Eco Friendly Halloween

October 4, 2017

Eco friendly halloween ideas for candy, treats, decorations, and costumes

After renting apartments in big cities for the past 10+ years, my husband and I bought our first house and are about to officially move to the ‘burbs… which most likely means that for the first time in our adult lives we might get trick-or-treaters!

The idea of meeting new neighbors and passing out treats to costumed kids makes me super excited, but also a little bit conflicted.

My first conflict is the candy – and to be clear, this is mostly for selfish reasons. Candy ruins teeth, spikes blood sugar, and there are all kinds of crazy hidden ingredients in those mass produced candies that are simply best to avoid. While I’m sure kids are not benefiting from consuming boatloads of candy on Halloween – the decision to let them eat it is really up to their parents. The problem for me is that I personally don’t have a lot of self control when it comes to sweets so I’d prefer to not have any tempting extras of that stuff lingering around in our home…

My second conflict is the waste – ridiculous fun-sized wrappers, plastic decorations, store-bought cheap costumes that you only wear once, it’s crazy!

With all of that in mind, I did a little bit of research and compiled a list of the most sustainable treats, decorations, and a few costume ideas for an eco friendly Halloween. Read on for inspiration! Continue Reading…

How to Clean a Hairbrush

September 20, 2017

How to clean a hairbrush

Think for a minute about how many times you have used your current hairbrush over the course of its lifetime. Now compare that to the amount of times you have cleaned it.

If you’re like me then that ratio is probably a little scary. Now think about all of the oil, dry skin, and loose hair that has built up in your unwashed hairbrush that you have been brushing BACK into your clean hair each time you use it. Don’t want to think about that? Ok… I’ll stop.

Instead, let’s all learn how to clean a hairbrush, shall we?
Continue Reading…

Microfiber Cloths

September 14, 2017

How to use, clean, and recycle microfiber cloths

I have always been under the impression that using a quality set (or sets) of microfiber cloths is a must for quality cleaning – I mean the facts are pretty convincing… microfiber cloths can absorb up to 8 times their own weight in liquid, are excellent at picking up dirt and grime – even without using traditional cleaners (just water!), and they eliminate paper towel waste.

Considering all of this, purchasing a few microfiber cleaning cloths seems like a no brainer, right? I thought so too until I did some microfiber research and was surprised by what I learned. Continue Reading…

Paper File Organization

August 23, 2017

Organize files and folders and minimize paper clutter with these tips

I had no idea how controversial paper file organization could be until I moved in with my husband. He is of the belief that because we live in a digital age, keeping paper files is antiquated and unnecessary… but I have ALWAYS kept a tidy filing box full of important documents, which has served me very well over the years! Hard copies of tax returns, medical records and receipts, car repair records – all of these have come in handy and each time I thank myself for keeping them so well organized.

With that said, my file box had become a dumping ground for a bunch of other items that really weren’t worth keeping: old magazine clippings, photocopies of old IDs and credit cards I had used during travel, old wedding business cards and pamphlets, old generic birthday cards, and other items that I didn’t have any practical or true sentimental reason for storing. So I got rid of those and downsized from my old file box to one that’s half the size (and more attractive TBH).

If you’ve also fallen into a paper hoarding trap, then maybe this system will benefit you as well. Read on to see how I downsized and organized my paper files.

Here are the products I used:

Continue Reading…

How to Clean a Hair Dryer Filter

August 9, 2017

How to clean a hair dryer filter

Add this to your list of things that you never think about cleaning but probably should. It’s time to learn how to clean a hair dryer filter!

Have you ever noticed bundles of dust collecting around the back side of your hair dryer? That is your hair dryer filter, and it is getting clogged.

I know it sounds ignorant, but in high school I just thought that dust collection was a normal sign of hair dryer aging. I ignored the dust until eventually the hair dryer started to smell funny (because the filter was completely clogged!) and instead of cleaning it, I threw it out.

Now I have a nicer (slightly more expensive) hair dryer and as I was drying my hair the other morning I took a second look at the lint collection at the back in the filter and realized that (duh!) the filter is REMOVABLE and very easy to clean.

