Q: How can I green up my kids’ play space?
A: Aside from having a natural latex foam mattress and a nontoxic pillow, the big thing to consider is what your child plays with. Toys are an important part of children’s lives, so choose organic, eco-friendly ones. Plastic toys that are vinyl or soft and squishy plastic are most likely to contain chemicals called Phthalates which interfere with normal reproductive and hormonal development.
Choose toys made from wood, bamboo, organic cotton and wool, and sustainable rubber: These are materials which are never exposed to pesticides and harsh chemicals and are not decorated with toxic paints. There is no danger of ingesting harmful chemicals or being exposed to toxins which could cause allergies, irritations, or skin problems. Also, eco-friendly toys are not bad for the environment once they are discarded.
When buying art supplies like colored pencils and crayons choose all-natural materials: Look for colored modeling beeswax which is used as an alternative to plastic clay to make any shape your child can imagine.
Shop online: It might be difficult to find organic, eco-friendly toys in regular stores. Here are some good places to look:
- Rosie Hippo sells unique, uncomplicated, inspiring, well-constructed, safe toys made from sustainable wood, organic fabrics, recycled materials — that are made in a way that is kind to the planet.
- Nuno Organic offers a wide variety of natural toys, from teddy bears to non-toxic paints and crayons.
- Hazelnut Kids is a huge online toy store with plenty of natural toy options to choose from that are packed in recycled gift boxes.