Category: Sustainable Lifestyle

Vegan Soap Making Notes

Preparing Herbs for Making Soap

You’ll want to pick your herbs (or gather them from nature) when they are at their peak. Mid-morning is best after the sun has dried the dew off the flowers and leaves, but before the sun dries out the natural oils of the plant. You can dry your herbs naturally in the sun, or in an oven or dehydrator. However it’s done, you’ll want to make sure they are thoroughly dry with no dampness left. Herbs that are not completely dry could produce mold in your soap or the lye may rot them. Either way, it’s undesirable.

When your herbs are dry, store them in a sealed container like a canning jar. This will keep them handy, you can see what’s inside, and they will stay dry. You can leave them as a whole leaf or flower or you can use a coffee/spice grinder to powder them.

Herbs for Homemade Soap

Lavender
Its light clean scent is well known and often provides a sense of comfort. It is antibacterial and can help to heal wounds. Lavender is also well known for its relaxing properties and uses as a natural sleep aid. Use it whole in the soap for a gentle exfoliating property or powdered for even gentler action.

Chamomile

Chamomile is soft and fragrant. It’s a gentle healing herb and is very soothing. It can also help to remove bacteria on the skin, although not as well as lavender.

Calendula

Often called pot marigold, calendula is not in the marigold family, but is in the aster family. Calendula is very healing and can help to remove redness from the skin. Many herbs turn dark after a few weeks in soap, but calendula will hold its color very well for a long time.

Lemon Balm

When it’s dried, lemon balm loses some of its lemony scents, but it still works very well in soap. Lemon balm is thought to be antiviral and can help to kill germs when you wash with it. It provides a dark green color and a bit rougher exfoliation than lavender or chamomile, while not abrading the skin.

Marshmallow Root

One of the most soothing herbs is marshmallow root. When powdered and used in making soap, the soap becomes soothing and softens the skin very well.

Comfrey

Comfrey root, dried and ground into a powder, is added to soap to help heal the skin. It is very effective for acne and poison ivy rash, while not being too harsh. It will not dry the skin out but will help to heal the skin. You can also use the leaf, although the root has a more healing ability.

Plantain

One of my favorite herbs is plantain. Not the banana relative, but the herb (or more often weed) found in your yard. It is thought to be very healing, even more so than aloe vera. It is demulcent like marshmallow root, but also has a nice green color that doesn’t fade quickly in soaps.

Mint

Almost all of the mints are antibacterial, making them a great choice for soap making. There are several different types of mint, some having more of the characteristic minty smell than others. Theres pineapple mint, spearmint, and grapefruit mint. It smells just like the peel of the grapefruit and lends a nice quality to soap.

Rosemary

Perhaps one of the most useful herbs in soap making is rosemary. It is antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral. It is also full of antioxidants. Rosemary Oil Extract, or ROE, is sold as a preservative for soap, herbal and other cooking needs.

Soap Bases

Aloe: Aloe Vera Soap Base contains real aloe vera, which is thought to benefit the skin! It has a clear, light green color.

Coconut Milk: Coconut milk is thought to be high in antioxidants as well as triglycerides, making it an excellent natural moisturizer for the skin. It helps boost lather and cleaning while eliminating harsh detergents.

HempThis base contains hemp oil, which is considered to be high in phospholipids, antioxidants, and omega 3’s.

Honey: This base is thought to be very high in natural antioxidants and anti-microbial benefits. We often hear that skin glows after using products made with a honey base.

OatmealOatmeal soap base is thought to moisturize the skin and relieve itching.

Olive Oil

Shea ButterThis base contains real shea, which is thought to protect skin from the weather!

Oils

Hemp Seed Oil:
Hemp seed oil is a deep, green color with a light, nutty smell. No, it doesn’t smell like marijuana, nor does it have any of the effects that marijuana has, but it does indeed come from the seed of the cannabis plant. It’s really lovely in lotions and creams and great in soap too. It gives a light, creamy/silky lather. Because of its fatty acid makeup, it has a very short shelf life…less than six months…so it should be refrigerated or even kept in the freezer. Treating it with rosemary oleoresin extract is a good idea to help keep it from oxidizing. It can be used as a luxury healing/moisturizing oil in soap up to 10%-15%.

