Earth Month: Eco-Friendly Essentials for Home and Travel

posted in: Home & Garden

It’s Earth Month, an ideal time to think about the ways you can live a more sustainable life. Thankfully, it’s easier than you think to improve your impact on the planet – from home cleaning products to apparel to travel essentials, I found over 30 items that make it a breeze to go greener.

Check out my favorite eco-friendly beauty products guide for my beauty and wellness go-to’s!



MaisoNovo Swedish Dishcloths ($12)  

This women-owned brand has a variety of tastefully designed green-living solutions for the home. The products are made from recycled/upcycled materials and help to offset plastic waste. These Swedish Dishcloths are reusable, colorful paper towels that come with a handy adhesive wall hook. I also enjoyed the Foaming Hand Soap ($25), which includes a refillable bottle and your choice of scented or unscented foaming soap tablets. Tablets can also be ordered separately.

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©Me Mother Earth

Me Mother Earth Zero Waste Dishwashing Starter Set ($36.99) 

Founded by a husband and wife team, this home brand helps to eliminate plastic waste. The minimally packaged products are vegan, reusable, and/or biodegradable. This set includes a solid dishwashing bar, which is available in several scents, along with a wooden soap dish to help extend the life of the bar. Also in the set are a scrub brush for pots and pans, and a multipurpose sisal hand brush with a refill head.  

The brand also makes a 3-pack of Pop Up Dish Sponges ($6.99), which are colorful cellulose sponges made from wood pulp.  They generate no plastic waste, come with a loop for hanging, and are 100 percent compostable. You can also disinfect them with boiling water or place them in the dishwasher.

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©common good

Common Good All-Purpose Cleaner Refill w/ Glass Bottle ($33)  

This female-founded, sustainable home and personal care brand was born in 2010 as a kid and pet-safe alternative to single-use plastic products. The All-Purpose Cleaner comes with a glass bottle and a refill pouch. The formulation is effective, yet free of harsh ingredients, like ammonia and chlorine. 

I also recommend their Laundry Detergent Refill Pouch and Glass Bottle Set ($24.95). This enzyme-powered, concentrated Laundry Detergent is good for sensitive skin and is available unscented or delicately scented with bergamot and lavender essential oils.

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ECOS All-Purpose Cleaner – Parsley ($4.59) 

This biodegradable, vegan cleaning formula can be used on a multitude of water-safe, hard surfaces to remove dirt, grime, and grease. It is made in the US with 100 percent renewable energy. The ingredients are globally sourced and include parsley, which helps to neutralize odors.  I also recommend the brand’s laundry detergent sheets.

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Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder Packets ($16.99 for 30) 

The eco-friendly answer to laundry pods, these pre-measured powder packets are ready to be tossed into standard or high-efficiency washers. The Safer Choice-Certified powder formula is scientifically proven, fragrance-free, and made with natural, biodegradable ingredients. It’s hypoallergenic and free of residues, brighteners, and synthetic fragrances, so it’s excellent for sensitive skin. Available in several quantity options as well as a loose powder. 

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Reel Paper Toilet Paper & Paper Towels ($43.99 for 24 rolls of toilet paper and $49.99 for 12 rolls of paper towels) 

Reel’s toilet paper and paper towels are made from bamboo and are free of dyes, chlorine, or BPAs. They are soft and absorbent, while also being biodegradable. FSC-certified and made in the USA. They’ve become a favorite in our house!

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©chasing paper

Chasing Paper Wallpaper ($45 and up)

If you’re looking to update your space, Chasing Paper’s traditional wallpaper is FSC-certified with water-based GreenGuard Gold Certified Latex ink, making the wallpaper non-toxic with zero fumes. The wallpaper substrates are printed to order in their Milwaukee, WI manufacturing facility to minimize waste.

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PureWine The Eco-Wand ($29.99) 

In response to requests from users, PureWine has introduced this eco-friendly version of their original wine-purifying wand. They’re made with renewable and biodegradable materials, like sugarcane and corn, and the packaging is made of 100 percent recycled paperboard.  The wine purifying wands remove histamines and sulfites from a glass of red wine, making wine enjoyable for sensitive drinkers. On each wand is a twist-off wine charm that you can use to identify your glass. 

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Adonit LOG ($39.99)

If you’ve been interested in checking out a stylus to write or draw on an iPad, now is the perfect time to treat yourself to one. The Adonit LOG is the first stylus to have a sustainability-sourced wooden casing! Each one is unique and hand-crafted with FSC & PEFC-certified wood that is sustainably sourced.  

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Box Refresh ($14.97 for a 2-pack) 

This simple tool allows you to reuse your shipping boxes, rather than disposing of them. Using the roll-on applicator, you can mask shipping labels, tape, and logos with the water-based, non-toxic, box-colored paint.  You can then affix a label or write directly on the paint.

