6 Earth-friendly Brands We Love

6 Earth-friendly Brands We Love
It’s not easy being green, but we’re working hard to make it a little easier for you to choose truly green products, by sourcing vendors and products that are going above and beyond to treat the planet — and you — with great care.

These six earth-friendly brands are some of our favourites for the lengths they go to in sustainability.

Nature's PathNatures Path

You may know Nature’s Path for its delicious granolas, but did you know Nature’s Path has been providing organic breakfast and snack foods since 1985? The family-owned company got its start in B.C. with a commitment to organic agriculture. Now North America’s largest organic cereal maker, it has won numerous awards for its achievements in business and sustainability. In 2018 it won London Drugs’ Sustainable Vendor of the Year award.

Attitude CleanersAttitude Cleaners

This made-in-Canada, cruelty-free, vegan, hypoallergenic, and EWG-verified and Ecologo-certified family of products ticks all the boxes when it comes to keeping your loved ones — and the planet — safe from toxins. Its offerings range from skin, hair and sun care to household cleaners and even pet care products. Learn more about its EWG-verified products.

HP computerHP

This maker of PCs and printers is a global leader when it comes to waste reduction. In 2017, the company achieved a waste diversion rate of 90.9% globally. It also achieved its goal to reduce the GHG emissions intensity of first-tier manufacturing and product transportation suppliers by 20% by 2020 — six years early! HP designs its printers and cartridges to be recycled and 48% of its new commercial desktop products contain greater than 10% post-consumer recycled plastic content. Learn more about its sustainable impact.

Philips Philips Light Bulbs

Philips offers great choices for energy-saving lighting products including LED lighting technology, which is an easy way for most people to reduce energy usage. The company is a leading player in the circular economy with lighting that can be reused and remanufactured. It is also working on a zero waste to landfill commitment. Philips has a target of being carbon neutral globally by 2020, with all of its power coming from renewable sources. Learn more about Philips’ sustainability initiatives.

Green Beaver Products Green Beaver Sunscreen

Green Beaver offers sunscreen with non-nano zinc oxide and titanium dioxide mineral protection, an alternative to chemical sun blockers, that is 100% natural, biodegradable, and reef friendly. Its hair care and deodorant products are ECOCERT Certified with natural source and organic ingredients, and proudly made in Canada.

 

Salt Spring Coffee Salt Spring Coffee

Committed to providing fair-trade, organic coffee since 1996, Salt Spring Coffee was Canada’s first Fair Trade Coffee company. It is also a Certified B Corporation, has carbon-neutral production facilities, and uses 100% certified organic beans. Since 2001, it has supported coffee producers and their communities through its Fair to Farmer Program. Learn more about its sustainability initiatives.


We’re proud to carry these products and more. Learn more about our green initiatives at What’s the Green Deal?

Spring Cleaning Tips for a Spotless Home

Spring is just around the corner, and you know what that means – it’s almost time for spring cleaning. If you need a bit of of a nudge in the right direction, these easy and green cleaning tips will help kick-start your motivation to make your place shine like the long-awaited sun.

Environmentally friendly DIY cleaners

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Strong detergents and toxic-smelling cleaning sprays are not your only option when it comes to effectively cleaning dirty surfaces. For an inexpensive and enviro-friendly option, all you need to do is look in your pantry to make this effective DIY all-purpose cleaner. No time to make your own? You can also grab an eco-friendly cleaner at your local London Drugs.

  1. In a bowl, mix together 4 tablespoons of baking soda and one quart of warm water.
  2. Optional – add a few drops of your favourite essential oil for fragrance (we recommend grapefruit or orange)
  3. Pour over a sponge or fill a spray bottle, and get cleaning.

[More at Good Housekeeping]

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Wash your plastic shower curtain in the laundry

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Plastic shower curtains can become mildewy and yellow faster than you may expect. Instead of spending hours scrubbing it down with a sponge or purchasing a new one, throw it in with your laundry.

  1. Remove the plastic shower curtain from the hooks.
  2. Place it in a washing machine with two white (or lightly-coloured) towels.
  3. Add 1 cup of baking soda and 10 drops of tea tree oil (optional).
  4. Wash on a gentle cycle.
  5. Hang-dry the shower curtain on its hooks and dry the towels as you’d like.

[More at Clean My Space]

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Let your slow cooker clean itself

crockpot

Slow cookers are perhaps one of the most versatile appliances you can have in your kitchen. Not only do they allow the busiest of cooks a hands-free and economical way to prepare meals, but they can even clean themselves.

