Considering the environment with every purchase (or non-purchase) you make from the get-go is easy if you know where to look. Below are more common items you’ll need for your baby, and eco-friendly ways to acquire them.
The first and most obvious way to go green with diapers would be to use reusable cloth diapers. Many would argue that what you save in waste with cloth diapers you’ll use in water to clean them. The reality is that you’ll be doing so much laundry anyway that the difference will be negligible. The second way is to look for biodegradable disposable diapers, which you can identify from the packaging. And if your municipality allows diaper composting, you can do that as well.
Almost every bath time product comes in an eco-friendly version. You can even find bath toys made from recycled plastic. But buying green will only do so much. You should also bathe green, and one way is to minimize your water usage.
Don’t run the bath before undressing your little one in case it takes longer than expected. First get your baby ready, then focus on the bath. Another smart way to save water is to keep a small jug in the bathroom for scooping water out of the baby bath for washing hair.
If you haven’t experienced the pay-it-forward culture of parenthood, you will soon enough. This is when someone you know shows up at your door with a bag of clothes that don’t fit their kid anymore but might be perfect for yours. Accept whatever you get, keep the pieces you want and pass on the rest. If you have another kid down the road, you’ll most likely wind up getting the same clothes back.
And considering that (a) babies stain most of their clothes and (b) nothing fits for more than 6-8 months, recycled clothes is always the better option unless you need an outfit for a special event or there’s something in a store that’s too cute to pass on.
Toys are another product you can buy second hand or get from friends. Give whatever you buy a good look to make sure it doesn’t have any loose or damaged parts; especially if you’re buying it at a garage sale or from a second-hand store.
If you’re buying new toys, you can look for eco-friendly options – for example, if the toy is wood, make sure it’s reclaimed wood.
Other eco-friendly practices
See if there’s anything you have that you can repurpose; for example, when your baby outgrows their first towel you can cut it up into rags for washing the floor. Also, when you’re out shopping, look for products with minimal packaging to cut down on waste. Finally, if you have the room to buy in bulk, you should. You’ll head out shopping less (using less gas), and save some green of your own.