The plastic in toys is usually obvious! *But* you mightn't have realised there's hidden plastic in most (but not ours!):
- Crayons. Most are made from paraffin or polyethylene waxes (both from petroleum, not biodegradable);
- Washi tape. These pretty tapes are paper but we can't find a brand without acrylic resin in the adhesive. Meaning it's actually neither plastic-free nor biodegradable;
- Glue. PVA = polyvinyl acetate (plastic);
- Craft felt. Unless otherwise stated, usually from virgin plastic - acrylic or polyester;
- Glitter. 'Regular' craft glitter is polyester (plastic);
- Packaging...on the toy itself...but also the packaging in the supply-chain. Sadly, bubblewrap / SealedAir are still the norm for transporting toys from factory to shop. Toyshops we speak with hate how much single-use plastic they end-up with.
We've found plastic-free substitutes for so many toy plastics - including 4 of the 6 hidden ones above. We still have a short list we're working on though...love to hear your ideas!
- Colouring markers. We just don't stock any (we just offer plastic-free pencils, crayons, paint, and paint-pencils);
- Washi tape (see above) - so we don't stock;
- Small, complex components of otherwise plastic-free toys we do stock: Nylon bristles in our vegan paintbrushes; lids-with-brushes on our biodegradable nail polishes; electric lamps and velcro in our shadow theatres; magnetic strips on our magnetic wooden puzzles; and carefully-shaped holders for our watercolour pellets;
- We have found plastic-free glue but not yet in plastic-free packaging - so we don't stock any yet, working on it!
Read our next post for how we've gotten to 80% totally plastic-free (20% nearly-plastic-free) in our toyshop.