Posts tagged eco-friendly

Toxic Trends In Everyday Beauty – From Green Lifestyles Network

Toxic Trends In Everyday Beauty

In the beauty industry the current trend is to look young and rejuvenated. Women and some men search high and low for the beauty products that “guarantee” youthful appearance. They buy hundreds of products that promise to prevent or reverse aging. What most people don’t know is that there is an average of thirty artificial chemical ingredients in beauty products. These artificially produced ingredients destroy immune systems within the body then affect the waterways in which they drain when we wash them off. Many people fall into the trap of trying to achieve their desired look while overlooking the consequences of the artificial and potentially toxic chemicals that they use.

Artificially manufactured chemicals in shampoos, for instance, can break down the body’s immune system and lead to cancer. Cheap or expensive, modern shampoos are usually a mixture of a handful of detergents, most of which are harmful to our skin. Coal tar, a popular ingredient in shampoos, is known to be effective in controlling and reducing dandruff. However, it is also known as a cancer-causing agent. Another ingredient in shampoo, ZPTO or zinc pyrithione, can cause severe allergic reactions, headaches, nausea, fatigue, nervousness and lack of concentration. Manufacturers do not acknowledge these side effects when selling the benefits of soft, bouncy hair to consumers.

Shampoo is not the only beauty product that has toxic chemicals. Deodorant is one of the most commonly used beauty products. However, most people do not know that deodorant contains aluminum, which when applied to the skin, becomes absorbed into the body. The aluminum in the body is known to cause dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Other popular beauty products are antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers. Triclosan, an ingredient found in many of those soaps, has been found in the blood of wild dolphins, affecting their development negatively. Studies have also found that elevated blood levels of triclosan may lead to a depressed central nervous system and impaired thyroid function, as well as to hormone disruption.

Polyethelene glycol (PEG) is a common ingredient in facial cleansers. Frighteningly, this ingredient can also be found in oven cleaners. The ingredient is added to dissolve the oil and grease on our skin. When a chemical dissolves a substance on our bodies, it is more than likely damaging our external skin and our internal bodies. Polyethylene glycol is also used as a thickener to produce a creamy consistency in creams, lotions, and soaps. The ingredient deteriorates our immune system at a slow pace, taking away our skin’s natural moisture, and is potentially carcinogenic.

Another ingredient that is found in many facial cleaners and exfoliates are tiny plastic beads. Often found in cleansing scrubs for their abrasive effect on the face and body, they are listed in the ingredient list as polyethylene. Seemingly harmless, these bits, which are less than one millimeter in diameter, wash down the drain and eventually flow into our oceans. The beads fall to the ocean floor or are swallowed by aquatic animals. They will never biodegrade. An easy solution for consumers is to choose scrubs that contain sugar, apricot, nuts or other natural abrasives, that do not damage the waterways or leave permanent manmade footprints in nature.

Propylene glycol (PG) is found in hair care products, cosmetics, after-shave, deodorants, mouthwashes, and toothpaste. It is also used in processing our food and is the active ingredient in anti-freeze. Industrial workers handling this product have to wear gloves and even eye protection because of its toxicity to the skin. It also has to be disposed of at hazardous waste sites. We use this ingredient, however, in extreme concentrations in daily products for our skin and even in our mouths.

GREEN ALTERNATIVES

So what do we here at Greenlifestyles.org recommend? Most women don’t know that the same ingredients in the 200-dollar bottle of “elixir of life” can be found in their very own back yard or local market. Sugar and honey is a great facial. The ingredients are natural and healing. Many women look for products that promise to rejuvenate the skin and lift bags under their eyes. Instead of using toxic chemicals that dissolve oil, using lemon and cucumbers work just as well. Cucumbers lift bags under the eyes and lemon juice lightens the skin, especially dark unwanted scars.

Shampoo originates from the Hindi word champoo. However, in India most of the population do not use manufactured shampoos, but create original shampoos using natural ingredients. For example, the powder of neem (soap nuts) is mixed with eggs, almonds, curds, buttermilk and honey. The ingredients are ground together to make a paste that works wonderfully to nourish and strengthen the hair without stripping it of its natural oils.

