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Category Archives: Inspiration

Friday the 13th, 13 Scary Facts About Conventional Mattresses

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In honor of Friday the 13th here is a guest blog, from our sister company Lifekind, with 13 scary facts about conventional mattresses.

It makes sense that an organic mattress would use organic cotton, but beyond that, most people may not be aware of many reasons that organic mattresses really are so much better than conventional mattresses. Lucky for you, we are experts in this area, and can break it down for you.

Warning: If you’re unsettled by things that are creepy, crawly, or contaminated, do not read before going to bed!

1. Bed bugs, dust mites, mold, and germs love your mattress
Bed-bugs and dust mites love to live in the dank, dark inside of a mattress. The environment also provides the perfect environment for molds & fungi to thrive in, along with bacteria, viruses, and contagious diseases. Because conventional mattresses are typically made with man-made materials like polyurethane foam, they don’t have the inherent dust-mite resistance that is a feature of the 100%-natural rubber latex used in the organic mattresses we make at Lifekind.

2.Your new mattress may not be new
Conventional mattresses can be sold, used, returned, and then resold as “factory seconds” or “refurbished.”  Even when they are “sterilized” with chemicals, many nasty things can be left behind.  A Dateline investigative report found bed bugs in all stages of life and death, blood, numerous forms of fungi and mold, and occasional traces of urine and fecal matter in refurbished mattresses that were in the same factory and sales-floors as new mattresses.  Only 26 states have laws on selling refurbished mattresses, and the government isn’t setting a standard on proper sterilization, which means it’s up to the mattress builder to determine whether or not a mattress is sterilized.  In the Dateline report, all of the mattresses tested were contaminated.

3. It’s pumped full of hazardous chemicals
Even if your mattress is brand new and uncontaminated, you’re not in the clear yet.  Did you realize that formaldehyde and boric acid are just two of the chemicals commonly used in the manufacture of conventional mattresses?  When Walt Bader, our CEO, was writing his book Toxic Bedrooms, he had a memory foam mattress tested by an independent lab and it emitted 61 VOC chemicals?  The chemicals used in your new mattress can aggravate allergies, cause respiratory irritation or bronchitis, affect your hormone levels, and even limit the amount of oxygen your body is able to absorb. Some chemicals are known carcinogens, endocrine disruptors and reproductive toxins, with warning labels advising “Caution – do not inhale,” “Use in a well-ventilated area,” “Can cause irritation,” or “Avoid contact with skin.”

4.   It can adversely affect the quality of your sleep and health
Cellular repair, rejuvenation, growth and healing all take place while you sleep. The chemicals that are used in the manufacture of conventional mattresses can cause all kinds of discomfort, and even illness. The range of symptoms can be as varied as the people affected, but one thing is for sure: If you’re sleeping on a toxic mattress, you’re not experiencing optimal health. For more details about the effects of sleeping on a toxic mattress, check out chem-tox.com

5. The bed you sleep in can harm future generations through inherited toxicity
Even if you’re one of the lucky ones that are totally unaffected and have children who sleep well without allergies or complaints, you can be certain that your grandchildren will show detectable amounts of harmful chemicals – even before birth!  Scientists have confirmed that chemical fire retardants, such as those used in conventional mattresses, have been measured in pregnant mothers and passed through the placenta to their unborn babies.  The danger of these chemicals is that they build up and remain in fatty tissue for years, waiting to be shared with your growing baby. Even if you aren’t experiencing any symptoms, there’s no way to know how three generations of built-up toxic chemicals will affect your grandchildren.

6. Suspected to contribute to SIDS
A toxic crib mattress is definitely not what you want your brand new baby to start life on. Many of the chemicals used to manufacture crib mattresses, including chemical flame-retardants, are suspected to contribute to SIDS – a logical assumption. Taking into consideration that babies have less mass overall, breathe faster, sleep more, and can’t communicate sources of irritation except by crying, they are by default more sensitive to toxic chemicals. Although research supporting this fact is shunned in general by the mattress and medical communities, common sense and anecdotal evidence from astute parents should not be ignored.  Besides, how many mothers wouldn’t rather be safe than sorry?

7.  Not actually built to last…
It only makes sense that in order to stay in business, a company must sell more product.  Unfortunately, many mattress manufacturers prey on their best customers by employing a trick called “built in obsolescence”.  They basically build a product that is meant to wear out at a certain time interval (often using cheaper materials that will break down more quickly), which forces the customer to pay good money to purchase another mattress from them. (So how do we stay in business?  We focus our marketing on consumers that don’t yet know the benefits of organic mattresses, and we use the best salespeople on the planet: customers who love their organic mattress are always sending their friends and family our way!)

