THIS IS THE GOING GREENER PAGE!

Bathroom Toilet

us.whogivesacrap.org

Who Gives A Crap

What they sell: bamboo paper products for the household (toilet paper, paper towel rolls, & tissues in cute, colorful, cube-shaped boxes). All made, packaged & shipped without ANY plastic! So - no wasted trees. And no plastic wrappers of any sort. Not even those little strips of plastic to "help" you pull out one tissue at a time. The shipping box is recyclable corrugated cardboard. AND they are donating 50% of their profits to making life safer & healthier all around the world. The money goes to nonprofits that build toilets in places where people don't have them yet! And other org's that are working to insure clean water where that's still needed. WHAT MORE could anyone want? How about being able to set up a regularly scheduled delivery? With a choice of frequencies (such as, every 3 or 4 months).

Bare Feet

www.organic-essence.com

Organic Essence

What they sell: certified organic body care products, NO chemical additives, all entirely packaged with heavy, compostable PAPER! NO plastic involved! Another company that combines having excellent products to offer, with a solid commitment to caring for the Earth! By the way, the website is very attractive & well designed, and includes info & links to a number of orgs & co's that are equally committed to fighting plastic pollution.

Their products I've bought and am using so far:

  • Pure organic shea butter (my husband Karl & I both use this one on our feet - NO MORE cracked calluses!)

  • Citrus Lavender Body Butter - Smells as good as it sounds, and leaves my skin (which tends to dryness) satiny-feeling for several days without re-applying!

  • Deodorant - Really! You can get a good one with NO plastic packaging! I'm finding that OE's does its job much longer than the organic roll-on I used for some years. Not going back! Comes in several scents or UNscented. I have both "Lemon Tea Tree Mint" and unscented. Both work well for me.

  • Organic Lip Balm (I have the "Natural" version - there are also several scents (flavors?), but my personal preference for lip balm is no fragrance added. Works fine - who needs a plastic tube? The sea animals sure don't! Besides lips, I sometimes use it to train my eyebrows.

Beauty Care

camamusoap.com

 

Company motto: "By hand, with heart". Sums up the quality! To get the best idea of these products, I strongly recommend visiting their website! Really pure, natural, hand-made soaps and other body care products (including a couple of soaps for washing your doggie, and a soap for the household, which is all I use now, for dishwashing by hand!)

All the soaps are solid (none of your namby-pamby perfumed glycerine stuff!), and made with a variety of healthful ingredients. They come in paper wrappers;  nearly all other products containers that are fully biodegradable or recyclable. I just tried one of the vinegar hair rinses (comes in a glass bottle) and in all honesty, my hair has never looked so healthy, after only a few rinses. Even better, I was struggling with my scalp, too; and now, the stuff that was collecting under my nails any time I scratched my head, has disappeared! I also have the "Nirvana" fragrance drops (very earthy-foresty!) and just finished a small tub of raspberry orange coconut body scrub (smells great, really moisturizes your skin; but oil in the shower can be slippery, so be sure to stand or sit on something non-skid). This one is in plastic, which is not perfect for the environment (but obviously safer to have in your shower/ bathtub than glass). And you can always save & re-use it - we all need an empty container from time to time.

Last cool thing, is that you can have a membership account and acquire points for every dollar you spend, which you can then convert into gift cert's you can use to buy more excellent Camamu products!

CAVEAT EPILOGUE...

My 1st 2 orders came very efficiently. However, it took about 3 weeks from the date I'd ordered a 3rd time, for that package to arrive. All 3 liquid products were in perfect condition; based on shipping date, took only 2 or 3 days here from Oregon. It's possible that after I emailed  my concern, they followed up with USPS and found out that the original shipment had disappeared; and then sent a replacement shipment. (USPS does insure for free up to $50, & this was under.) So, because the products are made with such obvious care, I choose to look at it that way, and continue to be a happy customer.

Antler in Nature

OregonAntlerWorks

(on Etsy.com)

I can't find a URL that will take you to that page directly; but all you have to do is click Etsy here, then put OregonAntlerWorks into their search box (type the way I show it here, with initial caps & no spaces)

What they sell: BEST DOG CHEW TOY EVER!

You can't get anything more natural than shed elk & deer antlers! The antlers fall off naturally every Fall (naturally), after the "horny" males are finished using them to fight for lady friends. So, vegan-friendly - NO animal is hunted, farmed, or killed, to make this product, which will stir your dog's ancestral wolf genes, with its all-natural scent. Not made of anything but elk or deer  (collagen, I think? Look it up if you care). So, no chemical or undigestable stuff to end up in your dog's gut, and no industrial runoff from some factory, polluting natural waterways. Not manufactured in China (by possibly underpaid underage humans, or political slave-labor). Not rewarding people who still have dog-meat festivals, with the hard-earned $$ of people who LOVE dogs. Not being shipped from halfway around the planet, by means of fossil fuel. Not packaged in thick, indestructible, single-use molded plastic. AND it's the safest chew you can find -- antlers don't splinter like animal bones. Good news for you too: they don't stink or leave marks, grease, etc., on your floor. Like a raw bone from a recently dead creature would. (And you sure don't want to be giving your furry friend cooked bones, which makes them dangerously brittle & splintery!)

I've bought antlers from several different sources, and for me, this guy who sells on ETSY fits all my criteria. He splits the antlers himself (not everybody bothers) to make the marrow readily accessible (that's what a dog wants to get at & chew!) His Etsy page says that he & his dog go out together - on foot - to collect the shed antlers. How cool is that?! OK, maybe he drives part of the way to the forest, from wherever he lives. But it's still not a jet plane or container ship.