Palm Oil:
Palm oil, along with olive and coconut, is one of the top oils used by soap makers today. Because of the qualities, it gives soap, it is often called “veggie tallow” in that it gives many of the same qualities that beef tallow does – a hard bar with a rich creamy lather. Alone, it’s pretty unremarkable, but combined with other oils like olive, coconut, and castor, it makes great, hard, long-lasting soap. There are some serious concerns about palm oil farming in Malaysia – and the impact it is having on both the land and the people. We know several soap makers who have eliminated palm oil from their recipes because of this.

Castor Oil:
Castor oil is a thick, clear oil that helps increase the lather in soap – a rich, creamy lather. It’s also a humectant (attracts moisture to your skin) oil. Just a little will do…5% – 8% in your recipe will work wonders. Shampoo bars often use 10%-15%…but more than that and you get a soft bar of soap. Castor oil has a fatty acid makeup that’s completely unique—which makes what it contributes to your soap (the rich, creamy lather) unique.
Castor oil will speed up the rate at which your soap will get to trace – so we usually leave it out of recipes that require complex swirls or designs.
Jojoba Oil:
Jojoba is actually a liquid wax that is very similar to sebum in its chemical composition. It contributes a nice stable lather, has remarkable absorption and moisturizing qualities and unlike some of the other luxury moisturizing oils, has a very long shelf life – 1-2 years! Use it at 5-10% maximum. Or just save it for “leave-on” applications like balms, massage bars, bath bombs, and lotions. It can make the soap batch trace more quickly, so it’s not a good oil to add if you’re going to do complex coloring or swirls, or are working with a temperamental fragrance or essential oil.

Apricot Oil:
Apricot kernel oil is a light oil that is similar to almond oil in its fatty acid makeup. It absorbs nicely into the skin and is a good luxury conditioning oil in soap – at about 5% – 10%. It’s good in soap, massage and bath oils, massage bars and bath bombs.

Coconut Oil:
Coconut oil is one of the primary oils soapmakers use in their soap. Susan Miller Cavitch, in her book The Soapmaker’s Companion, calls it “a gift.” Most of the coconut oil sold and used has a melting point of 76°, but there is a hydrogenated type that melts at 92°. Either version works the same to give tremendous, bubbly lather to your soap. It also makes for a very hard, white bar of soap. The collective opinion is that using more than 30% coconut oil in your recipe will be drying to the skin. Yes, the super-cleansing nature of coconut oil can strip oils from your skin, but we have often used it at 30%-40% with great results, especially with a slightly higher (6-8%) superfat. Or, you can make 100% coconut oil soap with a 20% superfat. It’s an amazing bar of soap.

Almond Oil:
A lovely moisturizing oil that is very light and absorbs well. In soap, it produces a low, stable lather, but we wouldn’t use it more than about 5% – 10% in soap – as it’s not a very hard oil in soap. It’s really nice in lotions, massage bars, bath bombs, bath oils, and especially in salt and sugar scrubs.

kukui nut oil:
A rich, liquid nut oil that’s native to Hawaii, kukui nut oil contributes to a nice, creamy stable lather in the soap, and is nicely moisturizing. Like the other luxury liquid oils, we recommend using it at 5-10% of your recipe for a richer, creamier soap. In lotions, creams, massage bars, and balms, it absorbs quickly, conditions skin nicely, and is reputed to help ease acne, eczema, and psoriasis.

Avocado Oil:
Avocado oil is a heavy, green, rich, moisturizing oil that has a high percentage of unsaponifiables (the portions of the oil that don’t react with the lye to form soap,) so it’s a good oil to superfat with. It’s often used in soap recipes for people with sensitive skin. On the skin, it first feels a little heavy…but after a moment, it absorbs nicely. It’s high in vitamins A, D & E, which is good for your skin and gives it a longer shelf life. You can use it in your recipes from 5% – 30%. It’s a bit too thick, in my opinion, for massage oils…but it’s wonderful in massage bars.

Neem Oil:
Neem oil is extracted from the bark of the neem tree. It is growing in popularity as a soap making oil due to its antiseptic, anti-fungal and insect repellent qualities. We know of one soap maker who uses neem oil at about 25% of the recipe and sends it to soldiers in the middle east to repel sand flies. It evidently works very well. It’s also great, all by itself (as both an oil and in a soap recipe) for treating skin conditions like athlete’s foot. The scent of neem is very strong…a sort of green, earthy, nutty smell…and takes some getting used to. But it doesn’t come through too strongly in the soap and blends well with other earthy scents. 

