6 ways to make your newborn care routine more sustainable

Let’s talk about your newborn care routine. It can be a whirlwind of diaper changes, feedings, and lullabies.

But have you ever stopped to think about how sustainable your newborn care routine is? Could there be a better way to do things, for both you and the planet?

I believe there are plenty of ways we can make our baby care habits more eco-friendly. And don’t worry – I’m not here to judge or dictate; I’m here to suggest alternatives and let you decide what works best for you.

In this article, I’ll be sharing my top 6 tips to make your newborn care routine more sustainable. So grab your reusable coffee cup, sit back, and let’s dive in.

1) Opt for reusable diapers

Here’s a fact that might surprise you: the average baby goes through about 5,000 diapers before they’re potty trained. That’s a mountain of single-use items heading to the landfill.

Fortunately, there’s a sustainable alternative: reusable cloth diapers.

Now, if you’re a new parent, I can already hear your exasperated sigh. Yes, cloth diapers require a bit more work than their disposable counterparts. But trust me, once you get into the swing of things, it’s not as daunting as it may seem.

Plus, it’s not just about being environmentally friendly. Cloth diapers can also be more economical in the long run and they’re often gentler on your baby’s sensitive skin.

This is about making choices that work for you. So if cloth diapers seem like too much right now, perhaps consider starting with a hybrid approach – using disposables when out and about, and cloth at home.

Like many aspects of parenting, it’s all about finding a balance that suits your lifestyle while also considering the planet we’re leaving for our children.

2) Simplify your baby’s wardrobe

When my first child was born, I was overwhelmed by the sheer amount of baby clothes we received as gifts. Everything was adorable but, honestly, we had way more than we needed.

I quickly realized that a simple, minimalist wardrobe is not only easier to manage, it’s also more sustainable.

Babies grow rapidly and outgrow their outfits in no time. So instead of stuffing the closet with a plethora of outfits they’ll only wear once or twice, consider opting for a few staple pieces that can be mixed and matched.

I found that choosing high-quality items in neutral colors worked best for us. They last longer, can be handed down to younger siblings or friends’ kids, and it’s easier to put together outfits on those sleep-deprived mornings.

Less is more when it comes to your baby’s wardrobe. It’s kinder to your wallet, your sanity, and the environment.

3) Choose wooden toys over plastic ones

Did you know that 90% of all toys on the market are made of plastic? And while they may be colorful and entertaining, they also contribute to the massive plastic pollution problem we’re currently facing.

Wooden toys, on the other hand, are a more sustainable choice. They’re durable, biodegradable and often have a timeless quality that can be enjoyed by generations.

Plus, wooden toys often encourage more imaginative play. Without flashy lights and noises, children use their creativity to bring the toys to life.

So next time you’re thinking of purchasing a toy for your little one, consider going for the wooden option. It’s a small change that can make a big difference.

4) Consider homemade baby food

Baby food pouches and jars are convenient, no doubt about it. But have you considered making your own baby food?

It may seem daunting at first, but it’s simpler than you might think. All you need is a blender and some fresh ingredients. Plus, you’ll have the peace of mind knowing exactly what’s going into your baby’s meals.

Homemade baby food not only reduces the amount of packaging waste but also allows you to make use of seasonal and local produce, which is a win for sustainability.

5) Breastfeed if possible

Breastfeeding is often called “nature’s perfect baby food” — and for good reason. It’s the most sustainable way of feeding your infant, without the need for manufacturing, packaging, or shipping.

Now, I understand that breastfeeding isn’t an option for everyone, and that’s okay. But if you’re able to breastfeed, even some of the time, it can have a positive environmental impact.

If you opt for formula feeding or find it necessary, think about utilizing a reusable bottle instead of disposable ones. This simple switch can have a significant impact on waste reduction.

6) Pass down or donate used baby items

When your little one outgrows their clothes, toys or equipment, it can be tempting to just toss them out. But these items can often have a second life.

Passing down your baby items to friends, family, or charity organizations not only extends the life of these products but also helps other families in need. It creates a cycle of reuse that is much kinder to our planet.

The thought of your child’s outgrown clothes bringing joy to another child, or his old crib becoming a safe space for another newborn, is a beautiful thing.

We’re not just creating a more sustainable world for our children; we’re also teaching them the value of sharing and caring for others.

Final thought: Sustainability starts at home

Behind all the diaper changes, feedings, and lullabies, there lies a powerful opportunity to set the stage for a sustainable future.

The choices we make in our newborn care routine can have a profound impact on our planet. It’s more than just reducing waste or saving money – it’s creating a world that our children, and their children, can thrive in.

Consider this: By the time your little one is all grown up, they could be living in a world where sustainability is the norm rather than the exception.

And it all starts with us, with every cloth diaper we choose, every wooden toy we buy, and every homemade meal we prepare.

As parents, we have an unparalleled opportunity to shape the future by the choices we make today. So let’s make them count.

Tina Fey

Tina Fey

Tina Fey is a nomadic writer with a background in psychology, specializing in child development. Born and raised in diverse cultural settings, she developed a deep understanding of human behavior and the intricacies of parenting. Driven by her passion for helping others, Tina now contributes to Careful Parents, offering practical advice and insights drawn from her expertise and experiences. Through her articles, she aims to empower parents with effective strategies for nurturing healthy relationships and fostering their children's growth.

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