Return to older practices and find organic alternatives for shampoos, soaps and more, to heal the body. Instead of washing toxic chemicals down our drains when using synthetic shampoos, soaps, toothpastes, and facial cleaners, it would be eco-friendly, health producing, and logical to use natural products that are better for our bodies, for the earth, and for its oceans. If we band together and choose natural ingredients over toxic chemicals and manufactured ingredients, we can make a positive impact on our earth, our waterways, and our bodies, all at once. We can do it!

Go to http://www.greenlifestyles.org for videos and articles on green health and beauty alternatives.

– Khali Hampton

Additional information on this topic can be found at:

1. Leavell, C. L. (2010, July 12). 11 beauty products that may be ruining the planet. Retrieved from http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/natural-beauty-fashion/photos/11-beauty-products-that-may-be-ruining-the-planet-0.

2. Archer, L. A. (2007, February 7). The campaign for safe cosmetics. Retrieved from http://www.safecosmetics.org/

Committed to Raising Consciousness

Dorit, GreenLifestyles.org
Book, Celebrating Our Raw Nature 1 & 2
http://www.serenityspaces.org 310-854-2078
http://www.greenlifestyles.org 310-928-7689

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Q & A Series: People, Products and The Health of Our Planet – Interview with Mark Samuels & Josh Askin, Co-Owners of Nimbus Eco

For the twenty-first interview, I have the pleasure of introducing you to Mark Samuels & Josh Askin, Co-Owners of Nimbus Eco – makers of sustainable, tree-free paper products, in business since Spring of 2012.

Question #1: Tell me briefly about yourself and why you decided to get involved in the “health” industry?

Josh: It’s always nice to be able to create a positive impact on people and be able to help improve the world one happy customer at a time. Also, I like that while improving the well-being and health of others I’m moved to improve my own as well—it keeps me accountable.

Question #2: If you were stranded on a desert island and were allowed to take only 5 items with you (they can be food, books or specific products that are all health-related), what would they be and why?

Mark: Bag of seeds, hunting knife, tent, surfboard, lots of rope
Josh: My drum set (no power needed and hours of entertainment), Various types of seeds to grow fruits and vegetable, Fishing pole – for fishing, Knife- cutting and building, Flint for starting a fire

Question #3: What one message do you want to share with the people of this world that is crucial for their ultimate well-being and longevity?

Mark: If you believe you can, you will.
Josh: Always question what is in the products that you buy. This forces companies to be accountable and always have the consumer in mind. Also, just because something has been made a certain ways for a decades, this doesn’t mean it’s the best way of producing that particular product.

Questions #4: If someone could afford to purchase only one product at this moment to start their journey towards better health (food or health-related), what would you recommend and why?

Mark: Ph 9.5 Water, because it gets you more hydrated and tastes great.
Josh: Nimbus tree free toilet paper. If everyone in the US, swapped one roll of Nimbus Eco’s tree free paper once a year we could save 470,000 trees. It’s a simple switch with a huge impact. Or solar panels…haha

Question #5: Tell me more about your business/company and/or products you offer to the public to help them achieve optimal health and well-being?

Mark: Nimbus Eco is a customer-oriented, sustainable paper products company that sells tree-free napkins, hand towels and toilet paper to the janitorial and wholesale markets utilizing advanced, eco-friendly innovations thereby dramatically cutting carbon footprint, waste and improving corporate profits.
Josh: Nimbus Eco offers tree free paper products for the home to be used in the bathroom and kitchen. We provide tree free napkins, toilet paper, paper towels and hand towels made from bamboo and sugarcane. These are both sustainable products that require no irrigation or pesticides and grow up to 4 times faster than trees. The biggest rewards however are the amount of CO2 that is spared from being put in our atmosphere by cutting down these trees for paper.

Question #6: What are your hopes/aspirations/dreams for the future health of the people and the planet?

Mark: My hope is that we can create a world where paper no longer comes from trees and in turn, save our forests for future generations to enjoy.
Josh: To create a world where paper no longer comes from trees. This is a mindset that will spill over to a lot of everyday ways of life. From the cars we drive, to the foods we eat, it is a mindset of being aware of your specific impact.

Question #7: Who is your greatest hero and why?

