Best Organic/Natural Bedding

Best Organic/Natural Bedding

I’ve rounded out my favorite organic/natural bedding on the blog today!  So you all know I’ve been on the hunt for some non-toxic bedding options.  As we’ve slowly renovated our bedroom it was a goal of mine to swap out our bedding.  I did have some sheets that were bamboo but they were 5 years old and needed an update.  Plus, they always came off our king size bed- not a fan!

I was able to test out a couple different sheet options. A higher budget option and a lower budget option.  They both worked out great and I would recommend them each.  Now you might be thinking why make the switch to organic sheets or bedding?  Well, there’s a lot of factors at play.  Allow me to explain.

Since we spend about a 1/3 of our life in bed it’s important to know what were sleeping on.  Cotton is one of the most heavily sprayed crops.  Being doused with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.  However, that’s not the only thing we should be concerned about.  Sheets often contain formaldehyde, and toxic dyes too.  There are also toxic softeners that are used now on bedding, creating a recipe for a toxic sleep experience!

Obviously it can be hard to throw out all the old bedding at once but I recommend starting with one room and slowly doing it when you can.  I recommend starting with your sheets and towels since they are right next to your skin.

What to look for when buying organic sheets?

  • Look for sheets that are certified organic by the GOTS- Global Organic Textile Standard.  For more info. on GOTS click here. This standard ensures the product is made without any toxic chemicals and that at least 90% of fibers are organic.  Also, no child or slave labor.  It’s peace of mind when buying the sheets if you see this label.  It means the sheets were made using pure and clean standards.
  • Avoid sheets or blankets that say “Wrinkle Resistant”, “Easy Care”, or “Permanent Press.”  These words indicate that formaldehyde resin was used in the process and it will NOT rinse out.
  • BE AWARE- just because a sheet set says “organic cotton” does not mean they’re certified organic.  It may indicate the cotton was grown organically but after that the fabric was processed with toxic chemicals.
  • Look for Oeko- Tex Certified Sheets.  These sheets may not be grown organically but they are tested for unhealthy chemicals in the final product.  These often tend to be a little less expensive and easier to find. For more on Oeko- Tex Certification click here.

So what did I end up for my bedding?

Sheets-

SOL Organics- These sheets are what luxury is made of!  They are made with fair trade certified cotton, and certified organic cotton.  The second party certifications include GOTS, Oeko-Tex and FLOCERT- a global fair trade certification.  These 300 thread count cotton sheets wrap you up in softness the minute they touch your skin!  They come in a variety of colors too. We chose white and are happy with how crisp and clean they look.  They also have 3 different sheet sets.  You can get a hemmed version, classic or pleated.  We got the hemmed version.  Each set comes with two pillow cases, a fitted sheet and a flat sheet.  And yes they stay on our mattress too!  They also come in Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King and Split King. Can’t say enough about these luxury sheets.  They also offer organic duvet covers and bedroom sets that include the duvet and sheet set.  They were kind enough to offer a discount for my readers.  Use coupon code: GGG25 for 25% off all products over $99, plus free shipping within the U.S.  Shop here for all bedding!

Target Organic Sheet Sets- Now you can find organic sheet sets at Target even.  I bought a set to try out for you guys too.  I wanted to give you a budget friendly option.  These sheets are also certified by GOTS and Oek0-Tex.  The king size comes in at $55.99- not bad for a toxin free sheet option.  These also come with two pillow cases, fitted and flat sheet.  They aren’t as silky soft as the SOL Organics.  They have a stiffer feel and texture to them.  Some people may like that feel, others may not.  It’s obviously your preference.  My hubs could tell a difference when comparing the Target sheets to the SOL Organics.  I think these would be a great option for kids, who may not notice.  However, for adults it might be nice to splurge a little on the SOL Organics!  These come in some fun prints if your into printed sheets.  We got the White- which does have some grey lines going across it but they call it White.   Check out the Target sheets here! 

Coverlet/Euro Shams- I ended up going with a West Elm Coverlet cover.  I used to have a duvet cover and down cover but due to allergies and not having a big enough washer to properly wash it all the time(hello dust mites) I ended up going with just a bedspread.  It’s organic and super chic if I do say so myself!  They have shams as well that I got to match as you can see above.  I got the euro shams.  I went with the frost gray color and really love it.  I really like how the coverlet isn’t stiff feeling and is soft and cozy.  West Elm also has more options for organic bedding too.  Check out the coverlet I got here! 

