Is Plastic Killing Your Sex Drive?

imagesWarnings about the danger of phthalates in plastics are once again in the news by way of a study recently presented by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

This time researchers have found a link between soft plastics such as those found in raincoats, rubber duckies, shower curtains and air mattresses* (PVC) and a reduced sex drive in women.

The primary reason for this is due to phthalates, which are already known to be endocrine disruptors that reduce testosterone levels in men, women and children and are associated with overall reproductive toxicity. However, the findings that women’s libidos can also be affected was revealed in a study by University of Rochester School of Medicine.

The findings noted each of the 360 women who participated in the study showed traces of phthalates in their urine. Those with the highest levels of phthalates were found to be two and a half times as likely to have lower libidos compared to those with the least. “They are throughout our environment and every single person studied showed measurable levels of these chemicals. So even at the levels found in the environment every day we are seeing an association with interest in sex,” said lead author, Dr. Emily Barrett, about the study’s findings.

If testosterone levels, declining sperm quality and feminization of males, early puberty in girls and an increased risk of diabetes weren’t enough to make all of us rethink what kind of plastics we use and bring into our homes, this new information will hopefully sway people to start rejecting these dangerous products by avoiding PVC and plastics marked with recycling label #3.

*Read our article about PVC-free air mattresses


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Great Green Gifts for Her

recycled materials green gym bagThe Everything Fits Gym Bag

•  100% recycled polyester with polyester mesh
•  Vented outside compartment to hold shoes wet items, shoes or towel

This eco-chic bag will keep a girl organized with its roomy interior featuring a zippered pocket, an elastic pocket and a key tether. Includes an easy-reach outside pocket for water bottle, inside and outside holsters for cell phone and MP3 player and bottom adjustable straps for your yoga mat (not included). 18″L x 8½”W x 13″H.

Bonus: Free shipping!

Find it Here:  Gaiam

The Organic Chocolate Pleaser Kit

A pleasing assortment of organic and fair trade Gourmet Chocolate Goodness from California. Rich Rainforest Dark Fudge, exquisite raw chocolate hearts and brittle, lots of mouth-watering gourmet chocolate bars, tasty chocolate bites, plus amazing Lavender Truffle Hearts!

Bonus: Made in the USA

Find it Here: Kate’s Caring Gifts


Organic Cotton and Hemp Infinity Scarf
With the feel of linen, the rich color of silk and the strength of hemp, this versatile organic scarf works for all occasions and brightens any outfit with texture and pop. 42″ long and available in ten colors.

Bonus: Machine washable

Find It Here: Sprigs




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Is YOUR Fragrance on This List?

I really love things that smell good but in the past few years I’ve become keenly aware of just how toxic they can be and thus, I was compelled to search Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep cosmetic safety database and compile a list of the worst-scoring fragrances.

This means that based on their ingredients, these fragrances rated the highest in categories relating to cancer, allergies/immunotoxicity and/or developmental & reproductive toxicity—YIKES!

This list isn’t all inclusive of every fragrance out there and it only contains some of the ones that got the highest overall “hazard” scores (9 and 10) .

There are plenty that I didn’t list and many that have only slightly lower hazard scores so yourself a favor and check Skin Deep yourself to see where your scents and cosmetics rank. FYI…my fave scent scored a 6 out of 10 :(

And now…


Read the rest of this entry »

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Good For You Girls

What: Natural skin care products for girls

Features: Skin care made especially for girls to help clean, balance pH, clear blemishes and protect their delicate skin from the elements without harsh, toxic, hormone-disrupting chemicals.

Green Factor: Good For You Girls products are free of synthetics, petrochemicals, parabens, sulfates,dyes, hormone-disruptors and GMO’s plus the packaging is made from recycled materials and water-based inks.

Bonus: Good For You Girls products have a 100% money back guarantee and they’re vegan and cruelty-free.

