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Are you still relying on plastic baggies, bags, or containers to pack lunches for school or work? Are you concerned about the chemicals that can leach out of plastics into the foods you or your kids eat? A lot of plastic food containers are touted as BPA-free. But BPA-free does not necessarily mean safe because the chemicals used in place of BPA can have the same harmful effects. And plastics like polypropylene may contain antibacterial chemicals like Triclosan, which have been found to leach.
There are many plastic-free alternatives, and this week, three companies are offering giveaways and discounts to My Plastic-free Life readers for back to school. To enter the giveaways, leave a comment at the bottom of this post letting me know 1) which item(s) you are interested in, and 2) an idea for what to do with all the old plastic containers we have lying around after we switch to plastic-free foodware. Dumping them in the landfill is not the right answer.… Read the rest
Since Tom’s of Maine switched from recyclable aluminum toothpaste tubes to plastic laminate a few months ago, I’ve been getting tons of emails asking what less plastic option to use instead. I looked at the change as a challenge to finally figure out a better toothpaste alternative. Aluminum was good (you could send the tubes back to the company to be recycled) but not perfect because of a) the plastic cap and threads, and b) the resin lining inside the tube which possibly contained BPA.
So, after much research and some harrowing moments, here are the Plastic-Free or Less Plastic tooth cleaner solutions I’ve discovered. There are many, many more out there. Your suggestions and input are welcome!
Make Your Own Tooth Powder
The Rucksack web site has a huge list of tooth powder vendors, as well as recipes for making your own tooth powder. Here are two ideas.
1) Baking Soda and Salt Tooth Powder. When I first started my plastic-free… Read the rest
The BlogHer conference is this weekend. Time for my annual eyebrow wax and pedicure. You know the saying that women dress for each other? When it comes to BlogHer, that saying couldn’t be more true. All other days of the year, I’m a pretty low maintenance gal. I mean, how often do I write about cosmetics on this blog? Almost never. But when the BlogHer Estrogen Fest rolls around, I get all self-conscious about my neglected feet and crazy eyebrows.
Witness the crazy eyebrows for yourself. Don’t see what I’m talking about? That’s okay. I see the crazy, and that’s what matters.
This time, instead of paying $15 for someone to slather paraffin wax (a petroleum product) on my face and rip it off with half my skin, I decided to save my money and inflict the pain on myself. I found some ancient wax strips and a sugar waxing kit in the bathroom cabinet. I can’t remember buying … Read the rest
Three years ago, trying to find a way to have liquid soap without the plastic bottle, I discovered that you can’t actually make real liquid soap from a solid soap bar. What I ended up with was a slimy green failure. And the reason is that liquid and solid soaps have different chemistries. The lye used to make solid soap is sodium hydroxide; whereas, the lye used to make liquid soap is potassium hydroxide. According to Wikipedia:
The saponification of fats with KOH [potassium hydroxide] is used to prepare the corresponding “potassium soaps”, which are softer than the more common sodium hydroxide-derived soaps. Because of their softness and greater solubility, potassium soaps require less water to liquefy, and can thus contain more cleaning agent than liquefied sodium soaps
So for the past 4 years, I’ve been doing without any kind of liquid soap. But recently, attempting to deal with some fungus problems in my garden, I’ve… Read the rest