Prowling the aisles at the ABC Baby Expo is always an endurance game. With over a million square feet of floorspace, the show defies comprehensive coverage. So like a 7th grader cramming for an English exam, I skim.
But a few items (and quite a few eager entrepreneurs) jumped out at me for whatever random, unscientific reason. I find that I tend to seek out smaller, utilitarian items, as will be evidenced by the products I chose to highlight in my video picks segment (coming soon).
One quick observation: design is winning. Pure functionality is in retreat. You see it at the packed Boon booth. And you see it in the interesting humidifiers offered by Crane. Fun, appealing to kids and parents. Fully functional.
I am really looking forward to the release of the entire Brother Max line. This brand is going to make a big splash, particularly with their bath toys (ba-doom-doom). Everything I saw appealed to the eye — kids will find the stuff irresistible. Parents will love the thermometer. Stand by for this line.
I also found the lollacup irresistible. And not just for it’s twitteresque good looks, either, though the cup is about as cute as a sippy can be, but for the cool, weighted straw. The pendulum action keeps the straw in the liquid at whatever angle the child holds the cup. As all parents can tell you, this solves for an actual problem. There are plenty of new products at the show that don’t.
Also a shout to local company ThinkBaby, and their new partnership with Livestrong. Their sunscreen has zinc oxide as the only active ingredient. The product is free of other active ingredients found in other sunscreens that are known carcinogens. So the anti-cancer alliance makes all kinds of sense. Congrats all around.