You know what I’m talking about: those direct marketing ads that offer products you’ve never imagined (and probably don’t really need) for $19.95 (and if you call now, you’ll get two of ‘em). Every now and then, one of these catches my attention… in the sense that “Hey… that’s kind of green.”
Now, don’t get me wrong: I’m not calling any of the products listed below “green” (nor am I endorsing them at all… from what I understand, caveat emptor always applies with these products). That would require some time-consuming due diligence to assess the products manufacturing process, materials, and lifecyle. But, in each case, the product’s selling proposition is based on conservation: use less of another product, make other products last longer, or use less energy, water, etc. These products do show that conservation sells… even if it’s not called that.
Without further ado…
[social_buttons]The ShamWow: “Holds 21 times its weight in liquid!” I haven’t tested that (or the product itself, for that matter), but the ShamWow could also nearly eliminate paper towel use if it works as well as the marketing claims. The greenest option for eliminating paper towels may be the rag bag, but, c’mon, this is pretty cool (but, yes, that spokesman guy is scary as hell!). Questions still to be answered in assessing “greeness”: material (a “rayon type of material” according to the website), manufacturing processes, end of life. The reviews are definitely mixed.
Save a Blade: “Save Hundreds on Razor Blades!” OK, that make take some time (though disposable blades aren’t cheap). But sharpening disposable blades to get up to 200 shaves… that makes financial sense, and also cuts back on blades in the trash. Given the ugly environmental impact of razor production, that’s a good thing. Questions still to be answered in assessing “greeness”: materials, manufacturing processes, energy use, origin of the product (I’m guessing “Made in China”), and end of life. Also gets mixed reviews. Treehugger took a look at a similar product, the Razor Saver.
The Snuggie: Who needs a sweater when you’ve got a blanket with sleeves? Better yet, who needs to turn up the heat…? Questions still to answered in assessing “greeness”: materials (“uper soft, thick, luxurious fleece” doesn’t tell us much), manufacturing process, place of origin, and end of life. JennyReviews took a test drive.
Accu-Pressure Safety Caps: This may be one of the best of the bunch (in concept, anyway) — caps for you tire valves that show when the tires are underinflated. Questions still to be answered in assessing “greeness”: materials (probably nearly all plastic), manufacturing process, place of origin, and end of life. Consumer Reports tried them out.
The Twin Draft Guard: “The Patented Double Sided Energy Saving Miracle.” Yeah, “miracle” is a big promise, but this seems like another one that could be really useful for keeping doors and windows from leading hot or cold air. Questions still to be answered in assessing “greeness”: materials, manufacturing processes, place of origin, and end of life. Energy Boomer reviewed it.
No, the Pocket Fisherman (showing my age there!), Hercules Hook, and Stick-up Bulbs didn’t make the cut… but let me know what I’ve missed. And if anyone can explain how the Neosocket could possibly help people save gas, I’m all ears.
Am I having a little fun here? You betcha! I will give it to the direct marketing folks, though: they know how to seize on opportunities, and consumers are clearly looking for ways to save money by reducing waste. That’s something I can get behind in concept… of course, if these products are crap, that does no one any good. Looking forward to hearing what you know… fire away!
Note: none of the links above are affiliate links… not selling anything here!
Update: It turns out there are a few more products that fit the bill here, so, if you’re interested, check out “Five More Greenish Products You’ve Seen on TV.”
Image credit: BuyShamWowNow.com