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Gear Hugger Heavy Duty Degreaser  ($14.95) 

I wrote about this Gear Hugger’s Multipurpose Lubricant in last year’s eco-friendly roundup – it’s become a staple in our home. They’ve since launched the Degreaser, which is formulated with a non-toxic plant and water base that is sustainably sourced from upcycled waste from tequila production in Mexico! The pet- and kid-safe Degreaser breaks down heavy grease on appliances, auto parts, patios, driveways, and more. 

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Post-it 100% Recycled Paper Super Sticky Notes ($9.97 for 5 pads)

Not only do these Post-it Notes have 2x the sticking power of the Post-its you know and love, but they are GreenCircle certified, made from 100 percent recycled paper in a zero-waste-to-landfill facility. 

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©The Green Design Center

Green Design Center (prices vary)

This design website and service was founded by healthy home concierge, Andrew Pace, is a resource for homeowners and contractors looking for healthy and green home design products and expert consulting advice. Products include non-toxic products with no off-gassing, like AFM Safecoat Paint ($24/gallon), and Cork Flooring ($7.79/square foot).   

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POLYWOOD (prices vary)

This Indiana-based home furnishings company has developed a way to transform landfill- and ocean-bound plastic containers into durable outdoor furniture. They have recycled millions of plastic containers each year in a circular, 99 percent waste-free process. They partner with schools, retailers, and influencers to educate and inform customers and collaborate with known figures, like Martha Stewart, to create products like the Chinoiserie End Table ($379 and up).  

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©Rutabaga Gardening

Rutabaga Gardening Four-Pack ($60)

These colorful, ergonomic, and eco-conscious tools were created by Rutabaga Education, which provides gardening know-how geared toward kids. The tools are designed for gardeners of all ages and skill levels and are made from 100 percent post-consumer PBA-free plastic, which is recovered from oceans. The tools are comfortable to use, thanks to rust-free handles coated with a biodegradable rubber substitute. The tools are available individually, in a 2-pack, or in this 4-pack, which includes a weed remover, trowel, hand rake, and scoop. 

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Murphy’s Naturals Mosquito Repellent Incense Sticks ($12.99)

If you are bothered by bugs in the backyard, these incense sticks keep critters at bay chemical-free, with citronella, lemongrass, rosemary, cedar, and peppermint oils. The sticks burn for 2 ½ hours, and unlike other bug repellants, they smell lovely.  Murphy’s Naturals is B Corp Certified and donates a percentage of gross revenue to non-profits each year. 

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Matter Compostable Tableware ($18.99 and up)

Planning a backyard barbeque?  These compostable single-use plates, bowls, and utensils are made from plants and natural fibers. If you have a backyard compost pile, you can toss your used Matter items right in! The brand also carries sustainable food storage bags. 

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Sunday Lawn Starter Liquid Fertilizer ($25)

To make lawn and garden care more sustainable, Sunday formulates non-toxic products for healthy lawns, while encouraging their customers to reduce their lawn size and increase plant diversity. This liquid fertilizer contains no pesticides and is made of eco-friendly ingredients, like kelp, compost, and wood ash, and uses limited nitrogen, which promotes deeper root development and balanced growth in lawns.

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Buzzy Seeds Save the Bees Wildflower Biodegradable Grow Kit | Assorted 12-pack ($17.99)

These kits contain everything you need to grow a batch of bee-friendly wildflowers. The biodegradable paper can be inserted directly into the ground and the plants do not require a skilled hand to maintain. This 12-pack is handy because you can use a few yourself and give the others as little gifts. 

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Lindywell Pilates Powerhouse Mat Premium ($59.99)

If your exercise mat needs replacing, consider this nontoxic one, which is made from fully recyclable materials and is free from latex, BPA, PVC, lead, phthalates, dioxins, and other chemicals. At 8mm thick, it offers plenty of cushion on hard surfaces, and it’s generously sized at six feet long and 26 inches wide. It comes with a strap, the packaging is recyclable, and all production standards for staff and processes are met. Mats of other thicknesses are also available.  

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Kora Bamboo Track Sweatshirt ($100)

Kora, which specializes in eco-friendly apparel for the outdoors, has recently introduced a collection with a blend of FSC-certified bamboo and organic cotton. Items include leggings, sweatshirts, base layers, and underwear, for both women and men. Bamboo happens to be one of my favorite fabrics because bamboo is so sustainable, and the fabric is comfortable and breathable. The Bamboo Track Sweatshirt is beautifully made, flattering, and has unexpected design elements. The clothing fits slim, so if in doubt, size up.

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Trek’s Cycling Socks ($17.99. On sale for $13.99) 

These cycling socks offer support, ventilation, breathability, and compression, and are available in several colors and in men’s and women’s styles.  They are made with COOLMAX EcoMade, which is from 100 percent recycled material. The brand also makes other eco-friendly products, including cycling jerseys and water bottle cages. Trek regularly publishes sustainability reports and recently launched its Red Barn Refresh project, which aims to extend the lifecycle of bikes to keep them out of landfills.

