May Favorites

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I feel like I say this every month, but it feels like May has slipped through my fingers. I can’t believe that it is already June! June is probably my favorite month, something about the weather, all the delicious fruit that starts ripening, oh and my birthday…! Anyways, this isn’t all about June yet, so let’s get back to my favorites for May.

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Beauty

  • Uncle Harry’s toothpaste – This toothpaste has been absolutely amazing. I picked it up when I was starting to run out of my old toothpaste that came in a plastic tube. This comes in a glass jar, which I love, but when I first started it using it, it felt a bit strange. The essential oils make it extremely minty and the texture is quite different, but now I wouldn’t imagine going back to conventional toothpaste. My teeth have never felt healthier and it does an excellent job at leaving your teeth sparklingly fresh. I’m sad that I am nearly out, but before I rebuy it I am going to attempt a DIY version. But I would definitely recommend it if you are looking for a pre-made zero waste or a natural version for conventional toothpaste.
  • Nubian Heritage Mango Butter Scrub – This body scrub is a m a z i n g ….. It makes your skin feel and smell amazing! I like to pair it with some baking soda to cleanse, exfoliate, and moisturize my skin. I honestly can’t get over how soft it makes my skin. It is another one that I would love to attempt a DIY version so I can avoid the plastic packaging, but I don’t think I could recreate the amazing smell. I would definitely give it a try, especially if you have dry skin. ( I have oily skin, so that is why I pair it with the baking soda)
  • Shea Butter African Black Soap (lemongrass citrus) – I just started using this soap towards the end of the month when I ran out of my liquid body was from Alaffia, and Oh Mah God. This stuff is amazing. I was looking for a new body soap that didn’t come in plastic packaging but wanted to stick with this brand, because I absolutely love their products. This soap delivers my friend, it is cleansing, yet still moisturizing and leaves me wondering why I didn’t switch to this bar soap sooner. For added benefit, I hang it in a mesh cotton bag, which keeps it contained and also exfoliates my skin. And it comes in wrapped in paper, which is pretty good as far as zero waste beauty products go. 10/10 would recommend, especially with the mesh bag.

Food

  • Nature’s Bakery Strawberry Fig Bars – I know, doesn’t really fit with my movement toward living a less wasteful life, but they are so good…. They are a way tastier version of fig newtons and they’ve definitely been a life saver on days when I am too busy to pack food to take to campus. They are a still going to be a favorite, despite the waste they create. But I definitely need to a find a better solution for next month.
  • Home Brewed Kombucha – If you are a kombucha lover, then I highly recommend searching your local craigslist and investing a few dollars in a scooby. Brewing your own kombucha is really simple and in the end is so much cheaper than buying it at the store. And it also is way less wasteful because you can buy your tea and sugar in bulk, brew it and store it in glass jars. If you live in the Bellingham area, let me know if you need a scooby, with each new batch I end up with more babies than I know what to do with.

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Fashion

  • Still Water Earrings – I picked up these beauties at the farmers market, and they are the first pair of earrings that I actually love. They are dangly, yet simple, and most importantly comfortable and cute! Unfortunately, you can’t purchase them online, but if you are ever in Bellingham on a Saturday, hit up the farmer’s market and check out the jewelry stalls. There are tons of options and they are all handmade!
  • Merrell Mix Master Move Glide Trail Running Shoes – Does this even count as fashion? Probably better suited in the health category, but whateverrrr. These trail running shoes are my new fav closed toed shoes. Lab day was painful before these beauties entered my life and I hiking ceased to exist before I got these. I was a lucky duck and got these on sale at REI, but these shoes are so good that I would probably pay full price now that I know. They are minimal, yet still, give support and there was no “break in” period. You know, the time when you get ugly blisters and question if it is really worth it? Anyway, these are the first pair of running shoes I’ve ever loved whole heartedly. Summer trail runs here I come!

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Home

  • Salt Lamp – I had been curious about salt lamps for a while, but not due to their supposed health benefits, but rather for the warm and comforting light they emit. I bought this one off of a friend who was moving away and I’ve loved it ever since. It’s perfect to turn on in the evenings right before bed because it is a dim warm light that doesn’t mess with your body. I would highly recommend getting one if you are looking for some nice dim room lighting.