  1. Making sure your slow cooker is turned off, fill with water until above the most concentrated food stain.
  2. Add 1 cup of distilled white vinegar to a 6-quart slow cooker.
  3. Very slowly add a cup of baking soda.
  4. Turn your slow cooker to the lowest setting, cover and cook for 4 hours or overnight.

[More at Life Should Cost Less]

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Revive a burnt cookie sheet

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Consider yourself lucky if you haven’t had the task of cleaning a baking sheet after a particularly burnt batch of cookies has coated its surface. Thankfully, what may seem like an impossible job can be relatively simple with a few easy steps.

  1. Loosely coat your stainless steel baking sheet with a layer of baking soda, a layer of hydrogen peroxide and another layer of baking soda.
  2. Let it absorb for 1-2 hours.
  3. Use a cloth or rag to scrub away the stains.

[More at Tip Hero]

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If you try one of these tips, we’d love to hear how it worked for you! Leave your reviews in the comments below.

Going Natural. The Noughty Way.

That’s the balance Noughty all about.

Sulphate-free shampoos like Noughty’s use natural surfactants or detergents to clean hair rather than being laden with silicones and sulphates. So if you’re making the transition to natural hair products from conventional hair care, Noughty want to share with your their experience of what to expect and why, as well as give you some well-earned advice to help you manage the transition. After all, we love to help and natural, healthy hair is what makes us very, very happy.

  1. Be patient. Conventional ingredients leave residues that can coat the hair shaft resulting in build-up that can weigh the hair down and leave it dull. Just like your body after a night out with the girls, your hair may need a little time to detox. It can take several washes to remove the build-up of conventional shampoo which is why we recommend using Noughty for at least 8 washes.
    If you are new to naturals, our Noughty Detox Dynamo clarifying shampoo can help speed this detoxification process along, by gently removing build-up and preparing your hair for its new natural haircare regime.
  2. Size up the bubbles. Think champagne-sized bubbles rather than the ones you blew through a wand as a child.
  3. Being kind makes us all feel good, in just the same way being kinder to your hair will make it look and feel better. The ingredients in natural haircare are gentler on both your hair and the planet.
    For sensitive, dandruff prone scalps who need extra gentle care, we recommend our Noughty Care Taker range.
  4. Get Active. To get the most out of a sulphate-free shampoo, it’s best to activate it before use. Squeeze a small amount of shampoo into your palm and add a little water, then rub your palms together a few times before working the product through your wet hair.   Natural products go a long way so start with a small amount of product, activating it with plenty of water and only adding more as you need.
  5. Lastly and best of all, expect to witness the benefits of high performing natural ingredients!

 

What to expect from hair detox?

Like you, every head of hair is unique. Your hair detox symptoms and the time it takes to notice the real benefits can therefore vary. You might have only one of the issues we describe below, or you might have all three, but rest assured we have some advice about how to handle the challenges while your hair re-adjusts to natural.

Hair Issue 1: Hair feels tangled, matted, sticky or heavy
Detoxing asks the hair to let go of all the residual product it’s been hanging onto. Since your hair’s not Teflon, it doesn’t just slide off: it may take a few washes to shift the build-up from root to tip and down the drain.

Tips to help: Rinse your hair thoroughly, making sure to work out all of the shampoo before conditioning thoroughly. Try to avoid being haphazard with your approach by slapping a bit on and rinsing it straight out. Instead, take care to ensure every strand is coated. Using a wide toothed comb, gently work out any tangles while the conditioner is still in. Leave the conditioner in your hair for a few minutes then rinse thoroughly, working from root to tip. For additional softness, try our famous Noughty Intensive Care Leave-In Conditioner.

Issue 2: Hair and scalp feel very oily

Oily scalps is a sign you have been using a shampoo that is too aggressive for your hair, stripping away the natural oils and making your scalp think it needs to produce more. So you’re stuck in a spiral – the more oil you see, the more often you shampoo and the more vigorously you scrub. Patience and persistence of use will give your scalp the chance to rebalance itself all on its own.

Tips to help: If you have an oily scalp or oily hair, NEVER shampoo or rinse with hot water. Always use cool or lukewarm, and don’t massage your scalp vigorously. When you do this, you stimulate the oil glands in the scalp to produce more oil, leading to oily hair.

Issue 3: Hair feels dry, brittle or rough

Silicones do an amazing job at covering up the damage we do to our manes. When they’re washed away in the detox process, the true state of your hair can be revealed, and the home truths can be rough.

Tips to help: Step up your level of conditioning. Think about using Noughty To The Rescue until your hair rebalances. Or alternatively, add Noughty Intensive Care Leave In Conditioner to your routine (especially at the ends of longer hair).