8.  …Except that they last FOR-EV-ER
And not in the “super plush and comfy for a hundred years” kind of forever (see Scary Fact #7), but they will last forever in our landfills.  Even with mattress recycling being fairly effective, there are only 11 mattress recycling facilities in the entire country.  This means that most mattresses end up in the landfills (to the tune of 10 million mattresses a year!)  The polyurethane foams and synthetic materials and fibers that are used in the construction of conventional mattresses are not biodegradable, which means that they will be polluting our Earth for generations to come.

9. Damaging to our natural resources
Commercially grown cotton is a huge offender in polluting the natural world, as are the toxic components used in polyurethane foam and the petrochemical, plastic-based fillers commonly found in, and on, conventional mattresses.  Many people are unaware that cotton is treated with substances such as formaldehyde even before flame retardants come into play, not to mention the harm that GMO crops and pesticides cause the environment.  The production and processing of conventional products is known to cause harm to the environment, and is thought to contribute to global warming.

10. The chemicals can cause irreparable harm to wildlife
The chemicals used in conventional mattress construction that can harm human health are also harmful to wildlife and pets.  Many people recall how the harmful pesticide DDT was an effective bug killer, but that it was also responsible for the deaths of thousands of birds and fish that ate the poisoned bugs, prior to being banned in the 70s.  Clearly our precious wildlife doesn’t have the option to choose organic, nor do they have the option to relocate beyond nature.

11.  Built with sweatshop labor and shipped halfway across the world
Laborers in third world countries build thousands of mattresses daily, working for wages that are a fraction of what a U.S.-based company, paying fair wages, pays their workers.  The finished mattresses are then shipped halfway across the world, subject to fumigation, and sold in American stores.  Basic economics has taught us that price is a huge reason why we choose to purchase an item in the first place, so companies will go to great lengths to make the cheapest product possible.  More often than not, products imported from overseas are sold for a fraction of what a U.S.-based company paying fair wages is able to sell its products for, which is great for the guy profiting off of these mattresses. Even when mattresses are made in the U.S., it’s important to be sure the raw materials are U.S.-grown also – otherwise you’re missing a huge opportunity to improve your own economy.

12.  Every “vote” for conventional mattresses perpetuates the problem
Beyond economics and financial support, it’s important to realize that every dollar spent makes a difference. You wouldn’t cast a ballot in favor of increasing pollution, or to support foreign labor or poor health. However, that’s what happens when you vote with your dollars and purchase mattresses made with conventional methods.  Every dollar that goes towards the conventional mattress industry encourages their practices, strengthens their lobbying power and keeps the public uninformed and in a potentially dangerous position.  Every time a consumer selects a more healthful choice, we can chip away at the old-boys club that is the mattress industry.

13. We don’t know what we don’t know…
Even all of this information is just the tip of the iceberg, a scattered few facts that reflect the limited tests and research that have been done concerning conventional mattresses.  Most of the chemicals used have been deemed safe by default, since they are already in products, but lack the research to show what the long-term or more immediate effects are.  Mattresses are today, where cigarettes were 50 years ago.  As our knowledge increases about the chemicals used in conventional mattresses, we are sure to learn even more dangerous effects they could have on consumers.

It’s a scary thought that your mattress, which should be a safe-haven in your home, could actually be bad for you.

Happy Independence Day!

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We at OMI wish you a happy 4th of July!  May we continue to celebrate all the nations of this world.

Enjoy this video tribute to Independence Day.

Have a fun and safe holiday!

Memorial Day: A Time to Remember

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To our brave service members past and present: we thank you for your service and dedication. We are thinking of you and the loved ones we have lost this Memorial Day.

And for those families awaiting the return home of your soldiers, this is what you have to look forward to:

Heart Warming Testimony: The Toll Family

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Here is a beautiful testimony from an OMI customer family.

The Toll Family

“My triplets (2 boys, 1 girl) are closing in on 5 years old. Both of the boys, Cooper and Carson, have Autism and my daughter Camryn also has chemical sensitivities.  Most people do not realize that Autism is not only a neurological disorder, but it also affects multiple systems within the body, including the body’s ability to detox chemicals and metals.  Since learning this, I have made it my mission to rid my children’s environment of as many toxins as humanly possible, thus lowering their body’s total toxic burden.  It has been a process for sure, but I am a determined mother who wants to provide every opportunity for their little bodies to heal and grow.