Josh: My heros are my parents. The work ethic they have taught me and the way they have navigated me through life, letting me make my own path and supporting me no matter if I was wrong or right.

Question #8: Is there anything else you would like to share with the public?

Mark: For every 24 pack we sell we plant a tree in poor communities worldwide, an investment in Nimbus Eco is an investment in our planet!
Josh: Our products are very very good. We have worked extremely hard test different types of tree-free materials and blends to offer an eco friendly product that does not sacrifice quality.

For more information on this company and all their products, go to: http://www.nimbuseco.com

Watch my interview with Mark and Josh: http://www.youtube.com/TheRawsomeVeganGal

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Company Review: Nourish – Organic Food for Healthy Skin – Organic Body Butter

Company Review: Nourish – Organic Food for Healthy Skin – Organic Body Butter in business since 2003

I have known about this company from the Expo West in Anaheim, CA and they recently reformulated their products and are now the first USDA 100 percent certified organic bath and body collection on the market. I recently tried their Almond Vanilla Organic Body Butter. When I opened the container (packaging is made from recycled content) it smelled “yummy,” as I LOVE vanilla. It almost smelled good enough to eat, since the ingredients are so pure, but please don’t do that! (Disclaimer: neither I, nor the company or any of their associates will be liable or have any responsibility for any adverse affects that may occur if you decide to do so). I use the body butter right after I get out of the shower and my skin is still wet, as it absorbs better on damp skin. My skin felt soft and silky afterwards and I loved the scents from the essential oils (I could actually open up the container and smell it all day for the aromatherapeutic benefits).

I am one who does my research before trying out/using any products. I don’t just grab the first thing I see on the store shelf, or opt for what is on sale (either because I don’t want to spend more money or figure that it doesn’t matter) because you will get what you pay for. Most importantly, not all products that say “natural” on their product, actually are. Don’t take this lightly! Contact the company if you are not sure and want more information. You have the right to know what goes into the products you are using.

Another important thing to remember, is that the skin is the largest organ of the body. What you put on it, is absorbed right into the bloodstream. If you are so careful about what you put in your mouth (i.e. food), is what goes on your skin any less important? Seek out only the best, even if it costs a little more (better to spend less on other things that don’t affect your health and you can do without such as more shoes, more clothes, electronics, etc).

There is so much “garbage,” when it comes to products being sold and the companies have famous spokespeople promoting them, so you think it has to be ok to use. Well, think again! Don’t rely on some “pretty face” who is only trying to make more money for themselves and the company. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients or there are things listed in a general sense like “natural fragrance” or “natural color” or the list of ingredients in a mile long (this isn’t always correct because some companies, like Nourish, list the common name in parenthesis, as well as, the botanical name) likely the product is best kept on the store shelf where you saw it and NOT in your shopping cart.

I am happy to see/say that there are more companies out on the market (some sold in stores and some only online) that have gotten it right and realize the importance of “feeding” your skin the proper nutrients that will benefit you and also not have a negative impact on the planet.

This information is taken from http://www.nourishorganic.com regarding the organic body butter:

Ultra-hydrating for even the driest skin
Minimizes signs of aging with antioxidant-rich ingredients
Clinically proven to hydrate and nourish skin
Melts onto skin with a pure, delightful scent

The ultimate moisturizer, this light and creamy blend of whipped shea butter, concentrated coconut and olive oils and antioxidant-rich Vitamin E smoothes on easily, absorbs quickly and leaves even the driest skin soft and supple.

All the skin care products in the Nourish line:
No parabens. No phthalates. No sulfates, petrochemicals, synthetic dyes or silicones. No propylene glycol, mineral oils, synthetic dyes, triclosan, EDTA or aluminum. And absolutely no artificial fragrances or preservatives. Period.

For more information on all the products this company sells you can go to their website http://www.nourishorganic.com

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored to write this, but I did receive a sample of the product(s). These are strictly my opinions. I only review products that I, myself would use and purchase.

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Company Review – Toockies: Hand-Knit Organic Cotton Housewares

Toockies-Hand Knit Organic Cotton Housewares in business since 2008

I met Anna Marie, the CEO of Sinko Corp., who distributes Toockies, at the annual Expo West in Anaheim during the month of March 2013 (the largest trade show in the world for the Natural Product Industry). She had a booth at the Organic Marketplace (features only certified organic products) and displayed her products. I was intrigued to see these organic cotton housewares and wanted to know more. She told me more about the products and I took a brochure and business card so I could follow up in the future. I have never seen any products like this anywhere!

