In recent years, parents have become more conscious about what products are near their babies. Many have found it appalling to see the amount of toxic chemicals manufacturers put in products made for brand new babies. You would think only the purest products would be used around brand new little ones, especially since they regularly breathe the air in their rooms.
However, many crib makers only use products that meet the minimum standards. Very few go above and beyond to try to ensure that a baby’s sleeping environment is healthy. Thankfully, that is not the case with all companies. There are many options now available for environmentally conscious parents and non-toxic product conscious parents.
Best Non-Toxic Cribs Reviews
With a recent push for more sustainable, non-toxic cribs, there are many options available to choose from that will fit your lifestyle. Many manufacturers have different definitions of what they consider non-toxic to be. As parents, we all have different comfort levels as well. Here is a closer look at nine of the best-reviewed non-toxic baby cribs currently on the market.
Babyletto Gelato 4-in-1 Convertible Crib
The Babyletto Gelato crib is made from sustainably sourced pine from New Zealand. The wood from this area is considered one of the most renewable sources available. The crib is Greenguard Gold Certified, which means it has gone through strenuous testing for more than 10,000 chemical emissions and VOCs. Lower levels of these chemicals add to the cleanliness of the air in your child’s room.
The Gelato is painted with a non-toxic multi-step painting and stainings system that is lead-safe and phthalate-safe. The crib can be used for your child for many years since it is a 4-in-1 convertible crib. It also has four adjustable mattress positions to adjust as your infant grows into a toddler. The Gelato can transform from a crib into a toddler bed, day bed, and finally, a full-size bed to carry your child through their teenage years.
The posts and spindles on the crib are rounded. Therefore, they are soft surfaces for your child to roll up against. Also, all of the hardware used to assemble the crib is not visible, so you will not see any screws, nuts, or bolts when you look at the finished crib.
- Greenguard Gold Certified
- Sustainably sourced
- Convertible rails
- Adjustable mattress height
- Phthalate and lead-safe, not free
- Conversion rails not included
DaVinci Union 4-in-1 Convertible Crib
The Union 4-in-1 Convertible Crib by DaVinci is also made of New Zealand pinewood and is Greenguard Gold Certified. The Union also converts from a crib into a toddler bed, daybed, and then a full-sized bed.
The bed is then painted with a non-toxic multi-layer painting process that is lead and phthalate safe.
As far as a mattress goes, the crib will fit any standard-size crib mattress. However, DaVinci does recommend that you use one of their Greenguard Gold certified beds that are also waterproof. The crib is relatively lightweight. It weighs 36.9 pounds, making it easier for one person to move around the nursery as needed.
- Greenguard certified
- Easy to assemble
- Difficult to convert
- Easy to dent since it is pine
Carter’s by DaVinci
The Carter crib by DaVinci is a low-profile crib, meaning it should be easy for any parent, regardless of their height, to get their baby in and out of the crib. For healthier living considerations, the crib is Greenguard certified, limiting the number of toxins in your child’s room and keeping their air clean.
The bed converts from a crib into a full, with every stage covered in between. The bed is made of New Zealand pine wood and TCSA compliant engineered wood. You can choose from 5 colors to fit your nurseries aesthetic. The paint comes from a multi-step, non-toxic process. DaVinci ensures that it is lead and phthalate-free.
- Slim design
- Rounded corners
- Not wobbly
- Not solid wood
- New crib smell out of the box
Dream On Me Clover Crib
The Dream on Me Clover crib is crafted from renewable and sustainable pine wood from New Zealand. They focus on many safety standards to ensure both you and your little one get a good night’s sleep. The crib is JPMA certified. They also meet or exceed the CPSC and ASTM safety standards. All cribs go through third-party labs for testing to ensure no trace of lead or any other undesirable toxic elements in their products. The paints used are water-based and non-toxic.
The Clover comes in two color options, both with the 4-in-1 convertibility. Once your child outgrows the crib, purchase crib rails to change it into a toddler bed or even a daybed. You can even use it as a couch in your child’s bedroom when they get older. For your child’s safety, you can start the mattress at the infant height and lower it to the middle selection as they begin to sit up. Drop the crib to the final mattress setting once your baby begins pulling themselves up.