If you have a naturally dry scalp and longer hair, the oils your scalp produces are almost guaranteed not to be enough to protect all of your hair. To stimulate your scalp, massage your scalp vigorously with your fingertips and rinse your hair in hot water. (If it hurts, you’re being too vigorous.)

So, you ready for hair happiness? If you’re new to naturals and the Noughty Hair Care range, the key is to be patient. When making the switch to natural haircare persevere and you will see the results everyone is talking about! Not only do we love that Noughty products are vegan friendly but their products make you look and smell amazing!

Don’t forget to share your photos using #LDBeauty and #noughtyhaircare


NOUGHTY CONTEST

Head to our Instagram to learn how to enter for the chance to win a Noughty Haircare Prize Pack for you and your bestie!

Contest closes at 11:59pm on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. Find full contest rules and regulations below.

NOUGHTY CONTEST

  1. To enter:
    Step 1. Check out our Noughty blog post (Going Natural. The Noughty Way.) and ‘Like’ the Instagram post posted on March 2, 2018
    Step 2. Tag 1 friend
    Step 3. Follow @LDBeauty_
  1. Contest is open to all residents of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba who, as of the date the prize draw is made: (i) have not won a London Drugs contest since March 1, 2017; (ii) have reached the age of majority in the province in which they reside as of March 2, 2018; (iii) are not employees of London Drugs, their respective advertising and promotional agencies, the independent judging organization (if any), or any family member living with any such employee.
  2. No purchase necessary. Limit one (1) entry per person per social network per contest. Entries must be received no later than 11:59 PM Pacific Time on March 7, 2018. London Drugs is not responsible for entries that become lost or misdirected. All entries become the property of London Drugs Limited and will not be returned.
  3. The winners will be randomly chosen on the day the contest ends (see dates below) in Vancouver, British Columbia, from all eligible entries received per contest. To win, selected entrants must correctly answer a skill-testing mathematical question and must sign London Drug’s declaration and release confirming compliance with the contest rules and acceptance of the prize(s) as awarded, releasing London Drugs from liability in association with the contest and prize and consenting to the use of their name, photograph, voice and statements for promotional and publicity purposes.
  4. There will be two (2) prizes awarded to one winner and their tagged friend: 2 prize packs consisting of: Noughty Pumped up Shampoo and Conditioner, Intensive Care Conditioner, Rise and Shine Serum and Detox Dynamo. See details and contest dates below. Prize must be accepted as awarded, are non-transferable and no substitutions are permitted. Prize will be awarded at the closest London Drugs location to contest winner.
    Contest dates – Friday, March 2, 2018 12:01AM to Wednesday, March 7, 2018 11:59PM Pacific Time
    Draw date – 9:00AM Pacific Time Friday, March 9, 2018
  1. Only one prize may be won by any one person and household. In the event that any selected entrant incorrectly answers the skill-testing question or is otherwise unwilling or unable to comply in full with these rules, a new entry will be drawn.
  2. Selected winner will be contacted by email or on the social network they were drawn from. No correspondence will be entered into except with selected entrants. If the winner does not respond then she/he will be notified for the second time, 3 (three) days after the first notification. If the winner still does not respond within 3 days of the second notification, a new winner will be chosen in the same manner until a winner is successfully contacted.
  3. The chances of winning a prize will depend on the number of eligible entries received. Decisions of the judges in respect of all aspects of this contest including, but not limited to, eligibility of entries and correctness of answers given to the skill-testing question, are final.
  4. London Drugs and their respective advertising and promotional agencies, the independent judging organization, and their respective agents are not liable to an entrant in any manner relating to the contest or the awarding and use of the prize(s).
  5. This contest is subject to all federal, provincial, and municipal laws and regulations. By entering the entrant consents to the collection of all personal information included on their entry and agrees to the use and disclosure of such information by and between London Drugs, an independent judging organization and their agents. The winner(s) also agrees to the collection, use and disclosure of their name, entry, photographs, voice and statements for London Drugs’ publicity purposes without further compensation. All personal information collected from entrants will be used only for the purposes of administering the contest and for marketing and promotional purposes as contemplated by these rules; under no circumstances will any personal information be sold or rented to third parties. All personal information collected by London Drugs will be kept in accordance with the privacy policy of London Drugs, which can be viewed at www.londondrugs.com, and in accordance with all applicable privacy laws.
  6. The right is reserved by London Drugs to terminate this contest, in whole or in part, and/or modify, amend or suspend the contest, and/or these rules in any way, should any cause beyond the reasonable control of London Drugs or its agents affect the proper administration thereof.