Plisse Blanket- This is an organic cotton blanket my friend Steph from @stephdufordlifestyle had recommended to me from West Elm.  She had raved about them and I knew once I started detoxing my bedding I was going to snag one of these for the bed.  It’s such a perfect layering blanket.  We have our sheet down first, then this Plisse blanket.  It gets softer the more you wash it too!  We got ours in the color white.  I like having a couple layers of blankets on the bed and this is a perfect fit.  Get your Plisse blanket here!

Oeko-Tex Blanket- Ok, so I wanted a warmer blanket for during the winter to layer on my bed.  I knew in the summer I would take it off.  I found one from Target that I like.  It isn’t organic, however, I was ok with that.  My biggest concern was that it was at least Oeko-Tex certified.  As mentioned above they test for harmful substances once the product is made.  I was excited to see how many options for Oeko-Tex were at Target!  I was ok with it not being organic since it’s not directly touching my skin and it’s Oeko-Tex Certified.  Check out all the blankets here!

Nightstands- The nightstands are from All Modern and they’re made from a combination of real wood and manufactured wood.  I wasn’t as concerned with the nightstands since they’re a lot smaller piece of furniture.  Plus, I let them air out in the garage for a week and outside when it was sunny to help off gas as much as possible.  There wasn’t a strong smell at all once we brought them in. Here are the nightstands I got from All Modern!

Lamp- The lamps I got from All Modern too.  I had been eyeing them for a while.  I love anything with gold and these just make a statement!  Check out the lamps here!

Bed Frame-  I’ve been searching for a new bed frame for a while.  I had some strict guidelines when looking.  It had to be made of real wood- no particle board or manufactured wood because of the chemicals involved in the process.  Since a bed is such a large piece of furniture I didn’t want it off gassing harmful fumes. It also couldn’t be cloth or fabric.  Although I do like the look of the cloth headboards, from research I’ve learned how dust mites can live in them!  Plus, I wondered how they would really get clean, since you can’t take the cloth off.  After much looking I landed on the West Elm Mid Century Modern Bed.  It’s not only made with real wood but fair trade as well.  The price wasn’t so crazy either.  I found most furniture made from all wood can be very costly.  I’m SO happy with the purchase!  It didn’t even have a smell when we opened it other than just a pleasant real wood smell.  My hubs was impressed with how well it was made too.  Can’t recommend it enough!  Check out the West Elm Bed Frame here! 

That sums up my organic/natural bedding review!  Did you see anything you like?

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Urbana Sacs Review

Urbana Sacs Review

I’m so excited to share with you guys about Urbana Sacs!  I often post about skincare, and makeup-well green beauty.  And I LOVE it, but going green is so much more to me than just beauty.  It’s about a complete lifestyle.  So when Urbana Sacs contacted me about their hand bags I was stoked!  I’m all about reusable bags and better yet ones made sustainably.  Urbana Sacs is just that.

First let me fill you in on how Urbana Sacs began.  It started after Carolina, the creator, worked 15 years leading retail, and hospitality projects at a large architectural firm in L.A.  She really wanted to get back to a more hands on approach, and connect with people again.  In doing so, she came across a lightweight washable paper textile made with a variety of virgin pulp fiber blends and recycled felt.  Best part?  It’s actually manufactured using cultivation not deforestation.  Hello!

You can use the bags so many ways.  From grocery shopping, gym bag, popcorn holder, magazine holder, diaper bag, spice holder…seriously the list is endless.  What’s great about the bags is that you can mold them into really whatever shape you want.  It’s as if you had a clay bag, and you form it into what you want it to be-so cool!  All their bags are handmade too.

They sent me the large Carry Sac with one adjustable strap in black.  Not only does it look chic, but it’s so practical!  I’ve been using it so many ways.

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  • As a Purse- I know sounds weird, but trust me it’s not.  It fits everything so well, and even has a pocket on the side for my water bottle.  When I say purse I really mean “mom bag”-you know the bag with all your kid stuff and then your wallet.  As I said above, the sac looks so chic that it goes with everything.
  • Grocery Bag- This has been an awesome re-usable bag for smaller grocery trips.  It’s nice having one strap, especially having a kiddo.  I can easily wear the bag and carry Finley-a win/win!
  • Gym Bag- This bag is perfect for my gym clothes, water bottle and books.  It’s easy to just throw over my shoulder and doesn’t look so sporty.

