Simple Swaps For Babies

Green + Simple co-founder, Erica Watson, shares her favourite natural, kind and eco-friendly swaps for babies.

As a parent, wanting the absolute best for your little one goes without saying. But did you know that behind the shiny marketing and child-friendly labels, some of the most common baby care products – those we use every single day – contain ingredients we’d prefer to avoid? Here’s our list of daily simple swaps that will lower your child’s toxic load.

Vapour Rub

When it comes to stuffy noses, kids vapour rub is a game-changer. A little on their chest – and feet – quickly allows a cranky bub to breathe easily and, most importantly, get some much-needed sleep. But, mainstream vapour rub (like Vicks) contains toxic ingredients like camphor and petrochemicals like turpentine oil. The good news is there are salves powered by plant-based ingredients and essential oils, that not only work a charm but are much safer for little ones. 

Try instead: 

Badger Balm Aromatic Chest Rub or Little Green Radicals chest rub 


In 2017, Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay a multi-million dollar payout to victims claiming their talcum powder cause ovarian cancer. Although claims asbestos had made its way into the powder were from the ‘50s to ‘70s, it seems no one can agree on the safety of talc. If you’re staring down the barrel of nappy rash, you want to something to wick away moisture, or you need an alternative to cream, corn starch powder is a great alternative. A good tip is to put the powder in your hand first then apply to baby – it’ll minimise particles reaching the air.  

Try instead:

Neal’s Yard Organic corn starch powder
Burts Bees Baby Bee cream to powder  

Baby oil

Many conventional baby oils on the market are largely made of mineral oil. Put simply, it’s a derivative of petroleum. They’re also often perfumed using synthetic ingredients. Plant-based oils – like almond, coconut and shea – are a great natural alternative, especially on the most sensitive skin. 

Try instead:

Weleda calendula baby oil or Jojoba Oil


When I had my first child, I found myself in a constant battle of dummy give and take. On the one hand, I’d relish the moments it soothed him, and on the other I’d be sneaking it out before he got too attached. By the time the second one came around I was all in, telling myself these little suckers are the holy grail of parenting. Sadly, baby two wasn’t having a bar of it. What I did discover over that time was natural rubber soothers, which were a much better option than their silicon and plastic counterparts.  They’re made from one piece of natural rubber and are also biodegradable. 

Try instead:

Hevea natural latex soother