By Jane Misra. I started my path on a “greener” lifestyle back when I was 18 and started working in a health food store. At that time, I was very frustrated because making good choices that felt right to me also felt very out of reach financially. In fact it was a little over a decade later that I felt I had the financial wherewithal to make all of the conversions in the health and beauty area of my consumer purchases. After many attempts, I finally found products in the natural and/organic sector to replace the products I had been previously using. I found shampoo, deodorant and cosmetics to be the hardest. After finding satisfactory replacements, I was ready to branch out into greener choices in my home as well. One of the first things I changed in my house was cleaning products and paper products. Both switches were made by trial and error and being persistent until I found a satisfactory replacement. I think toilet paper was one of the hardest to not only replace, but also sell the rest of the household on. I was able to finally find a brand of toilet paper that worked for my family and my desire to be environmentally responsible. Then recently, several years after I made the switch the worst thing happened. The manufacturer changed the product formula to the point it was no longer acceptable quality wise and I felt compelled to make a change. Oh how I dreaded finding myself in this position again because I just felt like there were so few viable options. I didn’t want to settle on quality, nor was I willing to pay exorbitant prices just to say I used toilet paper made from recycled paper. Luckily this occurred since I have been working for Marla Esser Cloos. How lucky am I to have such a plethora of knowledge within my access? It was such a relief to know I could just ask Marla and she would be able to give me at least some suggestions as to how to proceed. What I was not expecting was her to give me a completely new perspective on making environmentally responsible purchasing decisions!
What Marla shared with me was eye opening on several levels. She explained to me that not only did the end product matter but how important it is that the company practices, policies, and manufacturing procedures are and how they equally play a role in what makes a product that is an environmentally responsible purchase. This was truly an angle I had never really considered before. She explained to me that certain companies may not offer toilet paper made from 100 recycled paper but they may be highly committed to sustainable forestry which in turn may produce a more environmentally responsible footprint than using a product made of recycled paper. I found this very fascinating. After doing some further reading that Marla had pointed me to I was able to make a confident decision about which toilet paper was going to be my replacement. The bonus of this whole experience was also eliminating any residual question in my mind if my choice in facial tissue was in alignment with my desire to make environmentally responsible purchases choices.
I share this with you to not to tell you my trials and tribulations with toilet paper but to remind you of two things: the transition to being an environmentally responsible consumer is a dynamic multi-faceted process that is absolutely comprised of each and every one of us making consistent conscious choices on a daily basis with the knowledge that collectively each one of these actions combined will over time make a much larger impact and that I have encouraged Marla not to keep all of this knowledge to herself any longer. As a result we will be rolling out a new feature called “Ask Marla” where we will create an avenue for people just like you and me to ask Marla questions in and around incorporating “greener” practices in our daily lives and ways in which we can be more environmentally responsible consumers with ease and confidence. So start getting your questions ready and look for this new feature roll out in the very near future. Please let us know what you are interested in knowing more about in the comments below as well.