There’s a lot of talk about choosing non-toxic toys and furniture for your children’s spaces, but what does that actually mean and what should you look for? We’ll help you cut through some of the jargon and discover what really matters. Below, we break down some key features to look for when choosing the best non-toxic toys and furniture for your little one’s playroom.
Starting with a clean foundation is your best bet when it comes to making sure you’re bringing in the safest pieces for your kids. Look for natural materials like wood and simple textiles like cotton and linen. But of course, that’s just the start. All finishes and coatings should be free from harmful chemicals and child-safe.
While the word “non-toxic” has taken on a life of its own, there are actually ways to ensure that finishes are free from toxins and safe for your little ones. After all, kids have a tendency to bite, cuddle, and lick their favorite toys—all of which would put them in pretty close contact with their playthings!
One of the ways that companies can ensure the finishes they’re using are free from harmful chemicals is to get them tested with a laboratory that specializes in safety testing. More on that below, but safety testing is an important part of the toy development process, because it gives independent verification to the materials used and peace of mind for parents.
Another way to reduce the risk of inadvertently exposing children to harmful finishes is to learn more about the companies you’re purchasing from. For example, at Milton & Goose, we manufacture in the United States because it gives us better oversight into the materials and finishes being used in our products. In fact, in the United States, it’s nearly impossible to even purchase paint with lead in it for residential or use in children’s products. This is just one of the ways our company has chosen to reduce risk and increase safety.
The CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) has set forth some pretty specific guidelines to help protect our children and their well-being. Manufacturers that create pieces for children must ensure that their products pass muster by using CPSC-approved third-party laboratories to test for common relevant toxins in materials and coatings. At Milton & Goose, we safety test our finishes for lead, phthalates, and heavy metals to be sure we’re providing the safest durable finishes on our products.
Ultimately, parents still need to do their research and learn more about the brands they’re buying from, but by sticking to natural materials, non-toxic finishes, and safety-tested products, parents can at least feel comfortable knowing they’re heading in the right direction.