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25 Eco-Moms to Watch

Mamas on a mission to make the world a little greener.

25 Eco-Moms to Watch

*We’ve partnered with Joolz to recognize the moms that are changing the world for their babies, and ours. No doubt about it, parenthood makes you think first and foremost with your heart. From the moment your baby is born, it feels as if you’re suddenly walking around wearing your heart on your sleeve. Which in turn makes you hyper-aware of all that is around us and sensitive to issues you never quite paid attention to before (but should have). As parents, it’s our job to make the world a better place for the little ones we’ve brought into it. And the current state of affairs has made many of us even more proactive than ever before. Still, we know balancing life with kids can be all-consuming. So when we learn about moms dedicating their days to creating a better world for not only their kids, but all of ours, we take notice. And we’ve partnered with Joolz, an eco-minded company focused on positive design, to help you take notice. From eco-activists, to sustainable designers, to green beauty experts and more, here are 25 eco-moms to watch. Be prepared to be inspired -- and thankful -- for all that they do. 1. Lauren Bush Lauren, founder of FEED Projects. Lauren Bush Lauren has been helping children and families since long before she had one of her own. She founded FEED in 2007 as a way to help people fight against hunger in a tangible way, through the purchase of products that bring meals and nutrients to those in need. FEED has since expanded well beyond its signature burlap bags, with a plethora of well-intentioned collaborations and styles, all produced under fair-labor conditions, using environmentally friendly materials whenever possible. And now that Lauren’s the mom of a baby boy, we’re betting FEED’s diaper bags are coming in pretty handy…. 2. Bea Johnson, founder of Zero Waste Home. When Bea Johnson began her family 8 years ago she also set out on a path for the good of the world by dedicating herself and her family to a zero waste lifestyle. That means committing herself to the 5 R’s: Reduce what you do need, Reuse what you consume, Recycle what you cannot Refuse, Reduce or Reuse, and Rot (Compost) the rest. Her family of four manages to generate only a quart-size jar of waste per year! Bea now goes around the world giving talks about helping others help themselves and the world. 3. Nasiba Adilova, founder of The Tot. Nasiba Adilova is much more than a pretty face. After she became a mommy, this jet-setting Russian fashionista founded of The Tot, an online shop filled with smartly curated gear and fashion for baby and mom. The site is committed to eco-friendly merchandise, but also features cool collabs and mama advice and recommendations. After testing a pop-up shop in Dallas, The Tot has settled into a permanent location, which will be convenient for Nasiba when she welcomes Baby #2 to her brood this spring. 4. Mona Hanna-Attisha, pediatrician and children's health advocate. As a pediatrician Mona Hanna-Attisha already dedicates her life to helping children. But it wasn’t until 2014 that she became recognized on a national level. Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha was the doctor that brought the Flint Water Crisis to it’s feet. After much denial from the state, Dr. Hanna-Attisha would not ignore her patients complaining of strange systems and elevated lead levels. The graduate of Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, Hanna-Attisha conducted her own study that found the percentage of elevated blood lead levels among children in the city had doubled and announced the results at a press conference.

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Grace with her Joolz stroller

5. Grace Lee, founder of Nine Naturals. Grace Lee believes personal care products should make you feel and look beautiful without potentially harming you or your children. She was a Wall Street executive when she realized that the beauty aisle was full of hazardous chemicals. When she started shopping for natural brands, she was disappointed by many of them. So she created Nine Naturals and has since dedicated her life to create chemical-free beauty and skincare products that actually work. All of Nine Natural’s products are natural, plant based and safe for pregnancy and beyond. 6. Mara Hoffman, fashion designer. When it comes to women’s fashion, the terms sustainable and stylish don’t often go hand in hand. But everyone’s favorite mama designer Mara Hoffman is changing perceptions. She’s said that it was the birth of her son that pushed her to go greener, and has since been evolving her fashion line to include more recycled and eco-friendly fabrics and prints. Her latest collections also includes beautiful basics that will stand the test of time, a pushback, she says, against fast fashion and overconsumption.

