Eco and Sustainable Shopping

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circular
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Eco and Sustainable Shopping

Postby circular » Sun Oct 07, 2018 9:09 pm

We spend a lot of time in the forum discussing the quality (and lack thereof) in the food supply, but we tend to forget that, either directly or indirectly, toxins in our clothing are no doubt exacting a toll on the Earth and its people, perhaps especially vulnerable e4 people. There's some suggestion that some chemicals in clothes might pass through the skin and into our bloodstream. I haven't delved into whether there is science to support that, but regardless, it's clear the textile industry is generally a major pollutant while also engaging in poor labor practices. The pollution doesn't stop with production. Apparently synthetic microfiber clothing sheds microfibers in the wash that enter the waterways. Apparently that goes for Patagonia's jackets made from plastic bottles too.

Over the years I had started buying moisture-wicking microfiber and other synthetic shirts and other items that I could get good deals on in different colors. They were comfortable and relatively economical and fit my lifestyle. This summer I suddenly began to hate the feel of synthetic fabrics of all kinds against my skin. So now I have a closet with many clothes I have no interest in wearing. I also need new bath towels.

One thing I learned today is that bamboo, which is widely being marketed as environmentally sound and sustainable (the forests often are), actually requires a lot of chemicals to make it soft for clothes, sheets, towels and so on. I also see a number of traditional companies now selling organic cotton and linen products, which is a step in the right direction, but they don't have the Oeko-Tex certification to show that post-processing is up to snuff. Finding the companies that are reliably selling both certified organic and Oeko-Tex would make things a lot easier. So I think maybe there's more nuance than meets the eye that it would be good to educate ourselves about.

All this got me to begin learning about all the emerging options for eco and sustainable shopping of all kinds. With the holiday season coming up, I'd be interested in hearing how and where forum members shop -- for themselves or others -- in a way that respects the Earth and people. This could be for household items too.

As canaries in the coal mine, I was tempted to put this in the apoe4.info board under 'activism'. I can see ending up with a Wiki page offering a list of terms and links to resources for sustainable shopping. Over to all of you.
ApoE 3/4 > Thanks in advance for any responses made to my posts.

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SusanJ
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Re: Eco and Sustainable Shopping

Postby SusanJ » Mon Oct 08, 2018 6:46 am

circular wrote:...hate the feel of synthetic fabrics of all kinds against my skin


Sister circ, yep, that would be me, too. My skin much prefers cotton, and I have to wash it before wearing. I do have some fleece, which I wear cotton under. And a few "base" layers I own for skiing and the like, and well, even if they say they breathe or manage stink, well, I sweat, stink and have to change clothes as soon as I get home. Interesting, my dad didn't tolerate that stuff either, but one of my brothers wears a lot of it (working outside on hot, humid midwestern days). Synthetics, polyester, acrylics are everywhere when it comes to clothes.

Good question about sustainable shopping. We could probably all do a little better making conscious decisions about how we buy.

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Re: Eco and Sustainable Shopping

Postby SunnySideUp » Sat Dec 08, 2018 7:42 pm

We have the best luck at the used clothing/consignment stores where I spend $3 - $20 on designer pieces. My daughter draws the line at used sportswear but when I can find barely used Athleta for $10, I'm fine with it :) I wish that these were all made in America and workers made a decent wage but I do feel good that 90% of my wardrobe is secondhand.
I have also had great luck buying and selling things on craigslist.
For presents, I make organic "spa" gifts for friends and relatives. Body butter, sunblock, lip balms, perfumes, etc. Wonderful, easy recipes can be found at wellnessmama.com and crunchybetty.com. I also make my own cleaning products, remineralizing toothpaste, deoderant, etc. from recipes on these sites.

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Re: Eco and Sustainable Shopping

Postby mike » Mon Dec 10, 2018 4:51 pm

Sonoma Mike
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circular
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Re: Eco and Sustainable Shopping

Postby circular » Tue Dec 18, 2018 9:15 pm

SunnySideUp wrote:We have the best luck at the used clothing/consignment stores where I spend $3 - $20 on designer pieces. My daughter draws the line at used sportswear but when I can find barely used Athleta for $10, I'm fine with it :) I wish that these were all made in America and workers made a decent wage but I do feel good that 90% of my wardrobe is secondhand.
I have also had great luck buying and selling things on craigslist.
For presents, I make organic "spa" gifts for friends and relatives. Body butter, sunblock, lip balms, perfumes, etc. Wonderful, easy recipes can be found at wellnessmama.com and crunchybetty.com. I also make my own cleaning products, remineralizing toothpaste, deoderant, etc. from recipes on these sites.

Great ideas SSU! I've had to make my peace with some of my old non-organic, synthetic clothes, understanding that getting rid of them for the sake of it is its own kind of waste. But I really hate the feel of them now, so I'm mostly wearing new organic clothes and/or linen, which isn't always organic but a better crop than cotton if you're buying non-organic, and have donated a lot of stuff. I feel as if I should shop second hand, but I'm afraid I'm just a sponge for other people's energy. I can feel them when I put the clothes on and find it very uncomfortable in that way. It's the same with used books. I'm so glad you and others can make use of them, and save money too!

I found that when I would mention organic clothes to people, there was a general assumption that you can't find an organic shirt for less then $200 or something outrageous like that. This comes from companies that cater to the Big bucks folks like stars in LA who want to have some eco duds. Nothing wrong with that and it helps get the word out, but a good Google search will pull up a lot of options in different price ranges, and of course there are sale and clearance pages. That said none of it is really cheap either. It takes some time to figure out what works best, and I've made a lot of returns in the process, but I now have some basics. I'm having the hardest time with pants.

I've also been making more of my own products. I use Dr. Bronner's a lot for cleaning.

Here's a guide to recycling traditional holiday wrapping materials so they won't end up in the landfill (ie, what parts of it to keep out of the recycle bin so the whole batch isn't tossed). I didn't read all that, but those non-recyclable wrapping materials can always go into bottle bricks!

Here are a bunch of web pages on sustainable gift wrapping.
ApoE 3/4 > Thanks in advance for any responses made to my posts.


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