IKEA tends to be best in class when it comes to non-toxic materials. They use the lowest offgassing materials that are available at the time. Many of their beds below are made from metal or solid wood that don’t offgas at all. My least favorite IKEA options are made from particleboard or fiberboard as those do offgas VOCs.
The following classification of materials and their levels of offgassing is based on common materials as well as the personal perception of the materials by chemically sensitive folks. The categories are approximate.
Please keep in mind all IKEA furniture is considered non-toxic these are just the absolute lowest offgassing options.
- Steel, powdered coated/epoxy coated steel
- Hard PET, polyethylene, and polypropylene
- Solid wood (here are low or 0-VOC stains for pine that will work on IKEA’s solid pine)
- Clear acrylic lacquer – while this might have some low offgassing right after application, by the time it gets to the owner it doesn’t seem to have any offgassing
- Rattan with clear acrylic lacquer is likely to be 0-VOC
Ultra-low VOC materials
- Polyester fabric – has very minimal offgassing and can finish offgassing relatively fast, especially if it can be washed.
- Polypropylene fabric – has very minimal offgassing and can finish offgassing relatively fast, especially if it can be washed.
- Polyester wadding – has very minimal offgassing
- Plywood – plywood made with phenol-formaldehyde quickly reaches non-detectable levels of formaldehyde
- Melamine – melamine typically gives over particleboard. It’s a good block of the formaldehyde from particleboard where it covers it (edges tend to be exposed) and the melamine itself has ultra-low offgassing
- Acrylic paint and polyester paint – these likely have ultra-low offgassing, if any, when from IKEA
- Layer-glued wood veneer (slats which are in all their beds except one that has metal slats)
- Laminated veneer lumber
Standard VOC level
- Particleboard and fiberboard both offgas formaldehyde (for more on the levels see this post)
- Polyurethane foam used as padding in headboards and sometimes in the padding of the structure does offgas some VOCs, but thinner versions and IKEA’s foam are very low in offgassing.
The Lowest VOC Beds from IKEA
KLEPPSTAD Bed frame is made of a metal frame, standard slats, and a fabric that is pulled over the headboard.
MINNEN is an extendable bed frame for kids it’s all metal except for the slats.
SAGSTUA Bed frame is an all-metal bed frame for adults (except for the slats).
FYRESDAL this all-metal daybed frame, which extends out into a bed – it even has metal slats. This should be completely 0-VOC.
VEVELSTAD Bed frame has a metal frame, rattan headboard, and veneer wood slats.
HEMNES Bed frame is made of solid wood with a white stain and clear acrylic lacquer. I don’t know the VOC levels of their stains but they use water-based products that are very low or 0-VOC.
TARVA Bed frame is their classic solid pine bed, with wood veneer slats.
NEIDEN Bed frame is an even simpler version of a solid pine bed, with wood veneer slats.
SNIGLAR Bed frame is a kids’ bed made of solid beech wood. There is a little bit of fiberboard at each end and it has the usual wood veneer slats.