You may think that eco-friendly toys are expensive, hard to find or just won’t offer your baby the same stimulation as mainstream toys. Well then you are in for a pleasant surprise! In this guide we’ll tell you what you need to know about organic and earth-friendly toys from why they are a better choice for your baby to how to choose the right toy.
Why buy an eco-friendly toy? What are the benefits?
Eco-friendly toys are a great choice for your baby or a gift you know you can feel about. This is because natural and organic eco-friendly toys do not contain potentially harmful chemicals such as phlatates, bisphenol A, soft vinyl PVC, formaldehyde, lead or flame retardants – and that’s just to name a few! It can’t be good to expose your baby to all those chemicals and potential irritants – not when there are great natural alternatives that are so much better for the environment too (did you know that non of plastic humankind has created has yet degraded? )
How to choose an eco-friendly baby toy.
1. Safety – Your first consideration when choosing a baby toy is safety. Just because it’s natural or organic doesn’t automatically mean that its safe, so look for small parts (most organic toys tend not to have buttons and the like but check toys meet safety standards.
2. Materials – for a wooden toy to be eco-friendly the wood needs to come from ethical/sustainable sources (many are now made from old rubber trees that no longer produce latex) and soft toys should be made from natural fibres such as cotton, wool or bamboo and should have been grown without the use of chemicals
3. Labelling – for true earth-friendly toys look for labels such as
b. Sustainable materials
c. Vegetable based, water soluble paints
4. Which toys? – of course it’s highly unlikely that all your baby’s toys will be natural, organic or eco-friendly so what are the most important toys that should consider adding to your toy box? Try to make as many toys for a young baby natural/organic as possible – remember they don’t really need those many when they are little. This is important because the younger a child is the less able their body is cope with toxins and all babies have a tendency to put everything in their mouths! So the best choices (and they aren’t too expensive either) are wooden or safer natural rattles and teethers. Organic soft toys offer a safer option for your baby. Having not been manufactured with chemicals or nasty fire retardants not only are they safer for your baby but much more allergy friendly. So look for organic soft toys for teething, soft building blocks and as blankies/comforters/snuggle buddies.
5. How to find organic and eco-friendly toys
Well the good news is that these great baby and earth-friendly toys can be found in a growing number of mainstream shops (although choice maybe limited) and speciality shops most of which are online which always makes for convenient shopping!