The toy industry for children uses a lot of plastic in its products. In addition, these mass productions tend to be finished with techniques that are toxic to humans, which are added to the toxic effects of plastic, such as phthalates or bisphenol A. That is why in this new Ekoblog article we bring you a guide to choose sustainable toys. So that you are not only contributing to the care of the planet but also to the children.
It’s no longer enough to change our own consumption, our diet and our way of transporting ourselves, the critical environmental situation of 2020 demands activism from us. And from your role as a member of a family with children you can start by demanding sustainable alternatives to the endless number of plastic toys that are on the market nowadays.
Why choose sustainable toys?
Boys and girls are the opportunity to create a respectful relationship with the environment from the beginning. And connecting them with nature will also give them greater health and empathy with the world around them. Additionally, sustainable toys are proven to improve physical and mental health. As they don’t have strident lights or sounds like the majority of the plastic toys, they stimulate the imagination of children and a quieter game.
In this article we show you some suggestions to keep in mind when purchasing a new sustainable toy. But first, we want to invite you to change the way you see the plastic pieces you already have. Ask yourself if they can be reused, donated to other generations or give them to someone who can use them as raw material for other products.
The latter isn’t always possible if the toy contains different types of plastics, so the best option will always be to give it the longer possible use. In this sense, sustainable toys tend to be timeless, dismissing the very harmful concept of programmed obsolescence.
Wood from certified sustainable forests
Wood is a great alternative to plastic in any industry. And it’s even more interesting if the wood comes from sustainably managed forests, that is, with controlled and respectful logging, with an FSC certificate (Forest Stewardship Council). At Ekohunters we have multiple sustainable toys made of certified wood. This is the case of, for example, Maijon, from Cucuducho firm. It’s a desk that works as a playhouse and a decorative piece due to its design. It’s available in 4 colors and the wood is pine.
Also we recommend you take a look at the Stories In Structures products, all made with wood from sustainable forests. In its catalog you’ll find, for example, building systems with individual pieces of birch wood to fit and build emblematic settings, such as the city of Paris, London or New York, among others. In addition, they have wooden sculptures to interact, such as Yoga, or a set of 4 cars with wheels to play and put together a puzzle.
What if they aren’t made of wood?
While wood is one of the most used sustainable materials, there are many more. Whether it’s rubber, cardboard, bamboo, natural cork, fabric or even bioplastics, the important thing is to verify that they’re its most sustainable alternative. For example, another of the products offered by Cucuducho is the Cuncha Stool, available in pink, blue and yellow. A comfortable, friendly and easy-to-move child seat made of recycled cotton and iron. And it isn’t all, its hollow interior and two internal straps allow it to work from a basket to transport objects or store toys to what the imagination of children creates
And watch out for this! If you’re about to organize a children’s birthday, the Cartonlabs firm offers a set of 10 folding rabbit masks made of FSC-certified cardboard. The funniest thing is that it comes completely white, ready for you or the little ones, with some paintings in hand, turning them into works of art of the freedom of their creativity.
The finish that matters
Another important aspect when purchasing sustainable toys is to analyze the treatment applied to them. Ideally, the material is treated with natural, non-toxic products, both in varnish and glue as well as in coloring. The Dollsvilla firm has created an incredible dollhouse destined to contribute to the development of social interaction in childhood and the incorporation of environmental responsibility through play. It’s made of sustainable wood and finished with a double layer of non-toxic transparent varnish. It’s a house with more than 40 elements with a highly detailed and careful design.
In this sense we also have Kandoro products, made with recycled cardboard and printed in 100% ecological inks. Its collection is called “The Cardboard City” and includes 5 scenes of human daily life (home, shop, farm, hospital and post office). This way, children will learn about the world around them by interacting with these small, colorful, sustainable and safe replicas.