I gathered a lot of information, brochures and samples of products at the expo. I am very discriminating and discerning to choose only what I know is the healthiest, purest and of the highest integrity. If I am going to test the product myself it has to abide by my standards. I am not willing to compromise and that is why I ONLY share with my readers what I has researched to be the best. It is very easy to just choose anything and just “settle.” I don’t want the cheapest/most expensive products if they are not good for me. It is QUALITY that I am looking for in all that I use/consume – food, household products, personal care, etc.

I contacted Anna Marie and she was kind enough to agree to a Q & A – which has already been posted to my blog https://rawsomegal.wordpress.com/2013/04/20/q-a-series-people-products-and-the-health-of-our-planet-toockies-hand-made-housewares/. She also send me some products for review.

Great discount offered on all Toockies products till 12/31/13. Read Below!

The first product I used was the Hand Knit Dish Cloths. They are hand knit of 100% organic cotton by a group of poor women in Calcutta, India so they can earn a living wage. Always machine wash and dry before use and then again after use to disinfect and may become absorbent after many times washing. You can use the cloth to scrub any surfaces in your home and you soak it is water and then ring out as much as possible. I wanted to use it in the kitchen to wipe up around the sink, as the faucet tends to splash all over. I have been using it without soaking it first. Even though it isn’t meant for absorbing water it work fine for me.

Then second product I used was the Circulation Gloves. They are also hand knit of 100% cotton. Again, machine wash and dry before first use. You can use this inside or outside of your bath/shower as a wet and dry scrub. I used it while I was taking a shower and soaked them in water. You can use soap on them, but I just used water. Watch my video to see recommendations for using the gloves. They are great to stimulate circulation and exfoliate the skin.

I am really happy that this company makes great products that are also economical, Eco-ethical, hygienic, offer work for poor women who are now able to sustain themselves and provide a better life for their family. We are not meant to be a “throw away” society, as it is destroying the planet. Reusing these products for many years will help you to avoid the continual disposal of paper towels, loofahs or other scrub cloths (that are not hygienic since they are not cleaned properly after each use).

I emailed Anna Maria as I had some concerns/questions regarding the circulation gloves.

Mindy says:

I used the circulation gloves and washed them before use, of course and put in dryer, too. It takes a lot of heat to dry them, though and I wanted to see about air drying them, instead. After I used them, there was some discoloration on the gloves, probably came off from my skin. Then I washed them again and hung them to dry, but there is a smell that is not so fresh and lovely. I don’t use any harsh detergents to wash. I use a product called soap nuts and is 100 percent pure – more then detergents like seventh generation. I don’t know if you have ever had this issue. I will not use any commercial products for cleaning. Also, the discoloration is still visible on the gloves. What are your thoughts/comments?

Anna Maria’s reply:

Yes, they are raw thick cotton so it does take time to dry them (less over time as the cotton softens). I machine wash and dry and recommend everyone do so as this does get rid of yellowing and smell. A bit of a naturally bleaching agent also helps if yellowing is not going away as quick as you would like. I just add it to the pile of cloths from that day and toss it in. They do yellow if left out for a while but that usually disappears for me when I wash them. I do use a detergent (eco-friendly detergent) in the wash. The smell is from the raw cotton and doesn’t go away unless you machine wash and dry. After a few times in the wash they become softer, take longer to get rid of yellowing and will smell of what every you use on them or wash them with.

The greatest challenge in using this product is changing the way you use your bath scrub product. Most people use a scrubber and then leave it for a couple of days before washing or disposing of it. This is not recommended as it is not very hygienic. This product requires you to be proactive in keeping the products you use on your body clean. Rinsing a cloth in the shower and letting it hang is not clean. Please give them some time and remember to keep them clean. They will last you a very long time and save you time and money. If used as recommended they will keep you from scrubbing dead skin cells back on to your skin giving you a cleaner clean. I hope this helps. If you have any more questions please let me know.

