Sparkle & Smile

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Healthy Home

Start the New School Year by Going Green!

It is back to school time and the stores are full of school supplies.  The National Retail Federation (NRF) predicts a record $55.12 billion will be spent on merchandise for school this year. 

This year, why not take a different approach and purchase green school supplies?  They are not only good for the environment, but also for your children too. 

Avoid items made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC).  A report from Tufts University states that vinyl chloride, the building block of resin, has been classified as a human carcinogen. 

Several studies have documented links between working in vinyl chloride production facilities and the increased likelihood of developing diseases including angiosarcoma of the liver and other non-cancer disorders. 

Additives such as stabilizers, plasticizers, and fillers mixed in with PVC can leach out of a product during its useful life posing public health hazards, including the development of reproductive problems in children.

Another plastic, called polyester, is common in backpacks and lunchboxes.  Look for backpacks and lunchboxes made of natural fiber instead of hemp or canvas.  If your child requires a backpack made of synthetic material, opt for polyester or nylon over PVC.

Water bottles should be BPA-free.  BPA is an endocrine disruptor, which can mimic the body’s own hormones and may lead to negative health effects especially when exposure occurs in early development.  Many states have banned BPA in infant formula containers, baby bottles, and sippy cups.  If possible choose stainless steel water bottles. 

In addition to to avoiding poisonous plastics, choose tree friendly products.  Find pencils made from FSC certified forests and paper with a high recycled content.

If last year’s items are still in usable condition why not use them and save money?  Try thrift stores, yard sales and Freecycle for some second hand backpacks and lunchboxes.

Maid Brigade House Cleaning Services cares about our environment and 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

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