Those have been my main ways of using my large Carry Sac.  The best part about Urbana Sacs is there are so many other sacs to choose from.  Small ones perfect for kitchen or displaying plants, or whatever your heart desires.  They even have two handle sacs.  The sky is the limit!

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Urbana Sacs has been so generous to offer my readers 20% off using code INSTAGRAM.  You can shop all of Urbana Sacs here.  Also be sure to head over to my Instagram to enter to win a Water and Wine sac!

Labor Day Sales

Labor Day Sales

Guys, I couldn’t just keep all these sales to myself!  Discounts galore are happening this weekend in honor of Labor Day, and I don’t want you to miss out.  Here’s what’s trending:

Spirit Beauty Lounge-

Sign up for their newsletter today and you’ll receive a 20% off coupon for $100+ in you’re e-mail for Labor Day.  They offer a ton of green beauty, from skincare, makeup, haircare and even baby-they’ve got you covered.  You can also get samples there as well!

Ecodiva Beauty-

They are offering free shipping this weekend through Monday night.  They offer green beauty galore and a ton of high end green beauty brands, but all in one place.  You can find everything from hair, skincare, and makeup too.  Oh and of course they give out samples!

Pharmaca-

They are offering 25% off through Labor Day with code: LABORDAY.  You get free shipping after $35 always with them as well, which is pretty awesome!  They literally have everything your little natural self could want.  From supplements, eco-water bottles, skincare and makeup.  Oh and a ton of baby stuff.  Go check them out!

The Detox Market-

Love this green beauty haven!  Through Labor Day they are offering $10 off $100, $30 off $200, and $60 off $300.  They have it all-seriously!  Trust me, $100 will go quick!

Ok you little green lovers, get to shopping!

Hair Color Gone Natural

Hair Color Gone Natural

As a hair stylist hair color was the first thing that changed when I moved towards a greener lifestyle years ago.  I mean it had too, mainstream hair dyes are toxic…like to the tenth degree!  And if anyone knows how toxic they are, it would be a stylist.  I actually stopped doing hair for a bit until I found a safer option.  I didn’t want to be around conventional color, and I definitely didn’t want to be submitting others to chemicals.  They pretty much can put whatever they want in hair dyes… the FDA doesn’t regulate them…I actually wonder what they regulate?!  So why are mainstream dyes so horrible?  Let me break it down:

Arylamines One of the most dangerous chemicals found in hair dyes.  This chemical has been know to cause bladder cancer, and to cause cancer in experimental animals.  One of the most common names for it is                   p-phenylenediamine (PPD).  It is even present in many natural hair dyes(although it’s a lot lower).  It helps the color to last through shampoos.  It’s interesting to me that the FDA has not approved for this chemical to be tested on the skin, yet it’s nearly impossible to not get it on your skin if you’re coloring your hair…crazy!

Ammonia This is the most popular chemical people tend to hear about when faced with natural or mainstream. Ammonia is used in hair color to blast the cuticle and deposit the color.  Besides it being toxic, it’s also really damaging to your hair.  Why do you think stylists are always pushing those conditioners like crazy?!  Ammonia is just bad all around.  It’s horrible for the respiratory system, but it also can get into lymph nodes and cause cancer.  Once on a client’s scalp it seeps into the pores, which is then carried into the bloodstream.  Bottom line-avoid it!

Parabens, Resorcinol, lead acetate are a few other offenders.  There’s a slew more chemicals, actually there can be up to over 400 chemicals in hair dyes!

The EWG (Environmental Working Group) found that 69% of hair dyes when tested on their Skin Deep data bases may cause cancer.  Yeah, let’s just all take that in for a moment.  Also, the darker the dye, the worst it is for you.  Since the FDA doesn’t regulate hair dye, we must!  I’m going to give some options below, but I want to be clear that these are in no way completely natural.  If you’re using a permanent dye, it’s going to have chemicals.  Unless, you’re doing straight Henna and even then be careful of the source.  There have been reports that small amounts of PPD(as I mentioned above) have been found in some henna sources.  Color lines that are ammonia-free use Monoethanolamine, or MEA.  It is in the family of Ethanolamines and is what is used to change the PH of the hair.  This is essential because in order to change the color of the hair, the PH has to be raised for the color to penetrate the cuticle and get to the cortex.  There have been some negative studies on MEA’s when in large amounts, but they’ve ruled that ethanolamines aren’t not a cancer risk in people.  In several of the color lines I mention below, ethanolamines are present in them, since they are ammonia free.  They use the MEA coupled with oils to get the color in the hair shaft.

