I just purchased an organic crib mattress and now I'm looking to keep it nice with a natural waterproof mattress pad. I've look at getting wool puddle pads at Dax Stores, etc. but they are all so expensive! Can I just buy wool at a fabric store or is it not the same? Are there other naturally waterproof fabric options I have to use on the mattress, cosleeper and elsewhere?
Thanks for your help!
I happen to have two from Dax Stores and really love them. I agree they're expensive, but they last a very long time. These puddle pads are made from pure grown wool whereas regular wool at a fabric store might have been raised in a less pure fashion (sprayed, not well processed, potentially dyed with things you don't want the babe to be breathing). Also the Dax ones are very tightly woven and have been minimally processed so are likely to retain their lanolin/be more waterproof. If you can find pure wool or ecological wool at a fabric store, and get a crib mattress size rectangle cut, by all means go for it. It might not actually be that much cheaper. But unfortunately most fabric stores won't be able to tell you much about where their wool comes from. Do what you have to do and rest assured knowing that even processed wool is better than that the waterproofing alternative most other people use: vinyl. Any steps you take away from vinyl will be worthwhile ones.
I was hoping to get your opinion on a bedding issue for my baby, due in 4 weeks. We have used a traditional crib mattress with our first 2 children (age 6 and 3), that we purchased before we even knew what flame retardants were. Now I am wondering if I should buy a new mattress (and potentially contribute our old one to the contents of our local landfill) or if the old one has off-gassed enough by now after 6+ years of use that it is not as much of a concern to warrant the expense of a new one. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated...
This is a little bit of an apples/oranges question. Unfortunately flame retardants don't offgas. They're not like, say, paint fumes. But reusing a six-year-old mattress that may or may not have gotten wet over the years brings up additional concerns -- it isn't necessarily a good idea for young lungs. It could contain mildew and more, depending on where you stored it. I'm afraid this is an instance where environmental health (the safety of those growing lungs) trumps the environment (the landfill). I'd absolutely drop the $ on a new organic one. Chances are with all of the other hand-me-downs from the older siblings, this will be one of your only baby gear expenses, which (kind of) makes it less expensive. The least expensive natural/organic mattresses I have found are at DaxStores.com, though you might be able to find an all natural crib futon for less than that. They're really not actually that much more expensive than conventional mattresses and are very worth it. Protect with wool puddle pads, never vinyl (see last question).
If anyone feels like elaborating on any of these questions or answers, please chime in in comments.
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