 

A Beginners Guide to Canning and Preserving

Fall is here! But don’t worry, it’s not all rain and cold weather. Fall is a beautiful season of bounty, and you can make the most of that bounty by taking up your new favourite hobby: canning. That beautiful jam you like? You can make it. Dill pickles? You can make those too. Those cans of tomatoes you buy every other week? Yep, you got it! All you need is a bit of equipment and a bit of know-how. London Drugs has got you covered on both counts.

Woman In Kitchen Listing Ingredients In Vegetable Preserves

Canning is really just a way of preserving food. Water bath canning is the easiest way to start: you fill glass jars with the stuff you want to preserve (jams, jellies, pickles, etc.) and boil them in hot water. This kills any bacteria present, removes air from the jar, and seals it to prevent any more bacteria from getting in. Water bath canning only works for high-acid foods like fruit, tomatoes, and pickled things.

If you want to get really fancy and preserve your perfect pumpkin pie filling, you’ll need to upgrade to a pressure canner. But the basic process is to sterilize your jars in boiling water, make your preserves, put those preserves in the jars, put on the lids, and throw them back in boiling water. Easy peasy, right?

So where do you begin? First, you need some equipment:

  • Large stockpot, deep enough to completely cover your jars
  • Canning jars
  • Canning lids (these will come with jars if you buy a new set!)
  • Jar lifter
  • Lid lifter
  • Funnel

We’ve got a complete canning kit that includes the jar lifter, lid lifter, and funnel, as well as 250ml jars, 500ml jars, and even 1L jars for things like pickles and whole tomatoes. If you’re making jam or jelly, you’ll also need pectin.

Once you’ve acquired the equipment, you need to decide what you want to can! In early fall we still have stone fruit like peaches and plums, and lots of tomatoes. Later in the season, root vegetables like carrots and beets can make some excellent pickles. And apples, of course!

Pickled cucumbers, homemade preserved on wooden table

If you’ve got a well stocked grocery store that brings in produce from further afield, you can can small batches with basically any type of fruit. We’ve got recipes for strawberry balsamic jam and sour cherry jelly on the blog from earlier this summer. (What’s the difference between jam and jelly, you ask? Jam is made from crushed fruit while jelly is made from fruit juice! The more you know.)

Next, as a beginner, follow a recipe!

Canning isn’t difficult, but when mistakes are made they can range from something minor like a jam that doesn’t set to something dangerous like food that is unsafe to eat. You may balk at the amount of sugar in some of these recipes, but it’s integral to getting the jelly or jam to set properly, and it helps prevent spoilage.

Boiling time will vary depending on what altitude you’re at. You also can’t reuse the flat part of the two part lid for canning jars; you can reuse the ring, but you need a new lid each time you can. And don’t forget to sterilize your jars before filling them with your preserves!

Bell pepper preserves - London Drugs Blog

There are a ton of great websites you can go to for more information and recipes, including the National Center for Home Food Preservation, Food in Jars, and Punk Domestics. Companies that make canning supplies like Bernardin and Ball are also fantastic resources.

Here are a few of our favourite fall recipes. Go ahead and get canning! You can can!

Ecowaterless Car Cleaning

Washing your car has historically been a daunting task…

This is how we cleaned cars in 1914

In the 1950’s this is how we cleaned cars. Note even nearly 70 years people still clean their cars like this.

An average car wash uses over 200 liters of clean drinking water, contaminates the ground with dirt and you don’t know how your car will look on the other side (pressure washes usually scratch the car).

Of all the earth water: 97% is unusable as it is in the ocean and is salt water. The other 3%is fresh water and only 1% of that is accessible which we can use to drink and our other water needs. This is as the other 2% is locked in icecaps.

Right now: 460 billion litres of clean drinking water is used annually in the car washing industry.

 

That’s enough water to fill 184,000 Olympic sized swimming pools of clean drinking water.

Only 3% of the world’s water is fresh and only 1% of it is drinkable.

Each car wash is equivalent to 400 bottles of clean drinking water

 

That’s where Ecowaterless comes in.

Ecowaterless Car Cleaning KitOur solution uses zero water, contains only natural ingredients and is completely biodegradable. Along with that you can clean your car in 15 minutes as opposed to the time it would take with a hosepipe, bucket and sponge. Our solution also contains a natural wax which keeps your car shiny and adds another layer or wax coating to your car which protects it against dirt.

Each time you clean your car with Ecowaterless you save 400 bottles of clean drinking water. On top of this you save fuel, car emissions and time from travelling to and back a car wash.