Babassu oil:
Babassu oil comes from the kernels of the babassu palm, or Grade A oil (generally the best grade for soap), comes from the second pressing and is lightly refined/filtered. 100% olive oil makes the famous “Castille soap” and “Marseille soap” must contain at least 72% olive oil. Olive oil is generally the #1 oil in most soap makers’ recipes – and for good reason. Olive oil soaps are very moisturizing, make hard, white bars of soap (though high % olive oil soaps take a longer time to cure) and are exceptionally mild. But the lather from Castille soap is low and a bit slimy. Most soap makers combine olive oil with other oils 

Safflower Oil:
Its fairly short shelf life and fairly unremarkable fatty acid makeup have made safflower oil pretty neglected in soap making recipes. If you have it on hand, you can certainly use it in your recipes like you would soybean, canola or sunflower – at 5-15% or so. In soap, it is mild and moisturizing. 

Palm oil, along with olive and coconut, is one of the top oils used by soap makers today. Because of the qualities, it gives soap, it is often called “veggie tallow” in that it gives many of the same qualities that beef tallow does – a hard bar with a rich creamy lather. Alone, it’s pretty unremarkable, but combined with other oils like olive, coconut, and castor, it makes great, hard, long-lasting soap. There are some serious concerns about palm oil farming in Malaysia – and the impact it is having on both the land and the people. We know several soap makers who have eliminated palm oil from their recipes because of this.

Pumpkin seed oil is a rich and vitamin-filled oil with abundant antioxidant properties. It contains Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, as well as vitamins A, C, E, and Zinc. Its fatty acid balance is most similar to soybean and sunflower oil and will contribute about the same qualities to soap that they do in terms of hardness, lather, and conditioning. Most soap makers we know save the super-premium nourishing oils like pumpkin seed for special skin care products and focus on the more basic oils for soap making. That said, in terms of pure marketing appeal, it’s a wonderful luxury oil to add (a bit) to a batch of pumpkin soap.

Shea oil, or liquid shea, is fractionated shea butter, one of the most popular luxury oils used in soap making recipes. This variation of shea butter is liquid at room temperature and wonderful for adding to melt and pour soap, massage bars, or to creams and lotions. We’ve also used it in bath bombs. It’s very moisturizing in the tub but may be a bit too oily for some folks. But the fact that its liquid doesn’t give any benefits in soap. So if you’re going to use shea butter in soap, go ahead and use the actual shea butter instead of liquid shea oil.

Exfoliates

Colloidal Oatmeal
Colloidal oatmeal is one of the most gentle exfoliants. It can be used in face masks, soap, and more. We added it to the Oatmeal Bath Bombs and Gentle Oatmeal Baby Soap because of its silky texture and soothing properties.

Bamboo Powder
This natural powder comes from bamboo stems. It starts as a thick liquid, then crystallizes at room temperature. Add it to handmade soap and cosmetics for gentle exfoliation. You’ll love the way it feels in the Black, White, and Gold All Over Soap.

Pumice Powder
Pumice powder is a fantastic gentle exfoliant created from milled volcanic glass. Its fine texture works well in the Pumice and Poppy Seed Melt and Pour Bars.

Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
Baking soda is an amazing multi-purpose product. It’s used in bath bombs, bath salts, and natural cleaning products. It’s great for scrubs as well – try it in the Sea Clay Dry Salt Scrub, Walnut Facial Scrub, or Cranberry Seed Foot Scrub.

Walnut Shells
Along with exfoliation, walnut shells add a natural brown color to handmade soap and cosmetics. We used them for the crust in the Pumpkin Pie Cold Process Soap and the dirt in the Carrot Cold Process Soap.

Salts and Sugar
There are a variety of salts and sugars that can be used for scrubs, bath bombs, and more. Depending on the size, they can offer gentle or more powerful exfoliation. Salt can also be used in cold process soap – it creates really creamy lather. Learn how to use it in the Lavender and Rose Pink Salt Barstutorial.

Jojoba Beads
This biodegradable exfoliant is made from jojoba oil. The beads come in various sizes and colors, so there’s an option for every recipe. Try them in the Rainbow Jojoba Bead Sugar Scrub or the Cleansing Charcoal Facial Scrub.