One last thought before I dive into my recommendations.  If you’re wanting to get your hair colored, but are wanting the least possible contact with your skin, here are a few tips.  If you have no grey to cover, have the stylist do a balayage technique or foil. By using foils the product doesn’t touch your scalp.  Also, always go lighter versus darker since the darker you go the more chemicals you’re exposed too.  If you’re wanting highlights, I would stick to a salon that uses Organic Color Systems or O&M.  Both these lighteners are ammonia free.  Getting highlights is a great option, because you’re not touching the scalp and going lighter has less chemicals than going darker.

Ok, enough shop talk, let’s get to the good stuff!

Organic Color Systems-

This is the professional line I used at my salon.  They are made in the UK, which is great because they have higher standards than the U.S.  When I say professional, I mean it’s only sold to those licensed as a cosmetologist.  It is ammonia and resorcinol free.  OCS uses heat for the color to penetrate the hair shaft.  It covers grey and gives beautiful results.  Your hair feels healthy and shiny.  The fading was no different than mainstream color.  I dare say it was actually better than traditional color.  The smell is more of an earthy smell, nothing unpleasant about it at all.  They offer 64 colors, that can be made permanent or semi-permanent depending on the developer and they offer two lightening powders.  The lightening powders are ammonia, bleach and dust free.   The line is vegan but isn’t gluten free.  Some of their colors, as well as the lightening powders have wheat protein in them.  They have a truly semi-permanent line that’s called No Limits.  These dyes will wash out in 6-12 washes but don’t contain PPD, or PTD and you can do them in the convenience of your home.  They are sold as a retail product from the salon.  As I mentioned above, just because this line is “natural”, does not mean it doesn’t contain chemicals.  When I used it, I still wore gloves.  Although it is so much better than standard hair dyes, it still is not 100% chemical free.  To find a stylist using OCS, please e-mail them at [email protected]

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O&M-

I used this line here and there.  It is newer and made in Australia.  It is also a professional line.  O&M is ammonia, resorcinol and PPD free.  The first professional hair color line to do it.  The smell to O&M is more of cleaning agent smell.  I’m not a fan to be honest.  It’s not overly strong or burning like ammonia at all but it isn’t as pleasant as OCS.  It does not require heat to penetrate the hair shaft.  They are a lot larger than OCS in terms of colors, they offer 99.  They come in a cream form for permanent and liquid for semi-permanent.  The results I got from using O&M were great.  It covered grey well.  The hair shined and lasted through shampoos also.  To find a salon using O&M click here. (I will say I did not find a salon locator on their website like OCS has, but if you clicked contact and e-mailed them, I’m sure someone would respond).

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Tints of Nature-

This is a boxed dye and great for those who prefer an at home application or want to save money.  They are manufactured in the UK as well.   These contain no parabens, ammonia, resorcinol, and the lowest levels of PPD’s.  They offer 24 permanent shades and 8 semi-permanent shades.  The semi-permanent shades are free of PPD’s, parabens, and peroxide.  They last 6-12 washes and cover up to 80% of grey.  Not bad for a semi-permanent.  These do contain wheat protein in them, so they are not gluten free.  This is also completely free from any heavy metals.  They run about $18.99 for permanent color and $17.99 for semi-permanent color.  They have a great FAQ’s section on their website for more info.   You can find them online here.

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Naturigin-

There is a common thread among natural/organic dyes…they’re all made outside the U.S.  Naturigin is made in Denmark and is a great at home alternative.  It’s free from PTD’s, Ammonia, Resorcinol and Parabens.  They offer 19 permanent shades and no semi-permanent shades.  There isn’t a bad smell to it, and the coverage is great for grey hair.  It sales for $16.99 a box.  Check it out here.

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Naturtint-

This is another at home color.  It covers grey and the smell isn’t bad.  It is resorcinol, ammonia and paraben free.  They offer 29 shades, which is pretty large for an at home color line.  They are easier to find.  You can get them at most health food stores as well as Whole Foods.  To buy online click here.

