A Quick Guide To Eco Symbols

It can be confusing knowing which symbol means what when you are out shopping for green goods. As legislation is constantly changing, you need to make sure your product knowledge is up to date when it comes to knowing which symbol does what.

With a number of things to think about when you shop, including buying Fairtrade products, knowing what you can recycle and understanding what your goods are made of, we’ve decided to make things easy for you by providing a one-stop-shop guide to all the current eco symbols available on the market, and what they mean to you when you go out shopping for products…

Eco symbols guide

Knowing what your symbols and signs mean can lead you to a savvy shopping experience without being concerned about the impact your spending may be having on the environment around you. Print off the table and use it next time you step out for a spree, knowing that you are completely up to date with the latest rules and regulations surrounding your green shopping and eco awareness!

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Organic cosmetics companies ‘still have ingredient issues’

Tanja from online eco-friendly shop Big Green Smile writes about the challenges facing organic beauty companies:

While a significant number of natural beauty and organic cosmetics firms have launched products claiming to be environmentally friendly or organic, they continue to grapple with ingredient issues, according to Inside Cosmeceuticals.

Research led by Organics Monitor suggested that the quality and supply of organic and natural ingredients remains a major issue for manufacturers and brand owners.

The introduction of natural and organic cosmetic standards is also giving rise to new challenges for companies.

Standards agencies are imposing restrictions on the use of synthetic chemicals, processes and packaging.

Brands such as Melvita have passed stringent tests and the France-based organic natural beauty firm is certified organic by Eco-cert.

Judi Beerling, technical research manager at Organic Monitor, believes that companies also find it hard to acquire enough quality materials for their products.

“Having sufficient supply of high quality raw materials at reasonable costs is a major concern for many companies,” she said.

Indigenous Designs Eco Clothing Product Review

A review of organic clothing makes our 200th product review! Click here to take a look at the other 199 eco product reviews.

Indigenous Designs is an organic apparel company that makes one of a kind fair trade organic clothing made by artisans from around the world. In business since 1994, they sent us (or I should say my wife) a Henley hoody.

Henley Hoody

It’s hand knitted, a organic cotton / Tencel blend that:
• Falls to mid hip
• Textured rib knit detailing
• Semi-fitted
• Comes in these colors:
-Sky / Pearl
-Navy / Pearl
-Latte / Pearl
-Punch / Pearl

My wife takes over now, saying: ” It’s lovely and thick, soft, and feels handmade (I didn’t tell her it was), nice quality material and very comfy, yet it still still has a stylish and cute design. I love the look of the shirt and the color is great (we got Navy). It’s perfect with jeans.

“The sleeves are a little long but maybe I’m short-armed… It feels very well-made, I would definitely recommend the product and would try some of their other products/styles too.”

So there you go, a thumbs up. It certainly does look nice, and Indigenous Designs have some excellent credentials, take a look at the fibers they use.

Green People Organic Homme Cool Down Moisturiser Eco Product Review

I’ve reviewed quite a few moisturisers in my time (such as the Bulldog one and Australian Organics) and we’ve also reviewed another product in this Organic Homme range from Green People, the shaving gel. I had high hopes for this moisturiser and it didn’t disappoint.

Organic Homme moisturiser

Kindly send to us by So Organic, this moisturiser is intended for use after shaving, playing sports or being in the sun. As I do little of those three I’ve been using it as a daily moisturiser for testing and have found it works really well. As described in many of past past reviews, having a beard makes it difficult for some moisturisers to soak into the skin. This wasn’t as thick of some of the others I’ve tested and works into the skin nicely.

I can see why it’s not intended as a daily, all over the face moisturiser as unlike other brands which tend to be unscented, this has quite a strong smell of (supposedly) aloe vera, mint and calendula. And it specifically says to avoid the eye area as the mint and eucalyptus oils involved might cause them to sting. You can change the word ‘might’ to ‘does’ as I didn’t read the back before trying it out, but it wasn’t too bad really.

Vegan friendly and made from 93% certified organic materials, Green People also donates 10% of its net profit to charity which is great to see. Green People Organic Homme Cool Down Moisturiser is available from So Organic and costs £9.78 for 125ml.

Teaching Kids To Cook With Organic Ingredients

Handstand Kids cookbooks offer kids a fun, hands-on learning experience, while getting them excited about the world in which they live, and they do it with organic ingredients. Each cookbook introduces kid chefs to one country and comes with a delightful cooking accessory. The first book in this series journeys to Italy and comes complete with a chef’s hat, packaged together in a pizza box. The second, about Mexico, is in a tortilla bag along with an oven mitt, and has been named Toy Directory’s Top Toy of 2008.

