11 Conscious Baby Essentials For New Parents
The Conscious Parent Checklist
There is so much to consider while preparing for a little one to enter your life: eating right, sleeping enough, and selecting the products you’ll need to care for your baby once he or she arrives.
And while there are gadgets for everything from helping you remember which side to breastfeed on to relieving a stuffy baby nose, you’ll quickly find that there are products that become your most beloved everyday essentials. But how do you know if the products you’re relying on for efficiency are best for your baby’s health, too?
Here are 11 products that are made thoughtfully for your baby’s sensitive body and the world around them. These products will give you daily support and endless peace of mind.
Sustainable Nursery Essentials
1. SNOO Smart Baby Sleeper
Price | $1,295 (purchase); $110/mo (rental)
The Snoo boasts that it’s the safest baby bed ever made. Created by New York Times bestselling author, Dr. Harvey Karp, this revolutionary bassinet swaddles, sways, and shushes your baby (three of Dr. Karp’s notable 5 S’s). The motions replicate what it might feel like to be held by an auntie, buying tired parents a few extra winks of sleep. The Snoo is also nontoxic, phthalate-free, and BPA-free. While the price tag is steeper than some basic baby sleepers, Snoo offers rentals for short-term use and affordability. By lessening the number of new beds needing to be created, the brand is simultaneously helping parents while reducing its carbon footprint.
2. Oeuf Crib
Price | Starting at $670
Eventually, your baby will transition from a bassinet into a crib, and Oeuf makes a crib as stunning as it is responsibly-made. Sustainably-produced in Europe in an FSC-Certified facility, the Oeuf Cribs are solid birch and eco-MDF. The finishes are nontoxic, water-based, and free of VOC health hazards. Even the packaging is recycled cardboard. Oeuf cribs are also Greenguard Gold certified.
3. Burt’s Bees Baby Fitted Crib Sheet
Price | $20
Burt’s Bees was one of the first companies to introduce natural skincare to mass-market audiences, and the brand has expanded to include a wide range of baby products. Burt’s Bees Baby crib sheets come in an array of prints and colors, and are 100 percent organic, GOTS certified, and are as soft as your favorite t-shirt. Plus, they’re super affordable, making a backup set (or two) easily accessible.
4. Philips Baby Monitors
Price | Starting at $119
Your sweet little sleeper is bound to become your new favorite TV show, and regular check-ins certainly give you peace of mind. Unfortunately, the technology in most monitors exposes babies to an EMF (electromagnetic field) emission all night long. The Philips monitors offer an eco mode, which allows you to reduce EMF emissions when you don’t have the video turned on.
Nontoxic Changing Products
5. Bambo Nature Diapers
Price | Starting at $12/pack
There is so much to consider when it comes to diapers: how environmentally-friendly they are, what chemicals they put in contact with your baby’s skin, how much they cost, and—most importantly—how well they work. While cloth diapers are arguably the most environmentally responsible, they may not be feasible for every family. Bambo Nature offers a highly-effective alternative free of chemicals, 75 percent biodegradable, and made from sustainably-sourced wood pulp. Plus, the eco-friendly manufacturing process includes collecting, filtering, and selling the powder and dust created in the plant to ensure no waste is created.
6. Aleva Naturals Bamboo Baby Wipes
Price | $35/6-pack
If there is one thing that is unanimous for all new parents, it’s that you’re going to use a whole lot of baby wipes. Some wipes contain harsh chemicals that aren’t great for baby’s sensitive skin, and some are also made from plastics that don’t break down and harm the environment. These Aleva wipes contain organic aloe vera, chamomile, natural tea tree oil, and lavender oils to cleanse baby gently and safely. Plus, they’re vegan, free of chemicals, and biodegrade in just 21 days.
7. Beautycounter Calming Diaper Rash Cream
Price | $18
The best way to both prevent and cure diaper rash is through the use of a great diaper rash cream. Beautycounter’s cream is highly effective and also safe for baby’s sensitive skin since it doesn’t include any toxic or allergenic ingredients. The company is also incredibly selective about packaging and doesn’t use any plastics that have chemicals that could leach into the product itself.
Conscious Travel Carriers
8. Babybjorn Baby Carrier One Air
Price | $220
Baby carrying can be one of the sweetest parts of early parenthood, as well as a necessary one, as your little one triples in size in their first year and your biceps beg you for a break. Babybjorn’s collection of baby carriers feature comfortable and ergonomically-correct positioning for your baby—the brand has even won awards from the International Hip Dysplasia Institute. The padded straps relieve pressure on your hips and back to make it easy and comfortable for you to carry your baby, and all of the materials are certified by the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX(R). Every element that goes into the products has been certified as toxin-free.
9. UPPAbaby Mesa Car Seat + Stroller
Price | Starting at $240
Your baby will inevitably spend countless hours in their car seat and stroller, so comfort and safety are key considerations. With its high-grade Merino wool blend bonded to foam, the Henry and Jordan MESAs from UPPAbaby are the first car seats to meet federal flammability standards without using any fire retardant chemicals. UPPAbaby doesn’t use BPA, phthalates, lead, latex, Teflon, or ScotchGuard in any of its products. You can pop the MESA car seat into the Vista or Cruz stroller for a nontoxic baby carrier on the go.
10. Finn & Emma Play Gym
Price | $135
A play gym is a wonderful way to help stimulate baby, inspire early motor skills, and buy parents time to pour a well-deserved cup of coffee. This play gym from Finn & Emma is a minimalist design dream and is delightfully nontoxic. Its birch wood frame is finished with nontoxic stains and lacquers free of lead, phthalate, nickel, mercury, and VOCs, and the teething toys are made from untreated Indian hardwood and finished with vegetable seed wax. The knit toys were hand-knitted at an artisanal women’s collaborative in Peru using GOTS certified organic cotton yarn.
11. Guava Lotus Travel Crib
Price | $250
A playard is a must-have for travel sleep and hands-free baby time, and there are so many to choose from. The Guava Lotus combines the best in portability (it folds up quickly into a backpack that is small enough to be carried onto an airplane) with the highest standards. It’s made without flame retardants, PVC, BPA, or phthalates, and is also Greenguard certified.
Danielle Finck is the founder and CEO of Elle Communications, a conscious communications agency with offices in Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco that represents mission-centered brands, nonprofits, social enterprises, CSR teams, sustainably made products, activists, and leaders who are making the world a better place through their ideas and endeavors. She lives in Venice, CA with her son, Weston, and her husband, Adam. Connect with her on Instagram here.