When I was pregnant with Max and researching non-toxic play mats, there were very limited options available. I ended up with a Baby Care Play Mat – which is a GREAT play mat (you can read my review here) – but for the fact that it is made out of PVC. The company claims that the PVC is non-toxic. Nonetheless, it is PVC. If I were to err on the side of caution, and I could do it all over again, I would stay away from all PVC. And, if there are good alternatives, why take the risk, right? (I have since compiled a list of The Best Non-Toxic Play Mats for Baby that I have found.)
Recently, Max started rolling out of his toddler bed and onto our hardwood floors. Seeing his head smack the floor while he was dead asleep and hearing the accompanying thud is not a vision I ever want to relive.
That’s when I started my search anew for truly non-toxic play mats.
I came across Pillobebe, an amazing company, started by Lauren because she was having the same issues I had – she couldn’t find any good non-toxic play mats. So she created her own!
I reached out to Lauren because I wanted to review her Organic Cotton Play Mat and she generously provided me with a blogger’s discount.
So let me tell you what makes Pillobebe’s play mats so amazing. Aside from it being truly non-toxic – does not contain formamide, fire-retardants, PVC, BPA, PBS, formaldehyde, phthalates, lead, and VOCs – it is handmade in the USA using 100% GOTS Certified Organic Cotton for the cover. I absolutely love the beautifully designed covers which, unlike most children play’s mat, are not too loud or busy.
There are two non-toxic padding options: polyester and cotton/bamboo. I chose the cotton/bamboo padding and it is wonderfully thick. My biggest concern with natural fiber mats has always been whether or not the play mat would sufficiently protect against hard falls on my hardwood floors.
Max was able to test that out the very first night. He rolled out of his toddler bed and fell flat onto his back. I guess he wasn’t satisfied with the effect because he then proceeded to roll off the mat until his head hit the wood floor. And there is just nothing we can do to prevent that. (Why are toddlers so weird??)
While the play mat does a good job protecting against falls, it is worth noting that it is not as shock-absorbent as, say, (toxic) foam or PVC play mats.
The play mat is large, approximately 55″ X 55″. However, for those of you who would like an even larger play space, Pillobebe has a CorkiMat line – 19″ square tiles composed from natural cork, bamboo, and cotton – where the size is far more customizable.
The play mat cover is removable and machine-washable and contains anti-slip dots, on the underside, that work great on my hardwood floors!
The padding has a water-resistant cover which I’m grateful for because we all know that babies and toddlers leak fluids everywhere (and out of every orifice). Due to the nature of the material, the padding is not machine-washable. The padding can only be hand washed and the bamboo/cotton filling may bunch after washing. (I have not yet washed the padding so I cannot attest to the extent in which it bunches.)
The play mat cover can wrinkle and does not lie completely flat after we’ve played on it. This isn’t really preventable since the play mat is made from fabric and is probably just be a personal aesthetic pet peeve of mine.
Let’s address the biggest drawback. It’s expensive. Before any sales and discounts, the cotton/bamboo filling option is $249 and the polyester filling option is $199. However, I can’t find a comparable play mat in quality, size, attractiveness and non-toxicity. So, despite the price tag, I actually do think it’s worth it!
Overall, Pillobebe’s Organic Cotton Play Mat is an excellent, high-quality play mat and, most importantly, unquestionably non-toxic. I love baby products that make me feel good. And this one definitely makes me feel good.
For those of you who are interested in buying a Pillobebe play mat, Pillobebe is very generously giving away $100 in shop credit to one of my readers.
The giveaway will run until February 29th, 2016, 11:59PM. I will e-mail the winner within 48 hours. Good luck!
Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for writing this post. I did, however, receive a blogger’s discount for review purposes. Nonetheless, this review is 100% my honest opinion and, to the best of my ability, an unbiased review.