In most cases, the answer – as you may have guessed – is no! Unfortunately, kids and baby products, are not exempt from marketing deception. Many bubble baths, shampoos and lotions which are specifically designed and marketed for little ones, still contain health compromising, hormone disrupting and/or allergy causing ingredients such as fragrance, parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde and formaldehyde releasers, PEGs, sodium lauryl sulfate, and mineral oil. (Why are these bad for your health? Read it HERE.)
Remember that when it comes to labeling cosmetics and personal care products, there is very little transparency and hardly any regulation in the United States. This means that in many cases, even terms like “all natural” or “organic” are just marketing fluff that has no meaning or truth to it at all. And it comes to no surprise that baby and kids products are not spared from this “greenwashing” charlatanism.
Below is a list of items that I have been loving for my two- and four-year old. I hope it will give you a good starting point for finding products you can trust to be safe for your wee ones as well. All of them are practical (think multi purpose, compact packaging, use for the whole family etc.), affordable and widely available. Not only can you buy them online and at health food shops, but also increasingly at big box stores such as Target and drugstore chains such as CVS.
Honest Company Shampoo & Body Wash – $9.95, purchase HERE (also available at Target stores)
Founded in 2011 by mother and actress Jessica Alba, The Honest Company creates non-toxic household cleaning and personal care products that offer great value. I am subscribed to their monthly bundles and write/rave about them all the time. What I like most about Honest is that they are known for their safety standards across their entire brand and not just for select products. This means that you can rest assured that none of their products contain any harsh or harmful chemicals!
This ultra-pure 2-in-1 hydrating hair and foaming body cleanser is tear-free and plant-based. Coconut oil moisturizes and protects while chamomile, calendula, and aloe gently soothe and nourish even the most sensitive skin. Jojoba and quinoa proteins strengthen and fortify any type of hair. I took this with me to the pool to wash my daughter’s ultra blond hair right after swimming, and after two weeks of daily lessons, her hair did not turn green from the chlorine this time. This shampoo is also color safe so I occasionally use it on myself when I run out of my Acure shampoo. It has a lovely scent of sweet orange and vanilla which leaves skin and hair so fresh and so clean, clean!
Honest Company Conditioning Detangler – $5.95, purchase HERE
I find this compact leave-in conditioner and fortifying spray a little easier and quicker to use on my sweet girl than traditional conditioner, and it works just as well! I spray this on her clean, damp hair and comb through before blow-drying. Argan oil, shea butter, jojoba, and quinoa proteins naturally soften, nourish, protect and separate strands which eliminates knots, frizz, tangles and fly-aways. It comes in a relatively small bottle (a little goes a long way!) which makes it great for traveling.
Wet Brush – $4.99 and up, purchase HERE (also available at Target stores and at Douglas in Germany)
OK, so this is not a green product per se but I thought I’d include the Wet Brush because I just got it and love it for my mini-me’s hair! This brush’s bristles are super thin, strong and flexible. They glide through wet or dry tresses for healthy detangling without any tugging, tearing, pulling and ripping, combing out tangles and knots effortlessly. It comes in a bunch of different shapes and sizes. I like this little “Squirt” model as it is just the right size for small children and to toss into your purse or diaper bag.
Acure Bare Baby Lotion – $9.99, purchase HERE (also available at Whole Foods and Sprouts)
Acure Organics is a family owned and operated company founded on sustainable principles to provide the highest quality fair trade, natural and certified organic personal care products. Each of their products is free from animal testing, parabens, sulfates, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, harmful preservatives and artificial colors. As with most brands I genuinely like, I am very loyal to Acure and have been using their shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and some skin care products for over a year now. I love it all!
Why I recommend this particular product? We live in an extremely hot and dry climate which tends to cause my toddler’s skin to develop little bumps on his cheeks, upper arms and thighs. This fragrance free lotion is the only one I have found that does not irritate it further. In fact, colloidal oatmeal, cucumber and calendula moisturize and soothe, and shea butter and olive oil nourish his sensitive skin. I can really see an improvement!
Waxelene – $3.99-17.99, purchase HERE (also available at CVS, Bed Bath & Beyond, Whole Foods, and Sprouts)
This all-natural petroleum jelly alternative is a true multi-tasking talent! Made with only four 100% natural and certified organic ingredients (soybean oil, beeswax, rosemary oil, and vitamin E oil) it moisturizes, protects, and soothes skin all in one! It creates the same waterproof barrier that doctors recommend petroleum jelly for but contains no petroleum or hydrogenated oil. Instead, it uses its patented aeration process that won’t clog pores which makes Waxelene highly effective for any kind of skin. Use it for baby’s cradle cap and diaper rash, any dry patches, eczema, scrapes and cuts, as a cuticle cream, make-up remover, lip balm and so much more. I used to be a big fan of the Honest Balm but have to admit that Waxelene wins in my book as it seems more effective in calming my son’s fussy skin. Awesome product!
Which safe products have you discovered for your kids? Which ones would you like to learn more about?