You would think that for something that babies often put straight in their mouths that infant toys would be safe. You may be surprised to learn that recalls on baby toys are fairly common due to high levels of lead or toxic paints found in them. One factor that raises concern to many consumers is the importing of products from other countries. It wasn’t until my sister, who is very eco-conscious, had sent over a few eco-friendly toys as a baby gift for our first child that I became aware of safer alternatives.
It has become more apparent that harmful materials are making their way into children’s toys such as lead, phthalates, and aluminum. A cost-friendly approach to avoid these is to make your own toys. This option may not be practical for all parents, though. For busy moms or great gift ideas, these are a few eco-friendly toys made of natural materials that are completely safe for babies.
All Natural Teethers and Rattles
We have one of these for our son and he loves it! Some classics never die and Sophie is the perfect example of this with a design that has remained the same over decades (not the price, however!) It is made of 100% natural rubber and food paint. It also squeaks with just a gentle squeeze to entertain baby. It is quite durable and long lasting so overall it’s not a bad value.
Under the Nile Bunny Blanket
Under the Nile makes organic, fair-trade baby products that are made out of 100% certified organic cotton that is super durable and ultra soft. This blanket with its knotted hands and feet are great for teething babies to help soothe achy gums. It’s machine washable so your baby can always have a clean blanky friend to cuddle with and gnaw on.
Organic Soft Teething Toy, Ducky
This organic teething toy is made of completely recycled materials and organic cotton. It is soft yet stuffed with firm organic cotton and corn fiber with non-toxic plastic pellets to give it a little rattle when baby shakes it. The ring shape makes it easy for little hands to hold. The cute ducky character is also gender neutral so this would make a great baby gift item.
I was baffled to see a baby toy made out of cornstarch when I came across this item so of course, I had to get it. Both of my kids loved it, especially the little hand teether which is shaped like fingers. Both items are BPA and PVC-free made from cornstarch resin and biodegradable plastic. The dumbbell rattle is the perfect shape for easy grasping.
Eco-Friendly Developmental Toys
Dandelion Organic Developmental Activity Ball
Made with organic cotton and corn fibers, this activity ball has several different features to engage baby and stimulate oral, visual, and textural senses. It consists of soft fabrics and colors with a gentle rattle when baby shakes it. I can tell you right off my son would go nuts over this because like most babies he is obsessed with tags. It is also non-toxic and safety tested to ensure it’s naturally safe for your baby.
Green Toys My First Stacker
Stacking cups make great developmental toys for babies and toddlers. These are really neat made from recycled milk jugs. They’re safe for babies as young as 6 months old for stacking and nesting. Unlike many traditional stacking cups/rings it has a unique no-post center so babies can stack them and knock them down again like building blocks.
WonderWorld Hexi Twist Squeeze Toy
This natural toy is made of rubberwood and biodegradable fabrics. The bright multi-colors are water-based non toxic paints that are completely safe for mouthing. The twisty bendy design helps to encourage baby’s hand-eye coordination and promotes key motor skills.
Plan Toys Dancing Alligator
Push/pull toys create stimulating play for early childhood development to manipulate skills. When children pull on him this little guy ‘dances’ with a design that makes click-clack sounds as it moves to delight active minds. Plan Toys manufactures toys using only wood from rubber trees to provide safe toys using natural materials.
It’s much easier to spot safe toys for babies with more manufacturers labeling products BPA-free. However, there are still concerns with paints and dyes as well as some of the materials these toys are made of. Cautious parents can have more peace of mind about the toys their little ones are putting in their mouths with these safer alternatives. These are a few fun toys babies and children will love and also make a considerate gift to a new mom or mom-to-be.