5 Tips for Selecting Safer Toys and Presents
10.28.10 5 Tips for Selecting Safer Toys and Presents
It has started! I usually put off thinking about the holidays as much as possible, but these days I'm trying to be more of a planner. No more waiting until the last minute-- especially if you want to buy eco-friendly, safer toys for your children this (and every!) holiday. Here are a few tips to get you started:
1. Buy from a business you love. Support a locally owned, independent toy shop, or parent owned, small online business, like MightyNest. We vote with our money, and I would rather my money support local businesses and like minded parents, then some mega-corporation that lobbies for less toy safety regulations!
2. Buy toys made from sustainable and natural materials, such as wood, organic cotton, or wool. If you are selecting wood and have a baby or toddler, be sure the wood is not treated with a harmful finish. Select beeswax, food grade finishes and non-toxic paints.
3. Avoid toys with sound and plastic. These are made from unsustainable materials, often trouble us with a repeated sound and can damage your child's hearing. If you must buy a plastic toy, look for brands that use recycled plastic, like Green Toys. Plastic toys also can carry toxic chemicals such as BPA, lead, phthalates, and other harmful toxins. Simply avoid this exposure by not bringing any more plastic toys into your house (ahem, grandparents!).
4. Find out where the toy is made. Try to buy toys made in a country with higher safety standards, like the U.S. or many countries in Europe. Do your research, if possible, or buy your toys from a shop you trust.
5. Books are always a good bet! You really can't go wrong, and there are so many to choose from. Not sure where to start? Check out Pam Allyn's new book, What to Read When, for clear age group ideas.
What are your tips for selecting safer, greener toys?