Living green is no longer a luxury, but rather a lifestyle change that’s becoming an imperative choice should we want to keep our planet in tact and healthy. While most people embrace green living, and do their part at the very least by recycling, the majority of us have not made vast efforts in trying to reduce our carbon footprint. Honestly, as a whole, we’re a selfish lot and don’t take the time to make the green choice. Unfortunately, I fall into this category. While I recycle everything I possibly can, I don’t always buy organic produce, I sometimes leave the water running while I brush my teeth, and on really hot days, I’ve been known to shower sometimes twice, three times a day; and sadly, I think I’m typical when it comes to living green. Kermit the Frog was right: “It’s not easy being green.”
With green being called the new black, it was just a matter of time before the trend made it’s way into the bedroom. Enter Stefanie Iris Weiss, and her new book, Eco-Sex: Go Green Between the Sheets and Make Your Love Life Sustainable. Weiss introduces us to the “eco-sexual,” that person who is green from the moment they wake up in the morning to the minute they crawl back into bed and achieve an orgasm before drifting off to sleep. The eco-sexual is in a constant state of awareness, every choice is made out of love and respect for not only their own body, but the body of others, the earth, and future generations; and of course, a person of that caliber of green living, is going to make sure they are green in their sex life also. It’s a fact that the brain actually deactivates and shuts down in several areas during orgasm, so with reason and logic out the window, how is one supposed to maintain a level of awareness in order to be green? So I did something I’ve never done before: I read a “how-to” book; and being one for adding a lil’ flair to my bedroom activities, Weiss’ book was a good place to start.
A green sex life goes way beyond free trade condoms, bamboo sheets and chemical-free sex toys and lubes. It’s an entire philosophy that starts with the courting of another. While some might think that sex is an indulgent type of behavior that may not allow for political correctness, sustainability and green living, Weiss disagrees. She believes that indulgence is sensual, and in turn sensuality comes from knowing oneself intimately and honestly.
Weiss breaks eco-sex up into three sections:
1. Seduction: courtship, lingerie, accessories, wine, aphrodisiacs, and gifts
2. Sex and sexual health: birth control, sexual-related pills (Viagra!), and body health
3. Exploring eco-sexual adventures: how to nab a fellow eco-sexual, environmentally friendly sex toys, and how to be a green parent
From the moment you decide to accept a date with someone, you have the chance to make the green choice. Seduction starts with preparing yourself to entice another with your oh-so charming ways, which usually involves how to make yourself pleasing to the senses of someone else. Second to physical beauty is scent…you may look like Zooey Deschanel, but if you smell like a steaming pile of compost on midday in July, no one is going to want to get down and dirty with you. An eco-sexual takes short showers in lukewarm water. They use their own organic, and often homemade, soaps and scrubs (the book includes recipes for such things, the Brown Sugar Body Scrub sounds delectable), then move on to organic, free-trade cosmetics, hair products, and finally, the finishing touch, perfume. Oh, and don’t forget the green undies.
An eco-sexual date is one that snubs exhaust fumes and opts for more environmentally responsible modes of transportation (you always thought you’d look precious on a bicycle built for two, didn’t you?) and ends up at an organic or raw restaurant, where even the wine and beer is environmentally sound. When dinner is over and you’re ready to do the sex (yes, I skipped a barrage of foreplay possibilities, because to each his own), an eco-sexual’s bedroom consists of bamboo sheets, or at the very least, organic cotton sheets, mood lighting supplied by organic soy candles, toxin free toys and lube, and free trade condoms. Ideally, a completely gung-ho eco-sexual will opt out of birth control all together, as The Pill not only wrecks havoc on a woman’s body, but actually is making our ocean’s marine life transgendered when the chemicals in The Pill make their way back into the ground and eventually the ocean. While Weiss prefers free-trade condoms because they are biodegradable in the long run (note: they’re actually only biodegradable when we throw them out in the garbage, as opposed to the flushing them down the toilet), she recommends The Rhythm Method (Catholics everywhere just high-fived each other), and the extracts from the neem tree as not only a spermicidal for the prevention of pregnancy, but it’s antiviral properties can “potentially clear up yucky yeast and urinary tract infections and prevent the spread of herpes simplex virus type 2 and HIV.” Yep, there’s a cure-all tree out there in the world, a completely natural substance that could revolutionize how we have sex and protect ourselves, but the FDA has yet to approve it, and there is no guarantee they ever will.
So you had your date, you got lucky, what’s next? Instead of dealing with the awkwardness of next-morning scenarios, make your new lover an organic breakfast (i.e. Morning-After Breakfast: Cacao Nib Shake, another delicious sounding recipe in the book)…food is the best way to break the ice, isn’t? But Weiss doesn’t stop there, she takes you the whole length of a relationship, through a green marriage right up to the decision to procreate or adopt and the greener of the two (adoption, obviously). But should you decide to have a hellion of your own, Weiss compares the eternal debate of cloth versus disposable diapers, and even toxin-free bottles; she leaves no topic untouched.
While the green parenting movement falls under section three, so do green sex toys (babies and toys are adventures, it seems). I spoke to Ethan Imboden, founder of Jimmyjane sex toys (available at Coco De Mer). Imboden has been a designer his entire life, but in 2004 Imboden was ready for a change. He saw the direction of the earth and wanted to be part of the movement to try and save our species before we kill ourselves off. As someone who firmly believes in openness, communication, and sexual wellbeing, Imboden realized that it was in the sex toy arena that he could take his love of design and help to change an industry that isn’t as regulated as it should be. He wanted to make completely environmentally safe products that were geared towards women who love sex. Each of Imboden’s products is work of art made of body-safe materials, and are environmentally conscious through and through, consisting of a rechargeable lithium ion battery – no more Duracell batteries in the landfills! Like Weiss, Imboden is completely committed to the green movement, and lives his life green everyday; he is an eco-sexual.
What about me? Am I going to convert to this new way of life? I know that I’ll never be the eco-sexual that Weiss is, but I’m grateful her book opened me up to a world of which I knew nothing (The Pill causing generations of transgendered fish really got to me). I have the information needed to make the responsible choices not only in my life but also in my bedroom, and should I choose the non-green decision then shame on me, shame on all of us. However, with my new Jimmyjane Form 6 vibrator and my new bamboo Coco de Mer Spatula Spanker, it’s safe to say, a change is a-comin’.