Switching to a more eco-friendly lifestyle in Singapore isn’t easy! We’ve been going around swapping out all our plastic bags for reusable ones and ditching the disposables, when we stumbled upon one very big source of plastic – kids’ toys. While many toys from our time were made of hardier (if less kid-friendly) plastic and metal that outlasted years of drooling, banging and toddler-led destruction, toys these days are cheaply-made mass-produced environmental disasters waiting to happen. We’ve already started the switch to wooden toys and ones made from recycled plastic for a greener, happier playtime and here’s some of our top picks to get you started…
Ditch the battery-operated and pedal cars for an even more eco-friendly form of transport – wooden cars! Kids can get some really swanky-looking retro rides from Jamm Scoot for endless hours whizzing around. The toys are all designed in the UK and made using sustainable materials like rubber wood.
Buy from Deer Industries; www.jammtoys.com
In need of some softer, sensory play toys? Ailefo’s modelling clay ticks all the boxes, is imbued with plant oils to stop tiny hands from drying out, and it’s made from certified organic food-grade ingredients in case your little one sneaks a playtime snack. Luckily, it doesn’t taste very good. If that’s not enough, Ailefo uses recycled packaging that’s totally reusable.
This small family project began from the idea of using everyday objects as toys. Using simple wooden shapes, the toys are designed to stimulate the imagination and encourage free play with open and unstructured materials.
Buy from Playhao
Sometimes wood just doesn’t cut it. Green Toys is a California-based company that produces eco-friendly toys made from 100%-recycled plastic milk containers. Made in the US, you’ll find vehicles such as trucks, planes, boats and helicopters, as well as plenty of beach toys. Easy to clean, printed with soy inks and packaged using recycled material, this is possibly as green as plastic toys get!
Buy from Motherswork; www.greentoys.com
If you’ve ever stepped into one of Singapore’s many toy stores, you’ve probably heard of Plan Toy. Started in 1981, PlanToys manufactures toys using pesticide-free rubber wood, and opts for eco-friendly processes every step of the way. You’ll find an array of eco-friendly toys of all kinds, including balancing games, pinball machines, stacking games, puzzles as well as furniture, rattles and toys for bubba.
Buy from The Better Toy Store; www.plantoys.com
Meiya and Alvin
The brainchild of Mano Sheriff, The Meiya & Alvin Collection is based off Mano’s picture book, A Day at the Park with Meiya & Alvin. This range of baby products uses pure natural cotton, all-new fibre filling from recycled PET bottles and rubber from the rubber tree hevea. All the toys are hand-painted using plant-based non-toxic dyes so they’re teething friendly and you can toss them in the washing machine for a spin!
Petit Collage designs its toys to be long-lasting and repurposed as kids grow up. All of its products are non-toxic and at least 80 per cent of its paper products are made from recycled material. It also prioritises responsibly-sourced and sustainable materials such as bamboo with minimal packaging. You’ll be able to find backpacks, lunchboxes, books and mobiles on top of toys, games and puzzles.
Buy from Playhao; petitcollage.com
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