Sunday, May 20, 2007

This Old Tree House

This weekend, the NYTimes Magazine shows us how to be green and super uber-stylish at home. Bethca next season Ty Pennington's gonna wash that hightlighted schmutz right out of his hair and build a tree-house. Check it. And don't miss the video called, "The Beauty of Green." Do it.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

To Market, To Market

Insane eco fact of the week: It takes 12 million barrels of oil to produce the plastic bags we consume each year and 15 million trees for the paper ones. The U.S. goes through 100 billion plastic shopping bags annually at a cost of $4 million to retails. Plastic bags are not biodegradable, they're photodegrable and melt away into a toxic mush going back into our soil and water where poor and unsuspecting animals on land and sea dine on bits of old Duane Reade bags for lunch.


Plus, plastic bags are ugly.

What's a girl to do? I recently discovered grocery shopping is the perfect outing for my old and torn Herve Chapelier bag. The poor thing hasn't seen the world outside my apartment in years. You can resurrect and old bag from your "bags that have gone slightly out-of-style" closet (like me), or treat yourself to something new (check out Reusable bags for a great selection). There are so many options to this eco-problem and they're all so much more attractive than that nasty Duane Reade bag.

So the next time the check-out girl asks you "paper or plastic," you can tell her, "no thanks, Herve's helping me pack today."

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Back 2 MAC, Back 2 Reality

Ever wonder where lipsticks go when they die? Growing up, we had a makeup graveyard in the bathroom vanity. That's where all hot pink matte lipsticks went to live out their years after many impulse purchases at the Clinique counter (but Mom, the Gift with Purchase comes with two full-sized lipsticks!!!) and my black nailpolish from high school sat waiting to come back to style (miracles never cease).

Well, there may be a makeup heaven afterall--at least for some brands. The makeup renegades at MAC will take your used, empty and unwanted MAC makeup containers (read: hot pink matte lipstick) and in exchange give you a brand-new lipstick (read: not Gift with Purchase). The old cartridges and compacts reincarnate as playground material. Not a bad way to go; not a bad way to come back.

MAC's so ahead of their time in makeup and green-awareness; they've been doing this for years.

Monday, May 14, 2007

It's true Plant Love

CARGO has recently produced a line of lipsticks that go the extra seven-minute mile for Mama Earth. This line of 12 lovely lipsticks are all around bio-friendly and are almost impossible not to crave.

Let's start from the inside out. The lipstick is a botanical formula containing zero mineral oils, are petroleum-free, and are indulgently emollient. The lovingly-adorned tube is made out of our fave Kansas export, CORN! And last but not least, this lipstick comes with a bouquet of wild flowers...well, almost. If you stick the floral paper packaging of Plant Love in a pot of yummy soil, with a little sun-love-water treatment you too can have a homegrown bunch. Furthermore, CARGO donates $2 from every sale of these good little tubes to St. Jude's Hospital for pediatric cancer research. What's that thing floating in your hair? Oh, pay no attention--it's just your halo.

Plant Love also features five celeb-designed hues: Lindsay (Lohan), Mariska (Hargitay), Maria (Menounos), Evangeline (Lilly), and Sarah (Chalke). Can't say that I'm much a fan of the Lindsay, but I'll be sure to be puckering up to Maria until I reach corn.

Pick 'em up at Sephora, sis.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Feelin' good, lookin' gorgeous...

I don’t need much incentive to buy makeup, but those smart Smashbox fellows make make me feel like I'm doing a mitzvah.

Supplies are going fast on the two limited edition Palettes for PETA. These heavenly eyeshadow trios are 100% vegan, cruelty free, and genuinely fantastic.

“Earth Mother,” I love your shimmery, angelic neutrals in taupe, bronze and ivory. And “Wild Thing,” I love your fresh pop of color with gold, ripe peach, and deep sage. The eye-candy doesn't stop there--each palette is emblazened with the PETA love-bunny logo, reminding you of Smashbox's cruelty-free manifesto.

So swing by Sephora, pick one of these gems up, and rest assured that no bunny has ever worn that shade before.

Its not easy being green, but it sure is trendy.

Green is all the rage. I consider myself a pretty cutting-edge kinda gal. Malcolm Gladwell of Tipping Point Fame would describe me as an "early adopter," a "trend-setter" and a "connector" (I know people). I can smell a trend a mile away. I got a trendy degree (MPH), live a trendy life (yoga practicing vegetarian) and I even "no-poo" (ten points for anyone who doesn't smirk), but in all of my trendy years, not once did I think going green would become the cool thing to do.

Walking around in the birthplace of trendy, SoHo, last Sunday, I felt surrounded by the words "recycled," "reused," "renewed," "organic" and "green." My favorite boutique on Mott Street, Find Outlet will soon be Green Finds offering up tunics made from organic cotton and eco-friendly yoga mats. The good people at Whole Foods recently opened an outpost on Bowery Street. Storefronts on both sides of Broadway are turning green into gold. And while it is a big business, this may be the only way we're gonna make this green thing stick. (See the aforementioned Malcolm Gladwell on the importance of "stickiness.") We're trending something good here, folks. We're fixing ourselves and the planet (Apology: the tree-hugger in me gets out sometimes). Does it really matter how we get there? We'll make it--even if it takes impossibly long lines at Whole Foods to get there.

And so as I power down my computer tonight, I'm feeling a little trendier.

Not that I wasn't trendy already.

Friday, May 4, 2007

A Weekend Safe-Bake Companion

In honor of our projected forecast of six CONSECUTIVE sunny days here in the Big Apple, we here at MUNW would like to bring it down and talk about the Safe Bake. I sympathize with all of you who want nothing more than to shed all sleeves, socks and long pants at the first signs of a sunny day. But we all have to face the music: it’s unsafe and downright stupid to go out basking in those rays without sunblock. I have learned my lesson many times over. So in honor of bathing suits, tank tops, and my shorty-shorts, I present to you all some eco/body-friendly picks to keep you safe and sun-kissed for the summer.

Most sunscreens work by containing an organic chemical compound that absorbs UV light or an opaque material that reflects light. Apart from these components,
sunscreen lotions usually contain fragrance, alcohols, and other ingredients that can be not-so-friendly for our bodies or the environment. My non-synthetic option is Soleo Organics Sunscreen in SPF 30. This wunder-produkt contains ”nanofine” zinc oxide, considered the best protection against UVA and UVB rays. It also happens to be chemical and synthetic-preservative free. If this wasn’t good enough for you, kittens—unlike other zinc oxide sunscreens, this one won’t turn make you look like you work in a flourmill (ie- it’s clear upon application).

I f you’re sneaky enough to avoid the sun completely this summer, you can pull another one over on everybody by keeping up a sun-kissed glow with a kick-ass
bronzer. The good Doctor (Dr. Hauschka that is) now features a bronzing powder in his new line of cosmetics. This compact bronzer is chock full of safe and yummy things like jojoba oil and carrot extract for extra hydration. The spotlight ingredient of this powder is powdered silk fibers, which have anti microbial properties and contain an amino acid composition almost identical to skin. If you didn’t think you were doing enough good in the world already, you are also supporting a biodynamic mulberry growing initiative to provide a food source to our talented silkworm friends.

So friends, be sure to take advantage of the great outdoors this weekend. Be safe, safe, be festive (Cinqo de Mayo!), be FABULOUS.