Thursday, April 21, 2011

Earth Day: Love The World You're With

If you don't think an oil spill can spawn an environment- al movement, think again. Gaylord Nelson, Wisconsin senator (D) and environmental activist, conceived Earth Day after witnessing the devastating toll the Unocal Corp. oil spill took on Santa Barbara's coastline in 1969.

When government was slow to react, Nelson proposed that universities across the nation host teach-ins to educate students about the deterioration of the environment. The idea took flight and on April 22, 1970, approximately 20 million Americans, thousands of high schools, universities, and environmental groups gathered together for celebrations and to protest against the destruction of the earth's natural resources.

Senator Gaylord Nelson, Earth Day founder

In 1990, Earth Day went global and more than 200 million people from 175 countries took part; and nearly twenty years later, in 2009, the United Nations named April 22 "International Mother Earth Day".

In honor of Mother Earth, Luxe File offers these earth-friendly tips to try:

Sample Sale: Ever hear the saying: "Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour onto others without getting a few drops onto yourself"? Taken literally, perfume is one beauty basic that's hard to beat. The right fragrance can boost creativity, inspire confidence or spark sexuality.

Global Message In A Bottle: Hiroshima girl band, Perfume, signs their support

Green Tip: Magazines are brimming with perfume-scented tear sheets encouraging readers to sample their scents. Instead of tossing them in the garbage, which ultimately will end up in a landfill!, tear them out and tuck them into your purse. When you're headed to a meeting, date or event, swipe them along your pulse points (wrists, behind your knees and below your jaw) for a pretty pick-me-up!

Wasteful Wattage: The Worldwatch Institute reported that the United States and Canada together were responsible for 50% of the energy consumed by the world's richest industrialized countries.

Green Tip: Next time you reach for the light switch, reach for a match instead. Nothing quite lights a room like candles do and they have a magical way of making everything around us glow. Pick ones with beeswax, soy or palm oil. She may not have a lucky love streak, but Sandra Bullock's eco-friendly Bessence soy candles will fill your home with a lovely light. Each hand-poured candle is packaged in recycled materials and will burn cleanly for 50 hours.

Save The Environment: Serve up some candlelight

Shop S-MART: The Clean Air Council notes that Americans use nearly 1 billion plastic shopping bags every year, creating 300,000 tons of landfill waste. This is compounded by the fact that plastic bags are not biodegradable.

Green Tip: When gift-giving, JenChicago's Jen Knoedl recommends wrapping gifts in a recycled shopping tote and then tying with raffia. It's inexpensive, earth-friendly and, as Jen notes, "I know the bag will be reused!" Luxe File likes this Waste-Less Too Cute bag because it screams "rocker chic!" and holds up to 20 lbs. For additional green tips and to learn more about JenChicago, click HERE.

Present Perfect: Reusable totes make
great gift wrapping

Take A Walk On The Well Side: We like to think that when we splurge on a manicure or pedicure, our fingers and toes are in safe hands. That isn't the case if the salon uses nail polish or products containing DBP, toluene or formaldehyde. Bad for you and the environment, these toxic chemicals have been linked to cancer and other harmful ailments.

Green Tip: Next time you hit the nail bar, Bianca Alexander of Conscious Planet Media recommends opting for a toxin-free mani-pedi that uses organic, chemical-free products. In this clip, she previews a San Francisco nail spa that offers a luxe version we would all love. Want to know how you can live green-ly ever after? Visit Bianca Alexander's Conscious Living TV's website and get great tips from the woman who helped make green GORGEOUS!

Green Girl: Bianca Alexander, Emmy Award-winning
correspondent, environmental advocate and
co-CEO of Conscious Planet Media

Closer to home Luxe File likes the Organic Mani-Pedi at Salon Echo, a full-service salon in Edgewater that was built using 80% sustainable materials and offers a full menu of organic-based products and services. The salon is so focused on helping the planet, it donates hair clippings to Matter of Trust which uses the hair to make mats that soak up oil spilled in our oceans. Like to bike? Ride your bike to the salon and in addition to cutting down on harmful emissions, you'll receive a 20% discount on any service.

Keep the Carbon, I'll Take the Chanel: The airline industry isn't making a lot of friends these days. With oil prices at an all-time high, that trip to Europe to go treasure-troving or to Detroit for a sales pitch has become a lot more expensive, not to mention a toxic hotbed for the environment. Forget the "friendly skies": carbon emissions from airplanes not only pollute the air we breath, they leave behind a terrible carbon footprint*. For example, did you know that a round-trip flight to Los Angeles from New York creates between 2 and 3 tons of CO2 per passenger?

Green Tip: When traveling for business, consider taking a train for shorter distances or recommends meeting online or videoconferencing instead of flying coast to coast.

We know that many of our readers love to splurge on vintage-shopping trips to luxe locales like Paris, Milan and London. This summer, reduce your carbon footprint and stay domestic instead. Cities such as Dallas, Portland and Palm Beach are exciting direct-flight destinations for finding fabulous lost-era finds and Chicago even offers a plethora of fashion-focused vintage-consignment depots, you just need to know where to look.

Green Tip: Skip Paris' flea markets this year
and shop for vintage treasure online instead

If you'd rather let your fingers do the walking, Luxe File recommends a visit to Edrop-Off Express, an online consignment site that offers "gently loved" luxury essentials from well-known fashion houses like Chanel, YSL, Prada and more. When Edrop-Off Express' owner, Corri Mcfadden, told us how much energy we'd save by skipping the trip to the City of Lights and purchasing a vintage Hermรจs instead, we knew it was the perfect trade. We decided it was better to save Paris for another day so we could save the world today. Nice mantra.

Happy Earth Day!

*Merriam-Webster defines a carbon footprint as "the amount of greenhouse gases and specifically carbon dioxide emitted by something (such as a person's activities or a product's manufacture or transport) during a given period".

Posted by Kerry Shorr

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