10 Eco Summer Essentials

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I can hardly believe it’s the end of August already. The summer heat is still going strong here in San Diego and before the transition to Autumn begins I’m making sure to soak up all its goodness. It’s the perfect time of year to spend lots of time outside. For me a big part of living an eco lifestyle is being outside having great experiences in nature and using healthy, non-toxic products along the way. Below is a my list of Summertime essentials not to be missed.

  1. Read a great fiction book: During the year I read mostly non fiction books, magazines and blogs, I think it’s from years of being a student. During the summer I find that it is great to dive into a good fiction book. I just finished one so if you have any good fiction book recommendations please let me know. I’m not ready to go back to the world of non-fiction just yet!
  2. Sun hat: One that you love and will wear. I have super sensitive skin and finding a mineral based non-toxic face sunscreen has been a really big challenge so I oped for rocking the big floppy sun hat instead most of the time and love it. If I know my hats not coming off, aka I won’t be jumping into a pool, ocean or lake, I won’t put sunscreen on my face and my face thanks me.
  3. Mineral sunscreen: This summer I’ve been using this by Kiss My Face (don’t you just love that brand name?) Finding a good mineral sunscreen can be hard because they can leave a white film or be hard to rub in but this one has been great. I haven’t gotten burnt once this summer (knock on wood) thanks to this stuff and it does great if you are planning on being in and out of the water.
  4. Eco lip balm with SPF: During the summer I put away all other lip balms and only use my ones that have SPF in them; because even if you’re not planning to be at the beach all day you are still going to be outside. The sun is obviously more intense in the summer and the weather is drier so give eos or Kiss My Face a try. I’ve tried a lot and these don’t feel waxy; they smell great and keep your lips looking beautiful.DSC04386
  5. Lotion with lavender for sunburns: If you do get sunburned or you have just been in the sun all day and your skin is feeling like it needs some extra love, one of my favorite tricks is to use a very mild shea butter based lotion (this is my favorite lotion I use it everyday) and add 2 or 3 drops of lavender essential oil to the lotion before rubbing into your skin. It feels so calming and soothing.
  6. Day spent playing in the waves: I realize that those of you who don’t live near the beach this one will be more of a challenge, but go to the beach or body of water with the intention to let loose and play. As adults we don’t do nearly enough of that. So dive into a pool, lake, or the ocean, it doesn’t matter and let go of the “go, go, go” and the “to do” lists and just swim around and have fun!
  7. At least one camping trip: This has been an absolute must for me for many years now.  I’m happy to say we have gone on more than one trip so far and we are headed back out over the Labor day weekend. Summer and camping go hand in hand for me.  Load up the car and spend a weekend in the mountains, hiking, hanging out around the fire and grilling up yummy dinners.IMG_9684
  8. Reusable water bottle: Hydration is key in the summer. With the heat and sweating more we all get more thirsty. You don’t want to be somewhere with no water and end up having to buy water, so get your reusable water bottle out. Keep it on you at all times so you can refill it and reduce your waste.
  9. Eat lots of organic berries: They are delicious and in season so eat em up! Enough said.
  10. Lay out on a warm night and look up at the stars: I love to do this. It makes me feel incredibly small and expansive all at the same time. After some time of gazing has passed I find it fun sometimes to take out my phone and play around with the Google Sky Map app to see the names of stars, planets and constellations I’m looking at!

I hope you have been having a wonderful summer. What eco products or experiences are must’s on your summer time list? I’d love to know!

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11 thoughts on “10 Eco Summer Essentials

  1. Alyson, I’ve really been enjoying your blog. You’ve always had such a nurturing, enthusiastic spirit – you’re a very special gal!

    I just got sunburned a couple of days ago so I may try this mineral sunscreen next time, and was looking at the linked shea butter lotion, which I think I’ve seen at Whole Foods. I noticed the last ingredient is red palm oil, so I’m trying to dig deeper to find out if it’s conflict free. So far all I’ve found is that Nutiva has a red palm oil for cooking that’s responsibly sourced, but the palm oil plantations situation (rapid deforestation of endangered oranguntan habitat/rainforest) is concerning. There are hundreds of varieties on the wording of this ingredient and it’s in pretty much all bath products, so it might be one of those damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don’t things. There is an Etsy shop, Unearth Malee, that makes soaps sans palm oil (she also has a brick-and-mortar shop in Claremont), but I’m not sure about lotion yet, and have sensitive/allergy-prone skin so am researching…If you have any further info on that, could you share it?

    I know alternate choices often mean picking your battles. Your posts definitely encourage me to keep my choices considerate and positive. Thank you!

    1. Angela thank you for your kind words, it makes me so happy to hear you are enjoying my little corner on the internet :D Sorry to hear you got sunburned give that sunscreen a try and let me know what you think.

      I totally know what you mean about picking your battles. Sometimes it feels like once you open your eyes and try to make a conscious decision you can feel damned if you do and damned if you don’t but I think staying focused on what is most important to you (women’s/workers rights, non-GMO’s, organic, pollution prevention, animal testing…) and use this as your base line to make your buying decisions. That way you don’t start feeling guilty or pressured to find the perfect product because it gets to hard and takes the joy out of shopping smart and you should feel good making your buying decisions because they can make a BIG difference.

    1. Yay! I love that you kept digging until you found your answer and no need for sorry’s I love talking about this stuff ;) I think you’re going to love this lotion. I buy mine at Sprouts so it should be pretty easy to find. Let me know what you think. Hope you’re doing well!

  2. Hi Alyson! I’m in Ireland so I’m enjoying the cool, misty overcast days. Walks in the Killarney National Park with spontaneous showers. It has been hot as well in Las Vegas, so I’m hoping when I return, it will have cooled off. I’m visiting old friends, making new ones and loving the relaxing Irish way. Your blog is wonderful~ I have been keeping a Travel Journal, if you’d like to have a look. http://www.celticcelebration.blogspot.com.
    Love to you, Barbara

    1. Hi Barbara, you are always having so much fun…I love it! Thanks for sharing you blog about your adventure, it looks like a blast!

    1. Elisa you know where one of the best places to do star gazing is right? ;) Camping! I hope this inspired you to get back out there and enjoy sleeping out in nature and drinking up the stars! xox

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