earth month

Three down, one to go! The end of our 30-day Earth Month Eco-Challenge is rapidly approaching, and our kitchens, closets and casas vibe greener than ever – you’re welcome, planet. For this last week of tips, we’re taking a close look at our self-care habits and the products that support them.

We know you take good care of yourself; but even with a makeup bag packed with green goodies, your natural beauty bids might be missing the mark for optimal earth-friendliness. Eco-lifestyle guru, Ashlee Piper of The Little Foxes, is here to help with seven days of tips for detoxing our bathroom routines, from beauty to bathing. Try one each day and let us know in the comments which ones stick!

Monday, April 25th: DIY Your Beauty Regimen
While shopping for beauty products, cruelty-free, low-packaging, and natural are all awesome steps in the right direction, but you can save money, time and chemical overload when you opt to make some of your own multipurpose products (that are still as luxurious as any you can buy). Reusable cotton rounds, castile soap, jojoba oil and essential oil make incredible, sustainable makeup removing wipes. Coconut oil, peppermint essential oil, and baking soda make a safe and effective DIY toothpaste. Take some time to peruse the internet to find recipes that resonate with you and determine which of your package-intensive and expensive products can you swap out for make-at-home, healthier versions.

What are the beauty DIYs that you plan to use to replace less eco-friendly store-bought products?

Tuesday, April 26th: Bathe Better
Did you know that French and Italian women, with their gorgeously glowy skin, take shorter, cooler showers than American gals? Install a low-flow shower head, which can save ½ gallon of water per minute, keep your showers cooler (less energy to heat the water) and shower for under 10 minutes for maximum planet (and skin-loving) benefits – you’ll use about 20 gallons of water, for reference. If you’re more of a bath junkie (which uses anywhere from 25-40 gallons of water depending upon the capacity of your tub), consider saving some of your bathwater for other uses, like filling the commode to flush the toilet or irrigating plants. It may sound crazy hippie, but every little bit helps.

Did you start any planet-friendly bathing practices today? Share them with us!

Wednesday, April 27th: Become Label Savvy
Take a peek at your makeup, beauty products and home cleaners. Do you recognize the ingredients? If you don’t see the Leaping Bunny or PETA Bunny symbols, it’s very likely that these items have been tested on animals. Familiarizing yourself with labels helps you to avoid toxic chemicals (which are harmful to you and pollute our waterways), additives (like those pesky, recently banned microbeads) and animal testing (a nasty, unnecessary practice that kills millions of innocent animals like rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, rats and even dogs and cats each year).

What are you planning to replace with a product of more sterling ethical cred when the time comes?

Thursday, April 28th: Repurpose Stylishly
We often toss many items that could be useful to use with a quick clean and fresh coat of paint. And just because something can be recycled, doesn’t mean that it should be (after all, reusing is a more eco-friendly option because it defrays the need for extra energy used during recycling). Try this fun, quick, zero-waste weekend activity (perfect for kiddos, too): 1) Pop open a can of chickpeas and save the aqua faba (the liquid you normally pour down the drain) and use it to make fluffy vegan meringues. 2) Rinse the chickpeas and make a bangin’ hummus. 3) Wash the can, remove the label (which can be recycled or reused as you see fit), and add a coat of non-toxic gold or white paint; let dry and use as a pretty display for your makeup brushes, pencils, silverware, plants, whatever. That’s right, you just made three cool things from an item you’d normally only use to create one. Brava!

What did you try today? Any zero-waste DIYs or earth-friendly ways to repurpose single-use items?

Friday, April 29th: Green the Crimson Wave
It’s estimated that the average gal uses 9,600 tampons and pads in her lifetime. And we all know that those items come with lots of packaging (hello boxes, wrappers and applicators) and creepy additives like pesticides, dioxin (a known carcinogen), rayon and plastics). The good news is that there are plenty of sustainable options that work with your lifestyle and comfort level. If you’re a pad gal, Glad Rags pads and Thinx panties have you covered with outside-the-bod options. If you’re more of an inside-job lady, a reusable menstrual cup, like the Diva Cup and Lunette, could be for you. These options, which can be reused, sometimes for many years, can save you big time money (around $200 per year) and time (think of all the visits to the store). They also help you significantly reduce chemicals in your lady parts and waste in landfills.

Do you have a favorite eco-friendly brand or product that works amazingly well?

Saturday, April 30th: Create Lasting Habits
Congrats! You completed a whole month of green goodness!

Did you do some or all of the tips from this month?
What will you incorporate into your daily life long term? And what did you have trouble with?
We’d love to hear from you and cheer you on as you enhance your eco-lifestyle!

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