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Christmas Gifts: Ethical & Non-Polluting Toys Buying Guide

Blocs De Construction, Module, Chambre D'Enfant, Jouets

How to choose Christmas toys and gifts in an ecological and healthier spirit? Here are the key points to buy safer gifts Carcinogenic toys, clothes coated with harmful and allergenic products, formaldehyde awakening mats… as this disturbing study of 60 million consumers published in December 2009 showed, many toys purchased as Christmas gifts contain harmful substances. Let's quote this study of 60 Million that is chilling: "60 detected potentially dangerous substances in thirty toys out of sixty-six tested. Phthalates in plastic toys, formaldehyde or heavy metals in wooden toys". Here are some tips for choosing toys for toddlers and children for the Christmas holidays.

Christmas toys and gifts: avoiding toxic and harmful products

    • Plastic toys: PVC-free, phthalate-free, Bisphenol A-free: opt for toys marked "PVC-free" or "phthalate-free", as these substances are considered endocrine disruptors that can have long-term consequences for children's health. Remember that toys are often put in the mouth, chewed, and children can ingest these toxic products.
  • Wooden toys: avoid varnished or painted toys, and unpack toys by leaving them in the open air or in a well-ventilated room to let out harmful volatile compounds
  • Soft toys: they are often coated with flame retardants, remember to wash them before giving them to your child, especially if it is a blanket that baby will always carry to his mouth

Labels to guarantee the quality and safety of Christmas toys and gifts

To guide you in your Christmas gift shopping, you can rely on different labels that guarantee the absence of chemicals, toxic, or harmful to children (and to you!)

  • "Öko-Test" label: this label certifies that the product has been tested by the German consumer magazine Öko-Test, according to very rigorous criteria, it guarantees the absence of toxicity and respect for the environment
  • Spiel Gut label: this independent label guarantees that the toy has been deemed safe by an association including doctors, pedagogues, parents or chemists, among other specialists, it guarantees not only that the toy does not contain toxic chemicals, but that it is solid, complies with the criteria of design, safety, suitability for the age of the child…
  • CE standard, NF standard: the toy complies in terms of mechanical and physical properties, flammability, Migration of certain elements, and chemical organic compounds. Any toy sold in Europe must theoretically bear the CE mark.
  • Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 label, for textiles and textile toys, this label is divided into four categories, from Class I to Class IV. Class I is the most rigorous and allows you to choose with your baby's eyes closed from toys and textile gifts.