Energy Efficient Black Lights: Ultraviolet LEDs

LED flashlights are now available in the ultraviolet frequency range. These flashlights have the same longevity and durability of other LED lamps. Some of the ultraviolet flashlights on the market are the Inova X5 Ultraviolet (made with anodized aluminum) and the hefty Streamlight Twin Task. You can see many other types listed on this page.

Efficient Lubricant: Jojoba Oil

You’ve probably heard of Jojoba oil being used in cosmetics, but it’s also a great substitute for petroleum-based lubricants, which tend to be strong smelling and polluting. Jojoba is the best alternative because it is a natrual liquid wax that never goes rancid. Use it as you would a petroleum lubricating oil, such as for stuck doors, squeaky hinges and …

Citrus-Based Bike Degreasers

Citrus degreasers are powerful and much safer to use than traditional petroleum-based solvents like gasoline or kerosene. Citrus solvents are non-flammable and 100% biodegradeable. They are also strongly aromatic — so use them in a well-ventilated area or your house will smell like oranges! Best if used on metal parts like chains, bearings and some components. More non-toxic bike cleaning …

Reusable Aluminum Lunch Boxes by Sigg

Sigg is a Swiss company with a reputation for producing quality, non-toxic containers. They makes these lightweight, durable boxes out of anodized aluminium. They have snap lock to keep the lid securely in place, and a rubber seal provides a leakproof closure. They are available from Amazon.

Efficient Sleep Sacks for Travelers

Sleep sacks are lightweight sheets for travelers that pack into a very small space. They provide a clean “cocoon” to sleep inside, when your bedding is questionable. Many European hostels actually require that you bring one along. In warm weather, you can also use sleep sacks as replacements for sleeping bags. The healthiest sleep sack we’ve found is this undyed …

The Pocket Survival Pak

These are the best pocket-sized “survival kits” we’ve seen. They are a collection of minimalist survival tools packed into a tiny case — handy to have during wilderness travel or any other time a emergency situation could arise. They also include “Survival Instructions” with 33 illustrations printed on waterproof paper. The packs were designed by Doug Ritter who runs the …

Dimmable Compact Fluorescent Bulbs

Dimmable compact fluorescents are available, they are usually made with “cold cathode” technology. You can find dimmable bulbs here on Amazon. There’s a 12 pack available here, and a dimmable compact fluorescent spotlight here. 1000 Bulbs also sells a wide range of dimmable compact fluorescent bulbs

Inexpensive, Non-Toxic Solvent: Washing Soda

Washing soda is an efficient substitute for conventional toxic solvents. It cuts grease, cleans petroleum oil, removes wax, and neutralizes odors in the same way that baking soda does. Washing soda is sodium carbonate — it is in the same family as baking soda, but it has been processed differently. It is much more caustic/alkaline, with a pH of 11, …

Portable Pen For All Environments: The Inka Pen

The Inka Pen attaches to a keyring and has a lightweight, stainless steel design. Using a pressurized ink cartridge, it writes at any angle, temperature, altitude and even underwater. The pen is made in the U.S. and has a lifetime warranty. Available from Amazon for $11.

Efficient Repurposing: Twist & Spout

Here’s a way to reuse virtually any soda or water bottle with a screw-on cap. It’s called the Twist & Spout, and it comes in two varieties. Use the Garden style to create a watering can. Use the Kitchen style to make those two-liter soda bottles easy to handle. A set of two is available from Perpetual Kid for $5.99.