Environmentally friendly, eco-conscious, sustainable resources, renewable energy, go green, reduce, reuse, recycle. Buzz-words like these have been omnipresent on products, in media, and throughout popular culture for decades, but it is probably safe to say that most people still don’t think much about their environmental footprint. Frankly, this fact isn’t all that surprising.
Life is busy, and even the most well-meaning people often find themselves unable to avoid wasteful practices in everyday life. ‘Environmentally friendly’ products and practices are arguably less accessible than wasteful practices, and unless you go looking, finding those eco-friendly alternatives is nearly impossible. Beyond physical inaccessibility, many people don’t even realize their practices are wasteful, never having had the chance to truly understand what ‘environmentally friendly’ means.
Now, we don’t want to get too philosophical on you, since that is precisely part of what keeps people from seeing environmentalism as accessible and applicable to their lives. At Wowe Lifestyle, we try to create and sell products that make living ‘green’ easier and more accessible for everyone. One of the ways we do this is by educating our customers on what it means to be environmentally conscious. By simply increasing your awareness, living green will become easier and your efforts to be environmentally friendly will feel effortless.
What Makes Something Environmentally Friendly?
With all the mention of environmentally friendly practices, you don’t often hear about environmentally hostile practices, but they certainly exist. An environmentally friendly practice, product, or service is one that does not adversely affect the environment during its making, use, or disposal. Essentially, in order to qualify as environmentally friendly, products, services, and materials cannot harm the environment in any way.
Truly environmentally friendly products are made with the preservation of the environment and human health in mind. At the very least, a product qualifying as environmentally friendly must be non-toxic both to the planet and to humans. Beyond being simply non-toxic, environmentally friendly products and materials are often sustainably or organically grown to avoid depleting natural resources or the ecosystem.
Using non-toxic and recyclable materials is yet another way a product can be made to be environmentally friendly. Products made from glass, metal, wood, or certain plastics can be recycled, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are environmentally friendly. Plastic products are environmentally taxing, often leaching toxic chemicals into the soil and breaking apart into microplastics only to be consumed by wildlife inhabiting the area.
In essence, in order to qualify as environmentally friendly, a product must not harm humans or the environment during any phase of its existence: manufacturing, use, and disposal.
Environmentally Hostile Products and Green Alternatives
As we mentioned earlier, many individuals would love to be more environmentally friendly but simply don’t know what steps to take to do so. Living green can seem like an intimidating practice, one that requires lots of extra work, effort, and money. Though the most accessible products and resources are often the most environmentally hostile, that doesn’t mean that finding green alternatives has to be difficult.
Here are some common ‘environmentally hostile’ products you can probably find in your home or business. Though these products are common, they aren’t the only option available to you. Below, you will also find awesome eco-friendly alternatives to these products that make living green a little easier.
Toothbrushes and other dental products are super important for your health, but unfortunately many are made from toxic materials filled with chemicals. Plastic toothbrushes, in particular, are extremely harmful to the environment. In fact, in the US alone, over 1 billion plastic toothbrushes are used and disposed of each and every year. These products, made from mixed plastics, are non-recyclable and can spend hundreds of years wallowing in landfills and leaching chemicals into the environment.
Since you most definitely need a toothbrush, next time you need a replacement, make the decision to go with a more environmentally friendly option. Plastic manufacturing and disposal can cause serious environmental harm, which is why you should choose products made from green materials like bamboo. Wowe’s Eco-Friendly and Natural Bamboo Toothbrushes are a natural alternative to traditional plastic ones and are just as effective at keeping your smile bright and white.
Nylon Dental Floss
Nylon is a super flexible and extremely strong plastic used in applications requiring a product to withstand friction, pulling, or flexing. In recent decades, most commercial dental floss has been made from nylon coated in Teflon to help increase slip and slide. Though nylon is a recyclable material, dental floss is too light to be processed by most recycling plants. Dental floss is also packaged in non-recyclable plastic packaging made from hard plastics and metal with components too small to separate for recycling.
