Sparkle & Smile

Blog for Cleaner and Healthier Homes.

Healthy Home

An Eco-Friendly Black Friday

November 25, 2011

Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year, takes place the day after Thanksgiving.  And all that shopping could have quite the eco-impact. Here are some green shopping tips that you can use to keep your eco-friendly style while looking for those bargains: 

Whether you are shopping for clothing, electronics, or appliances, look for green options. Read up on what certifications and credentials you should look for to minimize your environmental impact while maximizing your savings.

Look for products made from organic materials, which require fewer toxic chemicals to create.  Opt for alternative fibers, such as hemp, bamboo, sea grass, and jute, which grow rapidly and require little, if any, chemical additives or petrochemicals for production.  Choose sustainably sourced materials such as FSC-certified wood.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), each year, 30 billion plastic and 10 billion paper shopping bags are used in the United States, requiring about 14 million trees and 12 million barrels of oil to produce.  Avoid taking a single disposable bag while you are out shopping by bringing your own bags from home. 

No matter what you buy, make sure to go with the option that uses the least amount of packaging, or those packaged in eco-friendly materials, such as recycled paper or plastic. You will reduce the amount of landfill waste created and cut back on the amount of new materials, chemicals, and energy required for packaging.

According to Philadelphia’s Clean Air Council, the average consumer product is shipped 1,500 miles in a diesel truck before coming to rest on a store shelf. Diesel exhaust contains over 450 chemicals, 40 of them believed to be toxic to humans and detrimental to the environment.  Buying locally produced products reduces diesel exhaust and supports small businesses and your local economy.

The less you have to drive on Black Friday, the better for the environment.  Americans use more than 100 billion gallons of gasoline each year, and every gallon of gasoline burned releases 20 pounds of carbon dioxide.  Save gas and money and reduce your carbon footprint by not driving store-to-store.  If walking or biking to your shopping destination is not an option, take the bus. 

The best way to avoid the transportation-related effects of a busy shopping day is to avoid transportation at all. Shop online!  Just be wary of how far the items you purchase will need to be shipped and what shipping method is employed.

Maid Brigade House Cleaning Services cares about our environment and the health of you and your family.  For more information on healthy green living and green cleaning, please log on to and  Watch our video on achieving work/life balance at  To learn more about the hidden allergy and asthma triggers in your home, log on to

For more information on cleaning products and breast cancer, please watch our video at  To find out ways to protect your family’s health against breast cancer, please log on to


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