Thanks very much, Anna Marie, this is great information for me and my readers because they may have the same issue when using these products themselves.

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored to write this, but I did receive a sample of the product(s). These are strictly my opinions. I only review products that I, myself would use and purchase.

Enter promo code for a 15% discount if ordering off Toockies.com.

Promo Code: RawLife
Active Dates: 10/01/13 – 12/31/13

I have a link to the website product pages that I reviewed in this post.

3 pack scrub cloths:
http://www.toockies.com/p/3-pack-multi-purpose-scrub-cloths-organic-cotton?pp=12

Circulation Gloves:
http://www.toockies.com/p/circulation-gloves-100-certified-organic-cotton?pp=12

Check out my YouTube channel – TheRawsomeVeganGal for video reviews of the products.

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Q & A Series: People, Products and The Health of Our Planet- Toockies – Hand-made Housewares

This Q & A is with Anna Marie Stauss CEO/President of Sinko Corporation – started production of housewares in India the spring of 2008

Great discount offer on Toockies products at the end of this post till 12/31/13.

Question #1: Tell me briefly about yourself and why you decided to get involved in the “health” industry?

I’m not in the health business, per se, but I am in the business of finding full circle sustainable products to bring into your home and to use on your skin. I strongly believe fibers created artifically have an artificial affect to any solution it was intended for.

Question #2: If you were stranded on a desert island and were allowed to take only 5 items with you (they can be food, books or specific products that are all health-related), what would they be and why?

I would take stones that can be struck to create fire. I would take coconut oil for hydration, lubrication and cooking. I would take a Toockies Scrub cloths that is multifunctional to be used as a grip for pulling, pushing or scrubbing anything as well as to hold hot items because they last for such a long time, will protect hands and feet and have so many uses. Disinfectant liquids like Iodine and bandages. Water purification unit for drinking water.

Question #3: What one message do you want to share with the people of this world that is crucial for their ultimate well-being and longevity?

Happiness that comes from simple Joy is a state of mind you can always choose. Find something to laugh about everyday and when you can’t, remember to smile because that is how you choose.

lQuestions #4: If someone could afford to purchase only one product at this moment to start their journey towards better health (food or health-related), what would you recommend and why?

The Magic Bullet blender that creates smoothies out of fresh fruit and vegetables. I’m recommending this type of product because having a spinach and fruit smoothie in the morning has been great for me.

Question #5: Tell me more about your business/company and/or products you offer to the public to help them achieve optimal health and well-being?

Our products are all vintage design hand made housewares, created from 100% organic Cotton or Jute. The benefit of having chemical and synthetic free products in your home that you use on a daily basis to shower, clean, cook and serve food with go well beyond the fact that they are practical, afforable, convenient, reusable, and reliable. Toockies products were made to last and to protect you and our planet from the alternatives while providing a Fair Trade living wage to women who would otherwise have none.

Question #6: What are your hopes/aspirations/dreams for the future health of the people and the planet?

My greatest hope for our health and the health of this planet is that we all find a way to consume less or at least produce less waste.

Question #7: Who is your greatest hero and why?
Mother Teresa is my greatest hero because she listened and acted on her hearts desire.

Question #8: Is there anything else you would like to share with the public?

We are a woman owned company and I would like to add a link to the artisan page on our web site. I want to provide a voice for the women we work with.

http://www.toockies.com/k/the-artisans/The+Artisans

Be sure to check out the website.
I will be doing a company review of the products that I will be posting soon.
There will be a special discount offer to my readers coming up for the end of year
holidays so be sure to check back for it.

Enter promo code for a 15% discount if ordering off Toockies.com.

Promo Code: RawLife
Active Dates: 10/01/13 – 12/31/13

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Company Review: Moso Natural – air purifying bag

Moso Natural air purifying bag – in business since August 2009

I found out about this company at the Expo West in Anaheim. I took home some literature about the product and after reading the information, I contacted the company to send me one for review. It, of course, would have to meet my high standards of purity and integrity before I would even consider testing it. I am happy to say that it did! The Moso Bag helps to purify the air and comes in two sizes depending on the space you are using it for. I received the smaller one that is for 90 sq.ft., which is good for the car, closet, bathroom and pet areas.