The crib is 30 by 36 inches with 54-inch long rails. The crib weighs 41 pounds. The weight capacity for your child tops out at 50 pounds. Dream on Me recommends the use of their Greenguard certified mattress. However, standard mattresses will still fit inside the crib safely.
- Safety certified
- Non-toxic paints
- Small footprint
- No new crib smell
- Can only hold up to a 50-pound child
- Not Greenguard certified
Delta Children Essex Crib
The Delta Children Essex crib is made of solid pine. Its stylish rails have a grey finish, while the legs are in their natural pine color. You can keep adjusting the bed to fit your child until they cannot sleep in a daybed any longer, which for some kiddos may be a while! You also have the option of purchasing coordinating pieces for your nursery, like changing tables and dressers.
While your child is still a baby, use the three adjustable heights to find the perfect spot for the mattress based on where they are in their developmental stages. The bed is 54 inches long with 34-inch tall rails. It has a narrow width of 29 inches.
Certified by JPMA, Delta’s Essex crib strives to meet or exceed ASTM’s safety standard. They have their products tested for toxic elements such as lead. They strive to use renewable sources and contribute overall to a healthier environment on earth. They have also been in business for over 50 years and are a family-owned business.
On top of trying to keep children’s sleeping environments healthy, they also give back to the community with 10 percent of their profits helping families who are in need.
- No chemical smell
- Assembly takes 30 minutes or less
- Easy to get your child in and out
- Made from sustainable materials
- May need to use additional tools for assembly beyond supplied Allen wrench
- Only comes in one color
Storkcraft Equinox Crib
Check out the Storkcraft Equinox if you are looking for a crib that’s style is unique. Instead of having slatted sides, it has paneled ends with an hourglass-shaped cross beam. The crib has a sleek design and a smaller footprint.
It can transition from a crib to a toddler or daybed with the purchase of additional crib rails. The bottom mattress supports have three height settings for easy adjustment as your child transitions through baby sleeping phases.
The paint used on the Equinox is non-toxic, and the wood is crafted from New Zealand Pine and other composites. The brand designs its products in the United States, and the cribs are made in China. You have three color options to choose from based on your nursery color scheme.
The Equinox is certified by Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) and Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), meeting all the industry standards for keeping your child safe while they sleep. Storkcraft also won the Women;’s Choice Award for baby & kids furniture.
- Easy to Assemble
- Non-toxic finishes
- Fits standard mattress
- Heavy at almost 70 pounds
- Not Greenguard Gold Certified
Oeuf Rhea Crib
The Oeuf Rhea crib is made of sustainably sourced solid birch and Baltic birch plywood. According to their website, all their finishes are done in non-toxic, water-based materials and are free of VOC health hazards. The rails are made from solid birch, while the Baltic birch plywood supports the mattress.
Rest assured that your child is not breathing in any toxic fumes, as Rhea has gone through rigorous testing and is Greenguard Gold Certified. The Rhea also meets all safety standards in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Europe. It even arrives at your doorstep in a recycled box, and they have licensed collecting facilities to recycle the crib itself responsibly.
Rounded spindles are on all four sides of the crib surrounding your little one with smooth surfaces that are not easy to stick little appendaged through. You have two color options to choose from, and the crib holds a standard size mattress giving you plenty of options if you want to pick out a non-toxic or organic crib mattress.
The Rhea is sleek and is expertly constructed, giving a high-end look to your nursery while providing your newborn with a healthy sleeping environment. It has a footprint of 30 x 37 inches, and the railing is 54 inches long. The crib weighs 57 pounds making it quite sturdy.
- Sustainably sourced
- Fits a standard size mattress
- Conversion kit available to grow with baby
- High dollar cost
- Difficult assembly
Stokke Sleepi Crib
Cribs generally are rectangular. However, this Stokke Sleepi crib is a unique oblong shape. It is made out of beech wood that is sustainably sourced from responsible forests.
It can convert to grow with your child, lasting until around three-years-old. The crib has a small footprint and can quickly move from room to room since it is on wheels. If you want to keep it in one spot, the wheels are easily lockable.
The crib can also be used as a mini-bassinet if you want or need to start with a smaller footprint. You can purchase conversion kits can to facilitate each size change. The mattress has four heights to change as your child grows. It also can be used as a toddler bed since you can easily take off the front side panel.
According to Stokke, once your toddler needs more space, there is even a convert kit available to change it into a bed that can last until your child is at least ten years old, making it 67” long.
