April 2015 - Our Daily Green

Monday, April 13, 2015

Bee Protective campaign with Vapour Tempt lipstick

Vapour Organic Beauty products

A few years ago, Our Daily Green reviewed lip glosses from Vapour Organic Beauty and discussed the importance of choosing cosmetics carefully. Not only does Vapour offer organic beauty products that are endorsed by The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, but they also utilize wind power in their production, use recycled packaging of both aluminium and paper, and minimize waste.

Vapour has CHAMPION safety status from the Environmental Working Group, an American environmental organization that specializes in research and advocacy in the areas of toxic chemicals, agricultural subsidies, public lands, and corporate accountability. 

We love what Vapour stands for and their commitment to responsible business practices. During the month of April, Vapour will be donating 10% of the proceeds from their limited edition TEMPT Siren Lipstick to the Bee Protective Campaign from Beyond Pesticides non-profit environmental activist organization. The Bee Protective Campaign aims to protect nature's pollinators. Credo Beauty will be matching the brand’s 10% donation for a total of 20% to BEE Protective Campaign during the month of April. 
Beyond PesticidesOur Daily Green is proud to be affiliated with Vapour cosmetics and their mission.  We received a tube of this neutral lipstick as a complimentary token of their appreciation. It's a suitable subtle color that lasts all day. All opinions stated here are purely my own. If you purchase Vapour's Tempt Lipstick this month, they will donate 10% to the Bee Protective Campaign. It's nice to "bee" beautiful and make a difference at the same time. 

Rain Africa: created for living (product review & giveaway)

Spa store

In December of 2013, my daughters and I took a holiday trip to New York City. Being the mid-western small town family that we are, the crowds were completely overwhelming. As we tried to navigate our way through the sardine-packed Rockefeller Center to see the tree, we found ourselves ducking into a store just to escape the throng of the crowd.

created for livingLittle did we know we were about to be transported to a calm, serene place from another continent. Africa, to be specific. The spa-like store was exactly what we needed that afternoon and spent time choosing beautiful products to take back to our hotel room and unwind, pampering each other with pedicures. While chatting with the store employees, we learned that Rain Africa products are hand crafted using organically grown ingredients with African origins. They promise:
  • no parabens
  • no petroleum jelly
  • no mineral oil
  • no liquid paraffin
  • no petrochemicals
  • no animal testing
  • no child labor
In addition to the sustainability of the ingredients, Rain Africa provides jobs, skills and hope to people living in abject poverty, particularly women and the disabled. With a low tech production cycle, Rain products and packaging are hand-made by trained artists. The wild ingredients are hand-harvested by Southern African women who have extremely limited economic opportunities. Rain is the only Southern African beauty and body product company which is accredited by both Fair Trade in Africa and the international Fair Trade body in Europe.

I was so impressed by not just the products, but also the mission of the company that I subscribed to their newsletter upon returning home to follow along with their success. A few weeks ago, I contacted the company to see if they ever worked with bloggers. To my delight, Rain sent me a lovely assortment of products to test and review and agreed to do a Mother's Day giveaway, as well as offer my readers a discount on any purchases.

Rain sent three products to pamper myself from head to toe and everything in between

Hair Mud Mask

Hair Mud Mask

Heel Balm

Heel Balm

For the head, I have a mineral rich hair mud mask from Biologie that contains marula oil. Marula oil is loaded with antioxidants and was recently featured by a leading women's magazine for its healing and restorative properties. This hair mask made my hair feel silky and strong. It has a wonderful fresh scent.

After I rinsed the mask from my hair, I lathered up with the lovely handmade artisan soap. I love bar soaps because they last so much longer than liquid soaps, and have minimal impact on the environment because they don't need specially manufactured plastic containers. Also, another benefit of bar soap is that I'm not paying for water (which is the primary ingredient in liquid soaps).

Omega Rich Soap

After the shower, I treated myself to a foot treatment with the luxurious Bee Essential heel balm that is just perfect for my dry, cracked winter-ized feet. The heel balm contains healing oils including olive, avocado, beeswax, shea, lanolin, argan, cape chestnut, rosemary leaf oil, peppermint oil, and calendula oil. I've been massaging it into my feet nightly since receiving it and they are just about ready for sandles.