Entertainment

  • Rabbits – I stumbled across this podcast and I was instantly hooked. If you are into mystery and intrigue, definitely give it a listen. For added fun, listen to it while walking to it alone it the forest. Definitely, adds to the scary element.

    “When Carly Parker’s friend Yumiko goes missing under very mysterious circumstances, Carly’s search for her friend leads her headfirst into a ancient mysterious game known only as Rabbits. Soon Carly begins to suspect that Rabbits is much more than just a game, and that the key to understanding Rabbits, might be the key to the survival of our species, and the Universe, as we know it.”

  • S-Town – Another great podcast, which I promptly completed in a couple of days.

    “John despises his Alabama town and decides to do something about it. He asks a reporter to investigate the son of a wealthy family who’s allegedly been bragging that he got away with murder. But then someone else ends up dead, sparking a nasty feud, a hunt for hidden treasure, and an unearthing of the mysteries of one man’s life.”

  • Ponzi Supernova – These episodes are so short its a crime, but nevertheless it is another captivating podcast. It is still coming out, so a great podcast to start for the month of June.
    Bernie Madoff Speaks.
    “Was his $65 billion fraud a freak occurrence, or destined to be repeated? An exclusive audio investigation into the dark interior of our financial systems.”

Zero Waste Bathroom

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Over the past couple months I’ve been working to narrow what I use in the bathroom and try to greatly reduce the waste that I produce. Currently I am still using shampoo, conditioner, and body wash in plastic bottles. But once I finish those I will be looking to switch to things like bar soap and bulk conditioner. For now, these are some simple changes that I’ve been able to make over the past couple of months.

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The first thing I switched to were bamboo toothbrushes from the brand brush with bamboo. It was a little hard to get use to the texture of them at first, because I had grow up using hard plastic toothbrushes my whole life. But after a month of using them it was completely normal and now I will never want to go back to using plastic ones. And it seems that my gums are a lot healthier thanks to the softer bristles.

After toothbrushes came lotion. I’ve never been a big user of lotion, but my skin has been a lot drier this year. (Probably due to moving to a drier climate.) For my face I started using jojoba oil that I got in bulk and then I switch to sweet almond oil when I was at home over break. Now I am currently using a mix of the two every morning and my skin has never looked better. I don’t use lotion on the majority of my body, but my feet and legs tend to get dry. So once in a while I try to use some zero waste body butter I made, using this recipe.

The last couple switches only happened over christmas break. For christmas my mom gave me a safety razor, which works wonderfully! And I made homemade chapstick to replace the tube of Burt’s Bees chapstick that I had been using. Then finally and probably my most used and recent switch is a stainless steel tongue cleaner I got for christmas. I use this twice a day after I brush my teeth and I find it way more effective than scraping my tongue with a plastic toothbrush, like I use to do.

Eventually I would like to make my own toothpaste and deodorant when I run out of the ones I am currently using. And I think it would be fun to experiment with making my own makeup. But that is very low priority on my list because I given up wearing make up all together.

Let me know if you’ve been working to switch to a zero waste lifestyle and what changes you’ve made so far.

 

Sustainable Stocking Stuffers

The past couple months I have completely fallen in love with the zero waste movement. Although I am not completely zero waste, I have been taking steps to get there. And a big one is changing the way my family does christmas. First up on the list is placing sustainable goods in stockings.

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Weekend Links 10/1/16

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Walla Walla is a great place to go cycling! This is about 3 miles away from my college.

What are you up to this weekend? I had a busy first week of college and I was so thankful when Friday finally came. I celebrated surviving the first week with an 8mile bike ride on Friday. It is still sunny and fairly warm here in Walla Walla, so it’s good to soak up the warmth and sun while I still can. Saturdays are always days of rest and fun and my Sundays are usually for doing grocery shopping, laundry, and getting ahead on my homework for the week. Here are a few links from around the internet….

An eco-friendly blog that I’ve fallen in love with!

A good post about eating healthy and vegan in college.

Sad, but interesting NY Times article.

If you need a little cuteness in your life check out this doggie instagram.

As a pre-med student, this podcast sounds pretty interesting.

These otters are just too cute.

A really good article about the sugars you should fear, and that fats that you shouldn’t.

These look amazing and they are still healthy!

Shopping waste free at the farmers market.

I’m obsessed with this really cute science jewelry.

I hope you are having a terrific weekend!