You recycle, load up on organic fruits and veggies, and choose biking over driving, but are you going green in the bedroom, too? Here are 11 ways to get sexy and sustainable:
1) Meet your match online. Dream of saving the planet with Mr. Right, The Eco-Friendly Edition, by your side? Log on to find your greener half: dating sites like ecodater.com and greenfriends.com cater to singles looking for an eco-minded partner.
2) Slip into organic undergarments. Look for sexy and sustainable materials like organic cotton, hemp silk, or bamboo. Brands like Stella McCartney and Cosabella have plenty of eco-friendly options. Or hit your favorite vintage store, where you can almost always find sexy, retro styles (think pinup-inspired corsets and flirty slips).
3) Take care of a hairy situation. You don't have to go au naturel to get in touch with Mother Nature. Save the planet on silky-smooth gams by shaving with the Preserve razor—it uses replaceable heads and an ergonomic handle made from recycled plastic (mostly Stonyfield Farms yogurt cups). Or pick up the Razor Saver, a device that resharpens dulled blade cartridges.
4) Swap your sheets. Consider redecorating your bedroom, the eco-friendly way. Trade Egyption cotton for organic cotton, or consider bamboo bed linens. They may cost a little more than their cotton counterparts, but bamboo's ability to last makes up for any price differences. Plus, unlike cotton sheets that feel rougher as their threads break down, bamboo sheets actually feel softer and silkier the longer you use them.
5) Tantalize your taste buds. Enjoy a candlelight dinner packed with aphrodisiacs. Stefanie Iris Weiss, author of Eco-Sex, recommends turning up the heat with chili peppers. Sauces, sides, and dressings made from chili peppers (such as hot sauce or salsa) contain the chemical capsaicin, whose effects mirror the signs of arousal (sweating, tingles, rapid heart rate, and flushed cheeks). And serve up organic chocolate for dessert. According to research published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, a compound in dark chocolate called phenylethylamine releases the same endorphins triggered by sex and increases the feelings of attraction between two people.
6) Choose the right lube. Lubricants are a great way to add a little fun to the bedroom—as long as you pick the right one. Look for glycerin-free water-based lubes. Glycerin is a sugar alcohol, which can promote yeast infection in some women. And it also contributes to the sticky and tacky feeling left after the water evaporates.
7) Reduce, reuse, recycle doesn't apply to condoms. To avoid clogging up pipes and treatment plants, toss condoms in the garbage, not the toilet. And before you pick up biodegradable lambskin condoms, make sure you and your partner have both been tested—they only protect against pregnancy, not STDs.
8) Set the mood. If you're going for candlelight, why not pick a product that does double-duty? Jimmyjane's massage oil candles make for sleek standalone candles and melt down into a silky massage oil, should the mood strike.
9) Play safely. Most sex toys are considered a "novelty" item so the ingredients aren't regulated—and many contain phthalates, chemicals commonly used to soften plastics, which have been shown to change hormone levels and cause birth defects. Look for toys made from glass, metal, silicone, or hard plastics, and buy rechargeable styles from eco-friendly brands. Jimmyjane's Form 6 Waterproof Vibrator is a wireless, rechargeable option, and their Little Something line is made from medical-grade gold, platinum, and steel.
10) Protect yourself and the environment. If you've thought about switching from the Pill—which may have a harmful effect on marine life once it passes through your system—consider going greener. Glyde's vegan condoms are certified by the Vegan Society and PETA's Caring Consumer Program. Diaphragms are even more eco friendly since they're non-disposable (they're also less effective, so keep that in mind!). If you're in a monogamous relationship and have both been tested, an IUD may be a great option. But think twice before switching your birth control method for the sake of the environment: a baby may be a bigger eco burden in the long run.
11) Hop in the shower—together. Save water by lathering up and washing off together. Just make sure to move it into the bedroom if things get steamy, or you'll end up paying for it when your next water bill arrives.