Shredded Loofah
This exfoliant comes from whole loofah sponges. They’re ground to a fine texture, making it easy to disperse throughout soap or scrubs. Try it in the Lard and Loofah Cold Process Soap or the Gardener Melt and Pour Soap.

Icelandic Black Sand
This product comes from a volcanic beach on the South Coast of Iceland. It has mild exfoliation and a beautiful natural color, as seen in the Coastal Rain Cold Process Soap

Water is Life – Live Intelligent

One in 10 people around the world lack access to clean drinking water, yet the majority of US consumers are unaware of the extent of the global water crisis.

5/2013. A girl is drinking water from the water taps at her school in the Domiz refugee camp in Northern Iraq.

The Power of Clean Water, this documentary follows the lives of three women and their families, providing a first-hand perspective on the daily challenges of accessing clean drinking water. The film also demonstrates the positive impact P&G’s Purifier of Water packets have had on communities in Indonesia, Kenya, and Mexico.  In these countries, people struggle with finding clean water to drink. And without clean drinking water, it’s much harder to keep their children healthy, educated, and provide a better life for their families.

Finally, a global awareness of the water crisis is growing, but many consumers in the US are still unaware of how many people struggle with the daily reality of not having access to clean water. In 2014 I traveled to Kenya to help build a water system to support a school, garden. To my amazement, I returned a year later to a fully-grown garden. When I drove up to see the children enjoying their lunch, I instantly burst into tears, because it was at that moment that I saw the lives of others benefit from my hard work, and knew I couldn’t stop there.  

So about Water

About 60 percent of your body is made up of water. Drinking enough water helps maintain the body’s fluid balance, which helps transport nutrients in the body, digest food, regulate body temperature, and more.

The U.S. problem with Water:

Sadly, water is the second most popular beverage in the United States after soft drinks. TThis fact is scary considering sugary soda is a health hazard, upping the risk of stroke, obesity, heart, and other health problems. However, many diseases can be avoided if people choose to drink water. Water doesn’t have negative side effects except for consuming too much. It is possible to overdose on water and “drown internally”. So kick that sugary stuff habit to the side and make water your number one drinking choice. The benefits are endless. 

Controls calories: Simple, when you drink more water you become fuller and eat less. 

Muscle energy: When you sweat at the gym, you lose water. and when you lack water in the muscles they get tired quicker. Who wants tired muscles when they are trying to work out?

Clearer skin: Water flushes out toxins and reduces the onset of pimples. 

Fatigue buster:

Water can help you fight that tired feeling since a common symptom of dehydration is tiredness. Grab a glass of water when you feel sleepy. 

Hangover help:

Let’s face it, booze is poison, and your body hates it. As soon as you drink alcohol your body starts to dehydrate. removing the water and leaving the chemicals. The best way to avoid a hangover is to drink plenty of water while consuming alcohol and after.

Pain prevention:

A little water can really go a long way. Aching joints and muscle cramps and strains can all occur if the body is dehydrated.

Keep things flowing:

Nobody wants to deal with digestion issue, so drinking enough water adds fluids to the colon which helps make things, move smoother.

Sickness fighter:

Water may help with decongestion and dehydration, helping the body bounce back when feeling under the weather. Just beware—drinking fluids haven’t been scientifically proven to beat colds in one swoop, so don’t swap this for a trip to the doctor or other cold remedies.

Brain Boost:

A study in London found a link between students bringing water into an exam room and better grades, suggesting H2O promotes clearer thinking. While it’s unclear if drinking the water had anything to do with a better score, it doesn’t hurt to try it out!

Event: This is a Great Event Stella Artois put together: 

https://www.facebook.com/events/170556457072502/

Social Media Initiative: Use the hashtag #7billionliters on twitter, facebook, or Instagram and Procter and Gamble will donate a liter of water to people who need it most!

The Secret to Napping for Success

Some people are made to feel a little guilty about taking naps during the day like it equates to being a slacker. Then I read an article about sleep and the importance of naps. Snoozing is no longer considered losing, but gaining. Most people think the secret to being productive is managing your time, they believe that sacrificing sleep is necessary in order to be successful in their industry. But I know it’s all about managing your energy and will reveal some reasons why;

Daily naps reduces the risk of heart disease. Those who take daily naps are 37 percent less likely to die of heart disease? 

