Understanding Skincare Product Certifications

According to Organic Spa Magazine, there are a growing number of organizations around the world that seek to certify cruelty-free, natural, organic and/or sustainable products and processes. Six of those have labels you will see often here in the U.S., including Demeter, Leaping Bunny, Natural Products Association, NSF, Oregon Tilth and USDA Organic.

As with eggs, these labels can be difficult to understand and keep straight. But better familiarizing yourself with their logos and standards will help you make more informed shopping choices for yourself and your family. Let’s take a closer look.  Continue reading

What’s Your Carbon Footprint?

You hear the words “carbon footprint” tossed around often these days, but what exactly is it and why does it matter? To put it simply, using coal, natural gas or oil for electricity, heat or transportation releases carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. These daily carbon dioxide emissions make up your carbon footprint.

Too much CO2 from our daily activities hurts the planet’s climate according to many sources, including the Sopris Foundation, a non-profit organization based in Aspen that focuses on preserving ranch land, keeping community intact in the face of changing land-use patterns, and working with Western leaders to develop a region-wide blueprint for livability.

This organization has taken the time to calculate the amount of CO2 used in three basic areas of daily living: (1) Home Energy; (2) Travel and Recreation; and (3) Food, Drink and Work. Comparing the numbers in each of the green, yellow and orange areas illustrates the power of the choices you make every day. Continue reading

Go-Go Green Smoothie

Remember the 1980s’ era cartoon “Inspector Gadget?”  I do because I remember he could say “Go, Go Gadget [insert bionic body part here]” and instantly save the world. Or something like that.

That’s how I feel after this Green Drink. Go-Go Mommy. Go-Go Wife. Go-Go National Marketing Manager. Go-Go BFF. Just Go!

Usually I’m the one to pass along the “healthy” tips but Green Drink is something my friend Steph has been persuading me to make for years. Seriously, I can’t believe it took me so long to succumb to such a healthy, refreshing and cleansing beverage. Now, I’m hooked. I even moved my blender from the cabinet to the countertop to support my new habit!

Continue reading

Sneak Peak: EWG Cleaner Database

Environmental Working Group (EWG), the same forward-thinking, non-profit that brought you the Dirty Dozen and Skin Deep, is getting ready to launch a new safety database this fall on cleaners. Hallelujah!

This news couldn’t be better for consumers, many of whom regularly purchase toxic household cleaners. You may be one of them. I was, and I wasn’t even aware. Yes, even SoulMamma isn’t perfect. This lesson in particular was humbling because, really, I should have known better.

According to the EWG, they have unearthed compelling evidence that hundreds of
cleaners, even some of those hyped as “green” or “natural,” can cause serious harm.  Continue reading

Earth Day Challenge

Happy Earth Day! I know it’s cliche, but I truly believe that every day should be earth day. (I told you it was cliche!) Be good to Mother Earth, and she will be be good to you. But let’s face it, when it comes to treating her with respect, we can all do a little better. The key is to replace one bad habit at a time with something healthier. Continue reading

Eco-Friendly Wrapping Made Easy

How cute is this gift wrap? 

Super cute!

Hooray for care packages, the likes of which I have not received since living in a dorm room. But following my recent surgery, my father and his wife wanted to brighten my days while I recovered. I was thrilled to receive these two gifts, but truthfully, I was so impressed by the wrapping that I almost didn’t care what was inside!

What an awesome use for fabric, plain old, pick your favorite pattern, and wrap it up fabric. Brilliant! Why? Because it can be re-used of course. No more one-time use wrapping that immediately heads to your recycle bin, or worse, the landfill.

Transparent tape sticks right to the fabric is easily peeled off by the recipient.

I am already one who keeps a “wrapping tub” full of gift bags and bows that I recycle over and over (I even carefully unwrap high-quality, foil wrap so I can re-fold and re-use it). But fabric? I’d never thought of it. Probably because I don’t sew and therefore don’t have scraps hanging around. But if you do, bingo! Save them for the next gift you give.

If you don’t, start gathering them from other sources – including flea markets, yard sales, and thrift stores – like I plan to do. Add a nice bow and you’ll instantly make someone smile.

They might not even care what’s inside, and the planet will thank you too.

I shared this post on Health 2day, Whole Food Wednesday, It’s a Keeper, Creative Juice, Your Green ResourceFrugal Tuesday, Catch a Glimpse, Home and Family Friday, and Frugal Days.

My entry into Strut Your Stuff sponsored by Appliances Online and the Bosch Washing Machines.

Mix Green with Your Red this V-Day

Do you love Valentine’s Day? Yeah, me neither.

But I sure love my family. And my mother, who rarely gets serious with me about anything, once scolded me when I complained about this February holiday filled with overpriced flowers and candy. “Don’t ever take for granted the fact that you have so much love in your life, including a wonderful husband,” she said. “Take any opportunity you can to celebrate that.”

Or something to that effect. It’s stuck with me ever since. (Well done, Mom!) Continue reading

Green Your Ski or Snowboard Adventure

As a Colorado snow sport lover, this caught my attention quickly. After all, our state lives and breathes skiing for half of every year. Unfortunately however, it’s not the most eco-friendly of activities. 

Looking at the Ski Area Environmental Scorecard, I was happy to see Aspen made the Top Ten at number 2, right behind Squaw Valley. However, Breckenridge made the Worst Ten, a disappointment considering the size and reach of Vail Resorts.

No matter where you live, you’ll benefit from Sierra Magazine’s tips for greening your next ski adventure.  Green Your Ski Adventure.

Where does your favorite resort rank?