We have been on this journey for just over 2 years now, and were ready for the next step in cleaning up their environment.  I came across the New Living and Green Painter stores upon an Internet search for toxin free paints and mattresses.  I called and was lucky enough that Adam Brackman was willing to meet my husband and I on July 4th (when the store was closed) to discuss our needs and see the products both stores had to offer.”

“New Living proves that going green doesn’t always come with a higher price tag, however, we sometimes struggle to be able to provide for everything that our special family needs. We would only be able to afford two of the mattresses for the boys at this time and would hopefully be able to buy Camryn her own non-toxic mattress later in the year. When it came time for the mattresses to be delivered, Adam and his crew showed up to deliver the two mattresses. We had already prepared our daughter, telling her that today was about her brothers getting beds and she would get her own “big girl” bed soon. Camryn was filled with joy to see her brothers new beds, but felt a little left out and asked, “when do I get my own bed?” We were prepared to repeat what we had been telling her, but to all of our surprise, Adam said “How about today?” and miraculously pulled a third mattress out of the truck for her! He had worked behind the scenes and with some help from OMI and his family, and together they had taken care of her mattress. Wow! We were thrilled and Camryn was on her own “big girl” bed in minutes!

Adam and OMI went to great lengths to work with our family to make our mission a reality. We are TRULY thankful to him for all of his efforts and are humbled by his sensitivity to our mission and circumstance!!!  Thank you Adam, OMI and New Living!”

Thank you!!

Regards–
The Toll Patrol

Amber, Dale, Cooper, Carson, and Camryn

Human Mattress Dominos

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Here’s a little video to bring some laughs to your Monday.

  

 850 people in New Orleans were knocked back onto mattresses in “human dominos” to break the world record for the number of people taking part.

Who says mattresses are just for sleeping?

How opposites attract…. The Duo

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My husband and I decided it was time to invest in a better night’s sleep, so we began the hunt for our perfect OrganicPedic® mattress. Seeing how I am less than 5 feet tall and my husband is well over 6 feet tall, it makes finding a mattress that we can agree on almost impossible.

After testing all the mattresses we arrived at a stalemate.  I melted into the Terra Plush while my husband loved the feel of the Flora Nouveau -complete opposites. What solution could we come to if we couldn’t agree which is the most comfortable for us?  The answer came in the form of the Duo.  The Duo was a lifesaver!

The Duo is a 10” mattress, with dual sleep zones to allow each sleeper to their own preferred comfort. Each side of the mattress has three individually sleeved layers of premium 100% natural rubber surrounded by certified organic cotton, and is available in many different comfort options.  Your OMI retailers can help you figure out which configuration is right for you.  Click HERE to find a retailer near you.  The sculpted surface of the top layer provides the ultimate in comfort and pressure point relief. This mattress has a removable cover and dual-zone internal layers that can be customized to accommodate each sleeper’s preference.   It is an everlasting mattress, meaning we can rearrange the layers and even change the firmness levels as our bodies change over time.

 After playing around with the layers, we were each able to create the ideal comfort level we wanted.  My side has a medium bottom layer and an extra soft middle layer while my husband chose a firm for both the bottom and middle layer.

MSRP (mattress only): twin $3495 • full $4395 • queen $5295 • king $6495

Foundation sold separately

For more information on the OrganicPedic mattresses click HERE. (link)

10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

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Enjoy this Earth Day by choosing an activity that helps or honors this planet that we call home.

  1. Plant a Tree

Trees are not only beautiful but provide habitats for plants and animals as well. Your local nursery will be able to help decide what will work in your area.

  1. Go on a Nature Hike

Visit a local park, river or lake to see the beauty that is Mother Nature.  Take the kids along and give them a lesson on the plants and wildlife that are indigenous to your area.

  1. Clean Up a Park

Spend a few hours at a local park picking up litter so that the area is clean and useable for all.

  1. Prepare an Earth-Friendly Meal

Pick a new recipe and cook an entire meal made with locally grown vegetables and non-processed foods to share with friends and family.

  1. Evaluate your Recycling

Take the time to evaluate your recycling and see if there are ways to improve upon it or establish a system.  See our earlier blog  “How to Create a Recycling System that Fits Your Lifestyle” HERE.

  1. Get Unplugged

Many people do not realize that most household appliances use electricity even when not in in use.  Be sure that all your appliances are unplugged when not in use to eliminate waste.

  1. Plant a Garden

Don’t have the space to plant a tree?  Try planting a renewable vegetable or herb garden.  If you have a smaller yard, the vegetables and herbs can be planted in larger pots and placed on decking.

