Tips For The Eco-Friendly Home Of Your Dreams
A lot of us try to make healthier choices in the new year. Something about a fresh start makes it easier to leave behind things we know aren’t good for us. So, whether you’re just starting your journey, or you’re looking for practical information and product swaps, we’re here to help. Here are just a few of the ways that Force of Nature can help you achieve the eco-friendly home of your dreams this year.
3 Ways To Jumpstart A More Sustainable, Toxin-Free Home This Year
1. Take steps to reduce plastic waste!
2. Break up with fragrances.
Fragrances have nothing to do with how effective a product is and unfortunately can bring lots of scary ingredients into your home. From personal care products like shampoo, deodorant or baby wash, or household products like laundry detergent or dish soap, fragrance ingredients are unregulated. Manufacturers are not required to list their fragrance ingredients on product labels, so they just list the word “fragrance”, which can hide a cocktail of more than 100 toxic ingredients. Phthalates and fragrance go hand in hand because phthalates help the scent of a fragrance last. You won’t find these chemicals listed on labels, so they are difficult to avoid. Research on the reproductive and developmental impact of phthalates has found a link to genital malformations and undescended testes in baby boys and lower sperm counts in men. And get this: a recent study of over 5,000 adults linked phthalates to up to 107,000 premature deaths annually among adults aged 55-64.
So now you know to skip the fragranced products, but you’re left with the very real challenge of odors. Laundry can be a key place to tackle odors, so we’ve got some tips to help.
Let’s start with the basics and make sure you know the 4 stink-causing laundry mistakes you need to stop making (cheat sheet: are you using too much soap? Too much heat? Fabric softener? Or, you could be waiting too long between loads!) When it comes to athletic gear, keeping stink at bay requires just a few tweaks to your routine. The top priority? Stop what’s causing the odor. Whether you’re hitting the road for a run, or your yoga mat for some chaturanga, your athletic gear creates the perfect environment for stink-causing funk to set up shop, thanks to sweat, natural oils and dead skin. Force of Nature to the rescue, with a solution free from toxic chemicals that is as effective as bleach, but gentle enough to spray on your yoga mat.
Tip: make sure you’re fully saturating the clothing or equipment and letting it sit for 2 minutes.
For extra credit, here’s how to take de-stinking to the next level:
For your washable gym clothes and team uniforms, spray with Force of Nature to saturate, focusing on areas where sweat concentrates like armpits and seams. Wait 2 minutes and then wash as normal. If you get in the habit of doing this when you get back from the gym, you’ll be able to eliminate that set-in stink issue for good. Remember to do a test in an inconspicuous spot the first time to be sure the dyes used in the fabric are truly colorfast.
Toxic air fresheners (we’re looking at you, Febreze) and dryer sheets simply mask odors instead of eliminating them. They’re also filled with chemicals that you really don’t want leaching into your skin and respiratory system. With already stinky shoes and cleats, the best strategy is to fully saturate the interior (until totally soaked) and allow them to dry completely. Don’t rinse. Once you’ve done this, you can give them a quick spray and allow it to set for 30 seconds after each wearing.
Gloves, Pads, Guards & Helmets
These are undoubtedly the worst offenders, but the treatment plan is the same (and will work!). The first time, you’ll fully saturate them and allow them to dry. After that, a preemptive spray after each use (including straps, foam, etc!) will help keep that stink at bay for good.
Bags/Carriers: Don’t forget to give your yoga mat bag or gym bag a routine spray down with a natural deodorizer like Force of Nature. A lot of gym bags are awkward to wash in a machine, so this is an easy and convenient way to ward off odors without creating a complicated cleaning situation.
3. Detox your kitchen.
If you’re ready to chop, juice and smoothie your way to getting more delicious, organic veggies into your diet, make sure you check for “hitchhikers” in the form of pesticides and bacteria.
Produce Tip: Confused on which produce to buy organic or conventional? Brush up on the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen Guides).
It may surprise you, but Force of Nature makes an awesome fruit and veggie wash. Rinse or wipe off any visible dirt or residue, then spray the fruit thoroughly to clean it. One fruit that’s important to clean first: melons, particularly cantaloupe, as their rinds can harbor bacteria. While you don’t eat the rind, when you slice through it, your knife is distributing the bacteria into the fruit itself. Ick!
Don’t forget to keep your cooking surfaces (including cutting boards) safe from germs by spraying them down with Force of Nature before and after use, especially when you’re preparing raw meat or fish.
Extra Credit: Here are six ways to dramatically transform your kitchen with one cleaner and 5 Steps To A Chemical Free Kitchen.
Moving from produce to cleaning products…
Swapping out your toxic cleaning products for safer ones is a huge step towards an eco-friendly home. Toxic chemicals in our cleaning products aren’t just bad for ourselves, our families and our pets, but they have terrible consequences for our natural environment, too.
Even so-called “natural” cleaners are not as safe as you may think, containing a surprising number of toxic chemicals due to the poor regulation of this product category in the US. Did you know that out of over 62,000 chemicals approved for use in the US, only about 300 have actually been tested for safety?
Even worse, cleaning product manufacturers aren’t required to show their full ingredient lists on their labels, and there are no federal standards dictating criteria for what cleaning products can be labeled as “natural.”
Bottom line: this means even “natural” cleaning products can and do contain toxic chemicals linked to hormone disruption, organ and neurotoxicity, respiratory & skin irritation.
Another great resource are our eco-friendly, chemical-free Product Guides which include tons of information on how to identify safe products or create safer alternatives right in your eco-friendly home.
And, of course, Force of Nature is a powerhouse cleaning system that can replace your cabinet full of household cleaners from countertop, kitchen and bathroom sprays to glass and floor cleaners, deodorizers and bleach. It’s so powerful it kills 99.9% of germs like MRSA, Staph, Salmonella, Norovirus and more, but the big game-changer is that it’s so gentle you can spray it on a baby’s pacifier without needing to rinse it. It’s EPA approved for use against Covid-19 too.
And, as if that wasn’t exciting enough, check out these unexpected uses for Force of Nature!
If you’re committed to an eco-friendly home, our revolutionary cleaning system, Force of Nature, will become the star of your cleaning product cupboard. It’s family-friendly and gentle enough to use around your kids and dogs, while being an EPA registered, hospital-grade disinfectant that kills 99.9% of germs. And, we’re always here with our blog and resources to help you learn how to make keeping an eco-friendly home easy.