Find It Here: Good For You Girls

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Shoes, Made Simple

simpleshoe.jpgWhat: Sustainable, sweet lookin’ shoes

Features: It may have taken a few years, but the folks at Simple Shoes have discovered their company’s focus: making 100% sustainable shoes. Simple shoes come in a ton of styles to choose from and range in sizes from infant to adult. They’re built to last, and I know that for a fact–my first pair of Simple’s lasted me well over a decade!

Green Factor: Simple uses recycled car tires (for soles), post consumer recycled paper, hemp, organic cotton, bamboo, natural latex and a host of other recycled and natural materials to make both their shoes and packaging

Bonus: Free domestic ground shipping on all orders!

Find It Here: Simple Shoes

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Favorite Things: Traditional Razors

parker-90r-detail.jpgI’ve always been kind of bothered by disposable razors. I mean, you use it a few times and then you just THROW IT AWAY. It’s absurd. What really pushed me over the edge, though, is when my husband tried the free Gillete Fusion we got in the mail and decided he really liked it. Yes, it worked nicely but the replacement cartridge heads? Cost a freaking fortune (around $25 for 8 heads). Shaving had suddenly become not only bad for the environment but ridiculously expensive, as well.

After succumbing to his pleas to buy the overpriced, ungreen foolishness a few times I decided there had to be a better alternative and I started looking at real razors like my dad used to use, also known as double edge safety razors. Usually made of stainless steel, chrome or nickel-plated brass, you use stainless steel blades that are generally inexpensive (and recyclable) and you DON’T need to replace the head or handle at all.

After much research, I settled on one and ordered it for my husband (it came with 100 blades) for $37 and change and guess what? HE LOVES IT. Even better? I love it—no more dull blades, no more throwing the whole thing away and no more buying new razor heads at an average price of $3 per head. And as an added bonus…my legs have never been smoother.

Find It Here: Amazon.com

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Recycled wth Style

picture-2.pngAs the old saying goes, when life hands you lemons, you make lemonade (or, if you’re like me, you scrap the lemonade all together and mix up a lemon drop cocktail instead). With that thought in mind, if my husband handed me my favorite wool sweaters–sweaters he’d accidentally shrunken–I’d probably struggle to look at things from the lemonade-making point of view. When it happened to Sue Burns, however, she didn’t see a pile of ruined sweaters, but an opportunity instead.

Instead of freaking out on her husband like I would have, Sue put her old sweaters to good use by creating funky, original clothing for children. What started in Sue’s basement as a laundry mishap has since blossomed in to baabaaZuzu, where old wool is given a new lease on life in the form of unique  jackets, vests, purses and other nifty things (like posy pins and Christmas stockings) using 100% recycled wool (and cool vintage buttons, too).   BaabaaZuzu’s recycled wares are quite fetching, albeit a bit pricey, but if you’re in the market for something recycled, handmade and just really cool, it may be worth a few extra Benjamins!

Find It Here: Baabaazuzu

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Tween Beauty

61l7fsz44l_sl500_aa280_.jpgAfter reading the results of the study done by Environmental Working Group that illuminated just how many chemicals teen girls have in their bodies, many of which were due to their personal care products, I couldn’t help but think of my own daughter. She’s only eight and a half but I know that stage of hyper-showering and deodorizing and perfuming and overall grooming that tween and teen girls go through is just around the bend. I’ve wondered many times if I’d be able to find non-toxic personal care products for her that would serve her needs AND keep her body from becoming laden with so much toxic junk. It seems the folks behind tweenBeauty had the same thoughts—to curtail the toxins that are bombarding the bodies of girls at such a delicate time in their lives. Their line of personal care products designed just for tweens includes shampoo, conditioner, body wash and lip gloss and all of the are free of parabens, phthalates and sulfates and they’re vegan. Oh, and they smell absolutely delicious. How do I know this? Because I’ve been using my daughter’s tweenBeauty shampoo, conditoner and bodywash, too—but that’s just between us, okay?

 Find it Here: tweenBeauty

Win It: We’re giving away a tweenBeauty  gift set that includes a shampoo, conditioner, body wash and a tube of lip shine in a hand woven fair-trade bag. Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter TB3 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: tweenBeauty shampoos and conditioners are available in which scents? Open to US residents. Enter by 3/17/09. $25 value. Contest Closed. Congrats Stefanie!