“Taking a nap could turn out to be an important weapon in the fight against coronary mortality,” said Dimitrios Trichopoulos of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, who led the study.

Daily naps help to restore alertness. Most afternoons you start to feel drowsy, especially at work. This lowers your alertness and focus. 

The National Sleep Foundation recommends a nap of twenty to thirty minutes. This supposedly, “improved alertness and performance without leaving you feeling groggy or interfering with nighttime sleep.”

Daily naps prevents burnout. In a crazy busy world, we are all in the “rate race” but we shouldn’t be racing without resting. Doing so leads to frustration, burnout, and stress. 

Napping is the ultimate reboot of your computer, I mean body. It relieves any stress giving you a fresh start. The same reason we can’t wait to jump in the bed at night. Those who nap show greater emotional resilience, improved cognitive function, and more. All we need is 20 to 30 minutes daily to protect from frying our circuits.

Daily naps heighten sensory perception. Dr. Sara C. Mednick, author of Take a Nap, Change Your Life says, napping can restore the sensitivity of sight, hearing, and taste.

Napping relaxes your mind, which allows new associations to form in it, improving your overall creativity. So, rest before coming up with ideas and making important decisions. 

Daily naps make you productive. 

Numerous studies have shown workers becoming increasingly unproductive as the day wears on. This is where slacking comes from, and it’s mainly after lunch. Instead of taking a nap, they drink coffee or an energy drink, even worse, get up and walk. A twenty-minute nap defeats any and all energy drinks.

Daily naps improve mood. Which improves any and all actions and reactions.

A happier person makes better decisions, has a nicer demeanor, and is easier to approach. 

Daily Naps improve performance including better mental memory and quicker reaction time. 

Napping Tips

Take a twenty-minute nap right after lunch. If you can’t, try to squeeze it in before 4:00 p.m.

Keep it twenty to thirty minutes, anything longer may lead to “sleep inertia”, that feeling of grogginess when you awaken from a deep sleep. Long naps can also interfere with nighttime sleep. Set an alarm to avoid oversleeping. 

Sleep deprivation affects work performance along with mental and physical health. At 36, 48, and 72 hours without sleep, your body and your mind begin operating in altered states that put your health, and your life, at risk,

There are many successful leaders who were known for napping, names you recognize. Could these leaders know that napping was the key ingredient to their success? You be the judge, here are a few.

  • John D. Rockefeller, who was an oil industrialist and philanthropist napped daily in his office.
  • Thomas Edison napped daily, but his ego forced it to embarrass him.
  • Ronald Reagan, a known nap taker was criticized for it.
  • Leonardo da Vinci preffered napping over long sleep.
  • Winston Churchill’s knew he would get twice as much work done daily if he took a nap, this wasn’t up for negotiation.
  • President John F. Kennedy took naps religiously after eating lunch.
  • Albert Einstein not only got 10 hours of sleep at night but napped daily.
  • Napoleon (The French Emperor) took naps daily.
  • Eleanor Roosevelt napped before speaking arrangements to boost her energy.
  • President Lyndon B. Johnson figured out a way to break up his day into 2 by taking a nap daily at 3:30 p.m.

The desire to stay connected

Mobile notifications can feel important—leading people to keep their phones close by, even when they’re asleep. An alarming amount of people sleep with their phones near their beds, mostly Millennials. It looks like technology is literally getting in the way of our dreams if you’re allowing it to. 

Yearly we have #NationalNappingDay: 

It typically falls the Monday After Daylight Savings. It’ a yearly celebration of naps that allow us all to re-evaluate naps and recover from the time change.This year it falls on…

2018: March 12

If lack of sleep can seriously harm you, how much sleep is enough to ensure that our brains are functioning properly?
Current guidelines say between seven and nine hours nightly for adults.
What are your thoughts, Please leave comments. 
Some companies are offering their employees nap rooms. Does this mean in the future we will all be snoozing to improve the bottom line?
Some presenters at CES think so,  See link -> http://ow.ly/KDva30iSRlX

 

Why Every Woman Needs a Bidet

 

When it comes to personal hygiene save money and the environment with a Toilet Sprayer.