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Mineral Fusion’s Grey Root Concealer-

This isn’t actually isn’t an all over color for your hair but for just your roots.  You use it when you are trying to hide those grey hairs.  It really does blend well and covers the grey!  It just washes out after shampooing.  You use it like you would mascara.  Now this isn’t by any means completely natural.  It rates a 5 on the Think Dirty app.  However, this is definitely a better alternative to dying hair in my opinion.  You are giving yourself a lot less of a toxic load.  It is a lot better than mainstream root concealers too.

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Ok, that’s my huge spill on all things natural/organic hair color!  If you have any questions, feel free to leave me a comment, or e-mail me.  Also, if you’ve come across other brands that you like please let me know.  I’m always trying out new ones and will be updating this periodically as I do.

 

 

Root Pretty Review

Root Pretty Review

I have searched long and hard for a gel liner that works and is of course green.  I was so excited when I found out Root Pretty carried one and here is the review.  Krista, the founder, sent me the gel liner as well as their Beauty Sleep Perfecting Serum and Pretty Balm.  All of Root products are gluten free and Vegan.  The products are formulated especially for sensitive skin and of course are free of any harsh chemicals, fillers or toxins.  They carry everything, from skincare products, makeup and body products.  If you follow them on Instagram, you’ve noticed they’re even working on making their own haircare line!  I have loved reading their blog as well.  It is a great resource for tips on how to apply their makeup, as well as celebrity looks.  Ok, I know you all want to hear about the product, so here ya go-

Beauty Sleep Perfecting Serum-

This serum is full of all the good stuff, and none of the toxic load typical in mainstream serums.  First off, the smell is divine!  Sometimes natural serums can smell fishy…haha, but this has a great citrus/fresh smell.  I love that it has only a handful of ingredients, all of which are pure and clean.  It melts into your skin and truly hydrates, but isn’t greasy at all!  My skin just feels balanced and moisturized.  I put it on at night and wake up to an even and balanced complexion.  This was the perfect oil to put on before makeup too.  It created a smooth canvas for my foundation.  My husband even commented on how good it smelled!  I love that Root offers two different sizes for the serum.  The first is .45 oz and is only $18, and the second is 1.9 oz. and is only $62.  Great deals for an anti-aging serum!

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Pretty Balm-

I love this little balm!  I’m all about balms with a hint of color.  The great thing about the Pretty Balm is the color is totally build-able.  Swipe it on once for a sheer tint of color or several times for a more dramatic effect.  I was sent the color Gossip.  It’s the perfect pink shade.  It even has a glossy look when the light hits it.  This has been a staple in my makeup bag lately.  I love that I can have two different looks with it.  The Pretty Balm’s are organic and ingredients are top notch.  Oh, and they come in 8 pretty colors, I’m pretty sure I need them all!  Trust me, you all need this, it really is a must for every makeup bag.  $8

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Pretty All Day Gel Liner-

Ok, I already wrote about this amazing little liner in my eyeliner post.  It’s seriously a must have item!  Here is my recent review:

I recently discovered Root’s gel eyeliner and haven’t looked back.  I had been browsing through their products and came across it.  I knew I had to try it!  A clean gel eyeliner…was God gifting me once again?!  Gel liners used to be my jam, well namely, MAC Gel pots…you know, the ones that glided on so effortlessly and stayed forever?  Well, my days with them were long gone and it was time to find a new gel eyeliner, and I certainly did.  Root’s not only goes on smoothly, but you can smudge it for the perfect smoky eye.  Once you apply, smudge away and then it drys.  It also works great in the water line-no irritation.  And the kicker?  It lasts!  I was so giddy when I looked in the mirror and it was still there.  This is especially great for those who have a hard time being as precise with a liquid liner.  I love setting mine with a little RMS translucent Un Powder.  Root didn’t just stop with an amazing eyeliner that lasts, but they also made it vegan and gluten free…just like all their products!  Oh and the ingredients are pure and organic.  Did I mention how big the container is…it will last you forever!  At $16, you should probably just buy one for your green beauty friend too.

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These are just a few of Root’s Products.  Check out their website for all things green beauty!  Also, use code gurlgonegreen for free shipping on any Root order!

 

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