The Lowdown On Wooden Toys

Oompa loves wooden toys. And wooden toys love Oompa. We know. They’ve told us so. Seeing as we have a collection of hundreds of wooden toys, we thought it would be great to share some answers from five great customer questions we have recently received.

1) Are wooden toys safer for my baby?

Yes! Wooden toys can most definitely be safer for your baby. You may have heard of  BPA and PVC, two chemicals both commonly found in plastics. BPA is an abbreviation for bisphenol A, a chemical that has gained much attention since 2010 when the Food And Drug Administration reported that it could be hazardous to both fetuses and children. PVC (polyvinyl chloride) is another chemical found in plastics that has enormous environmental repercussions from production to disposal. The dangers for little ones appear when pthalates are added to soften PVC. These toxic chemicals have been linked to several harmful effects including changes in hormone levels. There is no BPA, PVC, or pthalates in wooden toys making them a great choice for parents looking to avoid chemicals.

2) Are wooden toys eco-friendly? Aren’t you destroying forests?

Wooden toys can be very eco-friendly! Most of our wooden toys are made from rubberwood, wood from FSC-certified forests, or bamboo (technically, bamboo is a grass with a woody stem, but we’ll include it here anyway). Rubberwood trees produce latex for about 25 years. When they no longer produce latex, the forests of rubberwood are typically burnt down and replanted. Making wooden toys out of the non-producing trees is a great way to make use of materials that would otherwise be discarded. If eco-friendly rubberwood toys sound awesome to you, be sure to check out our collection of Plan Toys as well as Wonderworld.  Many of our other toys are made from wood that hails from FSC-certified forests. The Forest Stewardship Council is an independent organization that certifies forests that meet their management standards which, according to FSC, “expand protection of water quality, prohibit harvest of rare old-growth forest, prevent loss of natural forest cover and prohibit highly hazardous chemicals, which are all unique aspects of the system.” Many Haba toys are made with FSC-certified wood. Finally, bamboo toys are a great choice for eco-friendly families. This fast-growing grass is as durable as it is safe for babies and toddlers. If you want to see beautiful bamboo wooden toys, don’t miss our collection by Hape Toys.

3) Wooden toys seem to be more expensive. Are they worth the money?

Yes! Wooden toys are typically much more durable than their plastic counterparts. Because they can handle a lot of use over the course of many years and even decades, wooden toys can be passed along from child to child and even generation to generation. When first purchasing a wooden toy, it may appear to be more expensive, but in the long run, high-quality toys almost always pay off!

4) Will my child be entertained with a toy that has no flashy lights?

Yes! Our wooden toys are designed to stimulate imagination through open-ended play. As one Oompa customer said, “never doubt the value of simplicity with children.”

5) My baby has been chewing on their wooden toy. It’s time to give it a wash… but how?!

You can and should clean your wooden toys, especially teethers and rattles. The first thing to remember is that because these toys are made of wood, you definitely cannot soak them in water. The best way to clean your clutching toy after your baby has had a quality gnawing session is to spot clean with a cloth and mild soap. You can then “rinse” it by using the cloth to dab the toy with fresh water. Make sure to let it dry thoroughly before giving it back to your little one.

If you’re new to the world of wooden toys, check out some of our favorites for babies, toddlers, and big kids:

 

February 28, 2014 by Susan Klieman
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