Your bedroom should be a haven for you – a place you know you can retreat to unwind and relax. It’s possible to create this sort of a space while also making it eco-friendly. Here are eight ways:
1. Declutter wisely.
The easiest way to create a relaxing room is to keep clutter away. Make sure stacks of papers don’t accumulate on your nightstand or piles of laundry end remain on your chair. Be ruthless about what enters your room and organize what’s there. Recycle unnecessary papers. Donate unwanted or unused clothing. Give away excess bedding, too – homeless shelters are in need of gently used pillows, blankets, and sheets.
2. Use strategic window coverings.
Use insulated curtains or blinds to retain heat in the winter and to keep your room cooler in the summer. You’ll cut down on heating and cooling costs and save energy in the process.
3. Make a wise mattress decision.
Most mattresses include flame retardants – and you may not want to expose yourself or your family members to them. Eco-friendly – and healthier – options include mattresses made of all-natural latex , wool, cotton, hemp, or bamboo. You could even opt for a futon mattress that hasn’t been treated with flame retardants.
If you’re like me and have a conventional mattress coated in flame retardants, you may want to opt for a mattress cover. Do not purchase a mattress cover that includes PVC, though. Food-grade polyethylene varieties are recommended.
As a warning, memory foam mattresses are made with polyurethane foam – not only are they treated with flame retardants, but the foam also contains volatile organic compounds that can cause health problems.
When looking for a new mattress, check online retailers like Mattress Online.
4. Pick used furniture.
One easy way to recycle while furnishing your bedroom is by utilizing second-hand furniture. From beds to dressers to nightstands, you can typically find gently worn hand-me-down bedroom furniture. Aside from saving money and reducing consumption, second-hand furniture can be a healthier choice because any toxic finishes already have offgassed.
5. Choose low-VOC or no-VOC paints.
When painting your bedroom walls, choose low-VOC or no-VOC paints. VOCs (volatile organic compounds) are dangerous chemicals that give paint the typically strong (and awful) “new paint” smell. The paint can offgas chemicals for years.
6. Shop for non-toxic floor coverings.
If you can change the floor covering in your bedroom, opt for hardwood, bamboo, or tile. If you prefer carpet, choose a carpet awarded the Green Label by the Carpet and Rug Institute. Steer clear of carpets made with benzene, formaldehyde, p-Dichlorobenzene, 4-PC, and xylene that can offgas in your home for years. Refuse antimicrobial treatments, fire retardants, and stain resistance, too.
7. Make informed blankets and sheet decisions.
The most eco-friendly choices in bedding are organic ones. But if you don’t want to spring for the extra price of organic cotton, look for sheets and blankets that are 100 percent cotton. Make sure you do NOT purchase bedding that is stain resistant (it’s treated withTeflon), no-iron (it’s treated with formaldehyde), or flame resistant (it’s treated with flame retardants).
8. Rethink popular lighting choices.
This may sound a little surprising, but choose incandescent lightbulbs when lighting your bedroom. Compact fluorescent light bulbs contain mercury and require meticulous clean-up efforts if a lightbulb breaks. CFL bulbs also have been proven to emit UVA and UVC rays. To prevent exposure to dangerous rays and toxins, stick to the old fashioned incandescent bulb. To conserve energy, simply turn your lights out when you leave a room.
What ways have you made your bedroom more eco-friendly?
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Mattress Online.
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