Click to join the Essential Detox!

Check out what's new!

Nontoxic Window Curtains: Tips to Find the Best Ones for Your Home

interior design textiles Jan 23, 2018

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


When detoxing the home, details—such as the materials and maintenance of curtains—can impact your health.

Similar to table runners, furniture fabrics, bathroom towels and other types of textiles, curtains can be made from natural materials or synthetic chemicals. Curtains made from natural materials are healthier since they contain fewer chemicals.

Healthier textiles are made from natural sources,...

Continue Reading...

Strategies for Reducing New Carpet Odor

cleaning Jan 19, 2018

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


I was in junior high when my parents last installed new carpet. Well, at least, that was the last time I lived there. My sisters and I were on summer break, and so excited to get rid of the worn out carpeting that the previous owners had left behind.

Giddy with excitement, the three of us sat on the couch outside of the living room, watching the installers lay carpet and secure it with tack strips. After a short time, we retreated...

Continue Reading...

Top Chemicals Found in the Home

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


Chemicals, chemicals here and there. Chemicals, chemicals everywhere!  

It’s true. They’re all around us, which can be overwhelming at times.

How do you choose which chemicals to tackle first? Based on the book A to Z of D-Toxing: The Ultimate Guide to Reducing Our Toxic Exposures by Sophia Gushée, the top 10 chemicals (or families of chemicals) of concern and their health effects are described below. This...

Continue Reading...

Chemicals in Paper Towels: Are There Nontoxic Alternatives?

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


Paper towels are handy for cleaning up a milk spill, drying hands, and cleaning the house. Maybe a little too handy.

In 2017, consumers spent $39,203 million on household paper products (paper towels, toilet paper, napkins, tissues, etc). Plus, consumer spending went up by $1,958 million over a two-year period, with spending totaling a lesser $37,245 million in 2015. (1)

Let’s look at it another way.

Americans use 741 pounds of...

Continue Reading...

Harnessing the Power of Color to Change Bedroom Dynamics

bedroom interior design Jan 08, 2018

by Martin Wiggins and Sophia Ruan Gushée


Many homeowners consider the bedroom the most sacred room in the house. This is the place where everyone goes to recharge after a long day, which is precisely why it should be the first area to detox.

For a healthy bedroom environment, always remember to avoid placing toxic furniture and bedding with chemicals such as formaldehyde, PDBEs, and flame retardants. Since Practical Nontoxic Living has already covered detoxing tips for the...

Continue Reading...

Cell Phone Radiation and How to Protect Yourself

by Sophia Ruan Gushée and her editorial team


On April 3, 1973, the first mobile phone call was made by a Motorola employee, Martin Cooper. Ten years later, in 1983, Motorola released its first commercial mobile phone, which sold for $4,000.

Another major milestone in the life of mobile phones came in 2007, when Apple unveiled its first iPhone.

By 2017, cell phones have become accessible to most Americans: about 95% of Americans owned a cell phone, according to a press...

Continue Reading...

10 Chemicals in Personal Care Products to Avoid

self-care Jan 05, 2018

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


There are over 82,000 chemicals registered with the Environmental Protection Agency, with one in seven being used in personal care products.(1)

That means over 11,700 chemicals are used in personal care products. Whoa! That’s a lot of chemicals.

So many personal care products are applied to our skin: deodorant, makeup, shampoo, lotion, toothpaste, feminine care products, perfume or colognes. Chemicals in personal care products can...

Continue Reading...

Colorful and Nontoxic Wall Paint

interior design Jan 05, 2018

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


Painting walls brings out inner-creativity, even in the most non-creative people. With paint chips taped to the wall, we act as interior designers and choose the color that will look best with our flooring, furniture, and art work. In addition to color, it’s important to choose a nontoxic paint versus a conventional one. Why?

Conventional paints often have higher amounts of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)...

Continue Reading...

Zero-VOC Paint Means Less Off-Gassing in Your Home

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


Zero- and low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) labels are popping up on paint cans throughout the U.S. in response to growing consumer demand for paints with minimal toxic chemicals.

Standard wall paints can contain VOCs that may be causing short- and long- term health problems ranging from dizziness to central nervous system damage. (1)  About 40 to 65 percent of paint, or coating, is made up of VOCs, according to the...

Continue Reading...

Reduce Chemical Exposure from Household Cleaning Products

children cleaning Jan 05, 2018

by Angela Cummings and Sophia Ruan Gushée


The cleaning products we use affect not just those who clean, but also those who occupy the space of the cleaned areas. In our homes, that includes adults, children, and unborn children.

Adults who clean are exposed to chemicals in household cleaning products more directly every few days. Areas such as toilets and floors might be cleaned once a week, with kitchen prep surfaces like counters and cutting boards being cleaned...

Continue Reading...

50% Complete


Groundbreaking hacks for practical nontoxic living.

Delivered straight to your inbox.

At a frequency that won't annoy you.