Finding organic products and a trusted organic store can be a HUGE benefit to you as you work on your healthy house journey. I know for me personally, once I had the revelation that I could find a trusted organic store that carried high quality organic products, I could cut out A LOT of work on my end.
Let’s be honest, researching products and hunting down reputable brands and stores can be incredibly draining. It’s time consuming and oftentimes I felt like it ended in frustration. This is exactly why I love sharing what I find with you. If there’s one way I know I can make your life easier, it’s taking the research out of finding organic products and organic stores.
I think most of us on this journey to creating a healthier home have the realization that we probably can’t trust just anything we pick up at Target anymore. It’s a defeating realization and can leave you feeling very overwhelmed. I’ve been at that overwhelming place many times in my journey as it came up with different areas of our home and our family’s health.
But the great news is that once I stepped back from the situation, I realized that not only could I make this whole process easier on myself, but I could also streamline my research. I realized that by having a starting spot for my product research, whether it be a trusted blog or a search filter, I could at least weed out a LOT of products from the get-go.
From a narrowed in starting spot, I can really hone in on a few products that deserve more of my time and research. This approach has cut down on so much research and time for me, that I thought it would be helpful to give you a look into how you can quickly find organic products and an organic store for yourself.
WHY A HEALTHY HOME IS IMPORTANT
Support Your Immune System: In terms of body burden, our bodies are like a cup. Chemicals and substances fill up the cup, and overtime, the cup can overflow. The overflow means the cup is filled to the brim with these substances and chemicals and is spilling over into other areas. The other areas that become affected are seen through a variety of symptoms such as allergies, fatigue, skin conditions, asthma, general pain and brain fog.
While all of these symptoms are troublesome, a lot of them can be linked back down to a suppressed immune process. This study about a variety of toxins and chemicals is fascinating and extremely in depth regarding the toxicity of chemicals and how they suppress the immune system.
The more substances, the harder the immune system has to work. If your body is working overtime to protect you from things in our everyday products, it’s never getting a break and can become suppressed and weak over time.
Healthy Hormone Production: Toxins like parabens, phthalates, fire retardants, bisphenols and perfluorinated chemicals are BIG contributors to hormone disruption. Endocrine disrupting hormones have obvious effects on areas like the reproductive system, thyroid and our sleep function. But there’s also a trickle down effect that takes place as our systems begin to function improperly.
Many of the studies conducted about endocrine disruptors are performed in children. These studies link endocrine disruptors to ADHD, obesity, diabetes and issues with puberty development. (STUDY) You can read more about your home and hormone disruption in this blog post.
A Healthy Space for Kids: Kids and babies are more susceptible to toxins in our home for a number of reasons. First and foremost, pound for pound, they are smaller than adults. The exposure to a particular toxin may be insignificant for us as adults, but the same exposure to a child may be far more serious as proportionally, it is a larger exposure for them.
Second, children are not miniature adults, and so a toxin can impact their development as they grow into adults. This means while an exposure to us as an adult may have short term side effects, to a child, it can affect them well into adulthood.
Children are also spending more time on the floor and more time with objects and hands in their mouths. This means that they will ingest more toxins than we do as adults — especially toxins that are found in dust and that come in on shoes.
Indoor Air Quality: We spend about 90% of our day breathing indoor air. And what we know about indoor air is that it is much more polluted and unhealthy than even outdoor air. Many of the off-gassing toxins we bring into our home stay trapped inside, with no place to escape. Our homes have become so energy efficient that we no longer get fresh air inside as frequently as we should. When we start to control and limit the toxins we bring inside, we can start to reduce our toxin exposure drastically as the toxins eventually leave through vents and windows.
BEING A CONSCIOUS CONSUMER
While I think that you can really do yourself a HUGE favor by purchasing from healthier sources, it doesn’t mean you need to throw out half your products and home goods to do that. Instead, I think that it means you make a VERY intentional plan for purchasing. This is the basis of my entire post this week – plan ahead and you’ll make better choices. I promise.
I like to do my research long before I buy, because, let’s face it, sometimes research can take a LONG while. I like to base all my research on facts and on published studies. If I do happen to find advice from a personal blog, I then go on to research the practice myself in hopes of finding more factual evidence.
