For one little baby, there sure is a lot of stuff out there to help take care for them. It’s too easy to fill a nursery with all kinds of fun products and toys. Packing a diaper bag for a quick trip to grab groceries can feel like getting ready for a week-long vacation.
But it's more than just feeling cluttered by stuff. Parents are spending thousands on their babies each year, mostly on items that are outgrown in a snap. Add the overwhelming amount of waste that all these things ultimately produce and boom, we need a solution.
Diapering isn't the only area that can produce waste and cost us a ton in the long run. Plastic bottles, single use baby food pouches, toys and clothing all contribute to the waste. Itis said that babies alone are the worst offender when it comes to waste and pollution. But really, it's on the parents.
It’s definitely a shift and could be difficult to really adjust to since disposable diapers and plastic everything are so widespread and convenient. But it's worth choosing a more sustainable living style if only to ensure your child has the best earth possible.
So how can you be the eco friendly mama you know you’ve always wanted to be? Here are a few ways for you to start your journey as a green mom and easily make a sustainable environment in your home.
Give Clothes a Second Chance
Nothing makes a mom’s heart soar more than getting a big bag of baby clothes from a friend. New, gently used and, ahem, free clothes is a huge win.
And if you’ve ever been on the other side of this then you’ve felt incredible relief knowing that clothes your baby grew out of are now being enjoyed by another family.
It’s a true win-win!
Before you load up on all the baby basics and super cute outfits, consider going the used route. Second hand children’s clothing stores are a hot spot for great deals and even let you sell items you have in good condition.
Expo centers will oftentimes host a semi annual clothing swap event, giving moms the chance to take advantage of some serious bargain hunting.
Not only do these places offer clothing for cheap, but they usually have a big stash of toys, high chairs, jumpers and anything else you might need.
Incorporating used clothing into your baby’s life eliminates unnecessary waste, especially in the first year when they are growing oh, so fast.
Choose Wood Over Plastic Toys
It's widely known that the less plastic in rotation, the better. When it comes to making sure your playroom is an oasis of fun, it’s hard to steer clear of the bright colored, musical toys that captivate your child’s attention.
So what’s the problem with this?
All that plastic can really only turn into waste eventually, leaving little room for any kind of recycling options.
Environmental effects aside, switching over to wooden toys can be really beneficial all around.
Wooden toys are less likely to contain harmful chemicals, are more likely to help strengthen motor skills and are easier to pass on to the next child.
Throw in the fact that wood toys are biodegradable and you’ve got yourself a pretty solid list of perks.
Still unsure? Try starting out with small furniture you plan on adding to your playroom. Investing in a wooden chair and table set is a good place to start and is guaranteed to outlast its plastic counterpart.
The best part of all? Batteries not required!
Try Cloth Diapers Instead
Want to hear some really smelly news?
Diapers and wipes alone make up about 3.5 million tons of waste each year. That alone is enough to make you cringe (and probably gag), but it gets worse. Throw in the energy used to make diapering products, the plastic packaging it’s sold in and you’ve got a much bigger problem.
Maybe you’ve considered making the move to cloth diapers and wipes, maybe not. It’s certainly a commitment and can feel less convenient all around. After all, changing a poo filled bomb isn’t the most fun you’ll have in your parenting experience.
Good news? Incorporating cloth diapers and wipes can be less scary than you think. For one, you can adapt a reduced waste approach by having disposable diapers used for traveling or outings around town.
With the diaper laundering industry booming, these services are popping up everywhere, making the poopy job way less stressful. For a fraction of the cost of monthly diapers, you can actually pay someone to deliver freshly laundered cloth diapers and pick up the soiled ones you have ready to go.
Even better? Many of these companies use eco friendly cleaning products and offer baby safe, reusable alternatives to wipes.
Not able to snag a deal with one of these companies? The market is full of at home kits designed to take the eek out of this task.
Once you introduce reusable diapers, your wallet will be singing! A year of savings can be enough to fund your next family vacation. Plus, you’ll be one less contributor to the huge diaper waste piling up.
Support Sustainable Brands
Being intentional about choosing brands that are committed to using recycled and green products is huge. Find a few cool mom-fluencers who are known for plugging safe brands and begin from there.
A good place to start? HARTS Bootees! Easy baby shoe sizing and they’re sustainably made. Your baby will be looking trendy and keeping the planet sparkling.
Keeping up with a community who shares your green goals will make life so much easier. You’ll have inspiration and a boost into sustainable living. Not to mention it’s way easier to pick up tips and tricks when you have a wealth of information to pull from.
What could be next in your sustainable life? A mommy and me gardening club? Maybe!