Nicole with her Joolz stroller

7. Nicole Berrie, founder of Bonberi. It’s not easy to make eating broccoli look fun and, dare we say, sexy, but Berrie manages to do both. Her website Bonberi presents a plant-based, sustainable lifestyle that is equally chic and fashionable -- a place where you can talk about wellness with an open mind. Now that she’s got a baby, family cooking has become increasingly important, and this year, she’ll launch her first e-cookbook, focused on plant-based family friendly meals. In the meantime, you’ll find plenty of tools on Bonberi to figure out what “feeling and looking good” means to you -- the kind of support that a lot of us need when trying to live a healthier, more balanced life. 8. Tata Harper, founder of Tata Harper. The words “natural” and “beauty” aren’t necessarily two that go hand in hand. Unless you’re talking about Tata Harper’s Next Generation Beauty Line. Tata set out on a mission to give the skincare industry a fresh start with highly effective and luxurious beauty products that are completely free of synthetic ingredients. As a bonus all of Tata’s packaging is made without labels so it’s one less waste to our environment.

Hana with her Joolz stroller

9. Hana Getachew, founder of Bole Road Textiles. When it comes to interior design, Hana Getachew believes we can do better. Her ethically sourced home decor is all designed in Brooklyn and handwoven in Ethiopia, using ancient weaving traditions, passed down through the generations. The birth of her baby girl in 2016 prompted her to launch Bole Road Baby, filled with beautiful baby blankets, towels and other nursery accents. 10. Krysta Lyn, founder of Yipkids. Finding clothes that your opinionated toddler loves to wear is tough. Finding clothes that they love and you feel good supporting? Even tougher! That’s why Krysta Lyn created Yipkids with both her kids and the world they live in mind. Her line is constructed from environmentally responsible materials, and design and manufactured right in her hometown of Long Beach, California.