  1. Go Paperless

Switch all you paper bills to E-bills and pay bills online to eliminate excess and unnecessary paper.

  1. Give your TV And Cell Phone the Night Off

Spend the evening without technology and electronics.  Read a book, have a family game night or visit friends and family.

  1. Pay it Forward

Donate to your favorite charity or organization- time, energy or anything you can give.

Make an “Egg-cellent” Organic Easter Basket

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Easter is a great time to celebrate Mother Nature, so skip the plastic grass and artificially sweetened candy and opt for organic treats and eco-friendly gifts.

Pick a Basket that can be Reused

Chose a reusable container that can be used again and again. Sand pails and toy toolboxes make for fun toys that can be played with later.

Recycle a basket and give it a fresh look with new ribbon.

Ditch the Fake Grass Filler

 Stay away from the dreaded and irritating plastic grass that finds a way to stick to everything in your house.  Use shredded fabric from old clothes or blankets to add color and texture.  Or go with shredded newspaper, magazines or printer paper.

Fill your Basket with Organic Treats and Earth-Friendly Toys

There are many different organic treats that can be put into the Easter basket; here is a list of a few great options:

Vegan Organic Easter Bunnies and Assorted Chocolates

Sjaak’s makes an all-natural, sweet dark chocolate bunny and assorted chocolate boxes. It’s 100% organic, Fair Trade Certified and completely vegan. Visit the SJaak’s website HERE for more information.

Surf Sweets Natural Jelly Beans

Their complete line of all natural, organic gummy candy and jellybeans is completely free of additives, dyes and preservatives. Surf Sweets stands by their motto of “If it doesn’t exist in nature, you won’t find it in Surf Sweets.”  Visit the Surf Sweets website HERE for more information.

Yummy Earth Organic Candy

No chemicals, no artificial flavors, and no corn syrup. The line includes many different candies from lollipops to sour jellybeans in 21 delicious flavors with real fruit extracts and delicious taste! They have something for everyone!  Visit the Yummy Earth website HERE for more information.

Lifekind Certified Organic Cotton Bunny

A cute, cuddly and healthy bunny for Easter that is sure to delight children of all ages. The huggable, floppy-eared, handmade bunny is a Lifekind® original. Made with safe, certified organic materials, it’s covered in super-soft terry fleece, the body is stuffed with organic buckwheat hulls, and the head, arms, and legs are filled with organic cotton. Visit the Lifekind  website HERE for more information.

Made by Me Wood Toys

Made by Me toys are beautiful wooden toys that are designed and crafted in Vermont, USA. All their products are made from local sustainable hardwood.  These toys are great as they are not only fun to play with but you get to build and decorate them too.  These toys come in many different designs such as trucks, racecars, trains and more.  Visit the Little Cool Toys website HERE for more information.

Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

 You do not need to use harsh and toxic chemicals to dye your Easter eggs.  Chose the safer and healthier option by using organic products that can be found in your kitchen.

Boil eggs with all natural ingredients, such as brown onion skins for orange, red cabbage for sky blue or carrot tops for green. Or experiment and see what colors nature can give you!

Soak hard-boiled eggs in grape juice for lavender, beet juice for pink or strong brewed coffee for brown.

Have fun with all the organic possibilities out there, and here’s wishing you a happy, healthy Easter!

Have you met the Fusion?

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When customers ask us which mattresses we love, it’s hard to decide because there are so many wonderful choices.  So when the time came to buy a mattress for my 5-year-old daughter, I knew I had a tough decision to make.  I chose the Fusion, since it’s a great combination of both natural rubber and innersprings that can offer the support needed to accommodate my daughter for years to come.   The Fusion offers comfort at a wonderful price!

This 10”, two-sided mattress is the “best of both worlds,” combining a sturdy innerspring core with the supportive 100% natural rubber latex. The innerspring coil system is covered on both sides with certified organic cotton canvas and several layers of our sanitized certified organic cotton padding. The padding is covered with another layer of cotton canvas, then internally hand-tufted to keep the padding from shifting and to minimize body impressions. Finally, a luxurious 2” layer of 100%-natural rubber latex is added to the top and bottom surfaces, for increased cushioning, and it’s finished with our signature OrganicPedic® quilting.

MSRP (mattress only): twin $2395 • full $2995 • queen $3195 • king $4295

Our Most Precious Resource

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Just because it’s raining outside doesn’t mean that we don’t need to be conscious of our consumption.  Here is an excellent video that will help you think about our impact on the world. It is produced by GE, but the information is excellent!

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