Seventh Generation Ask the Science Man

Seventh Generation has a column called ‘Ask the Science Man’ and I often find answers to questions that have been lingering in my mind.  One of the most recent Q&A columns was about VOC emissions from paint, new carpet and cleaning supplies.  As a reminder, VOC (volatile organic compounds) are toxins that are emitted into your home from many products.  A huge concern is that not only are they emitted the instance they come into your home but they can constantly emit VOCs over time – some products emit VOCs into your home for up to 3 years!

Browse the archives to find answers to other burning questions such as non-toxic nail polish, SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) in products, plastic shower curtains and organic tampons.  If you don’t find the answer to the question on your mind, then Ask the Science Man yourself!


Seventh Generation Disinfectant Wipes and Sprays


Seventh Generation has come out with another great line of eco-friendly and non-toxic cleaning products.  This time, they have joined forces with CleanWell, using their patented technology based on thymol, a component of thyme oil, to create a line of disinfectant wipes and sprays, including both a multi-surface cleaner and a bathroom cleaner.

Their disinfectant line kills over 99.99% of household germs commonly found in your home, such as Influenza A, H1N1, Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella enterica, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli.  Now you clean AND disinfectant safely, in one step.

Look for their new line wherever you normally purchase Seventh Generation products including mass retailers such as Target, Walgreens, Toys ‘R Us and natural food stores such as Whole Foods.

Print a coupon for $1 OFF any Seventh Generation product.


Going Green Starter Kits

Know someone interested in a greener, more eco-friendly lifestyle?  Put a green kit on your Christmas shopping list, a collection of tools and tips to start out on their green journey. 

Kathy’s Climate Kits - kits include: compact fluorescent bulbs, weather stripping, tire pressure gauge, faucet aerator, reusable bags, LED nightlight, toilet leak detection tablets, letters to Congress, junk mail removal, and more. Plus, one tree is planted for every kit sold.  $45

Green Lemonaide- kits arrive in a reusable tote with SIGG water bottle, cleaning scrub, sink aerators, CFL and shower timer.  $35

The Green Starter Kit - kit includes It’s Easy Being Green book, Canvas Grocery Tote, Produce Bag, Stainless Steel Water Bottle by THERMOS, Stainless Steel Mug, Banana Paper Note Pad, CFL Bulb, Sun & Earth healthy cleaning products and coupon for 2 Trees Planted  $59

Seventh Generation Kits – You can’t go wrong with a kit from Seventh Generation.  Choose from their healthy home and cleaning kits or baby kits.  All filled with great Seventh Generation products.  $30 – 45


Natural Carpet Stain and Spot Remover

p95833bI’m in the last two weeks of my pregnancy and nesting like crazy, cleaning and organizing anything that can be.  One of the things on my ‘to do’ list was to scrub some of the carpet stains that have accumulated over the last couple months.

I recently bought a bottle of Seventh Generation Natural Carpet Stain and Spot Remover so I grabbed it and some white microfiber cloths.  I shouldn’t be surprised when a chemical free product works as good as anything with chemicals but still I am!

The directions say to spray the stain and let it set for 5-10 minutes before blotting up the stain.  I had to wait about 2-3 minutes and the stains were gone.  I was able to easily remove a stain on the carpet in my office that had been there for 2 years. 

I love it when a non-toxic, environmentally friendly product works just as well (or better!) than a conventional, chemical filled one.   Seventh Generational Natural Carpet Stain and Spot Remover uses hydrogen peroxide as its most active stain removal agent.  As with all Seventh Generation products, ALL of the ingredients are disclosed so you can decide whether or not you want them used in your house.

At $4.99 per bottle (get a $1 OFF coupon), it’s worth every penny.


To Bleach or Not?

prod_laundry_bleach_64oz-free-clear_260x282For a long time, I’ve excluded bleach from our house and found other ways to clean where I used to use bleach.  I don’t like the chlorine bleach smell and chlorine isn’t good for the environment.  I haven’t missed my bleach except in the laundry department where keeping stains out of my toddler’s clothing can be a challenge.  A little marker here, grass stains there.  Mix it all up, leave it in the laundry bin for a week and voila – permanent stain. 

I recently was looking through Seventh Generation’s line of products and found a chlorine FREE bleach and decided to give it a whirl.  My first use was for an outdoor curtain that wasn’t taken down during the last 2 winters and accumulated some mildew over the damp months.  While it didn’t remove all the mildew ( and I didn’t expect it would since it’d been hanging there for 2 years ), it removed a lot of it and I was thrilled!

Through the ‘Ask the Science Man’ archives, I found that their line of bleach is intended for laundry stain removal only and is not tested as a disinfectant or sanitizer.  According to the Science Man, “Non-chlorine bleaches are typically comprised of low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide or percarbonate which are able to kill many common bacteria, fungi and viruses. Non-chlorine bleaches are capable of reducing the quantity of microorganisms on laundry, although the ability to kill microorganisms when diluted in a wash cycle decreases antimicrobial efficacy.[1-2] For the best results with chlorine free bleach, pre-treat any highly contaminated items. ”

Even though the site said the bleach was intended for laundry stain removal, the Science Man did recommend trying chlorine free bleach on tile for grout cleaning so my next task is to take it to the tile floor in my shower.  I might rue the day we chose an all tile floor in the shower – it’s all little tiles so there is LOTS of grout to get mildewy.  If that doesn’t work, he also recommended three different options: baking soda/water, vinegar/water or a steam cleaner.  I have all three, hopefully one of them will make the job easy!

So, to answer the question: To Bleach or Not?  The answer is yes – but with a non chlorine bleach!  I’m a Seventh Generation junkie but Ecover and Biokleen also make them.