Vinyl is the last thing you want next to your baby. Here's an excerpt from an article I wrote on vinyl/PVC and other toxins in mattresses and beding:
Most crib mattresses have a vinyl covering for waterproofing purposes. Vinyl (polyvinyl chloride or PVC) is considered to be one of the most toxic and environmentally unfriendly plastics used. Since PVC is a hard plastic, chemical plasticizers must be added to make it into a soft and flexible covering. These plasticizers (the most commonly used are phthalates) make up 30%-40% of the weight of the vinyl surface of a crib mattress. They are not bound to the vinyl and can leach out or off-gas into the surrounding air. Health effects associated with chemical plasticizers include reproductive harm, asthma, early onset of puberty, cancer, and kidney and liver damage.
It's important to know that although certain phthalates have been banned in the US, alternatives (including legal phthalate variants) are not tested and might be just as toxic. No one really knows what level of additives in vinyl is safe for babies. So when you see a product description with "non-toxic vinyl" or "phthalate-free vinyl", you need to understand that it's probably far from non-toxic.
Consider a new car smell. That's the plasticizers off-gassing from the vinyl seats. You get a similar smell from a vinyl shower curtain. These fumes should always be avoided since they are highly toxic. When these fumes are coming from crib mattresses, babies are breathing and absorbing them into their tiny developing bodies 10 - 14 hours a day.
It's a long article and you can find the rest of the article here:http://www.healthychild.com/toxic-ba...ib-mattresses/