American Baby’s Baby Booty: Win a green crib mattress by Simmons!
Dr. Alan Greene, the pediatrician behind the book Raising Baby Green, once told our editors that if you’re only going to make one “green” purchase for your newborn, it should be a crib mattress. His argument was that a baby spends more time sleeping in her crib than anywhere else. Traditional mattresses are covered in a plastic that often contains phthalates. Phthalates are associated with cancer (that’s why they’ve been taken out of so many skincare products) as well as asthma. Crib mattresses are sometimes coated with a toxic fire-retardant, too. Of course, despite all these scary facts, there’s no scientific proof that the chemicals in a crib mattress have ever actually harmed a baby.
But the green-crib mattress movement was born, and Dr. Greene’s enthusiasm for it stuck with us, even though the prices of eco-friendly mattresses used to be prohibitive. The first ones that we saw were from brands such as NaturalMat (NaturalMatUSA.com); they make beautiful, handmade crib mattresses with materials such as organic lambswool and natural latex, and they start at $400. The Nook crib mattress (NookSleep.com) is hands-down the most gorgeous mattress we’ve ever seen; vibrant colors, all natural materials—but $550. Fantastic choices, but only if you can afford them. NaturePedic (NaturePedic.com) seemed like the best bet, pricewise; the mattresses are a high quality, and $260 to $400.
Eventually, lower-priced brands launched greener versions of their crib mattresses. Also, the GreenGuard Environmental Institute stepped in to help make it clear that the products aren’t just being “greenwashed.” GreenGuard is strict about monitoring products for indoor air pollution (GreenGuard.org), so look for their seal of approval on a crib mattress—it’s a big deal. NaturePedic has it, and now so do some even cheaper brands. The Colgate Eco Classica I is $190 (Colgatekids.com). And Simmons now has three GreenGuard-certified crib mattresses: Superior Rest ($130–$150), Pampering Nights ($140–$160), and Sunny Day ($180–$190), now at Amazon.com (buy Pampering Nights here) and coming soon to Babies “R” Us. (Very soon: Look for them on BabiesRUs.com by the time this giveaway ends.) It was the folks at Simmons who turned us onto the fact that you no longer have to pay top dollar to have a crib mattress that’s chemical-free. (And their mattresses are made in Wisconsin; we love things that are American-made!) We’re so excited by all this progress that we’re going to give two of the new Simmons crib mattresses away to some lucky parents!
To enter, just post a comment below between now and the end of the day Tuesday, November 22, 2011, and we’ll randomly choose two winners for a Simmons crib mattress (which will also fit a toddler bed). For full rules, click here. Goody luck!