Tag Archives: earth

Gift Ideas Inspired By Nature

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Gift Ideas Inspired By Nature

When it comes to giving gifts, you can choose to head to a department store and you are sure to get something beautiful and thoughtful. But, sometimes, it’s great to give something a little more meaningful and likely to be treasured and used for longer. When people say natural gifts, it can conjure up all sorts of images and ideas, but if you know someone who cares about the environment, prefers natural products, or has a bit of a hippy heart, then these gifts will be perfect for them. This has the extra bonus of supporting some smaller businesses, too.

“My favorite things often have a story behind them and are usually handmade or discovered at a flea market.”Amy Sedaris

Handmade soaps:

You will often find with handmade soaps that these are home-based businesses with one person behind the whole range. If you have allergies or your skin doesn’t love some ingredients from mass producers, you’re likely to be able to use these. They are usually 100% organic, packed with pure essential oils, and smell fantastic.

Felt booties:

Slippers or boots handmade from 100% wool, and natural rubber. From farm to foot is a great ethos to live by. Usually made in part by hand and part by machine, you know you’re going to get a lovely product with a lot of care and attention to detail.

Cold water essential oil diffuser:

An essential oil diffuser will disperse gorgeous scents all over the home. You can choose different fragrances depending on what mood you are trying to create. To create a calming environment, especially when someone is feeling run down, use lemon. Lavender is perfect for soothing anxiety and aiding sleep. Cinnamon helps concentration and creates a warm atmosphere. Use Peppermint for brainstorming and boosting energy and Rosemary to help you recall information and ward off headaches.

Metal straws:

Many places have banned single-use plastics and are pushing to only have plastic straws for those who really need them. But, sometimes, sipping a cold drink with a straw is a particular type of bliss. Get your friend (and yourself) a pack of metal straws to do your share in waste reduction.

And, speaking of waste reduction, it is almost impossible to cook a meal without having some waste produced. If your friend doesn’t already compost, now might be the perfect time to start. You could gift them with a large composter for in the garden or a smaller more portable one for the kitchen. A compost pail will help your friend reduce their carbon footprint considerably. Many pails come with charcoal filters, which will help trap and control the odors that are often associated with composting. Once the compost is created, it can be used to grow herbs and more veggies.

Plants are great gifting options, too. Not every eco-friendly person is great at taking care of plants, though. So bear that in mind and perhaps opt for something that is easy to look after. Succulents are very popular right now, have a gorgeous effect on their surroundings, and are easy to care for. Air plants are also wildly popular with people who simply can’t seem to keep anything alive. Tillandsias as they are known, require no soil, and can grow simply by being hot glued to an object. All they need is a mist of water once a week or so.

Solid deodorant:

Ditch the roll-on or spray deodorant for something a little more earth-friendly. You can pick up a pot of solid deodorant made from skin loving ingredients that work hard all day to prevent you from sweating and work just as well as anything you’ll buy in store.

Great tea:

A good cup of tea at the right time can change your life. There are many, many brands of tea but you could spend some extra time looking for handmade teas that have a benefit to the local area or the makers directly. This is a double whammy, as you can also choose a beverage that has health benefits like aiding digestion, heart health, or calming teas. Gift loose leaves with a reusable tea bag for maximum eco-friendliness.

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Photo by Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash

If your recipient is looking to increase their knowledge in all the ways that they can have a positive impact on the planet, then you should take a look at some of the best books around at the moment. Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life by Reducing Your Waste, by Bea Johnson is a great choice. This Changes Everything – Capitalism vs. Climate is written by Naomi Klein and talks environment and the ‘free market.’ Or, some inspirational literature like Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, or Wild: A Journey from Lost to Found by Cheryl Strayed.

When it comes to giving gifts, the thought far outweighs the price that has been paid. So get your friend or family member something that will mean a great deal to them while being kind to the world.

Featured Image By: Vladimir Proskurovskiy on Unsplash

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Six Ways To Achieve An Eco-Friendly Bathroom

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Six Ways To Achieve An Eco-Friendly Bathroom

Planning a home improvement project soon? Why not try making your bathroom an eco-friendly space? Your bathroom is the room in the house where water use is the highest. The longer you stay in the bathroom, the more water you use and the more energy for heating, lighting, and ventilating is used, too. This all translates to skyrocketing water and energy bills every month.

