where green living, parenthood, and interiors intersect

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Dish on Eco-Sponges

Ever since my friend Lizzy turned me onto them, I've been buying Twist sponges for all my cleaning needs. I like their power and their style; yes, a design enthusiast like me can't stand to have a neon green sponge in her light blue and white kitchen. And yes, I'm aware that I have a problem.

The upside of a seemingly impractical white sponge is that when it stops rinsing back to white after about two months, I know it probably needs to be pitched. Reports show that most Americans do not toss their sponges often enough, causing the spread of many virus and bacteria infections. So I can justify my design snobbishness because it is probably keeping us a bit safer too!

I stock up on them every so often at Sustainable NYC in the East Village, but it's not very practical to have such brand loyalty when that brand is a high-traffic 26-mile drive away. Luckily, Twist also has an online store now.

And perhaps even more conveniently, eco-friendly sponges have hit mainstream shelves now too. There are more options than ever, but Scotch Brite's Greener Clean line of eco-friendly sponges has me pretty impressed, from material, to life cycle, to efficacy, and of course the aesthetically pleasing neutral color. If you don't find them in your grocery store, Amazon seems to have the full line as well.

Here's what reviewer Danielle Liss had to say on Buy-Her.

"Greener Clean Soap Loaded Scrubbers

The soap pads are made from recycled plastic bottles. You know that 12 oz. plastic water bottle that you recycled? It has enough fibers to make approximately 6 scrubbers. The soap is biodegradable and phosphorus free. 100% recycled packaging.

GRADE: Works really well on the broiler pan, which is a popular item in our house for cooking salmon.

Greener Clean Natural Fiber Non-Scratch Sponge

Made from 100% natural materials. This is the replacement for my green and yellow sponge.

GRADE: Just as awesome and my green and yellow sponge. It also passed the Brian test. My husband doesn’t care if things are eco-friendly. He wants it to work without any additional effort. He liked it.

Greener Clean Natural Fiber Scour Pad

Made from 100% natural materials. The scrubbing fibers are made from 50% natural agave. The pads are large, so I cut them into smaller strips (I have freaky small child hands) and got about six strips from the two pads.

GRADE: FANTASTIC. These took off burned off stains from glass baking dishes that I thought were never going to come off. I am a fan for life.

Greener Clean Biodegradable Absorbent Sponge

Made from 100% natural materials. Reusable and long-lasting.

GRADE: Very handy. Super absorbent. A good alternative to paper towels. Especially if you have to clean up spills from hairless cats that like to knock over cups of water. (Is this a problem that only I have?) Much easier than using rags.

Greener Clean Biodegradable Expanding Soft Sponge

Made from 100% natural materials. Expands when wet.

GRADE: Very similar to the biodegradable absorbent sponge; however, it is expandable. Two thin sponges fit into very little packaging. I like the idea that I can get two sponges with a lot less waste."