Why buy organic cotton, bamboo, oybean fibre, and lyocell baby and maternity clothes and toys?
- Conventionally grown cotton accounts for more than 25% of worldwide insecticide use and 10% of the pesticides. Pesticides used on cotton are among the most hazardous. In California, five of the top nine pesticides used on cotton are cancer causing.
- Children are at greater risk for pesticide-related health problems than adults. Millions of children in North America receive up to 35% of their estimated lifetime dose of some carcinogenic pesticides by age five through food, contaminated drinking water, household use, and pesticide drift.
- It takes one pound of chemical fertilizers and pesticides to conventionally grow the three pounds of cotton needed to make a T-shirt and a pair of jeans.
- Clothing comes into prolonged contact with your skin, and toxic chemicals used to manufacture and finish conventional garments are absorbed through your pores. Once absorbed by humans, heavy metals, carcinogens and other chemicals tend to accumulate in the liver, kidney, bones, heart and brain. The effects on health can be significant when high levels of accumulation are reached. The effect is particularly serious in children due to effects on growth and their relatively low body mass.
- The rate of people experiencing health problems such as rashes, allergies, respiratory problems, and difficulties focusing mentally due to chemical sensitivities has been growing alarmingly. Many people diagnosed with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities find organic clothing to be essential in reducing their exposure to the vast array of toxic chemicals that we are unknowingly exposed to every day.
- Farm workers working in conventionally grown cotton fields around the world suffer from an abundance of toxic exposures and related health problems. Pesticides used on cotton cause acute poisonings and chronic illness to farm workers worldwide. Acute respiratory symptoms and other health effects in communities surrounding cotton farms are correlated with high use of defoliation chemicals.
- Besides being better for your health and the environment, the quality of clothing produced from organic cotton is also substantially higher. Organic cotton plants produce longer-stable cotton fibers which yield stronger yarn and more durable fabrics. Pesticide-free long-stable cotton also feels softer and more breathable and luxurious against the skin.
- Toxic chemicals from dyes also create severe environmental havoc. Large amounts of water are used to flush conventional synthetic dyes from garments and then this waste water must be treated to remove the heavy metals and other toxic chemicals before it can be returned to water systems, sewers and rivers.
- Low-impact fiber-reactive dyes chemically bond directly to the clothing fibre molecules. The fixation or absorption rate of low-impact dyes is at least 70%, creating less waste water runoff and therefore a lower impact on the environment. Recent advances have created fibre-reactive dyes with colours that are brighter and richer, and they provide excellent colourfast properties. They contain no heavy metals or other known toxic substances, and they meet all European Union criteria for being an eco-friendly pigment. But, the actual dyes in almost all low-impact fibre-reactive dyes are still made from synthetic petrochemicals.
What is soybean fibre?
Soybean fibre is a sustainable textile fiber made from renewable natural resources. It is part of an effort to shift consumers away from petrochemical textile products and turn waste into useful products.
How is soybean fibre manufactured?
Manufacturing is done using cutting-edge bioengineering extract proteins from leftover dregs from soybean oil/tofu/soymilk production. Through a process called wet-spinning, the protein liquids are forced through a device resembling a showerhead, called a spinneret, to make liquid soy which is solidified to make soybean fibre. After the protein is extracted from the soybean dregs, they are as fodder or fertilizer. All leftover materials used in production of soybean fibre are harmless and recyclable, making the production process a closed end process.
What are the benefits of soybean fibre?
Aside from being eco-friendly, soybean fibreitself also has superior warmth retention and moisture transmission, thus keeping babies warm and dry. It also has silky lustre, super soft hand feel, and drapes nicely. It is soft, smooth, and light. It has cashmere feel, but is smoother than cashmere. It has the same moisture absorption as cotton but with better moisture transmission than cotton, making it more comfortable to wear. Soybean fibre also has a stronger tensile strength than wool and almost as good as wool in terms of warmth retention.
