There are just SO many things to think about when preparing for a baby, and there’s not doubt that planning and decorating a nursery is one of the most exciting!
As mamas, we only want the best for our babies, and choose the items we register for very carefully for safety and effectiveness. But, have you even stopped to think about the TYPE of furniture going in the nursery? Friend, let me just tell you that when I started my wellness journey after my first son was born, I had so much to learn. So by the time prepping for this little peanut came along, I had SO many questions about what items were going into my baby’s sweet little nest.
While the types of diapers, wipes, and flame-retardant free baby pajamas we buy matters, so does the environment in which they’ll sleep, play, and grow! Here’s why:
- Spaces inside our homes can be filled with VOCs (volatile organic compounds), or chemicals that are released into the air from every day products, such as furniture and paint. These VOCs are released into the air at just room temperature alone and are considered toxic in high concentrations.
- Did you know because of the chemicals used in so many of our products, the air pollution inside of our homes is 2-5x higher than outdoors? Because of all the time we spend inside, 70% of our environmental exposure to chemicals now occurs indoors.
- Children are even more susceptible to inhaling these pollutants for several reasons: they are lower to the ground, their air intake-to-body size ratio, and inhale through their mouth, rather than their nose.
I knew that I didn’t just want SAFE furnishings for baby boy’s nursery, but the safest versions I could find. We started with using a low VOC paint, which you can ask for at your local hardware store. We got ours and Lowe’s and turns out, most of their paint is low VOC. It does require some curing time to ensure low emissions, so plan on painting the nursery at the very least a month before it will be used.
Secondly, I researched the HECK out of furniture safety. This is where I stumbled across the highest safety certification for furniture today: the Greenguard GOLD Certification. There are varying levels a brand can achieve, so be sure the items you view are of the *gold* standard.
Once I realized how incredible and rigorous this certification is, I was shocked at how few baby brands actually have it. Here’s what this certification means:
- Products that hold this certification undergo immense testing to ensure low emissions of VOCs.
- Because of the rigorous testing standards, manufacturers can expect the process to take up to 6 months…safety takes time!
- Initial certification is just the beginning, as manufacturers must maintain their certification through ongoing and continuous testing to ensure no compromises begin to happen in production.
- This certification requires two tests: emission and microbial resistance.
- Certified products must undergo testing for over 360 VCOs and pass with stringent emission levels.
- Futhermore, products are tested for over 10,000 chemicals (think formaldehyde, ozone, and phthalates).
- Other materials such as paint, adhesives, and coatings must pass testing for microbial (mold) growth.
Whew! Needless to say, my mama heart was so happy to see the standards of safety being raised when it came to even the furnishings for our littlest ones. If you’re currently in the market for nursery furniture, or know someone that is, be sure to have them start checking up on which items hold this certification. The brands that I found with the most certified options are DaVinci Baby, Pottery Barn Kids, and Crate and Barrel Kids. I know it can be overwhelming at times to seek out the safest options for our babies and kiddos, but all it takes is one baby step at a time. We do the best we can until we know better, and then we do better! It’s all we can ask of ourselves.