3 DIY Eco-Friendly Hand Soaps

I could not let my recent rant about what kids are being asked to bring to school whiz by without offering up a few alternatives. Don't you just hate people who complain about the state of things without giving any suggestions? In my book, that just makes them part of the problem. For someone who cares about our environment like I do, if I didn't provide a suitable option to make things better - it's just…well, ranting.

So, I’m going after the biggest defender of evil on that back-to-school list which included: zip-lock bags, toilet paper, garbage bags, cotton balls, anti-bacterial soap, detergent, paper plates, paper towels and tissues.

Drumroll, please…

ANTI-BACTERIAL SOAP tops the list for eco-unfriendliness.

Why? Because it is unhealthy.

Check out my recent post about how nasty the main ingredient in anti-bacterial soap is. Studies show triclosan alters hormone regulation in laboratory animals, and can cause antibiotic resistance, along with an increase of allergies. The F.D.A. says soap with triclosan is not any more effective than ordinary soap. So, why the hell are we asking kids to bring it to school???

Consider these 3 DIY Eco-Friendly Hand Soap alternatives:

1. Here’s a tutorial for ditching the Dial Complete (bad, bad soap with triclosan) and making your own eco-friendly Liquid Hand Soap.

2. Each year I buy handmade felted soaps at the Wool and Sheep Festival. They are a true luxury. Here are directions to make Felted Soap. I’m going to try!

3. What could be better than shea butter soap? Not much. Here’s the how to’s for making your own Shea Butter Soap.

I believe we can change our future, teach our children well, and protect our precious planet if we continue to think and act creatively…and collectively. Let’s not muck it up.

Credit: Craft

A Lesson We Can Learn From The Lorax (Again)

The Lorax, by Dr. Seuss has been the go-to environmental book for kids since it's publication in 1971. With Earth Day just around the corner, The Lorax will be read in schools and homes throughout the U.S. this month.

Let's refresh the events of this cautionary tale: The Once-ler devised devious ways of cutting down Truffula trees for the "biggering and biggering" of his manufacturing operation. The smogulous smoke that spewed into the air from his Thneed factory made the Lorax "cough, whiff, sneeze, snuffle, snarggle, sniffle, and croak." The beautiful Swomee swans were no longer able to sing, so the Lorax sends the birds away to find cleaner air. The Once-ler "biggered" to the point where he poisoned the Lorax's eco-lovin’ life with polluted water, polluted air, and left him in a sunless panorama of Truffula stumps. Poor Lorax.

Where We Were Before the Clean Air Act, when air pollution plagued the world, the ramifications of acid rain and smog were a blip on the radar of most folks. When awareness kicked in, and the ecological science began to mount, it became a priority to legislate for clean air. At the time, environmentalism was mostly a non-partisan issue, paving the way for the Clean Air Act.

Where We Are The EPA statistics indicate that since the Clean Air Act, the US has decreased toxic fume emissions by 109 million tons, which has reduced pollution and improved the air quality 48 per cent. This week the Senate voted down several pro-pollution amendments that would have decimated the Clean Air Act and kept the EPA from protecting the quality of our air and water. This is great news!

UNLESS… Do you know there is a pro-polluter lobby? It is unfathomable to me that such a thing exists. Didn’t everyone grow up heeding the Lorax's message that we are all interconnected, and collectively we need to take responsibility for the health of our planet and its inhabitants?

The Moms Clean Air Force is not willing to hand over a world to our kids like the one the Lorax left behind. We can't forget the importance of reorienting environmental values away from pure economic and political points of view, and towards common sense science. We can not relent, because the Once-ler-type bully polluters are figuring out ways of "biggering" and continuing to blow their smogulous smoke at our kids.