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With sluggish economy, it seems that more and more sales of baby gear on a consignment basis are popping up in our community. While I recognize that there are some good deals to be found, I find it hard to purchase gently used items for fear of safety or sanitary reasons. Am I being unreasonable? -- Chris, Strongmoms Facilitator
I think it depends on the baby item. With most clothes and toy covers, you can wash them in really hot water and use a good detergent to rid yourself of any microbes etc. If it is a toy you are purchasing, you can wash the toy in hot water and soap to get rid of any germs etc... I think when it comes to second hand items, you just need to go with your gut. If you think it is too dirty or looks unsanitary, then you may want to stay away.
I personally don't really mind second hand items because I figure that the world that my child goes out into is FULL of germs and bugs that we don't see and aren't aware of. It's pretty unlikely that they'd be exposed to something horrible if you are able to wash the items with hot water and soap. Having said that, however, I understand how the mental block could be hard to get over. :-p
Consignment is great! I won't spend money on anything with a stain or the has a trace of smoke smell. There are some items that should be avoided however just for safety such as car seats, cribs and ect. Car seats especially is advised to NEVER buy used even it if looks nearly new.
As far as clothes and toys go though, I don't see it being any different new vs. used. Do you realize how many thousands of little hands touch a toy in a store before you ever come along and purchase it? Just because it has some attractive packaging around it doesn't make it absent from germs. Same with clothes, many people pick it up and look at it and try it on their kid. Do you think every one of those people before you was squeaky clean? Hardly. As long as its from a smoke free home there isn't any difference.
Clean and wash everything, Baby's grow so fast and it is expensive out there. Save the money and put it in a account. Just use your judgement when it comes to the cloths, take a look around when you shop and see how clean and organized the store is. I love the consignment cloths!!!!