I have never seen any other product like this on the market. It is very pure, non-toxic, fragrance-free and eco-friendly. The bag is made of bamboo charcoal which has purification properties. The carbon in the Moso Bag is self-activated to absorb and filter out harmful pollutants and odors. This product does not have a scent, which is great for those who have allergies. It is also safe to use around children and pets, as there are no chemicals or toxins inside the Moso Bag. Once a month the Moso Bag needs at least one hour in the direct sun to release the pollutants and rejuvenate it for future use. You can certainly leave it outside for longer if you choose.

The product, at first, sounded too good to be true, but this company has gotten it right! It is beneficial for use in eliminating odors, pollutants, bacteria, mold, mildew and more. Since I received the smaller Moso Bag, I use it in my bathroom. I have had it now for over 3 months and here is what I experienced. When I take a shower, it definitely helps with the moisture that accumulates afterwards. I already have mold in my bathroom from a previous tenant who lived here years ago (I never knew what mold looked like, as I never had the problem before, until someone who saw it told me that it was). The mold is stillthere, as I don’t know that this product can remove what has already been there, but it has not gotten any worse, thankfully. I am using some natural methods to get rid of it, but it takes time and “elbow grease” especially since it is in the cracks where the caulking is around the top of the bath tub.

I used to keep my window open at night to get some air circulation because during the day there is lots of traffic on the street and I get dirt in and around my tub coming in through my window. I also keep it closed because of smoke that comes in from the cigarettes used by the neighbor next door, as his window is next to mine. The Moso Bag does not work to absorb the smoke from the cigarettes and I have to quickly close the window (if it is supposed to then I don’t know why it doesn’t!). Usually when I keep my window closed the room smells stale, but I don’t have that in the bathroom since I use the Moso Bag.

All in all, it is a great pure and natural product and I highly recommend it! To read more about the Moso Bag click on the link by scrolling down on the right-hand side of this page until the column titled Blogroll.

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored to write this, but I did receive a sample of the product(s). These are strictly my opinions. I only review products that I, myself would use and purchase.

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Company Review: Natural House – Natural Household Cleaning Products

Natural House: Natural Household Cleaning Products – Glassy Probiotic Glass Cleaner In business since 2011

In my continual search for the best and purest products on the market in the natural product industry, I found out about this company in the magazine, Natural Food Merchandiser. I did not see them at Expo West this past March, as there is so much to see and sometimes you miss things. I am glad to have found them through my diligent reading of NFM. I contacted the company to see about getting products for review on my blog. I signed up with the company to be a blog reviewer of their products. That is how I am now doing a review for Glassy Probiotic Glass Cleaner.

I started using Glassy as soon as it came in the mail, as I wanted to see the results/benefits for myself that the company “claims” about this product. First, I tried it on my mirrors. There was no residue afterwards and no streaks once I wiped it off. With other products I have had the streaking problem. The smell was mild and not overbearing, like the toxic smells you find with conventional cleaning products on the market. I don’t ever use any of those because I am environmentally conscious and also because when you spray any product it is taken in to your body through you nose and goes into your lungs. I am very sensitive to smells and also want to protect myself from absorbing any toxicity into my body that I have control over.

I also used Glassy on my tile in the bathroom and kitchen with great results. My tile looks better then it ever has and I will continue to use it on a regular basis. The scum and dirt that built up on the tile in my shower is gone. This glass cleaner is revolutionary to the natural cleaning products industry. No one has ever used probiotics in their products that continue to consume germs on the surface(s)’ even after you are done cleaning. I love the fact that this product can be used on multiple surfaces (glass, tile, marble, finished hardwood, etc.) I have not done so, as yet, but will try it on my tile floors, too.

I look forward to reviewing their other natural cleaning products on my blog. This is how I will let my readers know, through my expertise/knowledge, of the products that are good for the people and for the planet.

Natural House is on Facebook and Twitter and you can follow them there (link on their website).
If you are interested in learning more about this company and their products, there is a link to their website on the right-hand side of this page under the title Blogroll. You can purchase all Natural House’s natural cleaning products, including Glassy, on their website or Amazon.

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored to write this, but I did receive a sample of the product(s). These are strictly my opinions. I only review products that I, myself would use and purchase.

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