- Easy to move wheels
- Sturdy construction
- High-quality finish
- Great for multiple kids
- The non-standard shape may make it hard to find a non-toxic mattress
- The complicated assembly may take longer than 30 minutes
Slumber Baby London 4-in-1 Convertible Crib
If you are looking for a Greenguard Gold Certified crib with many other accolades, the Slumber Baby London crib is the one for you. It was named the 202 Product of the Year by Creative Child Magazine and was awarded the 2020 Top Choice Award by Baby Maternity Magazine.
On top of ensuring your child’s health, Slumber Baby also takes safety very seriously. The crib rails are fixed, so there is no chance of slipping or collapsing. They are JPMA certified and meet ASTM/CPSC standards. The crib also comes with a one-year warranty. All finishes are made with water-based materials that are considered non-toxic and child-safe.
London also converts through all your child’s sleeping stages, making this a crib you and your child will have for a long time. There are three mattress height settings to move your child from infant sleeper to standing toddler safely.
- Water-based finishes
- Safety certified
- Purchase conversion rails separately
- A little heavy at 55 pounds
What to Consider when Buying a Non-Toxic Crib
If you are just stepping into the search for non-toxic cribs, you may realize by now that there are many different factors to consider. One aspect is where the crib is manufactured.
Buying a crib from the United States or Canada that is actually manufactured in those countries instead of just designed is the first step in finding a non-toxic crib for your child. These two countries generally have higher standards for children’s products, as do many European countries.
In general, Chinese regulations are not as stringent. Here is a deep dive into some of the other factors to consider when searching for the perfect non-toxic crib for your child’s room.
Type of Wood Used
Contrary to popular belief, not all woods are equal, especially when it comes to non-toxic materials. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) Many cribs are made of either a hardwood, a softwood, or a manufactured wood. Hardwood cribs are usually more expensive and much heavier, but they are more durable and fire-resistant. Some examples of popular hardwood are:
Softwood cribs are much lighter but are easier for babies to sink their teeth into. There is also a higher likelihood that softwood cribs will get scratches and dents during daily use. You will also have to take extra care when moving the crib, as it is likely to end up with a few additional dings during the process. Typically softwood cribs are also less expensive than their hardwood counterparts. Some softwood crib examples are:
- Douglas Fir
You will want to avoid cribs that are crafted from softwood veneer over manufactured woods and cribs entirely made from manufactured woods. These cribs will release the most VOCs since they are usually put together with toxic wood glue and have a layer of veneer on them that is coated in a measure to protect the wood. Some examples of manufactured wood are:
- Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF)
These options and their softwood hybrids are less expensive but are more harmful to your little one. So, if you are looking for a genuinely non-toxic alternative, choose a hardwood or a softwood crib to avoid any uncertainty.
While wood lacquers, finishes, paints, and stains provide your baby’s crib with a beautiful finish and add to your overall room aesthetic, they contain VOCs. The most common is polyurethane. While the water-based version is considered more non-toxic than its oil-based counterpart, it still holds a percentage of highly volatile VOCs. The numbers are just less, therefore deemed acceptable.
Also, oil-based releases VOCs for years at a time, while water-based polyurethane will usually only off-gas in large amounts for a couple of days. However, it is possible that water-based polyurethane can release additional toxins over time. It can be declared non-toxic by federal agencies because it meets their standards. But, the U.S. federal government does not maintain strict standards when it comes to regulating toxic materials in children’s furniture.
While the best way to ensure that your child’s crib is non-toxic would be to have an unfinished crib, there are a few options available if you still want a finish. Some non-toxic crib finish options include food-based oils such as:
Also, check to make sure any glue used in the crib is soy-based or water-based. These two types of adhesive are non-toxic and considered safe to be around your child.
While researching non-toxic cribs, you will see various certifications listed. These certifications indicate the quality behind the crib and give you extra reassurance that you are buying a crib that is safe and non-toxic for your baby. Certifications can include:
- CARB II
- Greenguard Gold
CARB II is a certification that the California Resource Board created as a more robust version of CARB I. CARB I was created in 1992 and ruled that formaldehyde is a carcinogen. Therefore, its emissions need to be regulated. To qualify for a CARB I rating, manufacturers had to lower their emission levels. With CARB II, levels need to be below 0.05 parts per million in hardwood plywood veneer and hardwood plywood composite core. Particleboard was set to 0.09 ppm, while MDF is 0.11ppm.
