I was sponsored by Romina, a non toxic furniture company. I received the Karisma Single Dresser to try out and write this review. This review is my honest view and opinion.
When I had my daughter, I started looking for non toxic products. I was always into a healthy lifestyle even before I had a baby but I started really researching for non toxic products once my daughter was born. I looked at product ingredients or materials before I made purchases for my family most of the time. I guess a baby is very fragile and vulnerable so I wanted to do my best to protect my baby. Then I realized so many baby products can be made of toxic materials. That includes everything you find in a baby’s surroundings such as furniture. We all want the best things for our kids and protect them from any harm. However, there are so many toxic chemicals around us even at home. In this post, I want to share with you how baby and nursery furniture can be toxic and one non toxic baby furniture brand I found.
Why Non Toxic Furniture For Your Baby & Kids
You would be very surprised to find out or notice that almost everything around us can be made of toxic ingredients or materials and can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into our home. Toxic chemicals such as flame retardant chemicals or perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) can escape from products and get mixed with dusts in the air then they can settle around the house. Babies, toddlers and children are especially vulnerable to these exposure to environmental toxins and chemicals. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), infants, toddlers and children’s body are still growing and organs and systems are still maturing. Therefore, they require larger amounts of energy, water, oxygen and nutrients than adults do. Their absorption, transportation, conversion or metabolism and elimination of toxins and chemicals are different from adults and more vulnerable to damage. For example, a toddler will absorb between 40 and 70% of a given ingested dose of lead whereas a non-pregnant adult will absorb around 5–20%. Children’s body and systems continue to grow and mature through adolescence. Disruption during this critical period can damage children significantly more than it does to adults and the damage can be lifelong. Babies, toddlers and children’s hand-to-mouth behavior also contributes to more exposure to toxic chemicals since they can easily ingest them.
How Furniture Can Be Toxic
Toxic Chemicals In Furniture – Wood Material
Wood is one of the most commonly used materials for furniture. A wood material includes solid hard wood and engineered wood. Engineered wood furniture is a lot cheaper than solid wood furniture but it can emit toxic fumes into the air from the wood. Engineered wood is typically made by gluing wood chips or fibers together and pressing them under heat and pressure. When engineered wood is glued together, usually formaldehyde-based adhesives are used. Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and a highly toxic chemical. It can irritate eyes, nose, throat, and skin. It can also exacerbate symptoms of asthma for people with asthma. According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), formaldehyde exposure of children has also been associated with formaldehyde-specific immunoglobulin (Ig)E antibody production. Immunoglobulin E (IgE) are antibodies produced by the immune system and trigger reaction of allergic reaction typically in the nose, lungs, throat, or on the skin. Engineered wood emits formaldehyde into the air and we can breathe in the toxic fumes.
Toxic Chemicals In Furniture – Adhesives
Adhesives used for furniture’s parts and joints can also release toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and contaminate indoor air quality. Adhesives are often solvent-based or formaldehyde-based. Some solvents include chemicals such as benzene and chloroform which are classified as carcinogens by World Health Organization. Exposure to solvents can cause toxicity to the nervous system, liver and kidney damage, reproductive damage, cancer, respiratory impairment and dermatitis. Formaldehyde which is a carcinogen will also emit formaldehyde into the air.
Toxic Chemicals In Furniture – Wood Finish
Wood finish is another part of furniture that can release toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The problem with some of the wood finishes or stains is they can contain toxic solvents. Solvents are used to dissolve other substances. Solvents in wood finishing are used to thin waxes, oils and varnishes, clean oil, grease and wax. Most of the solvents are made of petroleum distillates. Petroleum distillates contain toxic chemicals such as naphtha, toluene or xylene. Naphtha may contain benzene which is a carcinogen. Toluene can damage the central nervous system, respiratory system, liver and kidneys. It can also cause dermatitis or birth defects. Inhaling xylene can cause depression of the central nervous system with symptoms such as headache, dizziness, nausea and vomiting. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), some wood finishes and stains contain N-methypyrrolidone, or NMP which can damage human reproductive systems. As solvents evaporate, they release toxins into the air. Except for water, there are no totally safe solvents. Lacquer usually contains most VOCs and will emit VOCs the most among all wood finishes. Many varnishes contain a known carcinogen, benzene. Some of the chemicals in solvents such as toluene, benzene, petroleum distillates are linked to cancer and reproductive harm. Polyurethane which is a petrochemical resin contains isocyanates which include compounds classified as potential human carcinogens and known to cause cancer in animals.