There’s environmental, and personal health benefits from using water over toilet paper for personal hygiene. Every day the average American uses 60 sheets of toilet paper, and 800 million tons a year. Forests are being destroyed to keep up with this demand. One economical way to cut down would be the use of a bidet.

The bidet isn’t standard in American homes, but you can find them all over the world. The bidet was invented by a French furniture maker around the 1870’s mainly to improve the aristocratic lifestyle.

It’s environmentally friendly because it uses about an 8th of a gallon of water when in use. Though people mainly connect the use of trees when making toilet paper. They usually forget the water usage during the production process. It takes 37 gallons of water to produce a roll of toilet paper. Overall you end up saving money, the environment, and lowering household waste.

Some health benefits are, the water replaces the paper that can destroy the skin around the bottom due to heavy wiping and friction. This greatly improves your chances of not getting hemorrhoids. Bidet’s also help with urinary tract infections in women since a popular cause is from wiping fecal matter too close to the urethra.

Side note, This may not be fun in the winter if you cannot adjust the temperature.

Another use of a toilet sprayer is to clean off cloth diapers and toilet rags. Not everyone is ready to leave toilet paper behind, but aren’t comfortable with the paper use. They usually gravitate toward cloth rags. These rags get soiled just like the cloth diaper insert. One-way to prep them for washing machines is with a pressurized sprayer. This sprayer guarantees you don’t touch poop.

Side note, Newborn breastfed babies poop is water-soluble.

Lastly, one final use would be to rinse off or hose down your pet in colder months. Animals don’t like being cold just as much as humans. That being said, during cold months when you wash your pet inside, the pressure controlled sprayer is great for washing off soap and dirt.

What goes into making toilet paper:

Wood Pulp
Chemicals
Water

Question: Knowing this information now, would you still stick with toilet paper or, are you more likely to install a sprayer or toilet seat in your home? Please give your opinions below in comments.

Here’s a sprayer I highly recommend:

Purrfect Zone

You can easily control water pressure from a gentle rinse to a strong jet spray to clean up dirty messes easily and it makes cleaning cloth diapers a breeze. The kit includes both wall and toilet mount options and the sprayer can be mounted on either side of the toilet making it ideal for both right or left-handed people. The kit has all accessories you need to install yourself, including plumber’s tape.

All parts of the kit are designed and constructed to the highest standards with steel to prevent water leakage and ensure that the sprayer will last. The flexibility of the hose makes it possible for the user to get the sprayer at the perfect angle for them. The best part, the sprayer comes with lifetime warranty. PurrfectZone wants to make sure their customers are happy and satisfied.

Purchase $38.00

If environmental impact and household waste is your concern, I encourage getting this toilet sprayer and lowering your carbon footprint one smart purchase at a time. 

 

Don’t Lock Your Knees! Are You standing Correctly?

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Are you standing correctly with relaxed knees?

Most people carry tension in their muscles. When you’re constantly contracting your muscles you’re also reducing the blood flow throughout the area and compresses joints, the muscles cross. Compression of the joints can lead to decreased mobility, friction, misuse of the limb, and potentially arthritis. 

One should be able to stand without clenching butt cheeks together or gripping our front thigh quadriceps muscles.Your legs must be straight in order to manage the tension. Just because the leg is straight doesn’t mean it’s locked. Your leg is “locked” when the quad muscles are contracted.

There are people who are able to hyperextend their knees, it looks like this.

There are people who stand with constant knee flexion (bent knees). It looks like this.

If the quads are relaxed, you should be able to contract your quads (notice your knee cap lift up) and return to the relaxed state.  If you can’t tell if your knee caps are lifting, more than likely your quads are already in a contracted state (this means that your patella is compressed against your femur, creating decreased mobility and friction which can lead to arthritis).

It sounds pretty simple to just relax your kneecaps, but if quad tension has become an unconscious habit for you, or if you’ve been unknowingly using your quads to keep yourself from falling over when you stand, relaxing the knees won’t be as easy as it seems.

Your four quadriceps muscles are designed to activate equally and at the same time when you straighten your lower leg, but in our culture, we’ve acquired alignment faults that leave the femur bone internally rotated and our pelvis misaligned. This changes the ability of the quadriceps to activate properly.

When your pelvis is not aligned, it changes your uses of the appropriate muscles for walking and standing, so your quads pick up the slack.

