The benefits of organic cotton clothing, article from ZERRIN

Here's why you should choose organic cotton clothing

by Team Zerrin May 06, 2018

These days it's become on trend to cook and eat organic, but wearing organic? It's a newer concept less of us seem concerned with. The facts have shown, however, that organic clothing can be better for our health, the wellbeing of farming communities and wildlife and overall encourages a more eco-conscious fashion industry.

A fluffy white plant, we tend to think of cotton as a natural and pure fabric. Versatile, soft and breathable, it's also a key choice for manufacturers, producers and shoppers alike. Sadly, the conventional cotton industry has a number of negative side-effects that many still aren't aware of, which have caused huge problems for our environment. 

For one, the use of toxic chemicals to help crops grow is astonishing. Reports have suggested conventional cotton crops use 25 percent of the world's insecticides and 10 percent of the world's pesticides. Needless to say, these chemical cocktails can be deadly. According to the WHO (World Health Organisation) up to 20,000 deaths happen each year from pesticide poisoning in developing countries. In the US, it's reported that more than 10,000 farmers die each year from cancers related to these types of chemicals. 

Cotton is also a thirsty crop. According to WWF, it can take 2,700 gallons of water to produce just a single cotton t-shirt. That's more than you or I will drink in a lifetime! To add to that, chemical insecticides do eventually end up in rivers and water systems, contributing to water pollution and affecting local communities and wildlife. 

Cotton farmers, image by Fashion Revolution
Image credit: Fashion Revolution 

The Organic Difference

So how does that compare with organic cotton? Here's a few of the reasons you should consider choosing organic cotton over conventional. Now, we're not suggesting you throw out all the regular cotton clothing in your closet. We're all about taking small steps to shop more consciously! Let's just remember: the more we support this practice, the more demand will increase and the more affordable it will be for farming communities to produce organic cotton. 

1. No genetically modified seeds or pesticides used. 

This has a number of positive knock on effects. Because it's not being pumped with toxins, soil for organic cotton crops tends to stay more fertile and therefore will last longer, creating a more sustainable means of farming. These pesticides can cost a lot too and often send farmers into debt before they even start growing crops. 

2. Less water pollution

There's been debate as to whether organic cotton takes less water to produce than conventional, but one thing's for sure: no toxins means chemicals don't seep inside waterways from soil after rainfall. This protects water quality (a lot of which can end up as drinking water for local communities). 

3. Better health for local farmers and wildlife. 

No toxins mean a healthier environment for farmers, their families and local wildlife. This is a particular concern in developing countries where the use of pesticides is poorly regulated. 

4. Ideal for sensitive skins 

Organic cotton clothing keeps its softness for longer because it isn't chemically treated. It's also more durable as it shouldn't have been through the typical bleaching and scouring processes, which affect fabric quality. If you're prone to rashes and skin irritation, organic clothing could be a good option for you because the material is free from pollutants. 

 
Thankfully, now more and more fashion brands are committing to using organic cotton in their clothing, too. Earlier this year, 36 major brands including Burberry and Adidas pledged to use 100% sustainable cotton in their manufacturing by 2025, which is fantastic news for the industry.  

 

Shop and discover organic cotton and other sustainable fabrics here on ZERRIN. 

We hope you enjoyed the read! For a weekly dose of inspiration and to find out about our latest interviews, features and new arrivals delivered straight to your inbox, join our community here




Team Zerrin
Team Zerrin

Author



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in THE ZERRIN BLOG

Celebrating Singapore's National Day - Photography by Zerrin Studio
Entrepreneurship in Singapore: Tips from local business owners

by Susannah Jaffer August 09, 2018

To celebrate Singapore's National Day and 53rd birthday of independence, we're spotlighting entrepreneurial tips and advice from designers, makers and inspiring change makers! 

Read More

Kin Cafe, London, featured on ZERRIN's London travel guide for conscious living
Conscious Travel Guide: Where to shop, eat and hang in London

by MJ Contreras July 23, 2018

Travelling to London and want to check out buzzing sustainable spots in the city? From shopping to eating, drinking and networking, our contributor MJ shares her guides to the coolest conscious spots in town.

Read More

Interview with Lorraine Lee, founder of Talee Jewellery
Healing Through Making: Lorraine Lee, Talee

by Susannah Jaffer July 07, 2018

Sometimes, creative inspiration comes when you least expect it. That's what happened to Lorraine Lee, who's inspiration to start her jewellery label, TALEE, came from a period of emotional hardship for her family. Discover the story behind the label here.

Read More

BE AN INSIDER

Join our community and be the first to know about new launches,
discounts, events and more - and get 10% off your first order with us*

*We don't do spam.