Happy Earth Day To Ya!

Green is the color of the month, and today is the ultimate day to express your environmental concerns. It’s Earth Day! Lots of beauty and fashion retailers understand that for some, being green is already a way of life. For others, a little encouragement by way of sales, giveaways, and discounts, goes a long way. So here are some of the best online offers for today, April 22 — all intended to encourage you to reuse, reduce, and recycle.

One of the most obvious, easy ways to be environmentally friendly starts with shopping. Americans throw out 100 billion plastic bags each year, and the detritus of those unrecycled bags is killing the planet. Some stores are doing away with them altogether — plastic is no longer an option at Whole Foods, and it’s a trend many gourmet grocery stores have adopted. Using a sturdy cloth bag is a practically effortless, often quite stylish way to reduce waste.

You can score chic bags galore today, at places like Kiehl’s. The first 50 patrons to return empty Kiehl’s bottles to any one of their free-standing stores for recycling will receive a Kiehl’s reusable canvas tote bag today — one per customer.

Macy’s also has some chic bags for sale for $3.95, and in all Florida and Puerto Rico stores, they’re having a special charity-shopping event on Saturday, April 26th and Sunday, April 27th. By making a $5 donation at Macy’s stores or online at www.nationalparks.org, customers receive a One Good Turn savings pass — a two-day in-store and online shopping pass — for 20 percent off most merchandise, and 10 percent off most home items. So you know where I’ll be this weekend — workin’ the plus size section with my discount card.

If you’re looking for a variety of natural and organic beauty products, check out Beautorium.com, a new site that features truly natural, truly organic, good-for-your-skin beauty all in one online store. For every purchase over $75, Beautorium will include a free “I Am a Natural Bag” fair-trade burlap bag.

By far the nicest charity-supporting reusable shopping bag I’ve seen is by Star 50 Bags, a line of collectible handbags that are designed to celebrate each state of the union. Is the Louisiana Market Sac not to die for? It’s super sturdy, and works just as well at the grocery store as it does on the beach. It’s pricey — $115 — but 5% of all sales benefit Brad Pitt’s Make It Right foundation, which is assiduously working to rebuild New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward, improving the living conditions there with environmentally friendly architecture. Click here to make a direct donation. I’ve got a special Star 50 discount for Afrobella readers!! Use the code Star50bella on your bag purchase, and you can get 50% off your purchase. This will only last for one week — until Sunday May 4 at 5 p.m, so click here for the Louisiana Market Sac!

There are some other initiatives and offers (besides bags) happening today —

Total Beauty.com is featuring a totally green sweepstakes, and you could possibly win a 2008 Saturn Vue hybrid car, filled with beauty products from Origins. Origins is all about Earth Day giveaways, they’re also offering a free Peace of Mind® On-the-spot-relief sample, plus free standard Shipping with any order while supplies last, today only. Clicky click!

It’s Earth Month at Ojon (expect a big fabulous review of their products soon!), and the hair product line so many bellas adore is donating 10 percent of all online sales through www.ojon.com during the month of April to MOPAWI. What’s Mopawi, you ask? TheFindGreen, a shopping search engine that exclusively features products that employ eco-friendly practices or materials. Today they launch a week-long series of blogs on helpful “green-living” tips for consumers. I can’t find a direct link just yet… but celebrity and fashion journalist Merle Ginsberg will be offering info about planning an eco-friendly wedding, and the latest celebrity charity causes.

Maybe for you, commitment to the environment goes deeper than shopping, reading about charities online, or toting a chic grocery bag to the store. Maybe you work green, play green, eat green and live green. If your ideas are truly unique, you can submit a short film or photo essay to the Sundance Channel’s original series “Big Ideas for a Small Planet.” The winner will be awarded a cash prize of $10,000 (!!) to help make their “Big Idea” a reality. The contest runs until May 20. Click here to learn more.

Treehugger has an exhaustive and magnificent Earth Day guide, loaded with information and advice.

Whew! Those are the coolest Earth Day offers I’ve heard about so far, bellas. Do any of you know of anything else happening today, or for the rest of April? Let me know — this is an easy way to support environmental initiatives and charities. But I’m looking for suggestions beyond just shopping, so please share any of your environmentally friendly ideas and tips with me — this week I’ll be writing about other ways to save the planet right from the comfort of your own home.

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Comments

  1. Mrs. Mckinzie says:

    I love my cloth bags from Whole Foods.

  2. Happy Earth Day to you too, Bella! :) I have pledged to start practicing more eco-friendly habits. A little at a time…makes a big difference. I have a grocery bag…my problem is that I forget to put it back in my car. Then I’m stuck at the store without it! That happens to me all the time at Ikea, and you know they’re charging now for bags, in hopes to stop distributing them.

    In researching for my Earth Day posts on green travel and ecotourism, I vow to no longer take those cute little lotions and soaps at the hotel. I never thought about how much plastic and paper is wasted replenishing those! I end up never using them again anyway!