Since nylon dental floss cannot be recycled, much of it ends up floating freely in bodies of water, polluting natural ecosystems, or in landfills. Though flexible, nylon is also extremely strong. Fish, turtles, birds, and other wildlife have often been found bound in dental floss, unable to eat due to floss lodged in their throats, or dead with stomaches filled with the thin plastic. Though dental floss is an important part of your oral health routine, nylon dental floss poses a huge risk to wildlife and the environment.
Next time you run out of dental floss, pick an environmentally friendly alternative from Wowe Lifestyle. Our Natural Biodegradable Silk Dental Floss is made without toxic chemicals and entirely natural materials that won’t harm the environment. Natural silk is coated in natural candelilla wax, and though not recyclable, this product is fully biodegradable. Still strong enough to withstand the friction of flossing, Wowe’s natural silk dental floss is an amazing green alternative.
Like toothbrushes, disposable plastic razors are a serious contributor to global waste and pollution. Over 2 billion plastic razors are discarded in the US every year along with their packaging, and since most cannot be reused or recycled, nearly 2 billion find their way to landfills annually.
Made 100% plastic-free, the Classic Eco-Friendly Double Edge Safety Razor with Natural Bamboo Handle is one of the most environmentally friendly razor options available today. Made to last for years or a lifetime with proper care, this classic razor provides an amazing shave without any of the guilt of traditional plastic razors. Simply replace your blades when they begin to dull, and recycle the old ones.
Most of us now know to bring reusable bags to the grocery store to carry our products home, but not everyone thinks to bring produce bags as well. Plastic produce bags, those thin bags available by the fruits, vegetables, and herbs, are as harmful to the environment as plastic grocery bags but are still prevalent in most major grocery stores. These single-use bags are made from plastic and cannot be recycled or reused. Like grocery bags, plastic produce bags can frequently be found floating in our oceans or in the stomachs of wildlife.
Next time you grab your favorite tote bag on the way to the grocery store, remember to bring your Reusable Organic Cotton Produce Bags from Wowe Lifestyle as well. Available in solid and mesh variations, these fully reusable produce bags are the perfect item to help you reduce your plastic consumption. Use these natural produce bags to avoid packaging by buying in bulk, protect your produce on the ride home, and to do your part for the environment.
You probably know that plastic water bottles are bad for the environment, but not many people know that paper cups are also part of the problem. Single-use paper cups and coffee cups are made from paper, but that doesn’t mean they are recyclable. Most paper water and coffee cups are made with a thin lining of plastic that helps to make them leakproof. This plastic lining does a great job of keeping hot coffee off of your lap but also makes paper cups completely non-recyclable. If you thought you were protecting the environment by opting to drink out of one of those little cone cups at the water cooler rather than a plastic bottle, think again.
Instead of relying on single-use beverage containers, bring a reusable Stainless Steel Water Bottle from Wowe Lifestyle with you. Made from FDA approved food-grade stainless steel, this water bottle never rusts, tarnishes, or becomes less effective. Properly maintained, this awesome reusable water bottle could last a lifetime and is the perfect way to have your favorite beverage with you on the go without relying on single-use containers.
Similarly to dental floss, plastic straws are made from recyclable materials but are too light to be processed by most conventional recycling plants. Often found floating in oceans, lakes, and rivers, plastic straws are yet another environmentally hostile product negatively impacting native wildlife. Sea turtles, in particular, have been negatively impacted by plastic straws, many mistakenly eating and choking on the items or getting them lodged in nostrils, eyes, ears, etc.
Though plastic straws are harmful to the environment, many individuals rely on plastic straws to help them drink independently, and many others simply prefer using straws to enjoy their beverages. If you fit in either of these categories, ensure you are never without your favorite drinking tool and invest in an Eco-Friendly Stainless Steel Straw from Wowe.
Stainless steel straws are reusable, durable, and long-lasting, and won’t find their way into a sea turtle’s nose once you are done using it. Wowe sells straight, curved, and even travel straws, and includes a cotton straw cleaner with every purchase to help you take proper care of your straw.
With so many products, practices, and habits negatively impacting the environment, it can feel overwhelming to try to reduce your own footprint. At Wowe, we try to make environmentalism easier, more convenient, and more approachable, which is why we have created so many amazing eco-friendly products and product alternatives.If you want to learn more about environmentalism, eco-friendly products, and living green, visit the Wowe Lifestyle website today.