Nostalgic Charm of Wooden Toys
Firstly, let's acknowledge the enduring charm of wooden toys. These toys, unarguably, possess a warm, timeless appeal that plastic or metal playthings often struggle to match. Moreover, known for their resilience, wooden toys can handle the exuberant handling by little hands remarkably well. Undeniably, many of us can recall with fondness a cherished wooden toy from our own childhoods. However, beyond the charm and durability, there's an often overlooked aspect: the finish.
Wood Finishes: An Overlooked Aspect
Primarily, the finish on wooden toys can either enhance or detract from their overall appeal and safety. Particularly, when these toys are intended for young children, the finish is not just a cosmetic consideration. Indeed, it plays a vital role in preserving the toy's integrity and, importantly, in safeguarding the health of the child playing with it.
Natural Finishes: Beeswax and Food-Grade Oil
Predominantly, natural finishes like beeswax or food-grade oils are an excellent choice for wooden toys. Unquestionably, these finishes offer multiple benefits, both from an aesthetic standpoint and from a safety perspective. Notably, these natural finishes, instead of creating a barrier on the wood surface, penetrate deeply and nourish the wood from within.
Visually, the right finish can transform a plain wooden toy into a stunning piece. For example, a beeswax finish imparts a soft sheen to the wood, highlighting its natural grain and beauty. Similarly, food-grade oil finishes, such as linseed or tung oil, give the wood a rich, warm glow. Essentially, these finishes allow the natural charm of the wood to shine through.
Practically, finishes also improve the longevity of the toy. By penetrating the wood, beeswax and oil finishes help to prevent cracking and warping. Furthermore, they offer a certain level of water resistance, providing an additional layer of protection against damage from spills or drooling mouths.
Safety: A Primary Concern
However, beyond aesthetics and durability, there's a more crucial reason for favouring natural finishes on wooden toys - safety. Namely, when children play, toys invariably end up in their mouths. Therefore, the toy's finish should be safe for consumption.
Safe for Ingestion
Subsequently, beeswax and food-grade oil finishes excel in this regard. As natural substances, they are non-toxic and safe if ingested in small amounts. Unlike synthetic finishes, which may contain harmful chemicals, beeswax and food-grade oils pose no risk to children's health.
Gentle on Little Hands
Besides, these finishes are gentle on small hands. Unlike some synthetic finishes, which can be harsh or allergenic, beeswax and food-grade oil finishes are skin-friendly. Therefore, they won't cause irritation or allergies, even with prolonged contact.
The Right Choice
In conclusion, the choice of finish for wooden toys is of paramount importance. Not only does it contribute to the toy's aesthetic appeal and durability, but it also impacts the child's health. Thus, natural finishes like beeswax and food-grade oils, which are safe and gentle, are undeniably the right choice for wooden toys. By prioritising safety and well-being, we can ensure that our children enjoy their playtime without any hidden risks.
As a result, the next time you choose a wooden toy, remember to consider the finish. As it turns out, the beauty of a wooden toy is not only skin deep - it’s also in the safe and natural finish it bears.
Shop for handcrafted wooden toys at SmolBlock which has a wide range of wooden toys to choose from!