He sells these in several sizes. So you can get the one that will work for your dog. I recommend antlers as great Midwinter gifts, for your own & for friends' dogs too. Why not get some to donate to your local shelter? Gnawing is a great way to work off frustration & boredom while waiting for a forever home to arrive.

P.S. Etsy caveat: you might be directed to a page where all antler sellers are listed. I'm not recommending any but Oregon Antler Works. Can't vouch for what I haven't bought. Also - there is a wasting disease (similar to BSE) that deer and elk began to develop some years ago, which could cross species. As far as I know, it is still only found on the East side of the Rockies. So I feel that antlers from Oregon are perhaps a bit safer.

Drink Sampler

www.junglestraws.com

Jungle Straws

What they sell: biodegradable & long-lasting drinking straws made from organic bamboo. Also, bamboo cutlery, coconut shell bowls and safety razors (all metal or metal with bamboo handles). If you like metal straws, they have those too.

I love that the bamboo straws are fair-trade grown & processed by local farmers in Vietnam. You can read about this co's fair-trade values on their website. They also donate 1% of their sales to environ-mental causes. The site has all the info you need about taking care of bamboo & coconut products. Besides a bunch of these lovely, smooth, wheat-color bamboo straws, I've got one of their coconut bowls (Karl uses it for chips), & new safety razors for us both. I got a pink metal one. He has the bamboo handle type. It's beautiful.

I was never a fan of drinking things by straw, but that changed in this past year when I sustained an injury to a nerve in my lip, that makes it hard now, to drink neatly from cups or glasses. I sure wasn't going to start buying things that can end up stuck in a sea turtle's nose. So I hunted online, and found Jungle Straws. A pack of 12 comes with a tiny bottle brush to scrub inside (if you let some liquid dry out a bit before rinsing). They also come with a little hessian bag that holds 1straw, so you can always have it handy. The company is in the UK, but don't let that discourage you. I've ordered products from them 3 times now, and all purchases have come in good time.

Shaving

albatrossdesigns.it

 

[fanfare] Hereby announcing: Karl and I (that's not him, it's a stock photo) have BOTH switched back to actual safety razors and double-edged blades! Yes, after a brief (but still too-long) guilty fling with the "increased convenience" - yep, mea culpa - of those single-use plastic things (not that I didn't always use each one about 10 times! But, still!) Also, to be clear, Karl has an electric shaver for the rough initial work; but he finds he MUST have a blade to really get a clean and complete shave. And those little multi-blade things don't work for him at all.

      Have YOU yet switched? If what's delaying you, is the thought of the inevitable time-wasting hassle involved in trying to find a clerk at CVS who will unlock the damn cabinet where they keep the blades, your worries are over!

      THIS company will sell & ship you high-quality razor blades via their Internet site (example price which sounds very good to me: 50 for $7.50; buy more, they're even cheaper). And when you've used up a reasonable number (details on site), you can dispose of them ECOLOGICALLY, and surely save some sea creatures, by MAILING THEM BACK to Albatross!

      They will then recycle the steel into a cool product, making your shaving into a completely waste-free, environmental dream come true! They will also sell you a safety razor (two styles available) if you don't yet have one.

      AND! If you want to participate in that recycling effort to the max, you can buy their cute little 3-piece traveling tableware set (knife, fork, spoon), made of recycled blades, that neatly fits together. A convenient way to always have the right utensil ready to hand, and smugly refuse the plasticware the takeout place will try to force on you! As I recall, this company's site is really full-service for those who shave their faces, also offering shaving soap on their site. I've never tried using a men's shaving soap on my legs, but now that I think of it, why haven't I? Worth checking out. Will report back.

Stacked Wooden Logs

prostainable.com

What they sell: a broad variety of household product and gift type items, all made of Earth-friendly substances, sold in biodegradable packaging, etc. So far I've only ordered once from this company, but am very happy with the products. From the website, I see that this is a brick-&-mortar shop in the Los Angeles area (San Fernando Valley, I think). And if you live down that way, you're really in luck, because much of what they sell (household products) is available in "refill" form (bring your empty container to the store, so no need to keep buying new containers every time). However, they have a lot of useful products that are easy to mail-order, and my first order came very fast.

What I've bought: large (couple inches long) wooden matches, perfect for lighting the fireplace or re-lighting our gas stove, packaged in a glass jar, with a strike area on the lid ... a bulk-quantity box of doggy poop bags. We were buying biodegradable small compost-pail liners, but frankly, those are unnecessarily large for this dog! These are a perfect size, and feel sturdy, while being 100% degradable, and affordable ... a toilet brush made of all biodegradable materials ... dishwashing scrubber "sponges" made of loofah, cut in a handy size oval shape (I love it -- never going back to the "cellulose + whatever that top layer is" kind which start to fall apart within a few days) ... bamboo hairbrush [handle & bristles are bamboo; slightly raised rubber base holds the smooth bristles (oh , the ecstatic way this brush makes my scalp feel now) ... all-biodegradable "bandaid" type bandages, packaged in attractive cardboard tubes; made of bamboo fiber (both regular, and with aloe vera if you need to keep the bandage from sticking to the wound); I burned myself with the edge of a pan lid right after these arrived, so got to test the aloe ones right away. Worked great! No scar & mark almost faded already!

This company has all kinds of other interesting products, so do take a look at their site for yourself. (I just ordered a few more things, so will add my reactions after those arrive & I get a chance to try them out!).