Babywearting – carrying an infant or toddler in a cloth sling or carrier – has been practiced by mothers across the globe for centuries.
Young children who are carried this way reap impressive benefits. Evidence shows it helps accelerate their ability to learn, they feel more secure and safe, they cry less and they’re calmer. Moms report they feel more in tune with their babies too, and are more easily able to anticipate their child’s needs.
Until recently,however, fashion and ergonomics weren’t part of this equation.
Enter Belle Baby Carriers in Colorado who, since 2007, has been offering moms – and dads – stylish, comfortable and ergonomic baby carriers.
The design is streamlined for comfort,” says Belle Baby’s Sales and Marketing Director Julianne Pearce.
The carriers were designed by two dads who, as engineers, had designed mountain gear like backpacks and rock climbing equipment. Not satisfied with the carriers on the market, they created the simple design that became the Belle Baby Carrier.
Its ergonomic waist belt makes the carrier as comfortable as possible, says Pearce. It distributes the baby’s weight unlike other carriers. Fifty percent of its weight rests on the parent’s hips or waist while the other fifty percent is evenly distributed between each shoulder. Babies can face in or out and be comfortable.
“This (carrier) has been endorsed by a pediatrician whose patients have commented on how comfortable it is and what a difference it’s made for them,” Pearce said.
Made to carry babies 8 to 30 pounds, Belle Baby Carriers have style, says Pearce. There are five Organics and seven polyester-blend fabric choices to choose from. They also feature a new detachable head support panel, perfect for young infants.
On the non-organic side, one carrier deserves a special mention. The Orange Blossom carrieris made from a cute, upholstery-grade, microsuede embroidered fabric with, says the company, “dark brown teddy bear fur” for its inside liner.
Two of the Organics stand out.
The Organic Denim baby carrier is made from an certified organic cotton – organic hemp blend. Its outer denim panel is made of 77% hemp and 23% recycled environmental polyester.
byTheir Organic Earth carrier, introduced in April. resulted from customers requesting an all-natural, un-dyed interior fabric.
This carrier was featured in Pregnancy & Newborn magazine’s April “Eco-friendly” issue, and was selected one of Baby Talk magazine’s favorite “Eco Chic” baby carriers. It will be featured in Kiwi Magazine’s June-July issue.
All Belle Baby Carriers are hand or machine washable in cold water with a gentle detergent made for baby clothes. Hang rather than machine dry.
Many celebrities have discovered these amazingly simple baby carriers, including Angelina Jolie and Jessica Alba.
Belle Baby Carriers are available online and at retailers across the country.
Chafing and diaper rash are par for the course with babies. Moms deal with these using whatever ointments and powders were available.
With growing concerns about harmful chemicals and toxins in baby products, it’s nice to know there are eco-friendly choices that help keep babies dry and comfortable.
In 2009, Elements Naturals introduced their 100% Natural & Compostable Baby Wipes. They’re made from a man-made plant-based fiber called Ingeo, a patented product developed by Nature Works.
Linda Naerheim, CEO and co-founder of Elements Naturals LLC, says she was shocked to discover that what was considered “natural” out there in baby wipes really wasn’t. Those “natural” products used latex and petroleum by-products, the same materials used in Pampers and Huggies. Cotton wipes only have around 15 percent cotton and contain a cocktail of harsh chemicals, including parabins and endocrine disruptors that have proven to cause cancer.
Seeking a better alternative, with the help of Nature Works, she developed her 100% Natural Baby Wipes.
Larger and thicker, these wipes are chemical, fragrance and chlorine free and have no essential oils that could irritate baby’s skin.
Since its introduction last year, Naerheim has worked to improve the formula and the packaging. And the company moved its manufacturing from overseas back to the U.S.
These 100% plant-based wipes have received a lot of recognition. They’ve been featured in Parents Magazine as one of the top eco-friendly baby products, were featured in Pregnancy & Newborn magazine’s April issue in its “A” list for “green” diapering. And they’re one of the top 12 best diapering picks on Seventeen.com.
“It’s an important product,” says Naerheim.
Shockingly, over 39 billion individual baby wipes go in to landfills every year. That’s 107 million each day! They leak toxins into our soil, challenge our ecosystem and they don’t break down because of the plastic resins they contain.
Since these wipes are compostable, they help reduce landfill dumping.
“(Using this product) is one thing you can do every day to reduce your impact on the environment,” said Naerheim.
Another great baby product to help keep babies dry will be introduced within the next two months by Baby Magic, a baby product line that’s been around for over 100 years.
