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Monday, 23 July 2012

It's easy, being green

A couple of months ago, Dita Von Teese recommended me Kimberly Snyder's Beauty Detox Solution after I asked how she managed to maintain such a flawless complexion. Naturally, I snapped up this piece of advice (can you believe Dita is going to be 40 this autumn? I'd be happy to look like that right now!) and it's quickly become my favourite nutrition and diet book. The Glowing Green Smoothie, giving up meat and cow's milk, and following Kim's food combining and light to heavy principles have really helped my skin, weight and muscle tone maintenance dramatically :) And I haven't had to think about calories once!

However, as well as solid science-based advice, there are some tin foil hat theories in both her book and her blog, admittedly mentioned only in passing- feng shui and the existence of chakras and ether (not the alcohol-like drug!), for example. Overall though, I found the book's approach very positive and since I cut back on meat and started buying organic I've become interested in being more green in general, not just to look prettier, but also because it feels good :) Other than doing a bit of recycling I really didn't care much before.

I've cut the harsh chemicals out of my home completely, replacing them with Ecover and homemade cleaning products (white wine vinegar is good for more or less everything!) and organic compostable cat litter (cheaper and better-smelling than the gravelly stuff and means no more dusty little grey paw prints!), and am in the process of cutting them out of my toiletries and cosmetics, bit by bit, replacing them with gentler, organic substitutes.

Then I discovered this website: A Low Impact Woodland Home. It's like a real-life hobbit hole! I would love to build one myself one day, when I'm retired from modelling and city life, and have even started drawing up little plans, just for fun :) 

 A low impact woodland family home with two stories, solar power and central heating, built in Wales in 4 months for 3 grand!

I was also interested in this page of the site, which bullet points suggestions for eco living in general and includes such advice as "Smile at people and meet their eyes." I smiled myself when I read that alongside practical advice to do with building your own solar panels out of scrap metal and so on, but the more I think about it, the more it makes sense.

If more people felt happy more often, they would probably not feel the need to buy so much stuff that they don't need :)

Not that I'm about to start fashioning my own clothing out of recycled hemp and living on found nuts and grass or anything, and my own hobbit hole would probably cost rather more than £3k due to chandelier, flock wallpaper and taxidermy budget, but still, I can at least tweak a few little things in my life that will actually make me happier and less stressed overall. And perhaps that happiness and relaxation will spread to others through contact :)

 Photo by Callan Tham, Singapore, December 2011. MUA: Kenny Tan

Two of the suggestions under 'Consumption' that I am planning on following whenever I can from now on are:
  • Avoid buying newly manufactured things, instead buy second hand or make our own.
  • Trade or give gifts in preference to using money.
I will always check charity shops and eBay for things that I am looking for now, and buy even more vintage and second hand items from independent shops, flea markets and car boot sales. I will also try posting on Facebook and Twitter when I am looking for particular things in case someone on there has it to sell or swap. That way it doesn't have to be made new in a factory, I can just purchase existing stuff so that it doesn't end up in a landfill. It's always broken my heart to see old, beautifully crafted clothing and furniture end up this way!

I am also considering doing some modelling on a "Trade of Skills" basis. A lot of photographers have non-photography day jobs and perhaps some might be interested in having me model for them in exchange for some sort of skill they can offer to me in return, like making clothes, making furniture, interior decorating, giving my cats a veterinary check-up, giving me a dental check-up, glazing, plumbing, leg-waxing, accounting- anything, really :) While I know that my landlord, energy suppliers and grocery store won't be interested, it would be nice to at least liberate myself from the demands of cold hard cash some of the time ;)

... Normal service will be resumed shortly ;)

Anita xx