Green it Up

- By: Safia Ohlson

Green it Up

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! In celebration of all things green, here’s a roundup of green tips for everyday life that make a huge difference to both the planet and your own health.

Create a #LifeAfterPlastic
We talk about this one a lot. Arguably, the #1 green move you can make is to say no to single-use plastics. Here are some simple ideas for doing so and the many reasons why it’s a good idea.

Use Reef-friendly Sunscreen
As if the oceans didn’t have enough problems, around 14,000 tons of sunscreen end up in their waters each year. (The most damage by sunscreens is done to fragile coral reefs in Hawaii and the Caribbean.) Choose mineral or physical sunblocks that do not contain the coral-bleaching chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. (Better for both your body and the ocean!)

Go Paperless
Save precious, oxygenating, earth-cooling trees by getting your bills delivered electronically and unsubscribing to all the unnecessary catalogs delivered each month. Catalog Choice is a free service that lets you communicate your mail preferences to companies and reduces the number of unwanted catalogs in your mailbox.

Grow Your Own Food
The mental health benefits of gardening are legendary, plus growing our own food leaves a much lighter carbon footprint and imparts a deeper appreciation for all it takes to have the bounty of food we experience at the farmer’s markets and grocery store.

Unplug
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, unused but plugged-in devices generate 44 million tons of carbon. Use power strips to make it easier to unplug several things at once and leave things that you don't use every day unplugged.

Eat Green
The way we eat has a huge environmental impact. Making sustainable food choices benefits both your body and the planet (makes sense since, after all, the two are deeply interconnected). Opting for organic, local, and vegetarian are rockstar green moves.

Compost
Every day, Americans generate 700,000 tons of trash. Composting your food waste means less goes to the landfills. Even better, when you compost, food scraps are turned into gardening gold, the result of which nourishes the soil of growing plants better than anything else. Talk about the cycle of life!

Shower With a Friend
Only 0.4% of the Earth’s water is freshwater. If you live in the American west, you know how precious it is. Take shorter showers (or shower with a friend!), fix leaky pipes, consider low-flow toilets, and turn off the water when you're not actively using it while washing your hands or dishes or brushing your teeth.  

Check Your Car’s Air Filter
A dirty air filter can decrease your fuel economy by up to 10%! Next time you service your car, have it checked out.

Be Like Nature
When studying nature, you see that it wastes nothing. Once something completes its life cycle it is returned to the earth and used as nourishment for the next generation. Everything has a purpose. We could learn a lot from this model!

No need to change everything all at once. Take small steps and build new pathways for living. May we suggest starting with something pleasurable, such as Plastic-free Haircare?

Wishing you a great, green St. Paddy’s Day.