Why To Choose Organic Cotton

Did you know: Roughly 25% of the world’s insecticides and over 10% of the world’s pesticides are used on cotton crops alone? Even in all my years reading about pesticide use this statistic still shocks me. I think it is because so much attention is given to pesticide use on produce that it is easy to overlook just how big of an environmental impact consumption of our beloved cotton is having.

While I’m not perfect in this area, when it comes to the items I buy multiples of or wear and use everyday, I choose organic whenever possible. The large majority of my socks, tees, tanks, underwear, some hoodies, and all towels, tampons, sheets, comforters and bed blankets are organic.

The obvious reason to go with organic cotton when you can is to decrease your own exposure to toxic chemicals through the skin and airways. (or directly inside your body through tampons). This is especially important for young children and if you have skin allergies; you’d be wise to try switching out the items that spend all day against your skin to less contaminated varieties..

But in my opinion, the more important reason to choose organic (when you can) is to chip away at the massive amount of toxic pesticides and insecticides (some of the most toxic in the world) and greenhouse gases being pumped into our environments in order to manufacture conventional cotton. In 2014, 38 million pounds of pesticides were used on cotton alone. That is no small amount being sprayed all over the world to keep up with our demand.

Something else we don’t often think about is the impact our demand has on the farmers and nearby communities who are exposed to these carcinogenic chemicals on a regular basis. According to the World Health Organization, pesticide poisoning causes up to 20,000 deaths a year in developing countries most due to farming conventional crops to keep up with with our consumption.

This is an example of how our demand can have a direct impact on our own health, the health of those we share this world with our environment and the availability of safer products in general.

The obvious next question is: Where do I find organic cotton alternative? I got you!

Some of my favorite organic jammies, robes, blankets, sheets, towels, scrunchies, tees and shorts are from brands like:

But over the last few years, organic cotton options have become much more widely available in stores like:

  • Target

  • Pottery Barn

  • Whole Foods (They carry Pact apparel at many stores usually near the supplements aisle!)

  • H&M

…and many more common places. So next time you’re due for some fresh sheets, towels or a new tee, consider the impact of your choices and seek out a more conscious option.