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The Gloves are On

sm-glove-wk-bk.gifWhen I work in my yard, I always wear gloves. This is partly because I’m kind of prissy and don’t really like getting dirty but also because gloves protect my hands from branches, thorns, stubborn weeds that can cut and of course all the bacterium that live in soil. I learned about all the aforementioned hazards the hard way…by NOT using gloves and thus, I’m now a big fan. Of course, I always wear my husband’s el cheapo grande work gloves and of course, I always swear I’m going to get myself a decent pair. The ones I have my eye on are the West County Gardener Work Gloves. Full of recycling goodness, they’re constructed with a high-tech spandex mesh fabric derived from recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) beverage bottles that have been ground up and spun into recycled yarn and each pair of gloves removes one 8-ounce beverage bottle from landfill. Only adding to their coolness is the fact that they also make them for kids. The Kid’s Classic glove is an exact replica of the adult Classic Glove, with all the same comfort and durability, but smaller. And cuter. My daughter, who always wants the gloves off my hands, literally, would be thrilled to have her very own and I’d be thrilled because then she could help me pull weeds!

Find It Here: West County Gloves

 Win It: We’re giving away three pair of West County Gardener gloves. The winner can choose from the Kid’s Classic and the Work Glove. Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter WC3 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What is a signature feature of the Work Glove? Open to US residents. Enter by 3/20/09. $60 value. Contest Closed. Congrats Shawn!

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300.jpgHave you ever seen a purse or tote bag made from recycled candy wrappers? I have, at an Earth Day festival, and they’re way cool—just like the one pictured, from by Sweet-n-Handy Handbags. Made of 100% recycled candy wrappers, bottle wrappers, and similar wrapping materials—most of which were misprinted labels that would  otherwise have been trashed, spending all eternity in a landfill—their bags are bright, colorful, sturdy and of course, green! All Sweet-n-Handy bags are handmade in a small Northern Mexico village by skilled craftspeople and Sweet-n-Handy is also Kiva Microlender. This means they use a portion of their profits to help make microloans to entrepreneurs in developing countries, empowering them to move out of poverty, which we think is REALLY sweet.

Find It Here: Sweet-n-Handy Handbags

Win It: We’re giving away the “Pinata” handbag by Sweet-n-Handy!  Click here to fill out our simple entry form. Just enter SH7 as the giveaway name and provide the answer to this question: What are the names of the four Sweet-n-Handy handbag collections? Open to US residents. Enter by 3/3/09. $40 value. Contest closed. Congratultions, Paula!

Deal: Use the code “GreenMom” to receive a 15% discount on your entire purchase from Sweet-n-Handy.

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Piggy Paint

ppaint.pngIf you have a little girl, there’s a very good chance she’s already asked to have her nails painted—and if she hasn’t, you can bet she probably will at some point. The problem is that conventional nail polish is full of nasty toxic chemicals that can and DO find their way into the human body. Yuck! There’s nothing cute or glam about THAT! But rest assured that we’ve found an awesome alternative that’s water-based, non-flammable, odor-free and completely safe for your wee ones to wear on their nails. It’s Piggy Paint non-toxic, kid-friendly nail polish and it’s 100% free of formaldehyde, toluene, phthalates, biphenyl A, ethyl acetate and acetone. As the Piggy Paint folks like to say…it’s as natural as mud (but comes in way better colors!)

Find It Here:  Piggy Paint

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Mama Bite for Eco-Moms

idealmamaDelivered each weekday to your inbox, Ideal Bite shares delicious bites of information for everyone interested in eco-friendly food, travel, and products. Here at The Green Mom Review, we obviously have a special interest in eco-finds and info for moms, so we’re especially psyched that Ideal Bite is also hitting the mommytrack and introducing a new edition called Mama Bite. By subscribing, you will enjoy FREE daily weekday emails that will cover a range of 100% green-centric topics just for moms. We can’t think of an easier way to get your daily inspiration as a green mama eco-warrior!

Find It Here: Mama Bite

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