and one for organic yard waste (sticks, weeds, dog poop) that can’t be used for the garden. I’m obsessed with fancy compost machines, but you really just need space and willingness. My neighbor down the street gets amazing garden compost with a small, plain compost pile out behind her house.

Find alternative lady products
TMI tip! I’ve done it. I’ve started using period panties. I love them, y’all. So much better than buying a ton of disposables each month. I use Thinx, although I may try a pair from a different company while I wait for Thinx to work out their ethics issues. (If you want to try Thinx, you can get a coupon code with my referral link here.)

Invest in reusable coffee cups
I’m really bad at this one. When it comes to remembering my to-go mug when I leave the house, I get a failing grade. My goal is to throw my water bottle and insulated mug into my bag when I head out for the day.

Take a walk
Choose human power over car power whenever you are able. Can you walk the kids to school? Walk from one store to the other instead of driving? Or maybe you can walk around your neighborhood, picking up trash along the way. Walking doesn’t just benefit the earth — it’s great for your health, good for your mind, and a fantastic way to meet your neighbors.

What are your easy earth-saving tips? Where do you still struggle?

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Links for a Lovely, Spring Weekend

Happy Easter weekend! Whether you are celebrating a sacred time or just enjoying the spring weather, I wish you days of peace and joy.

A few favorite links from recent posts:


My friends over at Grove & Bay are giving away beautiful, new jewelry from Faire Collection. If you aren’t familiar with Grove & Bay, check them out! They do the research to bring you a curated collection of ethical wardrobe pieces, including menswear.

Holly Rose has recreated Easter favorite Cadbury Creme Eggs using fair trade chocolate and Numi Organic Tea. What a fun project!

Project Just has a fascinating look at what makes a brand “ethical.” I’ll probably subscribe to their site so I can read details on that Everlane interview.

If you’re thinking zero-waste thoughts as we approach Earth Day, be sure to check out Hannah’s review of SuperBee Wax Wraps as an eco-friendly alternative to cling wrap for your kitchen.

 

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Any Style, Any Price: Vegan Shoes for Every Occasion

 

Vegan Shoes

 

We’re finishing up our vegan series today with a round-up of cruelty-free shoe brands. While vegan brands are known for animal-friendly products, most of the companies I found seek to be kind to their workers and the environment as well.

From top left:

1. Heeled Bootie from Will’s Vegan Shoes: This stunning shoe is designed in the UK and manufactured in Portugal. Company staff visit the factory each year to verify working conditions and quality. $99.

2. Everly Shoe from Vegetarian Shoes: Seeking to make shoes that are animal-friendly AND people-friendly, Vegetarian Shoes uses factories across the European Union that comply with EU labor standards.  These faux-suede brogues are a lovely retro twist on booties. $81.

3. Chelsea Boot from Will’s Vegan Shoes: A classic Chelsea boot. Will’s Vegan Shoes is PETA-certified vegan, meaning the company has signed PETA’s statement of assurance that their designs are completely free of animal products. $99.

4. Strappy Sandal from Bhava Studio:  Crafted in Spain from cork and Italian faux-leather, these sandals pass Bhava’s “NYC test-drive” for all-day comfort. $229.

5. Sandals from Nae: Made of eco-friendly microfiber, these sandals are made in Portuguese factories that follow EU labor standards. Nae seeks to create footwear using sustainable materials that are good for people, animals, and the planet. $58.

6. Peep-Toe Heel from Olsenhaus: Olsenhaus founder Elizabeth Olsen seeks to create shoes that are sweatshop-free and cruelty-free, personally inspecting the company’s factories in Mexico and India. $125.

7. Pink Poppy Heels from Beyond Skin: Featuring a faux-leather upper and recycled polyurethane lining, these retro beauties are good for the office and the dance floor. $95.

8. Pewter Monks from Beyond Skin: These gorgeous loafers are handmade with 100% recycled faux leather lining at a factory in Spain. $110.

9.  Mary Janes from Will’s Vegan Shoes: A classic silhouette and slip-resistant rubber soles make these shoes your daily go-to. $92.

10.  Aviator Boots from Will’s Vegan Shoes: Yep, I’m pretty crazy about Will’s Vegan Shoes after discovering them on a whim. This lace-up style is water-resistant and features extra-long laces for a wrap-around effect. $122.

11.  Riding Boots from Will’s Vegan Shoes: These classic knee-height boots feature Italian faux-leather plus a zipper and an adjustable buckle for a perfect, slim fit. $132.

12.  Lace-Up Boots from Will’s Vegan Shoes: Soft faux suede and a hand-stitched insole add a luxe feel to these trendy lace-up boots. $132.

Know of any great brands I left out? Still looking for something that fits your wardrobe? I’d love to hear about it!

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