Sometimes someone else just puts together the perfect article that I know is directly aligned with Life Simplified. Today is such a day that I came across this fabulous piece about PVC Free Shower Curtains. Lindsay from Passionate Homemaking explains the noxious smell from a new shower liner / curtain is PVC plastic (#3 plastic) that leaches out gases & toxic odors that you really want to avoid if all possible. Studies have shown that these vinyl curtains contain high concentrations of chemicals that are linked to liver damage as well as damage to the central nervous, respiratory and reproductive systems, some of which can remain around for up to a month after installing.
I had actually read about to possible dangers of PVC a while back and found PVC free liners from IKEA that cost $1.99 (in store only). This one is made from PEVA which is non-vinyl (PVC-free), chlorine-free, biodegradable and affordable. KOHL’S & Amazon both carry PEVA liners as well.
Both Lindsay from Passionate Homemaking and Maureen from The Alternative Consumer also suggest looking past the plastic and into even “greener” options such “organic cotton, hemp, bamboo or linen. Extra perks for hemp, it’s anti-microbial, doesn’t need a liner, and it’s really durable so it’ll last. Even plain old conventionally grown cotton is a better choice than vinyl. At least you can wash any these natural fabrics and keep reusing them for as long as you like.” Pristine Planet is a green comparison shopping site that has many curtain choices in cotton and hemp so I’m sure you’ll be able to find one that matches your needs.