Why choose ecological furniture?
At the start of the school year, pretty furnished studios welcome customers at the entrance to major furniture brands. Their target? Students settling into their rooms for the year. However, the furniture offered for their tight budget is often not very robust: can be assembled once, not twice!
Unsustainable objects with a strong ecological impact, made from wood fiber panels, that is to say impregnated with resin and covered with a plastic sheet. These components contribute to indoor air pollution in our homes. Already in 2015, the National Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health Safety identified 660 substances likely to be emitted by our new furniture, including 60 classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic. However, labeling informing of the presence of these components has not yet been introduced. To avoid them and reduce the carbon impact of our furniture, solutions are within our reach.
Renovate furniture or buy second-hand furniture
Hunting, customizing, “upcycling”… Each generation has its own words. Whatever the case, there’s nothing better than recycling to furnish yourself at a low price. Reupholster an old family armchair, DIY a coffee table from a wine crate… The possibilities are endless, and guarantee an original and ecological interior. And if you need to repaint, varnish, or DIY, pay attention to the “Indoor air emissions” label on DIY products.
Choose solid wood furniture
Chipboard, medium, wood fiber… all these elements contain glues, solvents and resins. To avoid these volatile organic compounds, choose raw wood, unvarnished, simply oiled. Regarding its quality, rely on the FSC or PEFC labels which guarantee their origin and sustainable forest management. As for the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, represented by a white swan on a green striped background, it takes into account the entire life cycle of the product, from its manufacture to its destruction. Better, if possible, choose a sawmill or carpenter who manufactures stools, tables or shelves near you. A little more expensive, no doubt, but more solid!
Rent your furniture instead of buying it
Rather than buying the unstable and ephemeral shelf every year, or storing the furniture of a grandson or nephew who has gone to study in another city in your garage, you can also rent them. The system, very widespread across the Atlantic, targets expatriates, students and lovers of change. In France, a few companies offer it, including Loc and Roll. The principle: you pay monthly rent for the furniture and household appliances that you have chosen from the catalog (delivered and assembled at your home). There is even a “student pack”, between €18 and €22 per month.