  3. Afrobella, happy earth day to you too and thanks for letting us know about all of these great offers. I try to eat natural and use organic products whenever I can, and I will be checking this out! LOVE tha Star50 bag!!!

  4. Happy B-Day to Mother Earth… we must start to respect her or she will not produce for us like she has for so long. I know some of these changes in the environment of years & years away. But I like to think of it as Making this a better planet and world for my son and future children and their children as well. So Do it for the babies!

  5. HeavenLeiBlu says:

    Oh goodness I am GAGGING! 50% OFF? Thanks, Afrobella!

  6. The PTA at my daughter’s school has one of those huge paper bins that are the size of those big green industrial garbage bins. Anyway, it encourages recycling because not only do we recycle every scrap piece of paper or cardboard, but it also benefits the school because they get paid for the paper, not a lot, but every little bit counts, and it helps motivate people to recycle paper, which I understand is the largest waste product Americans produce.

  7. Happy Earth Day. Great post!

  8. walking back, too says:

    Even though I ordinarily take public transportation, I walked to work today (5.1 miles!)in honor of Earth Day. It has really felt great to get around under my own power all day and is a good reminder that it’s possible to make constant changes to further reduce the strain I put on the earth.

  9. dettygirl says:

    One way I have made a change is through cleaning products. I use mrs.meyers for cleaning my kitchen, bathroom, etc..I get mine from drugstore.com. I am also thinking about a side hustle of making my OWN solutions and selling them in pretty glass bottles to encourage others.

  10. good post! one thing i want to point out is that you don’t need to buy anything to be eco-friendly. it sometimes doesn’t even take that much effort. one way to be environmentally sound is to reduce our consumption or to reduce (though, i’m not knocking cute tote bags).

    reusing the plastic bags we already have around the house is one way to help out. and i’m sure we all have at least one tote somewhere that we have gotten for free at some swag event.

    i know a lot of pizzerias in nyc that don’t have bins to recycle the glass snapple bottles they sell. i’ve been known to just take an empty home with me since i recycle at home.

    love the blog, keep it up!

  11. Naturally DevaSTing says:

    Hey Bella,

    My sorority sister has started a blog tracking her efforts to live greener. She is an amazing woman, naturally beautiful, smart, ambitious and politically active. Anyhoo, she recently wrote a couple of tips of things that we can do to live greener and healthier lifestyle for ourselves and our dear planet. I’m just going to post a few of the tips, but you can check out more of them on her blog http://goinggreenwithirene.blogspot.com/:

    A Mug of Your Own Every year Americans throw away 25 billion polystyrene cups and 25 billion individual water bottles, most of which end up in landfills. Instead buy a reusable to-go mug and a bottle that you can refill with filtered tap water. Bring your own (to a coffee shop, a meeting), and you cut down on Styrofoam.

    Want a Lick? A cone beats a cup. Why? “You’re eating your silverware instead of using plastic,” says Matthew Modine, a passionate promoter of earth-friendly policies. “It’s all about consuming less, using fewer of the resources needed to make products and packaging.”

    Stop Junk Mail Every year 100 million trees are chopped down for junk mail sent to American homes. Contact the direct marketing association at dmachoice.org/mps to remove your name from mailing lists of their members

    De-Lint the Dryer Lint builds up after every dryer cycle, reducing the machine’s efficiency. Removing it does a lot to decrease its usually massive energy use.

  12. Does anyone here own the Market Sac? I just got a honky ginormous 17″ laptop and it’s tough to find a bag for it that it feminine but funky. This tote plus a neoprene sleeve MIGHT be the ticket (and what a great cause!), but I wonder how strong it is as it needs to carry 10lbs. Any info appreciated!

  13. I do, heyhey, and it’s quite a sturdy bag. It’s definitely funky and elegant, and I crammed it insanely full of heavy magazines, two liter softdrink bottles, beach towels, and suntan stuff for all my trips to the beach at the Keys. The fabric is thick and the leather straps are strong. I’d recommend. Plus, seriously — 50% is awesome. I’m so glad Star50 is offering that to you guys. This bag is bomb.

  14. Great post and very comprehensive. One of my contributions to Mother Earth is riding public transportation. I’ve ridden for about 30+ years and continue to do so. People think of cities as an environmental pblm and some are, but they also help cut down on the # of cars on the road.

    I recycle at work as well as at home. I use paper bags at the market and have a bag that I will now start to carry when I shop. I still use plastic for my garbage. I’m wondering about a solution for that one. I’ll check out some of the sites listed.

    I also have become conscious of unplugging appliances that aren’t being used. I’m trying to develop this habit. Little things do make a difference. :-)

    Thanks as always Afrobella!

  15. Happy earth day …everybody go green

  16. ETA: honkING, not honky.

    D’oh. Thank you for the feedback, bella. :-)

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