How Romina Non Toxic Furniture Is Different
Romina is a non toxic furniture company I have found while I was researching all solid wood baby cribs. I only found a few truly non toxic baby crib companies and Romina was one of them. They control every aspect of their manufacturing process without using any third parties. This enables them to source the best materials, treat harvested wood with a natural moisture extraction process, finish each board with water-based stains, water-based paints and organic oil washes. Romina furniture is not only made of 100% solid hardwood but also made with organic glues, non-toxic, water-based organic finishes. It is Greenguard Gold certified which means they don’t contain toxic chemicals such as lead, formaldehyde or VOCs. They are committed to creating furniture without chemicals.
Romina furniture company is an eco-friendly company who cares about our environment. They plant five new trees for every tree that is harvested to make Romina furniture. Wood is sustainably harvested. They design and make quality furniture that never goes out of style to minimize landfills in our environment. Every detail of their furniture comes with a warranty and hardware is guaranteed to last over 70 years with average use. Their wood waste is used in packing materials or for green energy in their manufacturing facility. They manufacture and use their own ethanol. They even provide measurements of wood they need to their wood suppliers before harvesting so that wood waste can be minimized.
Baby, Toddler and Kid Safe Furniture
They design their furniture with infants, toddlers and kids’ safety in mind. Their furniture will remain upright when a little one pulls and tugs their furniture. Their drawers have anti-detachment technology and must be pushed at the same time for the drawer to release. All drawers have soft-close hardware to prevent the drawer from shutting suddenly and hurt the little one’s fingers. Their drawers can also be used as steps and the drawer will not tip over. Romina furniture is designed with balanced construction for sturdiness and safety.
Karisma Single Dresser
I was given a Karisma Single dresser to review. I think the Karisma Single dresser is a beautiful quality piece of solid furniture you can add to your home. Let’s take a look at its materials.
Wood: Their furniture is made of 100% solid hardwood with natural/unique grain characteristics. Romina uses European beech trees which take decades to grow to maturity. Their wood drying process can take several months to achieve optimal moisture content. Then all boards are inspected for any structural weakness, size, grain variations, and appearance. All components are evaluated by another team of wood artisans for design and structural consistency. Wood on this drawer is solid and sturdy.
Adhesives: Romina’s furniture parts are assembled using non-toxic adhesives, metal screws, and nails. Organic tree-sap based glues are used for this dresser. There is no formaldehyde and VOC emissions you will usually find with adhesives.
Finish: Romina uses non toxic, water-based and organic oil finishes. There are 17 different finish options and treatments to customize and choose from. Their finish has no formaldehyde and VOC emissions.
Certification: Romina furniture is GreenGuard Gold certified. GreenGuard Gold certified products must be safe to use in environments such as schools and healthcare facilities. This certification ensures that all VOCs found to be emitting from a product do not exceed their strict standards. It’s certification criteria considers safety factors to account for sensitive individuals such as children and the elderly.
Made In: Romina furniture is all handcrafted in Europe by artisans who are skilled and passionate about making quality wooden furniture.
This dresser comes with three large drawers and wooden diamond shaped handles. You can customize handles with metal or crystal handles which are made in Italy.
You can place a changing tray on top of the dresser and it is perfect for your nurseries.
Its soft-closing German drawer glides are guaranteed 80,000 cycles (approx. 73 years) with average use.
It has corner brackets and English dove-tail drawer construction for locking joints on its drawer boxes.
Romina offers truly non toxic, safe furniture for babies and nurseries. What I kept thinking was that this dresser is not only great for infants and toddlers but it can also be used for my entire family. They actually carry other furniture pieces such as bed frames, desks, chests, double dressers, nightstands and mirrors. This dresser radiates superb quality and adds distinctive style to the room. Most of all, I love its non toxic materials and safety features so my daughter can be safe around the furniture. I am very thankful to Romina for offering our family such impressive quality furniture. My daughter can use this dresser even when she grows up and we will keep this piece with us forever.
For non toxic cribs, check out my post ‘Non-Toxic Crib Buying Guide – Buying A Truly Non-Toxic Crib‘.
For non toxic crib mattresses, check out my post ‘‘Best Organic Crib Mattresses Buying Guide‘! 😀
For non-toxic car seats, please read my post ‘Non Toxic Car Seats Without Flame Retardant Chemicals‘.
For non toxic strollers without flame retardant chemicals, please read my previous post, ‘Non Toxic Strollers Without Flame Retardant Chemicals‘.
For non toxic play mats without flame retardant chemicals, please read my post, ‘Non Toxic Play Yard Without Flame Retardant Chemicals.’