The Livingreen Mission
Livingreen is committed to creating healthier homes and workplaces. We source and sell non-toxic environmentally responsible products, offer design consults for those who need help and provide the latest information on green building products and practices.
Why We Do What We Do
We believe it is a vital part of our mission to offer our customers better health and real value through honest and transparent information about the toxic chemicals we are exposed to in many widely used, conventionally-made products.
Since 1999, Livingreen has been dedicated to researching and identifying the healthiest, safest, highest performing and most environmentally responsible alternatives to many common “conventionally formulated” products – and to bringing them to our customers at the best prices possible.
Most of us spend our lives indoors – about 30% of the time asleep in our bedrooms, over 50% inside our dwellings, and another 30-40% in the workplace. Whether we realize it or not, we often use and are exposed to chemicals of all kinds in each of these settings – in our mattresses & bedding; in our soaps, detergents & cleaners; in paints and sealers; in flooring and other surfaces throughout our home and work environments made or treated with harmful, unhealthy finishes. Many of these chemicals contain harmful elements.
As in the food industry, where certain preservatives, hormones and other “performance-enhancing” chemicals have been found to cause longer-term adverse health problems, many chemicals commonly found in conventional building products are also toxic to our homes and workplaces. As testament to its growing seriousness, more and more consumer watchdog agencies are now bringing wider attention to the issue.
Here are some common “conventionally formulated” household products that are frequently identified as containing harmful chemicals:
• mattresses, pillows, bedding: have conventionally been made with petroleum-derived foams & gels that can off-gas for many years. Frequently, we consumers literally bury our faces in our bedding for hours every night, breathing in off-gassed toxins or absorbing chemicals through our skin that create adverse health effects from repeated long-term exposure.
• paints, sealers, adhesives and other coatings: commonly formulated with binders, drying agents, and performance enhancers that can be carcinogenic; some of these paints and coatings off-gas and cause poor indoor air quality for years, causing allergic reactions and ongoing chronic health issues
• detergents and cleaners: many are formulated with surfactants, binding and cleaning agents, such as bleach and ammonia, that are considered carcinogenic and harmful to our health.
• flooring, wood products: often manufactured with hazardous adhesives or treated with toxic fire retardants, sealers, or finishes that can adversely affect our health
Toxicity and longer-term health risks from “every day” products in the home and workplace are issues you will surely be hearing about with increasing frequency. For over 15 years now, Livingreen has been here to address your concerns and to provide you with great and healthy solutions.
About Ellen Strickland, Founder and Owner
Ellen founded Livingreen in 1999 with the opening of the 1st store and gallery in Santa Barbara, becoming an early pioneer of the “eco-friendly” lifestyle. This followed a long professional career as an exhibit/habitat and interior designer, and also, importantly, was a response to her own personal experience with life-challenging illness.
Part of her own healing came with the realization that many conventional building materials and methods were frequently not only unhealthy for humans and animals, but also damaging to the environment. She began researching alternatives for use in her own life and work and in the process, discovered an entirely new personal mission and life-choice: to offer the public better, more mindful products for the home and workplace that are healthier for both people and the planet – and to help spread a new mindset for better, healthier and more sustainable living.
One of Ellen’s passions is sharing the knowledge and experience she and the Livingreen staff have accumulated. Ellen – an associate member of AIA and ASID local chapters, the Sustainable Business Council, the Santa Barbara Contractors Association, the Culver City Green Business Alliance and other local and national organizations – often speaks on professional panels and at educational workshops. She is an active designer/green consultant and a frequent contributor to Livingreen's own blog and other outlets for her writing. Ellen has received several awards from the cities of Santa Barbara, Culver City and Los Angeles for her contributions as a green pioneer in these communities, as well as from national organizations such as the International Green Industry Hall of Fame. Most of all, however, she can be found just speaking to and sharing information with her customers….online, by telephone or in person.
Today, with increasing research and growing awareness of the potential health-hazards found in many conventional “every day” consumer products, Livingreen's products are chosen using Livingreen's SHADES of GREEN® vetting methodology to carefully select products which are sustainable, healthy and which provide great value. Livingreen's product mix includes paints & coatings, non-toxic cleaners, reclaimed and sustainable flooring with 0-VOC finishes, mattresses and bedding designed for comfort AND health, baby and children’s goods, and all kinds of eco- gift items. Ellen regularly consults with clients about design, sustainability and healthier products for more conscious living.
From the beginning Ellen’s and Livingreen’s mission has been to tangibly improve the lives of her clients and customers by offering healthy and sustainable choices in building materials, finishes and home/workplace décor. Through its physical and online stores, Livingreen's is more dedicated than ever to providing its customers and their families with products, information and sustainable design consulting services for better living on planet earth.
Come visit us at www.livingreen.com or call us toll-free at 866-966-1319. We’re here to help!