Thursday, April 16, 2009


The Natural Dentist, Sierra Designs, Mission Playground, Osprey
April 21, 2009

Words Judith Ecochard

Images from company websites

The cutback on hard copy “Green” magazine issues …is a sign of economic crunching but not indicative of the growing willingness of consumers to embrace all things sustainable.

Physical reads are not printed on recycled paper anyway and feature “eco” along side decidedly non-eco stuff.

--- AND the story angle of REINVENTING ‘nutty crunchy’ organic fashion and grooming products is tired. Good eco materials are ubiquitous with plenty of affordable organic textiles and ingredients (for beauty/grooming items) out there.

In contrast, the active wear/outdoor gear and personal health industry have embraced sustainable ‘green’ business practices, from cradle to cradle, for many years ago.

And in honor of Earth Day---our picks for products that are a ‘given,’ or should be.

PERSONAL CARE: The Natural Dentist
Our dentist (Jennifer Jablow) is one smart woman ---and she uses some Natural Dentist oral health care products. We like the entire collection for our pearly whites cause it gets the job done with clinically proven natural ingredients- and without the scary chemicals that will probably cause humans to naturally (ahem) glow in the dark.

The latest treatments- The Natural Dentist Pre-Brush Whitening Rinse
Flavor - Clean Mint and The Natural Dentist All Natural Antigingivitis Rinse
Flavor - Peppermint Sage- are both effective liquids that we feel okay with swallowing by mistake.

The Pre-Brush Whitening Rinse
 is a fav. It has natural silica from bamboo powder for whitening and stain removal, Peppermint and Sage Oils to help prevent and reduce plaque and gingivitis (the earliest form of gum disease), cleansing ingredients: Grapefruit Seed Extract, Menthol, Xylitol and soothing ingredients: Aloe Vera Gel, and Vegetable Glycerin.

For us, it’s the mint flavor that gets us up. And there’s no bleach or peroxide either.

The Natural Dentist All Natural Antigingivitis Rinse
Flavor - Peppermint Sage is a unique tasting, long lasting breath fresh-ner that is burn free (no alcohol). It has Xylitol, a natural occurring sugar in the mix—that’s effective against the main cavity causing bacteria. Other palatable ingredients include refreshing and soothing Peppermint and Sage Oils to help prevent and reduce plaque and gingivitis (the earliest form of gum disease), and cleansing ingredients: Grapefruit Seed Extract, and Menthol.

And as with all Natural Dentist products there’s no alcohol, artificial sweetners, dyes or preservatives.

PRICE ALERT: Both rinses now available at $6.99 for 16 oz bottle.

SLEEP ON IT: Sierra Designs Sleeping Bags

At the Outdoor Retailer Show in SLC, we got to know the ‘eco’ performance wear apparel of Sierra Designs, a Boulder Colorado based company.

Now with the weather beckoning for nights outside, we’re thrilled that this technically with-it entity manufactures eco gear too---under the auspices of their “Green Effect™ Program”…a years old conscious effort to “lighten our environmental footprint across the board-from our production processes to the way we enjoy lunch at the office.”

Very cool attitude and we hope contagious.

To snooze in Sierra Designs has the three season regular and long versions of the Verde 20, (20 degrees F, -7 degrees C) Verde 40 (40 degrees F/5 degrees C) , and Déjà Vu 5 and Déjà Vu 20 (for women) sleeping bags that uses recycled poly shell material, post-consumer –recycled (like plastic soda bottles) Climashield™ Green insulation and all-natural, fast drying, moisture wicking Cocona ™ (made from coconut shells) blended fabric for the liner.

(MSRP $159-$229)


WEAR HAPPY: Mission Playground:
We scored some tees by this company that we LIVE IN…with edgy graphics, excellent colors and comfy, comfy, comfy!!!

In addition to info and insights from our previous clips on Mission Playground, we’d like to add that each garment includes a sewn in “Earth-Tip” like “Bag, Your It,” or “Plant Your Car-bus, bike, walk or carpool,” OR “Shower Power.”

As quoted in the pr release, President and Founder Mark McMahon states:

“The idea is to use our apparel as a vehicle to spike people’s curiosity. We then hope that this leads to a discussion and awareness about environmental issues. The intended result is hopefully a shift to eco-conscious purchasing and living habits.”


TEN TIPS in all.



Every guy we hike with has an Osprey pack…and we do too, a women’s Areil 65 that conforms to our bods like no other.

Mike Peotenhauer, founder and head designer, and his Colorado based team actively partners with many environmental initiatives that do good things like the APPALACHIAN TRAIL 501 ©3.

New to us is the Resource Series, a collection of active daypacks (Circuit, Cypher, React, Halo, Helix) and couriers (Elroy, Astro, Revo, Float) and shoulder sling bags, (Warp, Tilt, Veer, Flip), that’s almost entirely built from recycled materials.

A prominent material is the recycled PET fabric made from ground water and soda bottles. Recycled buckles (from reground buckle straps), 100% recycled-fabric zipper pulls, recycled mesh pockets, and recycled binding tape…and high percentages of other recycled components.

FACTOID: Three arrows circling a green circle contain the –percentage number or recycled materials’ content.

PRICES: $49-$99

LOVE: Color options like Redwood, Rainforest, Glacier, Panda, Cheetah, Wild Salmon …the disappearing things we want to preserve.