Just because January is over doesn’t mean we can’t look at ways to make 2013 green. A new year means a new start, and the first few months are the perfect opportunity to make a few little changes for big, eco-friendly impact.
Check your soap and cleaners
All those body washes and antibacterial hand soaps are full of everything from petroleum-based chemicals to unnecessary antibiotics. Switch to basic, natural soap and water for your hand washing needs, studies have shown it’s just as effective as the antibacterial stuff. Around the house, make the switch to cleaning green with environmentally friendly kitchen and bath cleaners.
Ditch the shower curtain
If you’ve got a vinyl curtain, chance are it’s made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride) – a not-so nice chemical product. Switch out to a PVC-free shower curtain; it’s a tiny step with big impact for your health and the environment. Good choices include organic cotton, linen and EVA, a chlorine-free, green alternative to PVC.
Get picky about pests
If you have regular extermination or pest control services, talk to your company about reducing the use of chemicals, or switching to an organic option. Some may even offer plans that include monitoring and preventative work on an as-needed basis. You never know until you ask, and if your company doesn’t offer any choice but the toxic-chemical route, it may be time to consider switching to a company that’s a little more eco-friendly.
Curate your cookware
If you’ve got old non-stick stuff hanging around, it might be time to send it to a recycling center. Some pieces have coatings that can emit perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) when heated. If it’s time to replace, opt for stainless steel, ceramic or cast iron.
Take these four little steps and you are well on your way to making big improvements in your family’s health and keeping in green in 2013.