Skyrockets in flight … but is it an eco-friendly delight?
Photo: iStockphoto

Ahhh, the bedroom: an oasis of pleasure, a place where terms like “emissions reduction” and “off-gassing” should never intrude. Not that environmentalism and sex don’t mix. It’s just that lying back and thinking about things like CO2 and carcinogens isn’t exactly … hot. So what’s a passionate greenie to do?

The answer is easy as one, two, wheee. We’ve assembled a slew of ideas (and a whole lotta handy resources) that will allow you to relax and enjoy yourself — and they’re handily categorized in order of difficulty. Not that you’ll find much of the latter, since greening the bedroom is easier, more erotic, and involves a heck of a lot more nakedness than any other eco-action we can think of. It doesn’t even require self-denial or making out on scratchy sheets.

Here’s how to start.

Make it a quickie.

Level One: A Quickie

Shower with your sweetie. To start — or finish, as the case may be — get lathered with your partner. You’ll save water, especially if you don’t linger too long (showers aren’t good for tantric sex anyway). And make sure you’ve got low-flow showerheads, which are affordable, come in dozens of pleasing varieties, and save mega-gallons of water.

Level Two: Afternoon Delight

Trade in your toys. Slide ‘n’ glide with organic lubricants and massage oils, or get rolling in vegan condoms (they’re devoid of dairy proteins). You can also play with dozens of eco-friendly sex gizmos, from medical-grade silicone vibrators and dildos to phthalate-free (there’s no family-friendly way to say this) butt plugs.

Soften your sheets. Luxuriate on silky-soft organic cotton, bamboo, or hemp linens, grown and manufactured without pesticides and other nasty toxics.

Find a new turn-on. Replace the incandescent bulbs in your love nest with energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulbs, which come in all kinds of configurations, from dimmers to, er, three-ways. Opt for the “soft” or “warm” versions to get the best glow. Fire up the soy or beeswax candles, which flicker without the lead and petroleum found in conventional models. Or, hey, go ahead and play in the dark.

Family planning stamp, U.S.

Level Three: Tantric Bliss

Say yes, yes, omigod-right-there-yes! to family planning. This might sound like a no-brainer, but thanks to a swelling world population — fed by 80 million unwanted pregnancies each year — there are now 6.6 billion people on the planet, a number that could hit 11.9 billion by 2050. A potent counter-move? Support the battle for reproductive rights around the globe so that humans everywhere have access to contraception and family planning. Whatever your population-related plans, also make sure to practice safe, protected sex, so that your passion has happy endings. The earth will be moved.

Get Green(er) with Grist Links

Organic candles and more:
Aveda
Bluecorn Naturals
Adirondack Craft

Green sex toys:
Good Vibrations
Tantus
Smitten Kitten
Babeland

Organic sheets and more:
Earth Erotics
Northern Naturals
Pristine Planet
Bed, Bath, & Beyond
EcoMall

Organic massage oils, lubricants, vegan condoms, and more:
VeganEssentials
Good Clean Love
Glyde
Earthly Body

Lighting up:
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program
Electric Power Research Institute

For information and action alerts on family planning/reproductive rights:
Planned Parenthood
Ipas
EngenderHealth
Family Health International
Pathfinder International
Population Action International