Submitted questions will be posted with my response by the following Tuesday or before.
Submitted comments will be moderated and approved within 24 hours.
Question from Suzie
I’m looking to find out what waterproof mattress protectors are least toxic for my daughter’s bed.
I bought one from a reputable company made of organic cotton and what I assumed was a P.U.L. waterproof membrane. When I arrived it smelled that horrible toxic plastic way. It turns out the membrane is polyester. Would this give off a smell and is it toxic?
Another (cheaper) option I was looking at was an organic cotton with polyurethane laminated directly onto the back. Do you think this would be less toxic?
Any other options I could look into? Do you think I should return the one I have bought?
Polyester will offgas. Polyurethane is less toxic and a better option. I recommend this one from Naturepedic. Pure polyurethane is one of the least toxic plastics but some have additives that are not disclosed to consumers. Read more about the toxins in plastics here.
Naturepedic is GOTS certified and uses pure polyurethane.
Question from Kris
I need a chair where I put my legs up above my heart. I went through the furniture you have listed but unable to find any.
I am not aware of any lazyboy-type chair that is non-toxic. This type of chair is typically filled with polyurethane foam, which I do not recommend. You could look into having one custom made, but it would be quite expensive. Have you considered getting a solid wood footstool and using cushions to prop up your feet? You could use cushions filled with natural fill such as kapok, wool or cotton.
Question from Bonnie
Readers, any suggestions?
Question from Lindsey
Debra is an advocate of zeolite. You can read more about her thoughts on it here. It is not something I have personally used. We don’t currently sell any products on the site.
Question from Sandy
AFM Safecoat and ECOS paints are both non-toxic and have low odor. I don’t know of any paint that is truly free of any odor until it cures. You might want to try a sample before applying it to a large area.
Question from K
I live in an apartment so I have to bring my wet, snowy and salt filled boots inside from a day in the snow. I have not been able to find a mat that does not smell awful. Any recommendations? Right now I am using a silicone kitchen drying mat but they are so small. Maybe what I am doing is the best idea? I need to find a really large silicone mat then. If using the silicone as I am, no toxins would escape into the air correct? Is there any way to know if the silicone is made out of sand vs. plastics?
Silicone is made out of sand, but like plastic, it can have additives that are not disclosed by the manufacturer. Some silicone may be safer than others. This is a topic I plan to do more research on.
Have you considered a metal tray. Here is one example, but they come in many styles and price points. Just make sure it does not have a finish or coating on it.
Question from Rebecca
I have spent hours & days looking at the items in your site. I am so thankful to have found it & for your work.
I started comparing blenders after I read one of your posts about the blender you use & the ones you recommend. They we’re, KitchenAid, Cuisinart, & Breville, I believe.
I recently found another site which listen an abundance of cookware. I was wondering if you could look over the list & tell me if any of these are suitable as well when it comes to PTFEs & PFOEs.
Mamavation does very thorough research. I agree with their recommendations!
Question from Aileen
Do you have any ideas or resources that would not hurt the budget?
You can find many options on Debra’s List. Buying GOTS certified organic cotton is the best way to ensure that there are no harmful chemicals in the product. Make sure that the entire product, and not just the cover or the fill, are GOTS certified. Oeko Tex certification is not as stringent as GOTS and does allow the use of synthetic fabrics.
I really can’t say for certain whether or not a sensitive individual will react to something because everyone is different. I can tell you whether or not a product is non-toxic.
Readers, any recommendations for those with MCS?
Question from Dsmythe
I recently purchased 100% Cotton GOTS certified (male) socks and underwear from a reputable online retailer.
Unfortunately, these clothes triggered my symptoms severely, and I have no doubt these were the cause of my symptoms.
Even after washing they still triggered me.
Is there any explanation for this?
I really can’t say what will trigger a sensitive individual because everyone is different. GOTS certified organic clothing is non-toxic. Perhaps there is something natural that is a problem for you.
Question from Andi
Any suggestions as to what to use to unclog a kitchen drain? Actually it is not really clogged, but very sluggish. Had someone use a plunger, didn’t help. Then he wanted to use dawn detergent, I said no way, so he used my 7th Generation Dishwashing Liquid – didn’t help and he said to use a cup everyday – outrageously expensive to do that! I did the baking soda, vinegar, boiling water – helped slightly but the guy said don’t use – baking soda just gums it all up. Next thing suggested to snake it – quite expensive. So does anyone know of anything to use down a drain that is scent free and non toxic and that works?
You can get a drain auger that is easy to use and doesn’t require any chemicals.