There are countless manufacturers of organic baby mattresses, but Naturepedic stands out from the rest. They have a unique approach – make a product that’s safe and affordable, without using wool or latex which carry potential allergy concerns. Fans love the price. The Classic, “No Compromise” crib mattress is just $259! But, others cite concerns with the safety of Naturepedic’s wool substitutions.
You see, traditional organic baby mattresses rely upon wool for its fire retardant properties. A mattress that has enough wool does not require chemical fire retardants to meet fire safety standards. And avoiding those chemicals is an absolute priority for informed shoppers. Instead of using expensive and potentially allergenic wool, Naturepedic has created “FlameBreaker”, a proprietary fire blocking system utilizing baking soda and silica. They claim that it’s safe and non-toxic. But, is it? Here’s how Naturepedic describes it:
Our exclusive fire protection system is based on the unique fire retardant properties of baking soda and hydrated silica bonded to cellulose fiber. Baking soda is a non-toxic substance with excellent fire retardant properties and can be found as a naturally occurring compound. Silica is a natural mineral that comprises about 60% of the earth’s crust. Clay, rocks, sand, etc. are all made primarily of silica. It is a major constituent of human tissue, bones, teeth, etc., and is even available at health food stores as a food supplement. It is also a primary ingredient in natural toothpaste. The cellulose fiber used is derived primarily from eucalyptus and poplar trees and has a low carbon footprint. These materials provide the best way to meet fire regulations without the use of dangerous chemicals or allergenic wool.
Everyone agrees that baking soda is safe. It’s the silica that garners concern. Silica can be a dry, dusty powder that’s super-fine and dangerous to inhale. This is a crystaline form of silica that poses a cancer hazard to some factory workers who inhale it every day. Hydrated silica is a completely different chemical state involving a variable amount of water in the formula, according to Wikipedia. Hydrated silica is NOT dry and dusty and cannot be inhaled. It’s commonly used in natural toothepaste – in fact, it’s used in MY natural toothepaste! This kind is not dangerous. Naturepedic says they bind it to the fibers of the cellulose, which sounds like a stable solution to me.
I personally recommend and even own Naturepedic products, which reflects my comfort level with the company. It encourages me that their mattresses have been tested for chemical emissions and certified by GREENGUARD® to meet their strict standards for children. I also like that Naturepedic mattresses carry a 10 year warranty and that Healthy Child, Healthy World, an organization I fully trust, endorses Naturepedic. When we can afford to do so, I’ll be replacing my children’s twin mattresses with Naturepedic’s waterproof twin mattress. It’s the best priced mattress on the market, and I’m convinced that it’s a safe, responsible purchase.
Note: If your family does not have a history of wool allergy, I feel quite comfortable recommending a wool mattress to you. Wool is a wonderful, natural fiber that makes an excellent mattress. Unfortunately, it’s also expensive, which is one reason why some parents choose Naturepedic’s more affordable product.