Lifestyles of the Green and the Famous

Celebrities and their green personal care products

As Election Day nears with the first presidential debate this Friday, Burt’s Bees opened a “voting booth” in NYC last week to support an initiative for The Natural Seal. Actress Julianne Moore rallied with an appearance in support of the effort by The Natural Products Association to develop an identifying symbol for packaging that informs consumers when items contain 95% natural ingredients.

“It’s important to me to raise my children in a healthy environment, while preserving our environment,” said Moore. “With personal care, it’s harder to know what the best choices are because many products out there say they’re natural but contain chemicals that I’ve learned to avoid.” The Seal includes natural processing, no animal testing, and packaging guidelines. Cast your vote online and win a chance for prizes including a year’s worth of Burt’s Bees nontoxic goodies. Also, on the personal care company’s website, a handy downloadable wallet card lists stuff to beware of when shopping.

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Matthew Modine bicycles, Bono recycles, and Willie Nelson wails for Farm Aid

Actor Matthew Modine (of Showtime’s hit series, Weeds) is taking New Yorkers for a ride on the city’s bike paths with Olympian Sharon Seagrave this Saturday with his Bicycle for a Day event. Advocating for biking, walking, and public-transportation, “it’s a call to action to reduce the carbon footprint and have fun doing it!” The day includes a Luke Haas concert, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. speaking, and prizes such as Puma “Glow” Bicycles and a Segway.

The long list of celeb supporters includes Kevin Nealon, David Alan Grier, Heather Graham, Lucy Liu, William Baldwin, Liam Neeson, Liev Schrieber, Lorraine Bracco, Gina Gershon, Joe Pantaliano, designer Isaac Mizrahi, and the sports world’s Cal Ripkin and John McEnroe. What? No Ed Begley, Jr.?!  Eco-activist Laurie David is involved, but it’s great to see names other than the usual suspects who attend all the LA events.

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Fur-free Fashion, Sheryl Crow's Bag and NBC Bags Pickens' Plan

Fashion Week hit NYC with a Be EcoChic event hosted by Adrian Grenier (Entourage and Planet Green’s Alter Eco) to benefit the Sierra Club and sponsored by Aveeno while beauty firm Aveda kicked off the runway fest on September 4th with its 30th anniversary celebration. Launching its Green Platform with designers Rodarte, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Preen, and Alexander Wang, they’re participating in these green actions: supplying SIGG non-toxic aluminum bottles with tap water, serving organic regionally-available foods backstage, and fur-free fashion. A fleet of pedi-cabs were on-hand (and feet) for models, media and designers. Aveda’s also promoting its "Kick the Cap Out of Oceans Plastic" campaign with 100-percent recycled plastic caps.

Lindsay Lohan attended Charlotte Ronson’s fur-free show on Saturday, sponsored by the Human Society of the US. The designer joins the likes of Calvin Klein, Stella McCartney, Ralph Lauren, and Tommy Hilfiger who also took the fur-free pledge. Meanwhile PETA stormed the stage at Donna Karan’s show in protest, waving “Bunny Butcher” and “Donna: Dump Fur” signs.

Move over Anya Hindmarch and your famed “I’m Not a Plastic Bag” bags. Marc Jacobs’ eco-bags “Save My Pole” and “One Earth Once Chance” ($125 plus) and Edun, Bono and wife Ali Hewson’s design firm, has 100 organic cotton totes with a Rainer Maria Rilke poem inside ($25). Ben Affleck, Nicole Richie, and Jake Gyllenhaal have been seen sporting Edun’s sustainable clothes.

Now musician Sheryl Crow designed a special reusable bag for Whole Foods. Her “A Better Bag” costs only about a buck and supports NRDC’s Simple Steps effort to reduce plastic in landfills. Available October 15, the bag contains 80 percent post-consumer waste (four recycled plastic bottles). The design features a sketch of a tree with Crow’s words: I love my home, Planet Earth.

Oil tycoon turned television commercial star, T. Boone Pickens, now renowned for his alternative energy ads got his latest TV spot rejected by NBC. Pickens’ offending ad states that Iran is converting vehicles to natural gas, so why isn’t the U.S.?  NBC wanted proof. Seems Pickens is delving into R&D on natural gas cars. Other networks agreed to show all four spots in the campaign and after Pickens wrote NBC’s CEO that the network was denying Americans their right to info, NBC relented to air it. What ever happened to NBC/Universal’s supposed “Green is Universal” initiative?

Celebrity presence at the greenish Republican Convention

While members of the Creative Coalition Susan Sarandon and Spike Lee showed up at the Dem’s Denver shindig last week, co-president Tim Daly (Private Practice) will star-stud the Grand Ole Party’s party along with Kerry Washington (Ray) in the Twin Cities. The bipartisan nonprofit that brings “arts & letters” types together for causes hosts a “Bank of America Goes Green” reception. Read their initiatives and decide for yourself if they’re really green, or just greenwashed.

Hollywood’s politico honcho, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, can’t make the Republican Convention because he’s busy with budget problems in Sacramento, CA. Other notable no-shows include President Bush and VP Cheney, scheduled to speak Labor Day, but upstaged by Gustav raining on the parade. Some speculation claims that scheduling the current administration on opening night provided sufficient distance from the nominees and that the holiday meant lower viewership.


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Greening and glitterati at the Democratic Convention

Ben Affleck, an early supporter of Sen. Barack Obama for the president, not only attends the Democratic National Convention in Denver this week, but is busy with activities. He’ll pack up produce for America’s Second Harvest with Michelle Obama, participate in the SeaChange Ideas Forum, and play poker to benefit Paralyzed Veterans of America.

The Oscar-winning actor plays Poker at the Ballpark with pros as well as celebs Paul Rudd, Sarah Silverman and Seth Meyers. Joining Affleck at the roundtable forum, "History of Progressive America," are Josh Brolin and Rosario Dawson. Other stars at the festivities include John Legend, who performed at the opening of the event, actresses Charlize Theron, Anne Hathaway, Annette Bening, and Jessica Alba – and, of course, Oprah Winfrey along with all the political royalty.

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Issue 25

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