Recently my two best friends have had baby boys. So, first of all congratulations to them. This got me thinking of what I could post about next and I wanted to continue my theme of sustainability. I won’t be posting about sustainability again for a while but even though I don’t yet have a baby of my own, I wanted to talk about how you can make looking after your baby more sustainable. I understand that every mothers experience is different and it’s all about finding what’s best for you and your baby but I wanted to talk about a few things to try that can make your mothering experience a bit eco-friendlier.
The first way to make caring for your baby more sustainable is to use cloth nappies (real nappies, reusable nappies, washable nappies). These nappies can sometimes be scary for parents to try as they get a bad reputation but they have become more modern and are just as easy to use as regular nappies. They are nappies that you can wash after use instead of throwing disposable ones in the bin after one use. They work well, save the environment and save you money as you won’t have to buy new ones every time you run out.
Another really good way to become more sustainable when looking after your baby is to switch to wood. Instead of buying non-biodegradable teethers and rattles, you can buy wooden ones. Many retailers are selling more and more items that are better for the planet and you can now buy items made out of bamboo and wood that are less likely to break and also biodegrade when you throw them away.
Bibs are traditionally made from plastic and get thrown in the general waste bin after there is no need for them anymore, but you don’t have to use these. You can buy cloth bibs that you can wash after use and even buy ones made from sustainable materials. In the long run this will also save you money as most plastic items like these aren’t built to last and will need replacing not long after purchase.
Most people are put off buying sustainable items because of the price. A lot of retailers charge more for their eco-friendly items as they are harder to make and last longer so customers won’t be back to replace them like they would other items. Being parents is financially straining already as you have a whole other human to look after and fund and so it’s not always possible to splurge on the sustainable items. A way to be sustainable on a budget is to buy second-hand items. As long as items are washed there is no reason not to buy from a local second-hand baby store or charity shop. This also makes looking after your baby even cheaper than buying from a regular retailer as all items are discount. I have seen baby Nikes, Adidas, Gap, Converse, North Face and many others on sale for less than £10 in these shops so they might be worth a visit.
You can’t have second-hand baby stores without people donating. Instead of throwing out your old baby items once they are out-grown, donate them. It stops you filling your bin with items that are still perfectly fine to use and gives them to people who need them instead. Alternatively, you can sell items online, gift them to your friends or make a box of items for your children when they have babies of their own. It is pretty cute to have your future grand-children dressed in the same clothes their parents wore.
Nearly every item that you use to look after your baby has eco-friendly alternatives. As the world is evolving and retailers are taking more of a responsibility towards the destruction of our planet, they are coming up with different ways to supply you with your baby essentials in an eco-friendly way. We need to make sure there is actually a planet for your baby to grow up on and inherit one day. Don’t do it for you, do it for them.
‘Babies are such a nice way to start people’ ~ Don Herold
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