How To Choose Non-Toxic Nursery Furniture

Lullaby 08/21/2014

Did you know that the air in a newly furnished nursery can contain 300 different chemicals—compared to just two right outside the window? Designing a nursery is fun, but it’s important to keep in mind the potential health risks associated with conventional furniture and décor. Healthy Child Healthy World, a national non-profit, has an easy-to-use 30+ page guide for expectant and new parents that covers everything from what chemicals to avoid, working with a budget, online resources, and advice from other mothers. Today, we’re sharing their top tips on how to choose non-toxic nursery furniture.

1. Buy a better crib.

If you can, avoid buying a pressed wood crib which can off-gas toxic VOCs. Look for hard woods with water-based finishes. Even buying second-hand cribs might be a safer option since it will have already off-gassed. Make sure the crib meets current safety regulations and give it a facelift with a creative paint job! (Here's how to safely paint a crib in 6 simple steps!)

2. Make your baby’s mattress safer.

Buying a quality mattress is where you should focus your funds when it comes to spending money on your baby’s nursery. Babies spend 14 to 16 hours a day on their mattress, so look for something organic or one that is Greenguard Certified.

3. Select solid wood furniture.

Stay away from laminated wood, plywood, particleboard, and chipboard. All typically use resins and glues that contain carcinogenic formaldehyde.

4. Seal plywood and particleboard furniture

If solid wood isn’t an option, use an MDF Passivating Primer to lock in VOCs.

5. Get good flooring

Cork or hardwoods are their recommendations as flooring options (with a fluffy, cozy rug, of course!). If you do choose carpet, look for ones that follow the sustainable carpets standards outlined by the Carpet and Rug Institute. Also, keep carpet clean by vacuuming regularly.

Want to learn more? Download the Easy Steps to a Healthy & Safe Nursery e-book for information on safer baby care and baby gear, as well as helpful books, apps, websites, and so much more. Also, check out this post with 14 easy eco-updates for the nursery!

Lullaby Paints is a proud supporter of Healthy Child Healthy World.