I loved knowing that as I was pampering myself, I was also helping build an economy and care for the planet. Rain Africa is one of those companies that takes social and environmental responsibility very seriously and Our Daily Green is proud to promote their products.

If you're looking to spoil your mother or yourself while helping other mothers in a land far away, it's as simple as entering our giveaway. Rain Africa will be shipping a gift set of three olive oil artisan soaps packaged in a paper mache bowl and finished off with a ribbon, a $28 value.

Win This!

To qualify for the entry, follow these instructions:

1. Like Rain Africa on Facebook
2. Follow Rain Africa on Twitter
3. Share this blog post on the social media outlet of your choice and leave a comment below this post as your entry.

All steps will be verified.

One entry per person, US residents only. Giveaway closes at midnight EST April 30th. Winner has 24 hours to send shipping information to freshgreenkim@hotmail.com or another winner will be chosen. 

Rain Africa is also offering a 20% Mother's day discount code for Our Daily Green readers

It is available April 15-May 1 for all online orders. 

Enter GREENMOM20 at the checkout. 

Our Daily Green received complimentary products to conduct our review. 
We are absolutely thrilled to promote the mission of this elegant and thoughtful company and encourage our readers to do the same. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Aquaponics and how it can help save water and our food supply

As news of the California drought spreads, our national food supply will be effected. Residential water bans sound like a solution, in fact, in California, urban areas only use ~10% of water while 80% of water in CA is used for agriculture. In other words, the real difference will be made when we think about how we grow our food if we're serious about water conservation and more efficient food production. This is an education problem. We are so disconnected from nature and our food.

Aquaponics is a way to grow food, raise fish and filter water in almost any weather as long as there is light. It also saves 90% or more of the water used, eliminate the 1 billion pounds of pesticides and fertilizers yet double their productivity in half the amount of space. It’s where fish is raised in the same body of water as vegetables. Unlike hydroponics, the fish produce fertilizer for the plants and the plants act as filters for the fish to create a recycling ecosystem. It’s simple, the Mayans and Chinese have been using aquaponics for thousands of years but why has aquaponics disappeared especially when we need it most? We surveyed 500 people in San Diego and UCSD including professors and students. Unfortunately, only 39 knew what aquaponics is and out of the 39, only 6 could explain the benefits of aquaponics.

Aqua Design Innovations’s goal is to bring aquaponics back to as many people as possible. Our first product, the EcoQube, is a desktop ecosystem using mint and basil to filter aquarium water. It will turn any body of water into a sustainable hydroponics system and any aquaculture system into a recycling aquaponics system producing both protein and vegetation. Packaging aquaponics in the form of an aquarium automatically makes it incredibly accessible to diverse markets and gives this revolutionary concept incredible reach.

Current aquarium filters use sponges and activated carbon to filter aquarium water. Activated carbon requires user to replace it every 2 weeks costing up to $200 in changing filtration material every year. Most aquarium keepers do not do this resulting in over 80% of ornamental fish to die within first year of purchase. The aquaponics filter is a filter that uses modern technology like Ultra Violet LED sterilization, NASA inspired plant growth medium and key patent pending mechanical features to optimize for plant and root growth. The faster the plants grow and the more mature the filter is, the better the filtration becomes. Plants do not need to be replaced for at least one year leading to user success.

EcoQube is a concept demonstration of aquaponics, a better way of growing food. Packaging aquaponics in the form of a beautiful aquarium automatically makes it incredibly accessible to diverse markets and gives this revolutionary concept incredible reach. It's a great way to study the potential at home, but the hope is that this will revolutionize how we think about growing food on a much larger scale.

ADI has made the EcoQube extremely attractive and is a perfect decoration for any office or home.

The EcoQube C is available for $49 TODAY! (regular price is $79!)

Thank you to ADI for sharing this information with Our Daily Green. We receive no compensation other than the joy of knowing we're encouraging a new way to think about farming. 


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