As many of you already know, I've been advocating for a more sustainable lifestyle by using clean, waste-free products, choosing meals that focus on plant-based ingredients, and sourcing as much as I can from the garden. And while I’m far from perfect, I've learned that making a few simple swaps around my home can really add up and make a difference – for my health and our planet’s too. So in honor of Earth Day on April 22nd, I'm highlighting a few more of my favorite environmentally-friendly products for the bathroom, kitchen, refrigerator and garden.
IN THE BATHROOM
My bathroom is my sanctuary, so filling it with products that are non-toxic and sustainable is high on my priority list. For hand washing, I use the Arbor Hand + Body Soap from Mater. It’s made from 100% organic, sustainably harvested plant-based ingredients, plus a lovely blend of lavender, palo santo and patchouli. And to reduce plastic purchases, it comes in a glass bottle that can be refilled using this half gallon jug.
I’ve gone through my fair share of deodorants, and finally landed on a clean one that also keeps me smelling and feeling fresh. The Eucalyptus & Bergamot Deodorant from Salt + Stone is made from sustainable and ethical ingredients without the use of pesticides, artificial fragrances, sulfates, petrochemicals, parabens, phthalates or GMO’s. Plus it’s manufactured by renewable solar and hydroelectric energy and all packaging is recyclable.
Ditching disposable cotton pads and face wipes for a set of these Bamboo Washcloths is not only better for the planet, but it’s made a difference in my skin too. I use these daily to take off makeup and wash my face. They're super soft and absorbent and great for sensitive skin.
When it comes to toilet paper, Plant Paper Rolls are a great swap. Made from a blend of organic bamboo pulp, it's soft, resilient and requires less processing and harsh chemicals than the average roll, making them better for you and the planet.
For as long as I can remember I used plastic disposable razors, but when I discovered the Brass Safety Razor and all its benefits, I was hooked. This razor has a single blade for a close shave with less irritation, plus it's a great plastic-free alternative. For storage, I keep it in this Razor Wrap, which is perfect for traveling, storing spare blades and it rolls up tightly to protect the razor and your fingers.
IN THE GARDEN
One of my favorite ways to celebrate Earth Day is to spend time in my kitchen garden. There's nothing better than planting, tending to, picking and then eating home-grown food. Some of my favorite gardening tools include these popular Garden Scissors. As seen in Magnolia Magazine and Dwell, these stainless steel scissors have an ambidextrous grip, wide handles and are both water and rust resistant. I also love the Hori Hori -- a multi-purpose tool inspired by the Japanese garden knife. Use it to measure planting depth, or saw a branch... you can even whittle kindling.
My favorite seeds for planting come from Hudson Valley Seed Company, which sources heirloom and open-pollinated garden seeds from their farm in Upstate New York. They are committed to preserving crop diversity, which allows us to plant unique varieties like Emerite Pole Beans, Bloomsdale Spinach, and Salad Savor Mix. And when it comes to sowing them, I use this handy Seed Chute which helps to control the flow and to prevent waste.
To keep the sun off my face I wear the Gardener Lattice Hat. It’s handcrafted in Mexico from sustainable palm straw, has a stretch headband fit and a lock stitch weave that prevents unraveling, plus the hat floats if dropped in water – simply hang to dry. And to keep my hands clean and scratch free, I turn to the Women’s Work Glove year after year for the supple feel and the perfect fit.
IN THE KITCHEN
The kitchen is one of the easiest places to swap out disposables for more sustainable options. Instead of using a plastic bottle of dish soap, I’ve switched to this Multi Purpose Kitchen Block. It’s natural and effective at cleaning each and every dish, plus it’s biodegradable, zero waste and septic safe. Using paper towels is still one of the hardest habits to break, but these cotton Cleaning Cloths make the transition easier.
Ditch the plastic wrap (and the endocrine disrupting chemicals that go with it) for these pretty floral Beeswax Wraps. The warmth of your hands makes the wax flexible to cover bowls and dishes, leftover vegetables, fruits, bread and so much more. This set comes with three different size wraps for use at the office, at school, on the road, or in the kitchen.
When cooking, we used to throw away the vegetable scraps, but now we can easily convert them into compost with the help of the Bamboozle Composter. Made from biodegradable bamboo fiber, it not only does the job without the odor, but looks good on the counter too. Using compost in the garden helps to reduce plant disease and pests, and it also cuts down on methane emissions from the landfills. What's not to love?
IN THE FRIDGE
With all of the produce bags, and disposable food containers, my refrigerator was a breeding ground for plastic. But I’ve slowly transitioned with the help of cloth bags, like this set of four Reusable Produce Bags. A favorite for farmers market runs and grocery store hauls, and the mesh bottom keeps herbs and greens fresh. This Cloth Bag Set is my multi-purpose go-to whether I'm storing broccoli or avocados.
When I’m heading out, I also like to bring this woven Shopping Basket to reduce the need for paper or plastic bags. And to help me remember everything on my list, this Grocery Pad is key, plus the pretty floral design makes market runs that much sweeter.
Jeffrey and I follow a mostly vegan diet for health and environmental reasons, and thanks to a few favorite cookbooks, we're able to get out of almost any cooking rut. From the Top Chef star Gregory Gourdet, Everyone’s Table is one of our newest additions that explores globally-inspired dishes that are free from gluten, dairy, and soy. And from the James Beard Award-winning Joshua McFadden comes his second cookbook Grains For Every Season, which will change the way you look at cooking grains.
There are many ways to give back to Mother Earth, and while making sustainable swaps around the home may seem like a small effort, every little bit really adds up in the long run. I'm always looking for more ways to live sustainably, so if you have any favorites, drop me a comment and let me know! Happy Earth Day!