A NEW KIND OF GREEN CLEANING

"Home is where one starts from." –T.S. ELLIOT

There’s nothing better than a clean, fresh-smelling home. When you use green or natural products to give your house a sparkling makeover, you’re not only eliminating chemicals and toxins from your living space but you’re giving yourself a clean and healthy environment to thrive in.

Optimal health and wellness isn’t just about the products you apply to the body but rather what you use in your surroundings. After all, it makes sense that you’d want to avoid cleaning ingredients or home-based products that add artificial fragrances, phosphates and chlorine into the air you breathe or the textiles you rub against your skin. Want to learn more about how to give your home a green overhaul?

GREEN CLEANING – WHAT IS IT?
Depending on who you ask, there could be a few answers in regard to green cleaning. Some prefer to go the al natural route of using old-fashioned ingredients like lemons and vinegar to clean and scour the home, while others opt for manufactured products featuring a green seal of approval. These products are different from the traditional cleaning supplies in that they: 

Are biodegradable
Use ingredients gathered through sustainable practices
Feature organic-based plant extracts and essential oils  

An important note to make is that green products can still contain additives or chemicals that aren’t considered ideal for the environment. Before buying any products for the home, such as laundry detergent, candles, cleaning agents and even hand soap, always check the ingredient list to ensure that you’re avoiding some of biggest culprits like triclosan.

Found in so many of our daily goods, triclosan is used as an antibacterial agent. While it’s always a good idea to sanitize your space or cleaning supplies, triclosan is one of the major ingredients to look for in any product you bring into the home. According to studies, this chemical increases airborne allergens and antibiotic resistance, in addition to being known as a hormone disruptor that has the potential to affect the entire family.  

Unfortunately, triclosan is only one of many things to avoid. Bisphenol A (commonly known as BPA) is a synthetic chemical found in plastic – anything from food storage containers to water bottles – and has been shown to mimic estrogen in the body. 

Dichlorobenzene, prominent in air fresheners, toilet cleanser and even mothballs, is another chemical found in many households. Classified as a potential carcinogen, this chemical has been under scrutiny as causing prenatal complications and affecting puberty in children.

GO GREEN WITH THESE HOUSEHOLD ITEMS
Aside from cleaning products, think about the other things you come into contact with every day. Your bedsheets and laundry, perhaps? Choosing a plant-based or green laundry detergent is recommended, as long as it doesn’t contain endocrine disruptors like triclosan. Each day and night, your bare skin comes into contact with sheets and clothing cleansed using products featuring less than stellar ingredients and chemicals. Not only do most commercial products leave a residue behind that aggravates skin, using cleansing products with artificial ingredients (like synthetic fragrance) increases skin sensitivity and the risk of allergic reactions.

Candles are another thing to consider. Did you know there are environmentally-friendly waxes that don’t put carcinogens or artificial ingredients into the air? Look for these two wax options when shopping for your next candle:

Soy wax – burns cleaner and offers a natural, concentrated fragrance
Beeswax – contains no chemical additives and is 100 percent natural

Switching from common household items we find at our local retail stores to something plant-based or green takes some effort, but it’s worth it to know you’re providing you and the family with a safe, clean environment.

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