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Coalatree Trailhead Shorts ($79) 

Coalatree makes apparel and outdoor essentials that are eco-friendly in every way possible, including using recycled or repurposed materials – as is the case with these shorts – waterless dye, green facilities, and tree-friendly packaging.  These breathable, stretchy, and tear-resistant shorts have a water-repellant finish and are made with a fabric that hinders the growth of bacteria, so they are ideal for those with active lifestyles.  I also like their Trailhead Pants if you’re looking for bottoms with more coverage.  

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Blowfish Malibu Leo Sneaker ($49.99)

This footwear brand known for its fun, playful, and comfortable styles, has several eco-friendly options, including the Leo Sneaker, Alex Slip-on Sneaker, Sadie Sun Sneaker, and Martina Sneaker. The sneakers are vegan and free of any animal products or by-products, including the glue and outsole.    

The insoles use BLOOM technology, which combines eco-conscious materials, like algae, with base polymers to make resin pellets that can then be used as sustainable materials. I’ve been getting a lot of wear out of the Leo in Gold Tumble.

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Miakoda The Split Front Leggings ($104)

This women-owned, small-batch, slow-fashion brand designs basics that are soft, comfortable, size-inclusive (XS-4XL), and sustainable.  These split-front, high-rise leggings are made from 90 percent organic cotton and 10 percent spandex. The leggings have pockets and a raw hem so you can trim them to your ideal length – they are even long enough for me, which is rare. They also have a fun Zero Waste Mega Scrunchie ($15) made with deadstock elastic.

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Woxer Underwear ($20 and up)

This woman, LGBTQ+, and LatinX-owned undergarment brand known for their boxers and bralettes uses Tencel Modal fabric because of its green environmental footprint and biodegradability. It’s made with beechwood using sustainable forestry practices, and it’s moisture-wicking, breathable, and incredibly soft. Woxer also uses environmentally friendly production processes and is ISO 14001 Environmental Management Certified. I have tried their boxer briefs, which I love, and I recently tried their new tank, which is the softest tank I own. 

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©Mar Soreli

Mar Soreli ($145)   

You would never guess it, but these 100 percent handcrafted, chic velvet and silk flats are crafted from repurposed fabric with soles made from recycled bicycle tires. They are manufactured using sustainable techniques, with no materials wasted during the shoe-making process. They are comfortable, lightweight, and machine washable, and they fold easily for travel!  

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©Ricardo Beverly Hills

Ricardo Beverly Hills Avalon Luggage Collection ($150 and up) 

This luggage brand is known for its well-organized travel items, and the brand just launched the Avalon collection, which is made entirely from plastics recovered from the ocean. There are several sizes and two colors to choose from. They look like any well-made suitcase, but it’s nice to know that they are eco-friendly!

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©The Poppy Brand

Poppy Crossbody Diaper Bag ($160)

This compact, chic bag allows moms to carry her essentials without the bulk of a traditional diaper bag.  The crossbody bag holds her sunglasses, wallet, lip balm, and keys on one side and the must-have for her baby and kids on the other. There are several colors available, and the bags are made from biodegradable, upcycled materials such as pineapple husks, seaweed, and cactus.  Poppy is also a 1% for the Planet member, contributing at least 1 percent of annual revenue to environmental causes.

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©TIJN Eyewear

TIJN Eyewear ($50 and up)

This accessory brand has applied its sustainability ethos to a collection of chic sunglasses that are kind to the planet and incredibly comfortable. My favorite are the Monica, which are so cute! Throughout April, you can purchase 4 pairs of select styles for $40 with code 4440. The brand aims to invest a percent of its profits into continuing sustainable product development by 2025. 

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Timberland Eyewear ($41 and up) 

Another brand with an eco-friendly eyewear collection is Timberland. Last year, they began replacing traditional acetate with bio-based acetate, and all of the new non-metal acetate frames have between 40-85 percent bio-based material.  My favorites are the Earthkeepers Sunglasses ($68), which are a flattering, gender-neutral style for men. 

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Drift Wood Car Freshener ($10, regularly $12.95)

I love this car freshener! It turns the typical dangling pine tree on its head with a sophisticated piece that attaches to your car’s visor with a metal clip. The Drift is made from sustainably sourced alder wood and is soaked in natural essential and fragrance oil blends that last up to 30 days. There are several warm and wonderful scents available. My favorites are the Teak and Amber.

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Smart Shopping Expert

Trae Bodge is an accomplished lifestyle journalist and TV commentator who has specialized in smart shopping, personal finance, and retail for more than a decade. She has appeared on TV over 1,000 times; including Today Show, GMA3, NBC Nightly News, Inside Edition, and network affiliates nationwide. She has been named a Top Voice in Retail by LinkedIn, and her expert commentary has appeared in Forbes,, Kiplinger, Yahoo Finance, and numerous others.