Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Plant Love and Corn Bottles

I’ve faced the fact that I will never be No Impact Man (or even Low Impact Woman). I like to shop. But if one must buy things, I’ve been collecting links about consumer items that are not just recyclable but can literally be given back to the earth.

Cargo Cosmetic’s Plant Love lipstick line, which I haven’t tried, is either a great gimmick or an example of unusually responsible consuming. The lipstick comes in special cardboard packaging imbued with wildflower seeds. Instead of just throwing away the package, it can be moistened and planted, with wldflowers to follow. The lipstick tubes are also unusual: made with corn-based plastic they’re supposed to biodegrade completely within 80 days when exposed to sufficient heat and sun. (FYI, this won’t happen in a landfill — a reality check for all the biodegradable products, since landfills are airtight and stuff hangs around forever.) To complete the trifecta, Cargo donates $2 from every PlantLove lipstick purchase to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. The lipstick is available at several Nonprofit Shopping Mall vendors, including Amazon and Sephora, both of which will donate approx. 2% of your purchase price to a nonprofit of your choice when you use this link.

On a recent trip to the co-op I stumbled upon a resuable personal water bottle that also uses this corn-based technology. EnviroProduct’s Corn Resin Bottle is a resuable water bottle with a small screw-in carbon filter, so one can use regular tap water for DIY bottled water. The bottle is recomended for up to 90 uses, after which it is also guaranteed to decompose in 80 days in “commercial compost,” which would mean not in the regular landfill-bound trash.

Since any reason to plug The Lost Albatross is a good thing, blogger Emily posted a comment during the Carbon Fast for Lent mentioning BioBags, which are cool corn-based trashbags, as an alternative to the usual plastic trashcan liners. (BioBag also offers corn-based bags for cat litter liners and for cleaning up doggie waste.)

Today’s mitzvah: If you’re going to buy something anyway, why not make it plantable or disappear-able?


Emily said...

I know the whole "Earth Day is everyday" thing is a bit cliched, but I still think it's just as good an idea as ever. What's even better these days is that we have more choices of ways to make it actually happen.

I'm glad you're sticking with this. We should all be so dedicated. :)

jen x said...

Emily, thanks for the kind words! I've been feeling very un-dedicated lately so I especially appreciate the moral support "-)