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5 Eco-friendly Ideas for Raising a Green Baby
Our second baby is set to make his debut in the next 2 months, and we are spending our weekends moving my daughter into the spare room, and turning her room into the new nursery. Since it has been almost 5 years since I setup a nursery, and I have become much more environmentally conscious since then, I am taking a lot of care to make eco-friendly choices with baby #2.
There are several small changes parents can make when raising a baby, to reduce energy use and the negative impact on our environment. Most of these things also end up saving money, so that is a huge bonus, too!
5 Eco-friendly Ideas for Raising a Green Baby
Use Energizer’s EcoAdvanced Batteries
The first idea is incredibly simple! When buying batteries for your baby’s swing, bouncer, monitor or toys, use a battery that is made with recycled batteries.
I discovered Energizer’s new EcoAdvanced batteries at Walmart while I was passing the Battery Center. Actually, my daughter grabbed a pack while she was in the cart! I have a feeling my mini-me may end up following in my eco-friendly footsteps!
Energizer’s EcoAdvanced are the first batteries on the market that are made using recycled batteries and materials – and it is now Energizer’s longest lasting alkaline ever. They’re available in AA and AAA, which is most likely what you’ll be using for toys and baby goods for your little one.
Use Cloth Diapers instead of Disposable
Don’t underestimate the amount of energy you can save by switching to cloth diapering versus disposable diapers, not to mention the monetary savings. The average parent spends between $1,500 – $2,500 on disposable diapers per child, versus around $300 – $1,000 for cloth diapering. The initial up-front cost of cloth diapering may seem more expensive, but if you consider that they will last through potty-training, and can be used for any subsequent babies, you can see how it can save a tremendous amount of money.
And the obvious thing here is that cloth diapers don’t go to the landfill. As of 2013, an estimated 27.4 BILLION disposable diapers are consumed, in the U.S., per year (source).
If your daycare doesn’t allow for cloth diapering, you can find disposable diapers that are “earth-friendly”, in that they are nontoxic, hypoallergenic and chlorine-free.
Breastfeed, If Possible
I know that all women are not able to breastfeed, but if you can and are willing, breastfeeding is a wonderful way to provide numerous benefits for your baby, and reduce the amount of waste that goes into landfills.
The production of breastmilk is absolutely free, and creates no additional energy use by the mother. When a company has to manufacture, bottle and ship formula to a store, then the empty bottles of formula are thrown into the trash, you can see why breastfeeding is the more environmentally-friendly choice.
If you can’t breastfeed, try using an organic formula. Organic formulas are made with products that don’t contain pesticides and are GMO-free, so the ingredients are more environmentally-friendly than their non-organic counterparts.
Choose the Right Bath Products
On my blog, I talk a lot about the harmful chemicals present in many bath and beauty products, and the baby industry isn’t exempt from them! When selecting shampoos, body washes, oils and lotions, select products that are free from harmful chemicals, artificial fragrances and dyes. This will be better for your baby, and better for the environment! Plus, you’ll be supporting companies that are making environmentally-friendly choices in their manufacturing.
Buy Used Clothing
Baby clothes, especially in the beginning, are very seldom used until they’re worn out. Babies simply grow too quickly to really destroy clothing, so many of their articles of clothing are almost brand-new. You can save money and reduce waste by buying used baby clothing from thrift shops, garage sales, or see if a friend has some they are wanting to get rid of.
I have a friend who had a son a year ago, and she just gave me all of her son’s clothing! I didn’t have to spend a dime, and already have enough outfits and pajamas to last for the first 9 months, and all of the clothes are in pristine condition. When I am done with them, if my friend doesn’t want them back, I will pass them along to another mom, or donate them to Good Will.
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These are my eco-friendly ideas on raising a green baby, but I would love to hear your ideas! What green ideas do you have for raising babies?
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