Kelsey with her Joolz stroller

11. Kelsey Harper, Flower Girl Los Angeles. Floral arrangements at an event are always something to ooh and aah over, especially when it’s Kelsey Harper of Flower Girl Los Angeles designing your arrangements. But this impressive mama goes a few steps further. Not only are her flowers seasonal and sourced locally which leaves behind a smaller eco-footprint, but Flower Girl also makes sure to waste as little as possible, implementing composting of all green waste. Now that’s a reason to celebrate. 12. Tara Foley, founder of Follain. With all the nasties in much of our skincare and makeup, Tara Foley had a dream to create a healthy alternative. Her first beauty shop opened in Boston in 2013, and she has since expanded to up and down the Northeast Corridor, providing a curated selection of skin, hair and cosmetic products that are safe (non-toxic), eco-friendly, high-performance, luxe, and U.S.-made. This past year’s been a busy one: Tara launched house label, set up shop in NYC and had a baby, giving her a new appreciation for pregnancy and postpartum care. 13. Melissa Wood, health and wellness coach. When it comes to being green, Melissa Wood starts from the inside out. This NYC-based health and wellness coach, yoga teacher and model brings a touch of glam to the healthy, plant-based lifestyle, whether she’s leading your fave workout on Fitner App, or gracing the pages of Shape, Women’s Health and Pregnancy & Newborn magazines. And with a toddler at home, we know that’s no small task! 14. Vani Hari, Food Babe. After a health scare that hospitalized Vani Hari 10 years ago, this new mama, was inspired to live a healthy life, harnessing her energy into investigating what is really in our food. She’s spent thousands of hours over the years researching and talking to experts to make sense of this over-processed world we live in. Vani empowers her readers by giving them the knowledge and truth about harmful ingredients in processed foods and how to avoid the stuff the food industry is trying to hide. Something we could all use and pass down to our kids! 15. Paige Wolf, founder of a B Corp-certified PR firm. It takes a lot of willpower to turn down work with brands that don’t meet your eco-standards, especially as a small business owner. But PR maven Paige Wolf only works with clients who contribute to a sustainable world and positive change. The Philadelphia mom has built her portfolio out of green lifestyle and nonprofit brands, and is the first certified B Corporation public relations company in her city, meeting comprehensive and transparent social and environmental standards. 16. Shazi Visram, founder of Happy Family Brands. As the founder of Happy Family Brands, mom-of-two Shazi Visram is helping us make our families greener and healthier at the most important time in their life: before their 2nd birthdays. Shazi founded her baby food company 10 years ago (before she was even a mom!) and it has since extended into toddler and prenatal, and launched tons of innovative mealtime solutions. Happy Family Brands is also certified as a B-Corporation, which means it meets rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. 17. Phyllis Omido, founder the Center for Justice, Governance, and Environmental Action. We typically think of breast milk as nutritional gold, but when mamas are exposed to toxins, it can be anything but healthy. After Kenyan mom Phyllis Omido realized her baby boy had lead poisoning due to her own dangerous chemical exposure at a local plant, she worked to get the plant shut down, and help get support and medical aid for others in the poor community in which she lived. She ultimately founded the Center for Justice, Governance, and Environmental Action and was awarded the Golman Environmental Prize Recipient for her work. 18. Jessika Bailey, founder of Natural Mother Magazine. When Jessika Bailey became a mother, she “fell” into natural parenting quite, well, naturally: she followed her instincts. And in a world of endless information where making decisions for your family can be quite overwhelming, she felt the need to help others be confident in their parenting styles. So she created Natural Mother Magazine and gifted moms and dads with a community where they could share and read stories about gentle parenting and holistic living -- and all of it without judgement.   19. Christine Lolley, founder of design firm Solares. Christine Lolley has long been interested in green home design and sustainable living and, together with Tom Knezic, created Solares. With energy efficiency and affordability in mind, the Solares team provides architectural expertise to design eco-friendly homes and, hopefully, build a more sustainable future. A mother of two, Lolley even built her parents’ house, which blends perfectly with its surrounding environment and features temperature regulation techniques that greatly reduce heating needs in the winter and eliminate the need for air conditioning in the summer. 20. Judi Shils, founder of Turning Green. Judi Shils isn’t new to activism. She created a campaign that opposed hazardous chemicals in beauty and personal care products and founded Search for the Cause, which probed into the skyrocketing cancer rates in Marin County. With Turning Green, Shils (along with her daughter) broadened her mission to equip high school and college students with the tools to shift mindsets towards sustainable living. Her goal: to empower future leaders to take the helm in the fight for environmental justice. 21. Salma Hayek, actress and activist. Sure, Salma Hayek is a beautiful, talented actress. But she also does her part to live “green” -- even more so now that she’s a mom. Hayek hasn’t just given her presence and money to environmental causes and charities. She’s also served as a board member to Global Green, an organization that builds sustainable and resilient communities and that provides affordable housing to areas in need. And since you can never do enough to nurture Mother Nature, Hayek reportedly installed solar panels on her Los Angeles home. 22. Colleen Wachob, co-founder of mindbodygreen. As Founding Partner and Chief Brand Officer at lifestyle media brand mindbodygreen, Colleen Wachob totally walks the walk. Which is important when you’re leading a company that inspires people to live their best life. But that doesn’t mean it’s her way or the highway. Her and her team work hard to provide their readers with the best info possible about mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, and of course environmental topics for those on their wellness journeys. 23. Rosario Dawson, actress and activist. Rosario Dawson is no stranger to advocating for social changes. She’s engaged with various organizations to both protect the planet and help those in need. Her latest project? Studio 189 -- an online platform dedicated to promote and curate African and African-inspired content and brands. Using the world of fashion for social change, Dawson hopes to help African communities in need by empowering women, creating jobs and supporting education. In 2012, Dawson also partnered with SodaStream International to launch the first annual Unbottle the World Day, in an effort to raise awareness to the impact of cans and plastic bottles on the environment. 24. Melinda Olson, founder of Earth Mama Angel Baby. Founder of baby and mama skincare brand, Earth Mama Angel Baby, Melinda Olson began formulating organic herbal remedies for friends in her Oregon kitchen many years ago. From there her love of organic gardening, passion for herbs and desire to find safe products for mamas and babies led to founding Earth Mama Angel Baby, an industry leader in safe, natural and organic herbal products. So you can feel good about what you’re putting on baby’s skin. 25. Kelly Nichols, activist, educator, and organizer for Moms Clean Air Force. Kelly Nichols grew up roaming the woods of mid-coast Maine and Northern Minnesota, instilling a long-lasting love of nature. With Moms Clean Air Force, she works tirelessly to make the air of her home state, Illinois, cleaner. Moms Clean Air Force is a community of 1,000,000 moms and dads united to fight against air pollution, in the name of our children’s health and future. Did we miss an eco-mom that inspires you? Tell us all about her in comments! *This post was sponsored by Joolz. Want to see why every eco-mom is loving their strollers? Check them out here.

I felt lost as a new mother, but babywearing helped me find myself again

I wish someone had told me before how special wearing your baby can be, even when you have no idea how to do it.

My first baby and I were alone in our Brooklyn apartment during a particularly cold spring with yet another day of no plans. My husband was back at work after a mere three weeks of parental leave (what a joke!) and all my friends were busy with their childless lives—which kept them too busy to stop by or check in (making me, at times, feel jealous).