Their newest, most eco-friendly product – Baby Magic Patty Cake – will be the world’s first U.S. patented, talc-free, dustless baby powder. This unique product won’t come in a plastic bottle but in a compact.
Based on the concept of women’s make-up (i.e. pressed face powder), it’s made especially for babies and their delicate skin, says Melanie Timms, Brand Manager with Naterra Intl. Inc., maker of Baby Magic products.
Decades-old use of baby powder is rapidly shifting, particularly with warnings by doctors about the dangers to infants of airborn dust and powder.
Patty Cake has lots of pluses. It’s hypoallergenic, it contains moisturizers and it hydrates skin. One of its ingredients helps repel water from baby’s sensitive skin. And it’s made from rice, not corn which can trigger allergies, says Timms.
Patty Cake has almost no fragrance and can be applied exactly where it’s needed, with no talcum cloud.
Its convenient size makes it “easier to throw in your diaper bag than a messy diaper rash cream,” Timms says. And you can travel with it, she said. “It’s airline safe.”
Baby Magic Patty Cake lasts a long time. The box says it will last for 250 applications but, Timms says, depending on the amount used, it will generally last 4 to 6 months.
A resealable package of 80 wipes costs $5.95. Elements Naturals 100% Natural & Compostable Baby Wipes are available at a growing number of retailers around the country, including some Whole Foods, and online at Diapers.com, Drugstore.com and ElementsNaturals.com. And, says Naerheim, you can request that your natural food store carry them.
Patty Cake will retail for around $8.00 or less and will be available at national retailers online and at Drugstore.com.
Filed under: Terrific Children's products | Tagged: Baby Magic, baby products, compostable, eco-friendly, ecosystem, Elements Naturals, environment, essential oils, green, landfills, Nature Works, parabins, plastic | Leave a comment »
Parents of young babies know that giving them a bath is challenging, frustrating and rarely fun.
An amazingly innovative Canadian product called Spa Baby makes it pleasant a pleasant experience all around.
The Spa Baby is a European-style baby bath tub that lets you bathe your baby while it’s sitting up.
It goes back to the idea of bathing them in the kitchen sink, says Brandy Cameron, founder of Spa Baby Tubs, Inc.
After the birth of her baby six years ago, Cameron discovered how difficult it was to give newborns a bath and how much they disliked the process! Searching for a better alternative, she discovered that outside of North America, it was standard to bathe a baby upright.
An upright tub like the Spa Baby has a real advantage over traditional baby baths, Cameron says.
With traditional baby tubs, parents lay the baby flat on its back. Even though the water is warm, it cools quickly since it covers a large surface area. That leaves the baby’s chest and torso exposed to the air, while they lay in the water. No wonder they usually scream and fuss!
“We kind of forgot about the point of view of the baby,” said Cameron.
The Spa Baby – with its smaller surface area – uses less water than traditional baby baths – around 5 gallons. Fill it to the fill line, then carefully place the baby in it. The water comes up to around their chest. And the water stays warm for about 20 minutes, giving you time to give the baby a gentle warm bath.
“Babies relax so much they’re practically falling asleep,” she said.
You can check out a cute video of this at http://3.ly/qJeo.
“Your baby stays in this really familiar position,” said Cameron. “like (how) they spend their first nine months. It’s comforting for your baby – and a nice experience for you.”
The Spa Baby contains no BPA, phthalates, and no vinyl, otherwise known as PVC. A lot of other baby tubs contain blends of plastics and foam materials in them.
Spa Baby is polypropylene plastic, said Cameron. “That’s as non-toxic as you can get!”
Cameron’s latest baby bath tub is the Spa Baby Eco, made of 100 percent recycled plastic. She got the idea for this after seeing all the new plastic being generated, especially for baby products.
“You’re kind of surprised at the amount of plastic that comes through your door when you’re about to have a baby,” Cameron said.
With the exception of toys, there’s very little baby gear made of recycled plastic, she said.
“I think,” Cameron said, “we have all the plastic we need already on the planet!”
The Spa Baby and Spa Baby Eco are both recyclable. But Cameron recommends instead of tossing them in recycling when you don’t need them anymore, why not give them to another mom to use?
That’s real recycling, she said – as in the second of the 3Rs, Reuse.
The Spa Baby and Spa Baby Eco are very reasonably priced . If you order from Spa Baby’s website, shipping’s included if you live in the continental US. These amazing baby bath tubs are available at Spababytubs.com and on Amazon.