Greenguard Gold is a certification that also sets stringent limits on the amount of VOCs in cribs and other products. However, just because a crib has a Greenguard Gold Certification, it does not mean that the crib is 100% VOC free. It just means it contains very low levels.
For a crib to be Greenguard Gold Certified, its Total VOCs and individual VOCs have to fall into a certain level. For example, formaldehyde cannot exceed 7.3 parts per billion (ppb), and aldehyde cannot reach levels higher than 43 ppb. This rigorous third-party testing ensures that the products that come in contact with your child have the lowest VOC levels possible.
JPMA, or Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, has been around for over 40 years. They certify products made for baby’s use. Their stamp of approval means the product meets government safety requirements as well as performance and functionality standards.
TSCA is the Toxic Substance Control Act, which regulates the number of toxic substances allowed in products per the United States minimum standards. These are the standard requirements a product must have before entering the country and are not necessarily a sign of being non-toxic, just that the levels are acceptable to U.S. standards.
If you are interested in products that go beyond just being non-toxic, look for an FSC certification. An FSC is an eco-friendly certification. Wood that achieves this stamp comes from forests that are responsibly managed. It takes into consideration environmental, social, and economic factors.
Also, look out for labels for phthalate-free and lead-free. These terms mean that the crib does not have either of these materials. Whereas phthalate-safe and lead-safe indicate, the product has acceptable levels to U.S. standards.
It is essential to ensure the mattress your child is sleeping on is also non-toxic. Traditional mattresses can be filled with VOCs that your child breathes in while they rest. Look for a mattress made from the following materials:
- Organic wool
- Organic cotton
- Natural latex
- Coconut coir
Mattresses with these materials provide a comfortable environment for your child. They also are eco-friendly and environmentally responsible. When looking at mattresses, there are a few different certifications to consider. Safe mattresses should have one or more of the following certifications:
Each of these certifications ensures the levels of VOCs are either non-existent or at very low levels. The other consideration is organic or green manufacturing. OEKO-TEX, for example, has a specific certification for products that have been sustainably sourced under socially responsible conditions. Others test to ensure VOCs are at an acceptable level.
Frequently Asked Questions
The world of non-toxic cribs can be a complicated topic to dive into, especially if you are already low on sleep and mommy-multi-tasking. Here are a couple of frequently asked questions and their answers to help you along in your non-toxic crib search.
Why choose a non-toxic crib?
In the first few years of their lives, babies spend the majority of their time sleeping. It is essential that the air baby’s breathe and the environment in the room around them is safe and clean. Cribs that are not non-toxic release gases and chemicals known as VOCs into the air. Air quality is directly tied to development and health. Some examples of toxic chemicals to look out for are:
* Flame retardants
* BPA & BPA Substitutes
* Formaldehyde and Formaldehyde releasers
All of these can be found in a variety of levels in manufactured products. Each of them has been scientifically tied to causing health problems in both children and adults. Some health issues that have been linked to these chemicals are:
* Eye, throat, and nose irritation
* Kidney, liver, and nervous system damage
* Coordination loss
* Cancers, such as breast cancer
Since your child is growing rapidly, limiting their exposure to these chemicals while they are little can make a huge difference in their development and health later in life.
Are metal cribs non-toxic?
Newer metal cribs have a higher likelihood of being non-toxic. Older metal cribs can have lead and other toxic chemicals in the metal or in the paint used. Newer cribs conform to industry safety standards and will not have lead, especially if they are manufactured in the U.S. or in Canada.
Check with the metal crib maker to ensure the powder coat used on the iron or steel is made from non-toxic components.
Final Thoughts on Non-Toxic Cribs
When choosing a non-toxic crib, make sure you find one that makes you comfortable. Many cribs out there have the proper certifications to help you make a conscious decision and find one that satisfies all your needs.
If you do not feel like the manufacturer provides enough details for you to make an informed decision, reach out to them for additional information. They should be able to give you precisely what you are looking for to put your mind at ease.
Looking for more gear for your little one? Head over to our Gear Guides Section to see more comparisons.
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Krissy lives in California with her family of three that make up “The Hadicks.” With a passion for research and helping others, The Hadicks was developed as a resource for other parents and parents-to-be!