Go check yours right now, I bet your hair dryer filter is also removable, also full of lint, and also very easy to clean. Here’s how…

Continue Reading…

DIY All Natural Polish-Free Manicure

August 2, 2017

Learn how to give yourself a chic polish-free manicure

I have officially adopted the polish-free manicure.

For years I envied friends, family, and colleagues who were great at maintaining beautifully manicured nails (how on earth did they find the time/energy?!). Sure, there were short spurts where I tried committing to weekly manicures but I always grew irritated by the amount of time and money I was spending on something that barely lasted 6 days (if I was lucky!).

Then I read about recent studies showing that many mainstream nail polish brands contain dangerous chemicals that seep into our bodies via polish application. For instance, triphenyl phosphate (TPHP) might cause negative impacts on our reproductive and developmental health (source: EWG) and formaldehyde has been classified as a probable human carcinogen (source: As someone who hopes to start trying for babies in the near-ish future and hopes to live a long, healthy, and cancer-free life, this information makes me nervous!

But even with all of that said, my true lightbulb moment happened when I met a coworker who was SUPER chic – great haircut, awesome style, always looked put together. She was the type of girl who you would expect to sport perfectly polished nails, but no! She never wore polish. She was able to pull it off and still appear professional because her bare nails were so naturally well kept (nicely shaped, buffed, and clean cuticles).

Her example + my laziness + my desire to remove as many hormone-disrupting chemicals from my life as possible inspired me to master the polish-free manicure, and you can too! Here are the tools you will need:

  1. Nail Clipper
  2. File
  3. Orange Stick
  4. Buffer
  5. Cuticle Trimmer
  6. Olive Oil
  7. Sugar
  8. Small Towel

Continue Reading…

Thrift Store Shopping Tips for Beginners

June 29, 2017

Thrift store shopping tips for beginners

This year I have committed to not buying any new clothes – but that doesn’t mean I stopped shopping! I have been updating my wardrobe on an almost monthly basis by shopping at second-hand stores.

Prior to this challenge I found second-hand stores to be kind of gross (that distinct thrift store smell…) and too overwhelming to consider as a real option for clothes shopping.

Now, because of my commitment to not buying new this year, I have forced myself to test and learn some seriously game-changing strategies for how to tackle second-hand clothing stores. In fact, I have tested these thrift store shopping strategies on MULTIPLE friends who I have brought shopping with me and every single one of them ended up walking away with incredible pieces! I’m not just talking basic vintage band t-shirts, I’m talking incredible name brand coats, shoes, blazers, dresses, denim, for a FRACTION of the price that they would have cost when bought new.

If you want to become better skilled in the art of thrift shopping, read on for my road tested tips and shopping strategies.

Continue Reading…

19 Natural DIY Cleaning Products for the Home

June 22, 2017

DIY cleaning recipes to use in every area of your home

Instead of giving you just one cleaning recipe or DIY cleaning product recommendation, I thought it would be far more beneficial for me to compile every cleaning recipe that you need to clean your entire house on a regular basis. Just about every cleaning product I use in my home is derived from a small list of natural ingredients.

The only ingredients you need to clean your entire house:

I put all of the above in one single Amazon shopping list to make it easy to buy everything you need!

Ultimate All-Purpose Cleaner

This solution can be used on just about any surface in your home, from countertops, to floors, to shower tiles, to toilets. If you like the simplicity of using just ONE cleaner for almost everything then this is your best bet.

However, while this certainly works as an “all purpose” cleaner, it doesn’t mean it’s the BEST cleaner for every purpose in your home. If you’re looking for what’s best to use in each area of your home, keep reading for my recommendations. Continue Reading…

How to Remove Sweat Stains from White Clothes

June 8, 2017

How to remove sweat stains from clothes

At the beginning of 2017, I committed to not buying any new clothes for the rest of the year. Given that I have already made it 6 months (happy June by the way!), I have no intentions of turning back now!

No new clothes also means no new white shirts, and I have a few that I love that over time have developed the dreaded yellow armpit stains. Without the option to replace them with new white shirts I was on a mission to find a solution that could remove the stains. After trying a number of stain removal recipes that didn’t work, I finally found a winning combination. Continue Reading…