Next week (22 April) is Earth Day, a celebration of all things eco. It’s not easy being green, so we’re here to give you a hand with a round-up of labels and brands to look out for and the best places to buy environmentally friendly goodies for children. And, you’ll be pleased to hear, it’s not all beige linen and knitted lentils any more – there’s plenty of colour and coolness going on. Feast your eyes on these finds…
When it comes to clothing, choices are much more varied these days as manufacturers gradually clock on to the fact that parents are prepared to pay a bit extra for organic, sustainable childrenswear. Check out this brilliant round up and add to the list Indikidual (pictured above), Ava & Luc, Macarons, Kite, SuperNatural, Piccalilly and Pigeon Organics. Lots of our favourite stores stock green Scandi brands such as Maxomorra, Gardner and the Gang, DUNS, Fred’s World and Danefae – have a browse at our Hot Shops. If you’re in the market for school uniforms, make EcoOutfitters your first stop and for footwear, see Livie & Luca, Vivo Barefoot and Easy Peasy.
The baby market is a minefield when it comes to being eco – normal nappies and wipes are, by their nature, damaging to the environment. You can, of course, go down the reusable nappy route – Fill Your Pants and The Nappy Lady are great resources for those starting out, while Cheeky Wipes offer washable wipes kits. I must admit that I didn’t get on with reusable nappies, but my conscience wouldn’t allow me to go with the global conglomerates and their chemicals, so I have always used biodegradable nappies (and wipes and bags) for Alfie and Kitty – a combination of Moltex, Nature Babycare, Beaming Baby and Bambo, depending on fit/what was available, bought from Beaming Baby and Big Green Smile, as well as Boots and Ocado.
My preferred wipes are still Jackson Reece Kinder By Nature, which are widely available. The bonus with eco products is that they’re free from chemical nasties, so are kind to your little bundle’s skin as well as the earth. Kitty has very sensitive skin, so I always opt for organic products – So Organic, Green People and Ethical Superstore all have good selections of paraben and SLS free products. For a natural bedtime, check out the mattresses and linen at Little Green Sheep and Natural Mat.
Toys are another area where you can really make a difference to the environment – by steering clear of plastic that’s going to end up in landfill. I try to stick to wooden and natural fabric toys, although I must admit we make exceptions for LEGO and Playmobil, hoping they will stand the test of time and be handed down to the next generation. With big hitters like Plan Toys and Green Toys leading the way, you’re really spoilt for choice. Myriad Toys is a brilliant dedicated stores, plus all-rounders such as Shak-Shuka, Babipur and VUP Baby have fabulous toy departments alongside their comprehensive eco-friendly offering.
And the real bonus is that you can fill your shopping basket at all these stores with a clear conscience (in terms of the environment, that is, we can’t speak for your bank balance…)