About Mommy Greenest

Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff in Paris

Welcome! If you found me by choice, thank you—and if you accidentally stumbled in and are about to click away because you think I’m going to wax philosophical about the joys of dressing your kids in hemp, stick around.

I’m not here to preach. I might use biodegradable bathroom cleaner, but I’m not about to deny my three children the occasional hamburger—though I can’t help reminding them what factory farming is doing to the planet. I live by example, but I’m not a sustainabully. (Yes, I made that word up.)

Since I began publishing EcoStiletto in 2007 and blogging as Mommy Greenest in 2008 (the two merged under the MG umbrella in 2013), I’ve written about feeding my kids organic food, battling a lice infestation without chemicals (they won), DIYing natural perfume and disposing of off-gassing toys (“Doll? What doll?”).

When it comes to my three children, I follow the Precautionary Principle as established by the United Nations in 1982. It states that, “When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically.”

I try to raise my family with this knowledge in mind, but—like all of us—sometimes I fail. So maybe I’m not the greenest mommy on the block. Who cares? The point is, I try to make daily choices that can help us create a healthier lifestyle—without judgement. And on this blog, I share information about those choices with you.

Recently, I’ve been more focused on my work with mission-driven brands and organizations, which you can see more of at Lincoln Sarnoff Consulting. I haven’t had time to regularly update Mommy Greenest, but there is literally a decade’s worth of content here already, so hopefully you can find something interesting. And I do read and respond to comments, so bring ’em on!

So, What’s With the Nest?

Rates of children’s illnesses—including cancer, asthma and autism—are escalating at a pace so rapid that many are considered epidemic. Scientists believe that many of these illnesses are caused by chemicals in our environment, which children absorb at a rate much higher than adults. Yet many of these chemicals are so easy to avoid!

The analogy that these scientists have made is to the old “canary in a coal mine” adage, in which the coal mine is the world and our children are the canaries, whose spiking rates of illnesses should be telling us that something is very, very wrong. In creating Mommy Greenest, I kept coming back to the idea of those birds—as well as our children—and the safe environment that is the birthright for both of them.

Please take a minute to click through my slideshow. A picture tells a thousand words about why this information is so important.

I truly believe that by taking small steps to keep toxic chemicals out of our lives, we act collectively to protect our nest for all the world’s children. And if you’d like to know more, please email me at info(at)mommygreenest.com. I’d love to connect!

New Research Connects Plastic with Climate Change

photo: by Olivier Poirion for BBC https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-45043989

“One of the great tragedies of modern society is that we have politicians cherry-picking science in the interests of their own social, cultural, political and religious belief systems, and that’s the beginning of the end of an informed democracy…If your belief is not based in objective truth then maybe you should not be creating legislation based on it.” That’s Neil deGrasse Tyson on climate change. This is how plastic is connected. [Read more…]

Can Starbucks Straws Solve The Plastic Problem?

Photo: money.cnn.com

The decision to eliminate Starbucks straws by 2020 is making headlines. But is it a step in the right direction? Because they can be made of so many different types of plastic and don’t include an identifying “chasing arrow” symbol, straws aren’t typically recycled. Americans use 500 million every day. So eliminating Starbucks straws seems like a good thing, right? Well, maybe. [Read more…]

Solo Cups Are Styrofoam?

red solo cup made of polystyrene aka Styrofoam on polluted beach

photo: Metro Waste Authority (mwatoday.com)

From coffee cup lids to straws, cutlery and cups, polystyrene and “Styrofoam” products are everywhere. Even SOLO cups are made of 100% polystyrene plastic—the same plastic that’s in a Dunkin’ Donuts foam coffee cup.

Yes, really.

In honor of #plasticfreejuly, I’m sharing more information about the growing problem of plastic polluting our oceans. And “Styrofoam” is a huge culprit. [Read more…]

Plastic: 4 Facts You Should Know

seahorse plastic earbud

photo: National Geographic

Have you heard the stats on plastic? One million plastic bags used every minute around the globe. Three million water bottles used every hour in the United States. Five million straws used every day in America. Plastic production increased 2,000 percent from 1964 to 2014. More than 300 million tons of new plastic produced annually and less than 10% recycled.

Plastic overconsumption is affecting our environment—and our health. Reports show that eight million tons go into the ocean each year (the equivalent of a garbage truck full every minute) and that if we don’t do something about it, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.

In the last two years that I’ve spent focused on this issue, I’ve come to understand the bigger picture about plastic pollution—and what we can do about it. If you care about climate change, your health or animal welfare, you need to know these four facts about plastic. [Read more…]

Watch My TEDx Talk!

I feel so honored to have been chosen by TEDxSantaBarbara to share my vision of how one straw can change the world. What are you doing to fight plastic pollution? I’d love to hear about it. Thanks!

The Truth About Mercury

mercury batteryAt IKEA a few weeks ago, I picked up a few things. Candles, a few Beskuren, some replacement Ivrig—you know, the usual essentials. And AA batteries, better known as Aklalisk in IKEAland. When I got those home, I took a closer look at the label where, to my surprise, I found that it listed “0% Mercury.” Do most other batteries contain mercury—and if so, what else? I decided to find out.  [Read more…]

Healing Heartbreak Through Yoga: Mandy Ingber

mommy-greenest-mandy-ingber-yogalosophy-photo-600Like all of us, I’m no stranger to heartbreak. And I’ve always used exercise—particularly yoga, over the last 20 years—to get me through. So when I read about yogi-to-the-stars Mandy Ingber’s new book, Yogalosophy for Inner Strength: 12 Weeks to Heal Your Heart and Embrace Joy, I knew I had to talk to her. “Heartbreak is a universal experience,” she writes in this amazing book, the second in her New York Times best-selling Yogalosophy series. “In this moment of truth lies the opportunity to find action-oriented ways to love yourself.” This idea—that events which challenge us can also inspire critical growth—really resonated with me. With surprising perspective provided by yoga clients like Jennifer Aniston and Brooke Shields, Yogalosophy for Inner Strength is a twelve-week program that focuses on physical and emotional health with the goal of transitioning through grief to joy. Mandy took time out to connect with me in this exclusive interview. [Read more…]