Along with that, Ecowaterless donates a portion of their profits to Canada water aid and the company actively do local volunteering days. Ecowaterless has also won the Vancouver smart business award.

Ecowaterless Car Cleaning Kit is available at London Drugs.

Why You Need to Recycle Your E-Waste (and how London Drugs can help!)

Earth Day 2017 may be over, but we at London Drugs know that thinking about and acting on behalf of our planet is a vitally important year-long activity. That’s why we accept so many forms of recyclables at our stores, including everything from small appliances and empty bottles to both standard and rechargeable batteries. We even accept styrofoam!

 

There is one type of waste that can be especially damaging to both the environment and to communities around the world: e-waste.

It deserves special attention because, too often, we don’t think of e-waste as being recyclable at all. Or we don’t realize that there are good and not-so-good ways to deal with it.

What is E-Waste?

The first important thing to know is that “e-waste” is not garbage, it’s actually a category of recyclables. The problem is, objects in this category aren’t always disposed of properly. In fact, the UN estimates that only about 14% of e-waste is currently being recycled around the globe.

The category of e-waste includes all electronic appliances, but one of the most hazardous sub-types is computers. This includes PCs, gaming consoles, monitors, televisions, tablets, smartphones, and all other handheld digital devices.

Collectively, items in this category have advanced components inside them, such as microchips and motherboards. Although many of us rarely see these components, it’s important to understand that they are often constructed out of hazardous materials like cadmium, lead, and chromium.

Thankfully, many of the companies that produce these products, including Apple, are working toward a future in which these hazardous materials either won’t be needed or can be entirely obtained from recycled e-waste. But we aren’t there yet.

It’s important for consumers to know about the damage to the environment these products can cause when they are disposed of improperly, and to take responsibility for making sure disposal is done right.

How Dangerous is E-Waste?

Improperly handled or mistakenly thrown out e-waste is currently causing serious damage to the environment worldwide. Over time the dangerous metals and chemicals in e-waste (including in plastic casings) break down in our landfills. From there, these pollutants can enter the soil, the air, and the water in the surrounding area.

Another threat posed by e-waste is to the labourers who handle the products. This is especially true for the vast quantities of e-waste that are frequently shipped to developing nations for processing. Too often, these recycling operations are poorly regulated, leaving workers unfairly exposed to physical harm, illness, and even death.

On top of that, the processes used to isolate the valuable parts of e-waste can be crude and may cause more environmental damage than simply throwing the e-waste into the trash. For example, burning copper wires at low temperatures to remove the plastic coating (a common practice at unregulated recycling operations) releases hazardous chemical compounds into the air.

This is why it is so important not only to recycle your e-waste but to ensure that it is being disposed of responsibly. This is needed for the sake of the planet and for the safety of the labourers involved in the process.

What Can We Do About E-Waste?

Good news! If you live in Western Canada, London Drugs accepts all forms of e-waste for proper recycling. Simply bring your tech recyclables into one of our stores and look for the recycling station.

If you don’t see the recycling kiosk in your local LD store, or aren’t sure quite where to find it, just ask one of our LD Experts or speak to someone at the customer service desk. For certain items, there may be daily limits we will inform you of, but we will always do our best to accommodate your recycling needs.

When you recycle your e-waste at London Drugs you can be sure it will be handled by fully-screened and certified companies and never shipped to substandard processing plants. Another benefit of recycling your e-waste at London Drugs is that we always make sure your personal data is properly deleted. In some cases, we may even offer your used electronics a second life by providing them to those in need.

Go the extra mile for the environment and participate in our computer packaging re-use system called Bring Back The Pack. We’re thrilled to have partnered with Certified Data to bring you this program that enables re-use of brand new computer packaging.

Don’t live near a London Drugs? Don’t worry.

There are other ways to safely dispose of e-waste in Canada. The first place to check is with your local recycling depot, but The Salvation Army also typically accepts e-waste.

And remember, whatever you do, the most important step you can take to avoid contributing to the e-waste problem is to never put your electronics into the garbage.

Have more questions about e-waste recycling? You can always ask an LD Expert in-store.

And we encourage you to learn more about our recycling program at GreenDeal.ca.

LD Picks: Celebrate Earth Day with these Green Tips

At London Drugs, we strive to do business responsibly. The  four pillars of our sustainability strategy aim to improve: waste reduction, energy & operations, upstream buying, and education. Since 2008, our in-store recycling initiatives have prevented tonnes of garbage from reaching landfills. April, of course, is Earth Month—Earth Day falls on the 22nd—so we’ve collected for you a clutch of our favourite sustainability tips and tricks.  Enjoy!

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