The quadriceps can get so used to staying on and being recruited for extra work that it becomes difficult to figure out how to turn them off, even when your brain is asking them too! This is where people may get a lot of spasms. 

Monadnock Paper Mills, Inc. – Bennington, NH Company Highlight

Another Brand to make an appearance at Sustainable Brands was this cool paper company from New Hampshire. Monadnock is a family owned an operated business with nearly 200 years in papermaking. They provide a diverse range of paper products including technical/specialty papers, premium printing, and packaging papers and melt blown non-woven media for leading brands worldwide.

With a passion for the environment and ingenuity, Monadnock is turning ideas into reality.

Across all levels of our organization, we believe there’s a lot to be said for doing the right thing — simply because it’s the right thing to do.

Socially and environmentally responsible investments in technology, processes, and products will deliver value to our customers and our community.

Monadnock Sustainability Commitment – http://mpm.com/about/sustainability/

Stewardship

We’re proud to be Forest Stewardship Council certified by the Rainforest Alliance.

All of our products are manufactured carbon neutral (VERs) using Green-e certified 100% renewable electricity (RECs). Monadnock is an EPA Green Power Partner, EPA Wastewise Partner, and EPA SmartWay Transport Partner.

You can tell a lot about a company by the company it keeps.  We have been recognized by leading environmental organizations including the Sierra Club, The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests and have earned the Governors Award for Pollution Prevention as well as the Cornerstone Award from New Hampshire Businesses for Social Responsibility for our environmental efforts.

But awards and recognition aren’t why we do it. We do it because we live here. We do it because we raise our families here. And we do it because we would like to leave our beautiful area of New Hampshire as pristine as we found it nearly two centuries ago.

 

Monadnock Paper Mills, Inc. is committed to responsible stewardship of the environment by:

  • Promoting environmental awareness among our customers, suppliers, converters, employees and local residents.
  • Providing environmentally sustainable products and services to our customers.
  • Maintaining our record of compliance with environmental regulations and standards.
  • Continuing to invest in research to determine innovative ways to reduce waste and to efficiently use natural resources.
  • Choosing materials with minimal environmental impacts during the design and development of new products.
  • Encouraging legislators and state officials to develop sound environmental policies and regulations.
  • Senior management is committed to continual improvement in pollution prevention and in reducing environmental impacts identified in our 14001 Environmental Management System

Ramblers Way – Kennebunk, Maine Company Highlight

Women’s Wool Eva Dress – Style #161- $105

Clothing for a Good Life – Est 2009

I met a representative at the Sustainable Brands conference. I was hoping to chat with him and get some insight on their brand so I could have more to write about. Unfortunately, they shoved this card in my hand gave me a few lines I could probably read on the site and sent me on my way. I asked to feel the material and it was worth the booth visit. Though I wish I had more personal insight the opportunity to feel this textile magic was enough for me to write this blurb.

That had to be the softest wool I’m ever felt in a t-shirt. 

You can use this code (SB10%) now through June 30, 2017, for %10 off 

I did get the chance to visit: https://www.ramblersway.com/

The Ramblers Way Story

For Ramblers Way, sustainability is the pathway to making premium quality clothing. Our definition of sustainability is stewarding natural and human resources. It also includes creating local jobs by breathing new life into the country’s textile industry. Fashion trends come and go – we alter our styles too – but what won’t change is our commitment to the responsible and sustainable use of the resources. Simply put, we weave sustainability into the fabric of our company.

Their Products

Rambouillet Merino wool and Pima cotton are both known for their long staple fiber, which is ideal for specific knitting and weaving applications.

The coat of a Rambouillet sheep, an American cousin to the Merino breed, grows long naturally, providing what is referred to as long-staple fibers for weaving or knitting into cloth.

Rambouillet fiber is 4” long and uniquely thin (18.5 microns) in diameter, which means we can spin it into a superfine yarn. And, since it’s also a long staple fiber, it’s surprisingly strong when spun together. So you’ve got amazing strength and luxurious softness all in one silky-feeling fabric.

Benefits of Rambouillet Merino Wool

Moisture-wicking.
Natural fibers transport sweat away from your skin to keep you dry.

Body-heat regulating.
Wool buffers the elements to keep you comfy in warm and cold weather.

Remarkable quality.
Our wool yarn is worsted, compacted and spun to remarkably fine diameter so it’s super fine, super strong and doesn’t itch.

