New Green Household Products (and so easy to find)

September 13th, 2010

It’s a good sign that I don’t have to go out of my way lately to find more environmentally friendly household products. I don’t deem them all to be perfect or their makers to be eco angels, but it’s encouraging to see more products like these in everyday shopping places.

Here are a few new products I’ve come across recently:

Reynolds 100% Recycled Aluminum Foil
I bought this wondering if it would be as strong as regular aluminum foil. I’m not disappointed, and can’t tell the difference. Feels just as strong as ever to me, but I didn’t perform any superhuman, tornado-strength tests on it.

Reynolds makes this foil with a mix of pre- and post-consumer aluminum, but they don’t reveal what percentage is post-consumer. The packaging uses water-based inks, and the paper is 100% “recovered” according to the company’s website. You should find it alongside all the other foils at your local store.

Cedar Microfiber Flip Mop

Finally, mop makers have come to their senses. It seems that the days of disposable mopping pads are numbered. At Target, I counted several brands getting in on the machine washable, reusable mop game: Rubbermaid, Libman, Clorox and Cedar.

It’s true these may not be the greenest-minded companies on the planet, but they’re offering an alternative to those wasteful paper mops that were popular for so long. Even if these mops don’t come from recycled materials, they’re still a welcome change.


I haven’t tried these mops yet, but there’s plenty for the shopper to consider. Some of the mops like the Rubbermaid Reveal  come with an empty attached spray bottle allowing you to fill with your own solution. Or you can just opt for the more simple (and cheaper) ones like Cedar and put cleaner on your floor with a separate squirt or spray bottle.

Seventh Generation OR Method cleaners with CleanWell

I’ve been carrying CleanWell’s hand sanitizer in my purse for years. Love that it’s naturally antibacterial with stuff like thyme.

Now, CleanWell has joined up with both Method and Seventh Generation to offer their botanical goodness in kitchen or bathroom cleaners, said to kill 99.9% of germs. Since I like all three of these companies, I’m happy these products are now out there, providing natural alternatives.

However, for those of you who aren’t shy about making your own cleaners in your own reusable containers, please don’t switch (or avoid starting) now. And it’s eco-wise to say no to those disposable wipes — CleanWell or not.


Both Seventh Generation and Method disclose all their ingredients on their website. Don’t buy an “eco” product from a company that won’t tell you what’s inside.

Have you tried any of these products?

Can a company be half green?

March 16th, 2008

I’ve been thinking about that Green Works post I did at the end of February. And about the Clorox buying Burt’s Bees post.

The problem I have, and that a lot of people who write about the environment have, is what to think of Clorox and similar companies that are suddenly going green. And are they really going green?

The environment aside, chlorine bleach is bad for you. Of course it will kill you if ingested, but it can also irritate your lungs just from breathing it. People with chronic heart disease and asthma are advised to avoid it. Does this sound like something that should be used to clean laundry or bathrooms or anything?

And Clorox is proud of their bleach. But, now they own Burt’s Bees. And they got Sierra Club to endorse their new Green Works line of cleaners. So, is Green Works greener than cleaning with bleach or with some of the chemical-laden cleaners out there? Yes, it is. Does that mean you should support Clorox?

That’s the trouble. If they think this Green Works is so great, then why still make the other stuff? My really smart husband told me that he thinks a company can’t be half green. They should be environmentally responsible in every way if they claim to be green. And I have to agree. There are lots of all-green companies that sell green cleaners. Here’s a list of some recommended brands of cleaners:



Seventh Generation

Bon Ami

If you can’t find these products in your store, ask your grocer or other store manager to order the products. Don’t want to hunt down the manager? When they ask you at the checkout, “Did you find everything you were looking for today?” say no. That’s when most stores call the manager for you. Or do it by phone, or use the Internet. Many companies now have surveys you can fill out online.

Over at Big Green Purse, you can find recipes to make your own green cleaners. These are simple ingredients like vinegar, baking soda and salt.

My co-blogger Jennifer over at Tree Hugging Family did a great post about natural green cleaners — 25 Safe, Non-toxic Homemade Cleaning Supplies. Speaking of natural cleaners, ammonia for cleaning bathroom mirrors really is overkill. I actually get the same results with just water! End of rant.

So, do you agree that a company can’t be half green, or do you think all us green hippies should just shut up and praise Clorox for trying to turn a new leaf?