With the bleak forecast about global water and energy scarcity, there’s no better time than the present to gradually transform your home into an eco-friendly space; and the bathroom is the perfect place to start. Here are six ways to achieve an eco-friendly bathroom:

Install Low-Flow Faucet Aerators:

Faucet aerators are fixtures that are capped on the faucet opening to reduce water use, control its flow, prevent splashing, and increase perceived water pressure. How does it work? Faucet aerators save water (and therefore, save you money on water bills) by introducing air into the water flow, so there’s less water flowing but still enough to wash things.

With a low-flow faucet aerator, you can reduce rate of water flow from 2.5 gallons per minute (standard faucets) to as little as 0.5 gallons per minute. That’s saving about 80 percent of water every minute the tap is on.

Faucet aerators are affordable and easy to install. You can get one for $5 to $10 dollars, depending on the brand and features added to the aerator. When buying the a low-flow aerator, make sure you have the right size and one that is compatible with your faucet. Installing the new aerator only takes a few minutes. Just unscrew the old one using a wrench, turn on the tap to wash away debris, and cap on the new aerator. Make sure not to apply too much force to avoid damaging your faucet.

Change To A Low-Flow Showerhead:

Do you like taking long showers every day? If the answer is yes, then you’ve found the primary culprit for your skyrocketing water bills. Standard showerheads use from 2.5 to 4 gallons of water per minute. So every time you shower for 30 minutes, you’re using about 75 to 120 gallons of water. That’s 15 to 24 times more water used than the average person in a developing country. (The statistics is 20 liters of water or 5.3 gallons per person.)

When you change to a low-flow showerhead, you save one-half to two gallons of water every minute you shower. Of course, this only works well when you cut down on your shower time, too.

Go For A Water-Efficient Toilet:

Old toilets are one of the biggest water wasters in your house. They consume about 3.5 to 7 gallons of water per flush, which is a lot for one use. In contrast, new toilets only use an average of 1.6 gallons per flush. If you want an eco-friendly bathroom, then you may want to switch to a water-efficient macerating toilet.

Water-efficient or low-flow toilets save more than regular modern toilets. Some models can go as low as one gallon for every flush. Getting one with a macerating pump also helps with preventing toilet clogging, which saves you from expensive plumbing bills.

Use Energy-Efficient Light Fixtures:

The bathroom is the place where you do most of your grooming, like shaving and doing makeup. These are delicate activities that need good lighting to avoid injury or mess-ups. However, inefficient light bulbs are some of the chief reasons for high electricity bills.

For places like the bathroom, that require good lighting, use energy-efficient light bulbs. These include compact fluorescent lamps, light emitting diodes (LEDs), and halogen incandescents. Energy-efficient light fixtures can last 3 to 25 times longer than traditional light bulbs and save from 25 to 80 percent more energy, making them the eco-friendly choice.

Switch To An Energy-Efficient Exhaust Fan:

Ventilation is essential to keeping your bathroom clean, odor-free, and mold-free. A constantly damp bathroom is conducive for mold growth. However, when you ventilate your bathroom after use, you remove excess moisture and inhibit the buildup of mold spores.

There are two ways to ventilate your bathroom. You can either open the window and door or use an exhaust fan. An exhaust fan consumes energy and can result in mounting energy bills when used too often. It’s not always ideal to open windows and doors, too. Open bathroom windows may invite unscrupulous people (or bugs) in your home while open doors will just transfer the odor (and whatever else is in the air) into another part of the house.

Since you can’t do away with ventilating your bathroom, you can use an energy-efficient fan. To find one, search for an Energy Star-rated model and get 60 percent energy savings compared to standard vent fans.

Choose Eco-Friendly Cleaning Supplies:

Many cleaning products available in the market today contain harmful chemicals that are dangerous to your health and bad for the environment. Their ingredient includes phtalates present in air fresheners, dish soap, and some toilet papers. Phtalates are harmful to the endocrine system can and reduce a man’s sperm count.

Harmful chemicals, like perchloroethylene (Perc), triclosan, 2-butoxyethanol, and ammonia, attack your health and negatively impact the environment, and they’re common ingredients in many household cleaners.

Avoid these chemicals by opting for eco-friendly products or homemade products that are proven to have no harmful effects. You can consult the non-profit Environment Working Group for a list of cleaning products to avoid.

Take The First Step:

Wasting water and energy has far reaching impact to the environment and the earth’s resources. With global warming, climate change, and scarcity hitting the world in all corners, it’s high time for people to take action to reverse the damage that’s been done to the earth. Converting your bathroom into an eco-friendly space is the first step to building a more sustainable environment for you and your family. Why not start now?

Featured Image By: Pixabay