10 bonus features with your new pair of pants

When you go shopping for clothes, what else do you bring home with you?

Do you think about textiles when you hear teflon and formaldehyde ? I bet you don´t , but actually those are two of the ingredients you might find in textile production. Which means when you bring a new garment home it might be polluted.  When I was browsing for relating articles I found this interesting article from Rosewood Holistic Health LCC, it is called,Hidden Toxins in Clothing and Fabrics, it explains the chemical cocktail we are exposed to.

Your Clothing’s Chemical Cocktail

You may be wondering when, and why, chemicals are applied to your clothing. The fact is, man-made fabrics are complex, and getting a soft pullover out of raw materials takes some measure of chemical manipulation.

This a List of 10  Chemicals that you did probably not expect to find in your clothes. The fact is they are used to make fibers suitable for spinning and weaving.

  1. A formaldehyde product is often applied to prevent shrinkage. This product is applied with heat so it is trapped in the fiber permanently.
  2. Petrochemical dyes, which pollute waterways, are used for color.
  3. Unidentified chemicals are added to make clothing softer, wrinkle-free, fire-retardant, moth-repellant and stain-resistant.
  4. Commonly used chemicals include volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and
  5. dioxin-producing bleach.
  6. Nylon and polyester are made from petrochemicals, whose production creates nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas that’s 310 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
  7. Rayon is made from wood pulp that has been treated with chemicals, including caustic soda and sulphuric acid.
  8. Dye fixatives used in fabrics often come from heavy metals and pollute water systems.
  9. Acrylic fabrics are polycrylonitriles, which may be carcinogenic.
  10. Clothing and fabric that is treated with flame-retardant chemicals, such as children’s pajamas, emit fformaldehyde gas.

The chemicals used in synthetic clothing have been linked to health problems including cancer, immune system damage, behavioral problems and hormone disruption.

In addition to the «cocktail» description there is some good advice in the article, like washing a garment three times before using it the first time.

This is a short version of a documentary, from Journeyman.tv  that shows the seriousness of the matter.

I rest my case. I have worked in textiles for over ten years and I wonder what I should do about it, I used to unpack products from China most day´s during the ten years. Might that have something to do with my fragile health today?

Here is the whole documentary from Journeyman.tv,  it  takes 45 minutes to watch and we get to learn about the people who manufacture the cheap clothes. Using all the hazardous chemicals without any protection.


7 responses to “10 bonus features with your new pair of pants

  1. This is a very interesting article, Holistic Me! I usually do wash clothes once when I bring them home, but not three times. (And I’m reluctant to even approach the subject of dry cleaning {= o ) . This reminds me of a «House» episode where they couldn’t figure out why a teenager was having seizures, and they finally linked it to the chemicals in his new pair of jeans. I guess that was alarmingly close to reality.

  2. I’m becoming much more interested in the fabrics that I wear next to my skin – trying to buy different fibers (that often feel much better on my skin that those chemically processed…) Nice post to bring a little awareness to this subject!


  3. Excellent post! Thank you for another important and informative post!

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