So time is drawing to a close. I'm due in two months. We have to have a car seat to get our baby home from the hospital, but even those that are supposed to be non-toxic or low in toxins have been testing otherwise. I've visited several blog sites where mothers have sent in samples of foam from the higher end car seats that are supposed to be less toxic (Britax, Orbit, Diono, etc.) and found them to contain chemicals the company stated the foam didn't contain. The fabrics worry me, too, of course. Even those things that aren't supposed to be "as harmful" are still very harmful. I'm now leaning towards borrowing a used one from one of our friends because at least then some of the chemicals have off-gassed, but by how much? How much can these car seats still harm our baby? Why must we be forced to choose the least toxic option? Why must we choose between physical safety and health? Why are there no car seats made with completely organic fabric and wool or organic fabric and latex? Anyone know of a place that can create car seats from scratch made to our specifications?
Car seats contain toxins because they are required to meet flame retardant standards. It sucks, but it's life. My advice is to buy one now, wash the cover (NEVER the straps) with vinegar added to the water to help combat chemicals, let it air out, and know you're doing the best you can.
Clek is supposed to be the "safest" as far as flame retardants go.
OP, what did you end up buying?
To put things into perspective, cars themselves are LOADED with nasty flame retardants (though some are worse than others - Honda is one of the best) so I had to let the car seat thing go a little. Instead, I focused on keeping our house as free from flame retardants as possible. New organic/latex mattresses, new mission furniture with latex cushions, no more carpet, etc. And the best you can do is to vacuum often with a HEPA filter since most of the exposure is through broken down flame retardants in the form of dust - and washing hands before eating. Also, since a lot of flame retardants are bromide/chloride based, looking into detoxing toxic halogens with iodine might be helpful.
I'm on the market for a few new cars seats and this is something I'm aware of - it's very difficult!
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