Although I always dreamt of a serene, spacious retreat, non-toxic bedding wasn’t something I considered as essential to making it just that. It was until I learned more about the manufacturing process and all of the chemical counterparts, that it finally “clicked”. Since then, I’ve made the switch and encourage others to do the same. You’ll be glad you did.
1. Switch to organic bedding.
This is especially important for babies and children who are growing quickly, sleeping often (hopefully!) and chewing on everything. But, as an adult, you too spend so much time in bed so you might as well not breathe in pesticides, chemicals, microplastics and who knows what else! We love these Burt’s Bees sheets for our toddler and Magnolia Organics have been our recent go-to for queen sheets. Other organic GOTS certified brands we are big fans of include Bioweaves, Whisper Organics, and Naturepedic.
2. Replace pillows.
After biting the bullet and replacing my poly-filled pillows, I have to say, I cannot be happier! Knowing that every night we breathe what is on and in our pillow, I was thrilled to make the change. In our home, we have both 100% GOTS Certified Organic cotton pillows and shredded latex.
So far, this is my favorite shredded latex pillow – it is literally so comfortable and best of all you can add or remove latex to adjust the pillow to your liking. Plus, I can honestly say, even my husband agrees – it was “lifechanging”! Don’t forget the organic cotton pillow case too!
3. Choose an organic mattress.
Choose an organic mattress (no metal coils, if possible) made from natural latex, cotton, or wool. Avoid mattresses made of foam which often contain flame retardants and other chemicals like formaldehyde, benzene, and toluene. This is on my list of items to purchase next!
My Suggestion: A few reputable brands to consider: Naturepedic, My Green Mattress, and Avocado Mattress. Naturepedic is a well-known brand that crafts certified organic mattresses and other bedroom essentials made without toxic chemicals and pesticides. My Green Mattress is a more affordable brand made from GOLS, GOTS, and OEKO-TEX certified materials! Avocado Green is another excellent option. Check back for updates!
4. Choose furniture made from solid wood or natural materials.
MDF and particle board often contains glue made with formaldehyde and other chemicals that are known carcinogens. Even many “solid wood” products including doors, are often just MDF or various types of particle board glued together. Cautiously, choose finishes, glazes, and stains as some can contain potentially hazardous chemicals. Expensive doesn’t ALWAYS mean better!
Pro Tip: When choosing items that are not solid wood, it is best if it does not contain any added formaldehyde. Ask the manufacturer if the item is certified as NAUF (no added urea-formaldehyde) or NAF (no added formaldehyde).
My Suggestions: Many items from Pottery Barn are GreenGold Certified while Ikea offers more affordable yet safer-than-traditional options and many solid wood options too!
5. Add an air purifying plant! or Air Purifier!
Among the many air purifying plants we have in our home, the Peace Lily is one of my favorites! I love the ambiance live plants bring to a room plus the replacement of synthetic plastic plants really makes for a healthier environment. According to the latest NASA study, these 18 plants are best at cleansing the air of toxins.
Through my research, I’ve found the Austin Air to be one of the best air purifiers on the market. The AA system removes “bacteria, germs, pollen, animal dander, dust, VOC’s, chemicals, odors, and other airborne allergens” and has been an extremely popular option for hospitals during COVID. The Air IQ is another excellent option.
6. Choose rugs, curtains, and blinds without added chemicals.
Avoid PVC completely… and upholstered products with wrinkle resistant, stain resistant or flame retardant finishes which contain formaldehyde and other carcinogenics. When choosing wood blinds, consider the type of finish as it may off-gas chemicals.
Rugs can release an abundance of nasty chemicals overtime and most rug pads are no better. Many ‘non-slip’ rug pads are made from PVC, which often contains phthalates, lead, cadmium, and organotins, many of which are known to cause cancer, liver damage, developmental, respiratory and reproductive issues among many things. Look for untreated rugs made from natural fibers (like cotton or jute) that do not have a non-slip backing. Even some backings marketed as latex are actually made from PVC. Check with the manufacturer if you are uncertain.
My Suggestion: I love Lorena Canals Rugs, but be sure to avoid the anti-slip rug pad they sell which is made from PVC. Made from 100% cotton or wool, they are non-toxic, eco-friendly, and can be washed in your washer! We have several in our home including this one in my daughter’s playroom. Other great options include: Earth Weave, Loloi, or Organic Weave.
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