Caring for soybean fabric is relatively easy as it can be machine washed with little shrinkage and air-dried. We don’t recommend high temperature drying because it will damage the protein structure.
Are babysoy soybean fibre clothes made under fair trade conditions?
Yes. Babysoy makes 100% certain that our contractors in China are practicing fair trade and obey the local labour laws. Every year, our inspector will visit the contractors’ facility 3-4 times without advance notice and make sure everything meets requirements.
What is Bamboo?
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant in the world and is able to reach maturity in about four years, compared to the typical 25 to 70 years for commercial tree species in the U.S. It tolerates extremes of drought and drowning, generates more oxygen than trees and is considered a critical element in the balance between oxygen and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It grows without pesticides, fertilizers or chemicals.
Bamboo fibre is softer than the softest cotton, has a natural sheen to the surface and feels similar to silk or cashmere. It is sustainable, anti-bacterial, UV-resistant, hypoallergenic, thermo-regulating, deodorizing, does not retain odours and is biodegradable. It is more absorbent than cotton, absorbing 60% more moisture and drying 20% quicker. It also wicks sweat away from the body.
- Protective: Unlike other anti-microbial fabrics, which require a chemical treatment, bamboo fibre clothing is naturally anti-microbial and requires no harmful chemicals. It contains an agent, “bamboo kun”, that prevents bacteria from cultivating on it. Bamboo apparel is comfortable, thermal regulating and will keep you cooler, drier, warmer and odor free. Bamboo fibre also has natural UV protection. The 100% bamboo fabric has an SPF of 14.
- Natural: Bamboo is nature’s most sustainable resource, is grown without pesticides or chemicals, is 100% biodegradeable, and naturally regenerative. Bamboo is actually a tropical grass, with an extensive root system that sends out an average of four to six new shoots per year, naturally replenishing itself and growing every three to four years.
- Bamboo fibre fabric requires less dye than 100% cotton fabric. When Bamboosa dyes their fabrics they use only AZO-free fibre reactive dyes, which consume less water and less energy and generate less waste, and therefore have a lower impact than non fibre reactives. Also, because bamboo fabric accepts and holds dye well, we do not use any dyefixing agents, which often contain heavy metals and formaldehyde.
- Bamboosa does not use chlorine for bleaching or pre-bleaching nor do they use any dyefixing agents which contain some unattractive compounds – on any of their products.
-All of the purely natural fabric is just that – natural without dye. Bamboosa chose to use embroidery for their logo instead of printing, as a no chemical alternative.
- Washing, drying and shrinkage. You can wash Bamboo products just like cotton — cold or warm water and tumble dry. We do recommend a gentle cycle. No bleach or fabric softener. Remove promptly from the dryer. 100% bamboo products should not shrink — The cotton blended products will shrink some, but less than 100% cotton shirts.
What is Lyocell?
- It is a recovered fibre made from wood pulp cellulose with minimal impact on the environment and economical use of energy and water.
- Lyocell fibres are soft, absorbent, very strong when wet or dry, and resistant to wrinkles; it can be machine- or hand-washed or drycleaned, it drapes well.
- It often uses a non-toxic solvent which is continually recycled during the production process. Production plant emissions into the air from smokestacks and from wastewater are significantly lower in comparison to many other man-made fibre operations. Waste products in the air and water from the manufacturing process are minimal and considered harmless.
- Lyocell fibre is eco-friendly since products made from it can be recycled and lyocell is biodegradable because it is a cellulosic fibre. Products made from lyocell can be recycled, incinerated, or digested in sewage. The fibre will usually degrade completely in just eight days in waste treatment plants.
- The process to manufacture lyocell fibre is in fact very nearly a closed loop process in which bleach is not required.
- Jessica Scott clothes are produced in India – the manufacturing process is completely integrated there, meaning their cotton is grown there, made into thread there, dyed with environmentally low-impact dyes, turned into fabric, and cut and sewn into clothes. They do not use harmful chemicals or toxins at any stage of this involved process.
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