Rain gear often contains polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a chemical in all sorts of flexible, waterproof items such as bibs, rain jackets, and rain boots. Unfortunately, PVC releases toxins over its lifespan.Some safer alternatives for rain coats, rain boots, and umbrellas include those made from polyurethane, polyester, or nylon. Polyurethane, polyester, and nylon are synthetic materials but they are more inert than PVC and usually contain fewer toxins. Make sure that rain gear choices are listed as PVC- and phthalate-free because these toxic materials can still show up in the manufacture of materials like polyurethane. Avoid rain coats and umbrellas made of shiny or colorful materials because they are the most likely to contain PVC.
Luckily, Puddle Gear, Calunaloves.com.au, CWDkids.com, Lands End, L.L. Bean, Hatley Raincoats, Hanna Anderson, and iPlayoffer some coats made of safer plastic. When shopping, look for the PVC-free tag in rain coats.Below are some of our favorite options for PVC-free children's rain gear:
Hatley Raincoats: Hatley Raincoats are my favorite for elementary school-aged children and little kids. They have super cute prints including horses, pirates, watermelons, apples, space aliens, purple flowers, and more. Take your pick of unlined or lined and pair it with matching rain boots and umbrellas for ultimate cuteness. Sizes range from 12M to 7. Prices typically range from $30 to $48 at Hatley.
Try to get them cheaper via our Amazon link below:
iPlay Raincoats: I love the preppy inspired prints (especially the whales) for the cotton-lined iPlay raincoat at Target. They are very affordable from $17 to $24. And it's just as PVC-free. Sizes range from 18M to 4. They cost about $17 at Target.
See if you can get them cheaper at the Amazon link below:
L.L. Bean: Lightweight and mesh-lined, the nylon Discovery Rain Jacket is a good fit for a spring rain and not just for little kids. Bigger boys won't be embarrassed to wear this nice jacket. When folded into its own pocket, it's easy to stow in the backpack for unexpected shower. Loose fitting to accommodate layers underneath, available in five bright solids and two prints. The sizes range from 12M to 10. They cost about $27 at L.L. Bean.
Hanna Andersson: The Wind at Your Back Anorak boasts sturdy nylon oxford cloth with a soft cotton lining, drawstring hood and easily adjusted sleeves. It's another jacket styled in a way that older kids will love too. Sizes range from 18M to 12. They cost approximately $58 at Hanna Andersson.
REI: The REI Cascade Rain Jacket is sturdy, yet light, PVC-free, and has a water repellent coating and the seams are sealed to block out rain and wind. Integrated hood features visor for added coverage and elastic sides for a snug fit. On-seam pockets shelter little hands. Reflective accents increase the child's visibility in low light. Elastic cuffs help seal out rain. Full-length front zipper with snap-closure storm flap helps prevent leakage. Sized from 12M to 18(XL) for girls and boys. Prices range from $25 to $40.
Puddle Gear: Puddle Gear makes PVC-free rain coats too. All their rain gear is totally PVC and Phthalate Free and instead coated with ATEK – a Polyurethane-coated stretch fabric. It’s a very light, soft, tear-resistant material and is wind and watertight. Their sizes range from 10M to 12 Teen. Their rain jackets range from $50-$60 but are virtually indestructible and last forever.