Girl's Guide to Going Green
Go green in style with our expert eco-chic tips for eating, wearing, and living green!
GET ECO-CHIC STYLE
- Take a Walk on the Green Side: Strut your stuff in eco-conscious shoes like Vivienne Westwood for Melissa.
- Sustainable Style: Eco-minded model Angela Vindvall says "Organic is utterly chic, and has evolved way beyond the itchy-scratchy stereotype." Try pairing a wear-forever investment piece, like a classic jacket, with eco accessories like a Lulu Frost necklace.
- Eco-Smart Workout Wear: Skip the antimicrobial fabrics for your gym gear: Compounds in them are now being regulated by the EPA as pesticides (and if you wouldn't carry a pest strip, why wear one?).
- Go for a Green Mani/Pedi: Instead of acetone nail polish remover, try Pritis Soy Based Polish Removerit's toxin-free, biodegradable, and packaged in recyclable glass bottles.
- Stay Dry: When Mother Nature pours, go green with a Radley's recycled umbrella. More than just arm candy, its eco-innovation at its best. Made from recycled plastic bottles, the fabric is 100% recyclable.
- Nearly Naked: The next-best thing to sleeping in the buff? Get slinky in Jenny White's Eco Boudoir lingerie, made of earth-conscious silk, exclusively at Fig Leaves.
- Bring Your Own Bag: Shopping until you drop? Drop the plastic bag habit too. America uses more disposable plastic bags than any other country with 60,000 plastic bags doled out every five seconds. Next time you hit the stores for groceries or clothes, shop in stylebring a reusable canvas bag.
- Green Denim: Forget about the blues and slip into something more earth-conscious. J Brand Green Label's organic-cotton jeans use a low-impact wash and come with a bonus totebag to boot.
- Reuse Common Scents: Don't discard those dryer sheets. Wipe them over your combs and brushes for a soft touch of fragrance and to keep your hair static-free.
- Suds-Free Shampoo: Avoid excess oil and save on water usesprinkle a bit of baby powder throughout the hair, which helps eliminate oil and leaves a fresh scent throughout the day.
- Shaggy Texture Without Styling Tools: To add texture to short hair without plugging in your go-to tools, try David Babaii for WildAid, the eco-friendly hair care line from David Babaii and actress Kate Hudson. Spray towel-dried hair with a beach spray and allow to air dry.
- Curly Hair Sans Curler: For chic curls without the curling iron, pick up David Babaii Beach Spray. After shampooing, spray hair with beach spray, scrunch and/or twist sections, then allow to air dry.
SAVE MONEY & THE PLANET
- Pull the Plug: Power down and unplug when you're finished using electronics. Shut down your home workstation every day. A year of nightly computer sleep will save you $90.
- Make the Digital Switch: Ditch the monthly paper statement and handle your bill onlineelectronic bill payment is a planetary mitzvah. Consider the trees milled, water wasted, and energy expended to create checkbooks and paper statements. It adds up to a lot of squandered resources.
- Travel Light: When traveling, only use gadgets you would use at home. Even travel gear marked earth-friendly create unnecessary waste if it's just extra stuff.
- Lighten Up: The Compact Fluorescent Light Bulb (CFL) is perhaps the greatest invention since...well...the original light bulb. CFLs consume up to 75% less energy and last 10 times longer. Replace 45 incandescent bulbs (the average per U.S. household) and youll save $180 per year.
- Get Efficient with Energy Star: Replace old and inefficient electronics with Energy Star certified alternatives. A single-family house revamped with Energy Star products will decrease energy use by 30 percent, salvaging the average American family $600 a year.
- Put on a Sweater: Every one-degree thermostat reduction can save three percent on your heating bill.
- Power Down: Make a habit out of unplugging at-rest cell phone chargers and electronics on standby. To make unplugging easier, attach appliances and battery chargers to a power strip, and switch it off when you leave the house for the day.
- Ditch Your Gas-Guzzler: Personal travel accounts for nearly a third of the typical Americans carbon footprint. What to do until you change cars: Stick to the speed limit, keep tires inflated, and avoid jack-rabbit starts and stops. These could cut fuel usage by 30 percent.
- Travel Off-Season: Visit high-trafficked outdoor areas in the off-season. Not only will you avoid the crowds of other tourists, you'll help prevent erosion. Outdoorsy? Visiting when hiking trails and camp sites are less trampled reduces the amount of waste removal.
- Have a Shower Quickie: Showers account for most of a household's hot-water use. Cutting showers from 30 minutes to 10 could slash water-heating costs by 50 percent.
- Give Green: Regifting isn't just great for your walletMother Earth will thank you too! Regifting will prevent items from ending up in the landfill or incinerator. According to the EPA, each American throws away an average of four pounds a day. That's a total of 210 million tons a year.
- Have a Cold One: Wash your clothes in cold water, which expends about half as much energy as hot rinses. To save even more, make sure to clean out the lint tray before starting the dryer.
IT'S EASY EATING GREEN
- Read Carefully: Check the label before you hit the checkout. Products labeled "organic" must consist of 95 percent organically produced ingredients, but products containing 70 percent organic ingredients can use "made with organic ingredients."
- Go Halfway Vegetarian:Cut your meat consumption in half and replace those proteins with fish like wild salmon and trout. Avoid farm-raised salmon (full of banned PCBs) and canned albacore tuna (loaded with mercury).
- A Cleaner Dirty Martini: From pesticide-free vodka to carbon-neutral rum, there's an outpouring of greener drinks sure to satisfy your deepest thirst. Try Veev Organic Vodka for a refreshing vodka lemonade, and use organic fruit juice as a mixer.
- Chocolate That's Good For You: Bloomsberry, LLC, a Salem, MA-based chocolate maker, have teamed up with TerraPass, a green energy broker, to offer Climate Change Chocolate bars. The price includes enough carbon energy credits from TerraPass to offset your carbon footprint for one day.
- Know Where to Shop: Shop smart when stocking up on groceries. Stick to the periphery of the storethe most heavily processed foods are shelved in the middle. Imagine you're trolling the aisles with your great-grandma in tow. If she wouldn't recognize something as foodread: Gummi Bears or Cap'n Crunchthink twice before picking it up.
- Fresh Food Spoils Quickly: Stay on top of what's in your fridge. Some tips: Many stone fruits, like peaches, and tomatoes keep longer at room temperature; refrigerate herbs in a glass of water, stems down.
- Organic Doesn't Mean Clean: All produce is susceptible to nasty bacteria such as E. coli. Soil and runoff water that's contaminated with E. coli can get onto produce. Your best defense: Wash everything thoroughly under running water.
- Put Away the Plastic: Careful where you throw your plastic bottles. Plastic accounts for up to 80 percent of all debris in the Pacific or Atlantic Ocean. Recycle instead.
- Cut Down on Meat: Producing one calorie of meat protein burns more than 10 times the fossil fuels as does a calorie of plant protein. Going vegetarian does more to reduce greenhouse gases than exchanging your gas-guzzler for a Prius. Not ready to give up meat? Commit to eating strictly vegetarian every other day.