This also goes for products. I like to know ingredients in my cleaning products, personal care and makeup products. I also look for companies who embrace transparency in disclosing ingredients used in their products. This to me is a great sign of a relationship I can have with that company. Nobody wants to have a relationship with someone who keeps secrets. The same is true for my home products, beauty products and food.
BUT, that being said, it’s still my job as the consumer to find these companies and products. Unfortunately we don’t live in a time where we can assume all our products are safe and healthy. This can be a great opportunity, though, to find and support trustworthy companies and make at least a small difference.
HOW TO FIND ORGANIC STORE OPTIONS AND ORGANIC PRODUCTS FOR YOUR HOME:
Search Filters: Places like Wayfair, Target, Lowes and Home Depot now have search functions filters that help you find eco-friendly products and products made of organic materials. These filters are a great way to start finding a solid product. You can find GreenGuard Certified products this way as well as products that are free from specific toxins.
Back to the Basics: The more basic and more simple a product is, the fewer ingredients and materials it has. THIS is the key, I think. This has been especially true of furniture for our home. If I can find something that is all natural hardwood, with no stain and no plastic, I’m sold. With cleaning it means finding organic products with small ingredient lists of items I KNOW.
Handmade: Finding Fair Trade and handmade is another avenue I have explored many times. You can find handmade and fair trade on Etsy, or you can search online. I also love supporting local companies and artisans that create organic products and home items in my own community. We’ve loved getting furniture, art and décor this way.
Green America Directory: The Green America Directory is a great place to go when you’re looking for an entire brand that is healthier and uses green practices. The directory focuses on everything from organic products and home goods to food and fair trade. Again, it’s a great place to get started and then narrow down your search with more specific research.
Trusted Amazon Alternatives: A company that is committed to providing you with organic products and natural products is a great resource. Some of my favorite stores that I trust with a lot of our home and food products are:
Expert Advice: While I’m a pretty trustworthy person right off the bat, I really don’t trust just anyone for advice on organic products they’ve used and tested. There are just a few trustworthy ladies that I refer to when I’m on the hunt for something specific.
OTHER WAYS TO CREATE A HEALTHY HOME IN THE MEANTIME
If you’re trying to find some ways to start changing your house IMMEDIATELY, these ideas will give you some great control over your space without spending a dime. You can start today by reducing toxins that come into your home and limiting the chemicals you bring inside. The second part of creating a healthy home is getting rid of toxins that you’ve allowed into your home.
Dust: I’ve talked a lot lately about how dust is filled with toxins, pesticides and bacteria. Our kids are actually ingesting dust and on top of all this our dust is transferring onto our food where we’re ingesting it as well. Take some time to make a plan to remove dust around your home. This can include vacuuming carpets, using a wet mop on hard surface floors and using a damp rag to wipe down surfaces. This post has some additional ideas and spots you don’t want to miss.
Take Off Shoes: Shoes track in more than we give them credit for. Think of all the places you may have walked outside today. Especially if you have small kids who spend a lot of time on the floor, you definitely don’t want toxic pesticide residue, chemical toxins and bacteria being transferred onto your carpet. Make it a habit to leave shoes in a designated place outside your main living spaces to keep your spaces as free from toxins as possible. This post about creating a functional entryway is loaded with ideas to create easy ways to remember to leave shoes at the door.
Open Windows: Natural ventilation is one of the BEST ways you can reduce toxins at home. And the best thing is, it doesn’t cost you a darn thing. By getting windows open on a daily basis, you can ensure that you’re home is exchanging it’s indoor air with fresh outdoor air on a regular basis. The outdoor air will dilute the toxins inside your home while allowing the toxic air to leave at the same time. You can also improve air circulation while windows are open by using vented fans, ceiling fans or your whole house fan.
Get Rid of Toxic Products: Getting rid of products you don’t use or need can be a great way to reduce toxins inside your home. You may not even need to go out and buy replacements right away. I know that I’ve learned to consolidate my products and it has been SUCH a great change for our home. For example, I only purchase one multipurpose cleaner concentrate and it does pretty much all the cleaning jobs in our home.
With these steps along with finding healthier ways to shop and buy organic products at organic stores, you can drastically improve your space.