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Detox Your Dorm: Top 10 Nontoxic Tips for College Freshmen

Detox Your Dorm: Top 10 Nontoxic Tips for College Freshmen
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Written by Claire Moshenberg

When it comes to college shopping, itís good to†make solid, non-toxic choices at the beginning so that you donít have to invest money every year in replacing items. Toxic confession: I had the same plates all four years of school. They were plastic. Why didnít I replace them? Spare cash was rare, and when it showed up, plates were the last thing on my mind. Why would I replace something I already had when I could pay for things like food and laundry?

Back to school shopping doesnít end with backpacks and pencil cases: If your kids are on their way to college, there are plenty of goods theyíll need for their dorms and plenty of toxic chemicals they probably want to avoid. Here are the top 10 non-toxic tips for your college freshman:

Bedding: When buying sheets and pillowcases, be on the look out for these terms:

  • Polyester/cotton blend
  • Permanent press
  • Easy-care
  • No-iron

According to the Sierra Club, these terms are a red light to let you know that your bedding contains formalydehyde. Organic cotton is your best bet when it comes to environmentally friendly bedding options, though you can also avoid formaldehyde by choosing a cotton flannel or cotton jersey fabric. Remember:

Only buy new bedding if you need it. Commercials and catalogs may insist that college kids need brand new everything, but brand new everything can mean lots of packaging and unnecessary waste.

Top photo: sweetapathy/flickr; second photo: Thinkstock

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12:23AM PDT on Sep 17, 2012

Thanks for sharing this article

11:19AM PDT on Aug 10, 2012


9:06AM PDT on Aug 10, 2012

Very useful, thank you!

5:54AM PDT on Aug 10, 2012

A mother of one student bought her daughter a whole new dinner service when she went to uni. More money than sense.

5:11AM PDT on Aug 10, 2012


5:11AM PDT on Aug 10, 2012


12:44PM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

really don't think 10 pages was necessary, but thanks.

12:05PM PDT on Aug 9, 2012

It's pretty good advice for the dorm or any home.

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