Chemicals are everywhere. How do we avoid them invading our closets?
What you wear on your body is just as important as what you put into your body. Chemicals in your clothing can have dangerous effects, thanks to exposure to products like herbicides and pesticides, fire retardants, petroleum-based fibers, carcinogenic dyes, and heavy metals.
To just be clear, the way to fully avoid chemicals in your clothes is to buy organic and eco-friendly brands that use non toxic dyes. These companies use all-natural materials and processes to create their clothing and accessories. As the consumer of said products you are the recipient of good stewardship shown by the company that made the item.
But reality is that you are out one day and "pop" into a store. Sure, that shirt or dress might be cute — and cheap — but it’s cheap for a reason, and that’s because the producers are making their products with low quality, dangerous materials. (among other methods to employ a low cost item.)
So how do you resist? Eco fashion is not readily available nor does it come as cheap. If you are like me you are likely standing in an aisle thinking this purchase through at that moment. This is when YOU must put some thought into your purchase.
FIRST: Identify what the material of the clothes (or accessory) is.
Check the Labels- Choose Organic Cotton
As you are being bustled by other shoppers check the labels. Turn the garment inside out to inspect where its made and WHAT it is made of.
If that material is cotton, TIP #1: Not all cotton is the same. Non-organic cotton crops are heavily sprayed with insecticides and pesticides, including many that range from possible carcinogens to known carcinogens.
Organic Canvas Tote by Able Made: Photo courtesy Able Made.
These harmful chemicals are passed onto consumers in clothing especially cotton mixed with nylon that have come to epitomize fast urban hats. These chemicals also also impact the people (and bees) who work picking and cleaning the cotton, and processing it into clothes.
Organic cotton, however, is grown without synthetic chemicals like fertilizers and pesticides, keeping the environment, workers, and wearers free from the effects of these substances. The result is clothing that is safe, breathable and lightweight, comfortable, hypoallergenic, and soft.
Making the switch to Organic Cotton means thinking ahead and buying your essentials at Organic sellers. (there are many).
That does not mean it has to be boring. Organic cotton can be dyed and decorated in countless eco-friendly ways, as you can see with these beautiful organic cotton Letol scarves that are anything but plain.
TIP #2 Switching Plastics for Cork
By now you should be learning to "ditch the straw" at bars and restaurants just politely asking NOT to have a plastic thing in your drink. But what about the wallet or purse you're carrying into the joint? Think about the bag you carry. Highly fluorinated compounds are used to waterproof textiles, phthalates are used to soften PVC, and even the metals of zippers can pose problems with dangerous materials like lead.
And don't even get started on how toxic the making of most inexpensive (and expensive) leather for shoes and bags are. It's an essay in itself but a quick google search will give you an idea.
But a simple, yet stylish solution? Cork! So Tip #3 - Replace Your Handbag With a Better Alternative.
The next time you're at TJ MAXX and idling by the accessories sections keep an eye out and your mind open. You probably won't find any there but you'll notice variety at finer boutiques and of course at One Savvy Mother!
Resist the cheap leather for the sake of the Earth. Say No to "just any" choice. Be picky and choose Cork bags and other accessories are incredibly sustainable and safe. Cork is natural, renewable, and recyclable. It is waterproof on its own, fire resistant, and goes a long way in promoting eco-friendly activities. That’s because cork is harvested from the bark of a cork oak tree only.
In fact, harvested trees absorb more carbon dioxide than unharvested trees, as they use the CO2 to regenerate bark. So, not only is cork fashionable, it fights global warming.
The more consumers support cork products, the more cork oaks will be planted. You are supporting the old growth forests and a carbon sink by buying cork. There's tons of variety too.
Think again about your wardrobe and enjoy these ways to look great while avoiding harmful chemicals and helping the planet. Everything that OSM carries meets a stringent code to avoid chemicals and provide high quality (at a good price) assortment of alternatives.
We hope you agree!