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July 17, 2017

10 Reasons to switch to organic cotton and avoid toxic clothes


“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” -Hippocrates


We need to take responsibility for our personal health and safety, as well as for the health of the people in our lives that depend on us for guidance the exercise of good judgment. That starts with taking care of our body.

As Jim Rohn once said “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.”

The best way to take care of our body is eating right food, having enough sleep and exercising. This is a well-known fact and taking these three basic steps can keep us healthy. But there are other factors that can cause harm to our health, if ignored. Like working in a toxic environment or wearing harmful chemical coated clothes.

How we eat is how we live and how we wear is how we look. But there is more to it. Empowering ourselves with information about how to make right buying decision is the first step forward to a healthy lifestyle. This is true for food as well as clothes, home furnishing, upholstery and cosmetics.  After all, these things surround us all day. Why not make them worth for us?

These are 10 reasons to Switch to Organic Cotton and Avoid Toxic Clothes:

1. Save Your Skin

    Manmade petrochemical fibers restrict and suffocate the skin, our largest and most sensitive body organ, making it unable to breathe. Polyester, nylon, acrylic and other synthetic fiber made clothes don’t breathe. Whereas organic cotton clothes breathe and lets our skin release toxins. Our skin is most important eliminative organ and release body toxins. By some estimates, we release a pound of toxins everyday through our skin. Assuming that it’s are allowed to vent as nature intends. If we hold back any percentage of these toxins from being released, they accumulate in body fat and body organs.    

    2. Safer for Babies, Toddlers and Kids

    Children’s skin is subtler and sensitive than adults. By wearing organic cotton, they won’t absorb chemical residues into their skin. Many school uniforms are coated with family of chemicals called perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and given the name of fabric stain resistance and the “non-iron”, often found in school trousers and skirts. These perfluorinated compounds have been classified as probable cancer-causative agents by US Environmental Protection Agency.

    3. Beware of “Resistance” and “Retardant”

    Formaldehyde is used to make shrinkage resistance and wrinkle resistance, and as a binding agent for ink. Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and an allergen. Most of the “resistance” finishes are coated with chemicals. Avoid them. Read the labels on cotton clothes too. Organic cotton clothes are free from this and don’t expose to cancer causing chemicals.

    4. Free Yourself from Pesticides and Herbicides

    Eco-friendly and health-friendly organic fiber are free from pesticides and herbicides.  If you wear organic cotton clothes, you are free from these chemicals. On the contrast synthetic fibers are made from chemicals. Even conventional cotton farming involves lots of pesticides and herbicides.

    5. No Harmful Chemicals

    Toxic clothes are made with synthetic fibers and synthetic fibers origin is from petrochemical. Synthetic fibers are developed in lab and then made from petroleum based chemicals. They leave pollutants in the air we breathe in our closets and homes. Organic cotton is naturally grown without pesticides and clothes made from organic cotton have much lesser chemicals on it

    6. Toxic Clothes Are Harmful for Planet Earth

    Non-organic and synthetic fibers release chemicals and dyes during production and manufacturing that damage fragile ecosystems and harm wildlife. This is much less in case of organic fibers

    7. Longer and Healthier Life Span of Your Clothes

    Organic cotton and other fibers aren’t degraded by chemicals during growing and manufacturing, clothing made from these fibers is stronger and healthier than non-organic and has a longer life span

    8. Avoid Heavy Metals

    By avoiding chemically coated toxic clothing, we are avoiding heavy metals like mercury, lead, chromium, cadmium. These heavy metals are found in many dyes and chemicals and they are linked with various serious ailments. If we wear these chemical filled clothes, they end up on our skin. GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standards) approved clothes restrict amines releasing AZO dyes and disperse dyes. Look for GOTS symbol on Organic apparel.

    9. Organic Cotton is Recyclable

    Organic cotton and other natural fibers are recyclable and biodegradable, whereas non organic and synthetics don’t easily biodegrade and tend to accumulate in landfills. This poses a disposal problem for future generations.

    10. Organic Cotton is a Superior Choice

    When we choose organic cotton clothing, we not only benefit directly from its superior comfort and durability, we also help to minimize harm to our health and the planet’s ecosystems. From seed-preparation to weed control and harvesting, organic growing methods have proven to be safer because they rely on toxic chemicals. Organic cotton involves untreated seeds, crop rotation and water retention in the soil by adding organic matter, hand removed weeds from the crops and natural biological practices for pest control.

    Organic cotton represents safe and sustainable practices.  People with allergies and chemical sensitivity especially benefit from organic cotton clothing, as conventional cotton may retain harmful toxic residues. Even if you don’t have sensitive skin, organic cotton will just feel better on your skin.

    Organic farming is not only safer and healthier for farmers, but also encourages just economic systems in the supply chain. It provides an economically viable and socially acceptable alternative to large-scale farming and dependence on subsidies.

    So why wait, let’s make a start. Check out organic cotton clothing option next time when are you are in stores. Don’t let babies, toddlers and kids wear toxic clothes. They are soft and they need soft. Nature has given us the best option. 100% organic cotton.

    Be safe, buy safe.


    Agriculture is the noblest of all alchemy; for it turns earth, and even manure, into gold, conferring upon its cultivator the additional reward of health-Paul Chatfield


    References and source for more information:

    • http://www.panna.org and http://www.pan-uk.org The Pesticide Action Network is working to replace pesticide use with ecologically sound alternatives. 
    • Killer Clothes written by Anna Maria Clement, PhD, NMD, LN and Brian R. Clement, PhD, NMD, LN
    • https://oecotextiles.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/chemicals-used-in-textile-processing/
    • Main image: Courtesy Pixabay

    This article was originally posted on blog.classiccotton.org in June 2017 by Jitin Anand.

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