As well as buying the book, there are now also Handstand Kids Cooking Classes that offer kid chefs a “hands-on, yummy cooking experience”. Each class uses organic ingredients to make healthy & delicious foods from around the world, along with holiday treats to share with the family!

If you order a cookbook in October (i.e the next couple of days – sorry about the late notice!) from the Handstand Kids website ($28) you will also receive a new eco-friendly child’s reusable shopping bag for FREE that you can use for grocery shopping (an $8 value).

Green People Organic Formula Day Solution Product Review

The thing about doing reviews is that it can be very subjective. Or not. Some products either work or they don’t, but others may be a personal opinion – while I might not like the smell, someone else might. So when I gave Claire this Green People Organic Formula Day Solution I thought she’d like it, after all she loved the Green People Organic Formula Gentle Cleanse. But she didn’t. So in fairness I gave it to my girlfriend to review as well – not knowing whether she’d like it or not. And she did. It’s a funny old world.

Day solution

Anyway, their contrasting views are below, but a little background is that the day solution is basically a moisturiser that’s “suitable for all skin types. Gentle, alcohol-free day cream rich in antioxidants and essential fatty acids, formulated to balance, nourish and moisturise your skin”. It’s also made from 93.5 per cent certified organically grown ingredients and 30p of every one sold is donated to Penny Brohn Cancer Care.

Claire’s view:
“I’m not quite as impressed with the results of the moisturiser, though my skin is very, very fussy when it comes to moisturisers. Products are usually not effective enough, my skin dries out relatively quickly after applying the moisturiser, or it is too oily, and my skin ends up with a ‘nice’ greasy sheen to it by the end of the day. I found this product very thick and heavy, it didn’t rub in very well and left my skin feeling slimy.

“I find a good moisturiser also works well as a makeup primer, this product however, was not. Because it left my skin feeling slimy, it affected the application and look of my makeup. I also didn’t notice the scent of fairly traded rose geranium!”

The girlfriend’s view:
“I liked the smell, it smelled of plants, a bit herby but really nice. I didn’t find it greasy at all, though it was quite light and rubbed in well. I’ve been using it in the morning and at night and it soaked in well and a small amount goes a long way.

“The bottle is fantastic – pump action works really well – not too much comes out and is great compared to a lot of other products I have. It compares very well with non-organic moisturisers but I will be going back to my old brand as I like one with some sun protection in as well which a lot of moisturisers do have but not this one.”

However, she won’t be going back to her old brand as Green People do have a version with factor 15 sun protection here, it’s just the version I got to test didn’t. Happy days.

So there you have it. Green People Organic Formula Day Solution without SP15 costs £11.99 and with is £12.99 for 50ml.

Green People Organic Formula Gentle Cleanse Product Review

Green People make a load of eco-friendly stuff for men and women. We’ve looked at their Itch Away Shampoo before but they kindly sent us some of their Organic Formulas Gentle Cleanse to test. It contains 93% certified organically grown ingredients, is an alcohol-free, moisture-binding cleanser rich in essential fatty acids. While it’s also vegan and not tested on animals. I once again had my friend Claire to try and she gave it a thorough testing.

Green People Organic Formula Gentle Cleanse

“I found it very quick and convenient to use, as you don’t have to rinse your face before you apply it, it just goes straight onto your dry skin. And you have the option of either rinsing it off or wiping away with a cotton pad.

“It’s an effective makeup remover, my skin felt clean and refreshed after using it, also quite calming to the skin. I didn’t notice the ‘beautiful scent of fairly traded rose geranium’ but a pleasant scent isn’t what I look for when choosing cleansers. I also didn’t notice any of the anti-ageing benefits, but maybe others did – do I look 22 years old again?

“What I look for in a cleanser is that it gets rid of the impurities and oils in my skin without drying it out too much, and I found that this cleanser did both of those. No excess oiliness or dryness after using this product for a few days. Again, I don’t necessarily go out of my way to buy organic products, I usually go for names that I know and trust, and am often very sceptical of organic products, and they are also more expensive than non-organic brands, but I found this product mild yet effective.”

Green People Organic Formula Gentle Cleanse costs £12.99 for 200ml, £7.99 for 50ml and £3 for a 10ml trial size.