By Melissa Moog
Often, Itsabelly is asked “if I can’t afford to create a completely green and non-toxic nursery for my baby what do you suggest I do?” First, to be clear when Itsabelly provides safety tips we are looking at both the baby proofing aspect and the toxic chemical concerns in the nursery. For the purposes of this article we’ll focus on the toxic chemical concern. This means we’re looking at what your baby sleeps on, what affects air quality and what baby places in her mouth. Infact, you can read our article: how to choose non-toxic baby products which provides valuable tips on going green with baby which are also included in our book!
Before we share our tips on how to create a safe and non-toxic nursery for your baby, it’s very important to remember that chemicals are up to 10 times more toxic to children than adults. Babies and children are more susceptible to chemicals’ effect because of their developing organs. For this reason alone Itsabelly is concerned with providing the most toxin free environment for a child to sleep in.
First, Itsabelly advises if you can’t purchase nursery furniture that’s made with non-toxic materials then buy a non-toxic/organic mattress, organic fitted sheets, organic mattress pad and air purifier to reduce exposure to VOCs. Additionally, make sure you allow your new crib to air out for at least a few weeks which allows for some of the toxic fumes to dissipate before your baby sleeps in her nursery. However, this most likely will not get rid of off-gassing completely.
Our #1 pick for safe, non-toxic crib mattresses is Naturepedic’s Lightweight Organic Cotton Classic 2-Stage Crib Mattress. Personally, we’ve reviewed this product and absolutely love the care and thought the company places in creating a truly non-toxic, high quality mattress. This particular mattress and ALL of their mattresses are made with following criteria in mind:
- CERTIFIED ORGANIC – by OTCO to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS)
- GREENGUARD® CERTIFIED – Regularly tested for chemical emissions
- Designed to be free of harmful chemicals and allergens
- Designed to meet CPSC firmness recommendations and fit snugly in U.S. standard size cribs
- Feature strong edge support for use in toddler beds
- Are proudly Made in the USA with a Limited Lifetime Warranty
However, if you can’t purchase an organic mattress for your baby’s crib we suggest purchasing organic fitted sheets and organic waterproof mattress pad to fit over your baby’s mattress. This way you know your baby is laying her tiny body on non-toxic materials and there is a barrier between the actual mattress and her. So, the bottom line is that although we can’t protect baby completely from off gassing or even know how much exposure baby is getting you can do your best to decrease toxins polluting the air by buying a Naturepedic Organic Cotton Waterproof mattress pad which is a product we give high marks to. It’s features are:
- Two Layers of Organic Cotton Flannel – Top and Bottom
- Highly Absorptive and Extra Soft
- Reduces Uneven Temperatures, Sweating, and Clamminess
- Ultra-Thin Waterproof Barrier In Center
(Waterproof Version Only)Features DrySleep™ technology, which effectively blocks liquids from passing through while still allowing the fabric to “breathe.” Some water vapor is allowed to escape resulting in less “sweaty backs” and a drier, more comfortable sleep. Also blocks dust-mites and other allergens.
- Alternative Design
NO Vinyl / PVC
NO Latex (for allergy concerns)
- Machine Wash & Dry
Additionally, we recommend Naturepedic’s organic sheets. All of their crib sheets are made with the following in mind:
- 100% Organically Grown Cotton
- Luxurious 300 Thread Count Sateen or Soft Flannel
- Fitted Design w/ Full Elastic Perimeter Provides Secure Fit
- Machine Washable
- Made in U.S.A.
Last but not least, we’re particularly thrilled about these two facts regarding Naturepedic’s mattresses:
- 2 Stage Dual Firmness – this means you can use your child’s mattress well into their toddler years because one side is slightly firmer for baby & safe sleeping and the other side is slighter firmer for use as your child gets older. Itsabelly loves this because you don’t have to buy a second mattress for your baby as she grows older.
- No icky fire retardants used on their products EVER – this means Naturpedic has taken extra precaution to ensure there is no use of toxic chemicals on any of their products. As stated on their site “Exclusive fire protection system features a non-toxic and naturally derived fire barrier system that is safe and effective. It meets and exceeds all Federal and State flammability standards without the use of harmful chemicals.”
If you have other tips or comments regarding how to green and create a non-toxic nursery for your baby we’d love to hear them. Please leave your comments here.