Glycerin: An Underrated Natural Moisturizer

Glycerin is perhaps the best natural humectant (moisturizing substance). It absorbs an amazing 50 percent of its weight in moisture from the air. This makes it an excellent aftershave — just a rub a little on your skin for the moisturizing effect. Glycerin is created when a vegetable oil like olive oil is mixed with an alakli. The result is …

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Efficient Products I Like

Here are some efficient products I like in 2013. I’ve tested all these products and found that they perform well. Generally, I like things that are ultralight and ultradurable. I also look for things that are sustainably made and come with lifetime warranties. For purchase things, I like Amazon and REI, due to their efficient return policies — I return …

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Energy Efficient Upgrades That Pay For Themselves

Home improvement can pay for itself, and even put cash back in your pocket – if you’re putting your money in the right places.  Renovations that increase your home’s energy efficiency aren’t just nice for the environment, they can be economical as well.  The folks at One Block Off The Grid offer a great guide to help you sort out …

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Reduce Your Household Water Use Efficiently

Reducing household water usage has big-time benefits for both homeowners and for the environment: reducing strain on local water resources, cutting demand on wastewater treatment facilities, and lowering both water and sewage utility bills, to name a few. Although this is by no means an exhaustive list, we’ve put together a collection of water-saving tips and products that can help …

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A Metaefficient Bathroom – Environmentally Friendly And Functional

A bathroom may be one of the smallest rooms of a home, but make no mistake – it’s a vital one. Whether you’re building a new home or renovating an existing one, integrating efficient components into a bathroom will add convenience and improve functionality, and also minimize the environmental impact of energy and water consumption.

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The Three Fundamental Flaws Of The Modern Toilet

My unwinking, analytical gaze of efficiency now turns to the toilet. Unfortunately, the design of the modern Western toilet is highly inefficient, in fact, it is so inefficient that it is actually harming our health. The modern toilet has only been around for about 150 years — the “porcelain throne” was created to “give dignity” to the water closet, rather …

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Efficient: Foot Pedal Faucet Controllers

Pedal Works HandsFree Faucet Controller

Foot pedal faucet controllers allow you to control a faucet hands-free. These devices are efficient and hygienic — they are commonly found in commercial kitchens and hospitals. I’m not sure why we don’t see them in more homes. You can reduce water use by 50% using pedal controllers, and if it’s hot water, you’ll be saving power too. At a …

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The Best Kitchen Faucet Aerators

One of the least expensive ways to increase the efficiency of your home is to install low-flow aerators on your faucets. These devices save water, and lower utility bills as well, because less hot water is used. Because of this, low-flow aerators will generally pay for themselves in only a few months.

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Road Runner Shower Head Has Unique “Pause” Feature

I’ve been testing the Road Runner low-flow showerhead, which is rated at 1.59 gallons per minute. Currently, it’s my favorite showerhead, beating out my previous favorites: the 2GPM Oxygenics showerhead, and the 1.75GPM Nigara Earth Massage showerhead. The Road Runner has a unique feature: it has a built-in sensor that detects when the water gets warm enough for showering (95° …

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How To Filter Your Shower Water Very Efficiently

This post has been updated for 2011. I recently wrote about Filtering Your Drinking Water Very Efficiently, but let us turn now to your shower water. When we shower, we absorb the substances dissolved in water through our skin quite readily. For example, 60% of the chlorine absorbed daily comes from showering in chlorinated water. The chlorine is absorbed directly …

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Now Available: Very Efficient: Toilet Lid Sinks

These sinks are finally available in the U.S. They sit atop your toilet and replace the lid. When you flush the toilet, the clean water that would go straight down the toilet is first routed up through a spigot to dispense pure water for hand washing. The sink shut off automatically when the toilet has been filled. It saves on …

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Efficient Moisturizer: Unrefined Shea Butter

Shea Butter is one of the most efficient skin moisturizers available. It is an organic product that protects against dry skin and sunburn. Shea butter is extracted from the nuts of the Shea Karite tree, found in the tropical regions of West Africa. It is a sustainable resource and it requires no pesticides to grow.

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Efficient Material of the Year: Bamboo

Well, this year bamboo takes the prize as efficient material of the year. We’ve got to hand it to the grass that is showing us yet another side of its efficiency. Since bamboo products are still sometimes difficult to locate, we had to track down these items from a number of different sources. First on the list, are two bamboo …

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Faucet Restrictors/Aerators

Have you ever spent time at the sink, judiciously adjusting the hot and cold water, to achieve that happy medium between “cold” and “scalding hot”? Well, we’ve been there too — and we’ve noticed that water streams down the sink in a meta-inefficient manner. That’s why these faucet restrictors are so handy. They attach like a regular faucet aerator but …

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Water Saving Shower Head: “Earth Massage”

This was my first low-flow showerhead, and it’s still one of my favorites. The Earth Massage showerhead produces a fine spray or pulsing jet but only uses 1.75 gallons per minute. It works consistently in both low and high water pressures. A “soak and soap” button reduces the flow rate to 1.0 gpm for soaping up and allows for the …