Have you ever thought about what we wash our buildings, our clothes and ourselves with having a direct impact on the environment?
While the clothes might come out smelly like roses, the toxic chemicals that made that smell go on to seep in to water systems, rivers and oceans. And the ‘ultra performance double strength mighty grease remover’ spray might get the oven hob sparkling but it will also put toxic fumes on to skin and into the air.
One of the first changes I made to my day-to-day life was the to cleaning products that I buy. I find the alternative, more natural products, just as good quality and I have never gone back to old ones. Here are some of my best buys when it come to eco cleaning:
I changed all of my cleaning products more than a year ago to ones which are environmentally and human friendly. I am a bit of a clean freak, so believe me when I say that they work just as hard as the traditional mainstream brands. For cleaning at home I buy products from the British owned company Bio-D – they can be bought online, in Oxfam stores and in some supermarkets. Bio have a massive range of products from hand soap to floor cleaner, all which I have found to be of good quality. There is also a brand called Ecover which I also like to use – especially their washing up liquid.
I am sure that there are many homemade cleaning products I could be making at home which would be even more environmentally positive but I am not quite there yet. It is something I plan to do some research in to in the coming months and I will update you.
For clothes washing I use the fabric conditioner from Bio-D and as my main detergent I use an Eco Egg. The reusable egg is a hard plastic shell which you buy along with mineral washing pellets to go inside. The pellets wash the clothes but do not breakdown inside the machine and do not hold any harsh chemicals like most other brands. Depending on the pellets you buy, they can last from 54 to 720 washes, and calculates to only 3p for each wash. Then you simply replace the pellets and off you go again. By using the Eco Egg you will reduce your impact on the environment, your clothes and your wallet!
Another tip for clothes is to not wash it unless it actually needs it. I am not talking about wearing a t-shirt 10 times before it goes into the launch bag, more so, if you get a splash of your dinner on your jeans or shirt. Rather than automatically putting them for the wash, use a little soap and warm water on a cloth and wash only that patch. It sounds very simple but we unnecessarily wash millions of clothes every day – all of these washes use litres of water and products.
In the shower I really like to use body washes and soaps from Faith in Nature . I use bars of soap most often because it reduces my plastic consumption but they also last a lot longer than shower gels. Grab yourself a bar of natural soap and a sponge to later it up and you won’t notice the difference.
For my hair I like to use the Lush Shampoo Bars – they are just brilliant!! They give the best lather I have every got from a shampoo, smell great, cleanse perfectly and it lasts for months. Bonus: I travel with mine as they don’t count as a liquid. Unfortunately there is no conditioner bar yet so I use the Faith in Nature range which are very nice.
Skin care routine is important to me and I always cleanse, tone, moisturise daily and used scrubs and masks on the weekends. I have combination skin (oily/dry) and I had an issue with a shiny t-zone since I was a teenager. Since I started to use the Palmarosa range from Neal’s Yard products last year I have not had this issue whatsoever. Their products are all natural and organic and the brand is British owned. You will pay a little more than the high street products but they are of high quality, last for ages and are SO much better for your skin. As the majority of the product packaging is glass and they use mostly organic and natural ingredients, the impact on the environment is greatly reduced compared to mainstream brands. Remember, good skin care is a long term investment 😉