Long-lasting.
Looks timeless. Buy fewer pieces. Wear them more often.

Odor-repellent.
Odor-Free.

Biodegradable.
It comes from nature and doesn’t use harsh chemical softeners or finishes to provide comfort.

Long-Lasting Worsted Wool

Worsted yarn is made of long-staple fibers that have been combed twice to remove any short fibers and spun parallel to each other (vs. a woolen yarn, which is randomly entangled). This careful spinning process produces a clean, smooth and tightly knit yarn that’s free of the usual fiber ends that cause you to itch.

Our fabric is further defined by proprietary spinning techniques that remove any excess fiber to reduce potential pilling. This produces super fine, super-strong clothing that you can wear time after time.

Pima Cotton

Long staple Pima cotton was developed and propagated by the Pima Indians of the American Southwest. Ramblers Way Pima Cotton is grown in the San Joaquin Valley in California using low water and pesticide-free growing methods. Pima Cotton is commonly called ‘the cashmere of cotton’ for its softness and durability.

Turn Waste Into Wonderful – Get Zera (Product)

FOOD SCRAPS TODAY, FERTILIZER TOMORROW

Zera™ Food Recycler is designed to fit seamlessly into your kitchen and make the most of your food — turning today’s food scraps into tomorrow’s ready-to-use, homemade fertilizer

THE AVERAGE FAMILY PRODUCES OVER 400 POUNDS OF FOOD WASTE PER YEAR.*

That waste comprises roughly 20% of space in landfills, decomposing and producing methane — a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming.

With Zera™ Food Recycler, you can recycle a week’s worth of food waste within 24 hours* through a fully automated process. That means better soil for your plants, less food waste in the landfill, and a greener future.

I ran into these guys at the Sustainable Brands conference. Though I don’t believe in waste, meaning wasting your money on buying products that solve problems stylishly. I think this would be a great gift to encourage new composters. Most people aren’t interested because either they don’t know about it, or don’t want to do the work to prepare the proper set-up. Tools like this help you make the transition to support less food waste with ease. 

 

 

 

Sustainable Brands Day Three #SBDetroit17

Started off with an old banana, granola bars, old wine and potent hash.

Here are the sessions I sat in on: 

Trends in Values-led Hiring: How to Go About Hiring and Engaging People with an Encumbered Past

Jo Confino   Jo Confino The Huffington Post

Amy Peterson   Amy Peterson Rebel Nell

Emily Hunt Turner   Emily Hunt TurnerAll Square

https://www.emilyhuntturner.com/law-prisoner-reentry

Aurelio Dorris   Aurelio Dorris Urban Ashes

Mike Brady   Mike Brady Greyston

Paul Hickman   Paul HickmanUrban Ashes

https://urbanashes.com/

This was a pretty important, factual, right in your face discussion. Addressing topics most people prefer to breeze over. They discussed challenges and issues that many low-income and no-income households. These are serious issues human face all over the world. 

I had a quick lunch and met the CEO of Common Impact 

Danielle Holly

http://commonimpact.org/

At Common Impact, they envision a society in which all individuals and businesses invest their unique talents towards a shared purpose: strengthening the local communities in which we live and work. 

After Lunch, I sat in on a session the Innovation Lab:  Good Supply Chains + Materials 

Hosted by Georgia from Forum for the Future

They are an international non-profit working with business, government and civil society to solve complex sustainability challenges.

She recommended to check out https://www.thefuturescentre.org/ as a great source for information. 

We briefly discussed common supply change challenges like:

Biomimicry for new materials

After that session, I met Kevin Farmer from Michigan Science Center

He is their innovation and discovery consultant and also did demonstrations for The Strange Matter. Green earth Booth. 

They are focusing on exhibits that allow you yo experience the power of Materials on a Sustainable World. Their exhibits typically live at the Michigan Science Center

I ended my day at this session: 

Redesigning the Fashion Industry by Proving the Business Case for Sustainability

Cara Smyth   Cara SmythGCU Fair Fashion Center

Frank Zambrelli   Frank ZambrelliGCU  Fair Fashion Center (MOD)

Melanie Steiner   Melanie Steiner  PVH Corp.

http://www.gcunewyork.com/fairfashioncenter/ is a young department of GCU New York their mission is to prove the business case for sustainability in the apparel and accessories industry.