It was another day in which I would wait for baby to fall asleep for nap number one so I could shower and get ready to attempt to get out of the house together to do something, anything really, so I wouldn't feel the walls of the apartment close in on me by the time the second nap rolled around. I would pack all the diapers and toys and pacifiers and pump and bottles into a ginormous stroller that was already too heavy to push without a baby in it .

Then I would spend so much time figuring out where we could go with said stroller, because I wanted to avoid places with steps or narrow doors (I couldn't lift the stroller by myself and I was too embarrassed to ask strangers for help—also hi, New Yorkers, please help new moms when you see them huffing and puffing up the subway stairs, okay?). Then I would obsess about the weather, was it too cold to bring the baby out? And by the time I thought I had our adventure planned, the baby would wake up, I would still be in my PJs and it was time to pump yet again.

Slowly, but surely, and mostly thanks to sleep deprivation and isolation, I began to detest this whole new mom life. I've always been a social butterfly. I moved to New York because I craved that non-stop energy the city has and in the years before having my baby I amassed new friends I made through my daily adventures. I would never stop. I would walk everywhere just to take in the scenery and was always on the move.

Now I had this ball and chain attached to me, I thought, that didn't even allow me to make it out of the door to walk the dog. This sucks, I would think regularly, followed by maybe I'm not meant to be a mom after all.


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Time-saving formula tips our editors swear by

Less time making bottles, more time snuggling.

As a new parent, it can feel like feeding your baby is a full-time job—with a very demanding nightshift. Add in the additional steps it takes to prepare a bottle of formula and, well… we don't blame you if you're eager to save some time when you can. After all, that means more time for snuggling your baby or practicing your own well-deserved self-care.

Here's the upside: Many, many formula-feeding mamas before you have experienced the same thing, and they've developed some excellent tricks that can help you mix up a bottle in record time. Here are the best time-saving formula tips from editors here at Motherly.

1. Use room temperature water

The top suggestion that came up time and time again was to introduce bottles with room temperature water from the beginning. That way, you can make a bottle whenever you need it without worrying about warming up water—which is a total lifesaver when you have to make a bottle on the go or in the middle of the night.

2. Buy online to save shopping time

You'll need a lot of formula throughout the first year and beyond—so finding a brand like Comforts, which offers high-quality infant formula at lower prices, will help you save a substantial amount of money. Not to mention, you can order online or find the formula on shelves during your standard shopping trip—and that'll save you so much time and effort as well.

3. Pre-measure nighttime bottles

The middle of the night is the last time you'll want to spend precious minutes mixing up a bottle. Instead, our editors suggest measuring out the correct amount of powder formula into a bottle and putting the necessary portion of water on your bedside table. That way, all you have to do is roll over and combine the water and formula in the bottle before feeding your baby. Sounds so much better than hiking all the way to the kitchen and back at 3 am, right?

4. Divide serving sizes for outings

Before leaving the house with your baby, divvy up any portions of formula and water that you may need during your outing. Then, when your baby is hungry, just combine the pre-measured water and powder serving in the bottle. Our editors confirm this is much easier than trying to portion out the right amount of water or formula while riding in the car.

5. Memorize the mental math

Soon enough, you'll be able to prepare a bottle in your sleep. But, especially in the beginning or when increasing your baby's serving, the mental math can take a bit of time. If #mombrain makes it tough to commit the measurements to memory, write up a cheat sheet for yourself or anyone else who will prepare your baby's bottle.

6. Warm up chilled formula with water

If you're the savvy kind of mom who prepares and refrigerates bottles for the day in advance, you'll probably want to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Rather than purchase a bottle warmer, our editors say the old-fashioned method works incredibly well: Just plunge the sealed bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes and—voila!—it's ready to serve.



Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on Comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Errands and showers are not self-care for moms

Thinking they are is what's burning moms out.

A friend and I bump into each other at Target nearly every time we go. We don't pre-plan this; we must just be on the same paper towel use cycle or something. Really, I think there was a stretch where I saw her at Target five times in a row.

We've turned it into a bit of a running joke. "Yeah," I say sarcastically, "We needed paper towels so you know, I had to come to Target… for two hours of alone time."

She'll laugh and reply, "Oh yes, we were out of… um… paper clips. So here I am, shopping without the kids. Heaven!"

Now don't get me wrong. I adore my trips to Target (and based on the fullness of my cart when I leave, I am pretty sure Target adores my trips there, too).

But my little running joke with my friend is actually a big problem. Because why is the absence of paper towels the thing that prompts me to get a break? And why on earth is buying paper towels considered a break for moms?

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