Adorning your little girl’s outfit with costume jewellery is both fun and inexpensive, and many parents can’t resist picking up a pretty necklace or bracelet for their daughters when out shopping.
However, some costume jewellery may pose risks to children. Read on to learn about the hazards and pick up tips on how you can purchase safe costume jewellery.
Risks of costume jewellery for children
1. Presence of heavy metals
Costume jewellery, including those manufactured for children, may contain toxic heavy metals such as lead, chromium, cadmium and nickel.
Little ones prone to sucking on objects can become exposed to these toxic heavy metals as they may leach out when the metal chain or pendant is chewed on or sucked. As lead has a sweet taste, young children may unknowingly continue to suck on the object.
These heavy metals are potentially harmful to a child’s health. For example, cadmium may affect the kidneys and the cardiovascular and skeletal systems. Lead may affect brain development in children and also damage the immune, reproductive and cardiovascular systems.
Long, beaded necklaces are pretty, but dangerous around your baby’s neck.
2. Risk of choking and strangulation
While that long, beaded necklace may look beautiful around your little princess’s neck, it may pose real risks of both choking and strangulation.
The long necklace around your little one’s neck can get caught on objects around the house, posing a strangulation risk. If the costume jewellery has clasps, ensure that objects will not be easily caught by the clasps.
We all know how infants and young children love putting things in their mouths. Parents who purchase costume jewellery with small pendants or beads attached to it should ensure that the beads or pendants do not easily break off when the child plays with the costume jewellery.
A shiny bead from a broken necklace can be popped in your little one’s mouth (without you even noticing), potentially choking her.
3. Scratches and other minor injuries
Jewellery with large stones, clasps, or sharp, pointy edges may scratch or injure your child.
Some children are allergic to certain metals such as nickel, which are sometimes used in costume jewellery. While the allergic reactions are usually not serious, they can result in an itchy rash , or even blisters in severe cases.
Costume jewellery and kids: What parents must keep in mind
- Always check labels and make sure the costume jewellery is safe for use by kids.
- Purchase kids’ costume jewellery from reputable stores and sources.
- If you purchase costume jewellery with gemstones, make sure they are securely fastened to prevent them from coming off and being ingested by a young child.
- Check if the item is easily breakable and avoid purchasing jewellery with small parts for infants and toddlers to prevent choking.
- If your child has allergies, look for jewellery that is hypoallergenic.
The jewellery your child wears should be sturdy and kid-safe.
- Avoid buying children’s jewellery that contains magnets or batteries. Both of these items can result in serious internal injuries (even death in the case of batteries) if ingested by your child.
- Remove all jewellery before your child goes to sleep or engages in active play. Long necklaces pose a strangulation hazard during sleep, while during play, jewellery can catch on skin, hair or eyes.
- Ensure your little one’s first earrings have screw-posts. These make sure the earrings stay put, preventing your child from ingesting them should they come off.
- If your kids are playing dress-up with costume jewellery, ensure adult supervision at all times.
The Consumer Goods Safety Requirements (CGSR) regulations help make our homes safer for our family. Visit www.spring.gov.sg/productsafety to stay current on product safety alerts (including those for children’s costume jewellery) and consumer safety tips.