Good Clean Love has long been an advocate for the use of healthy ingredients in consumer products. We know how far-reaching the dangers of toxic chemicals are, and the serious effects they can have on a person’s long-term health and well-being. That’s why we were thrilled to discover that our friends at Keep A Breast Foundation were launching a new effort to educate consumers: a movement they call the Non Toxic Revolution.
Non Toxic Revolution’s mission is simple: to inform, educate and inspire young people to revolt against the dangers of toxic chemicals in their environment and food supply, especially those linked to the development of breast cancer. NTR’s aim is to focus on prevention as a means of maintaining long-term health and well-being. They also provide alternative choices so that young people everywhere can make smart changes in their purchasing and consumption behavior.
We sat down with Non Toxic Revolution’s Program Director, Monica Schrock, to learn more about the movement.
1. Non Toxic Revolution’s mission is to inform, educate and inspire young people to revolt against the dangers of toxic chemicals in their environment and food supply, especially those linked to the development of breast cancer. What inspired the founding of NTR?
NTR was started in 2011 by Keep A Breast’s founder, Shaney jo Darden. After she started Keep A Breast in 2000, she became part of the world of breast cancer news, research, and facts. When she learned that most cancers were not actually related to family history, she then began to ask herself: what can a cancer diagnosis be attributed to?
She began studying more information about the environmental links to cancer. Then she came across a report on Breast Cancer Prevention Partners’ website called “The State of The Evidence,” written by Dr. Janet Grey. It was hard, scientific evidence of the environmental links to cancer. This changed her life. After realizing that breast cancer diagnosis was only 10 percent genetic and 90 percent attributable to our environment, she knew there was an even bigger conversation that needed to be had.
She started Non Toxic Revolution (NTR) to open a direct dialogue about the food we eat, the products we use, and the toxins we are exposed to daily that really increase our risk of breast cancer and many other diseases. NTR uses art, music, and creative messaging to inform, educate, and inspire young people to revolt against the dangers of toxic chemicals in their everyday environment and personal care products – especially those linked to the initiation of breast cancer. Moreover, it also teaches young people to become their own health advocates, both personally and through activism.
2. How and why did you first become involved with NTR and the Keep A Breast Foundation?
I actually started as a guest writer with Keep A Breast (KAB) when they first launched Non Toxic Revolution (NTR). Non toxic living has been my passion since I was a teenager and starting have terrible reactions to conventional products. My friend Luis worked for KAB and thought I would be the perfect person to create useful content for their blog. I was so stoked on the program and had no idea that one day I would be lucky enough to have it be my entire job.
3. You just recently unveiled the launch of the Non Toxic Revolution Marketplace. What were your goals and motivation behind this marketplace?
We are so excited for this marketplace, and so grateful to the brands that have not only helped us launch it, but make products that are safe for the world. Over the years, we have created tons of content and guides on what ingredients to avoid in products, but at the end of the day the question is always “Okay! Then what should I buy?” We wanted to give our audience the chance to learn, and then apply their new knowledge by allowing them to purchase non toxic products right on our site. This way they can start their journey to lowering their exposure to harmful chemicals while also supporting the NTR program.
4. Some people may hesitate to “join the revolution”, arguing that it is too expensive, difficult, and/or time-consuming to make these lifestyle and habit changes. What is your response to these arguments?
Yes, this definitely happens sometimes. I generally start with the facts, send them some resources, and open a dialogue about how using several products a day with harmful ingredients is the true root of the problem. To make it less daunting, I tell them they can ease into it, start with the products you use every single day and work your way from there. We love sharing DIY recipes as well, to show that it doesn’t have to be expensive if you keep it simple and only buy the products you need. Then I give them recommendations of some of my favorite non toxic personal care items. The best part is getting a message from customers about how much they love the products I suggested, and how much better they feel because they know they are doing something good for their health. It makes the tougher conversations worth it!
Honestly though, the interactions we have when we go to events are extremely heartwarming. Young people are so receptive of this information, and even if their parents are defensive at first, after we explain some of our education and what our mission is, they usually end up thanking us. The feeling of being able to help empower people to take their health into their own hands is unmatched.
5. What is the most important piece of advice you have for young people (or any of our readers) to help protect themselves against harmful chemical in their day-to-day lives?
Oh man, that’s a tough one! I would have to say the most important thing you can do is read labels! Everything we buy has a label, and to start understanding and becoming aware of what’s in your products you have to look there, especially with personal care and food. The answers are mostly there, and once you get more familiar, you’ll be able to quickly decide whether or not something is going to positively or negatively impact your health over time. We recommend downloading the Environmental Working Group’s Healthy Living App so you can scan products and ingredients while you’re shopping. It’s a huge help in the beginning.
6. What’s next for NTR?
My vision for the future of NTR is one that is more involved in advocacy. We advocate for the consumer demand for safer products, which is so important, and now we want to become more involved with organizations working on the legislative side of things. If the demand is there, then we can make a difference when it comes to the policies regulating consumer goods. We all have a voice in this and we can vote two ways, with actual policy votes for higher standards of regulation, and with our dollar by the products we choose to buy.
To learn more about NTR and the work they are doing, visit their website. You can also purchase our very own Good Clean Love Consensual Essentials Kit through their online marketplace. Join the non toxic revolution today!