Dressing your baby usually involves weighing up what looks good with what is comfortable and practical. A baby’s skin is 5 times thinner than that of an adult and so needs extra care to protect it. Dressing your baby in organic baby clothes is an ideal way of keeping their skin protected, leaving them happy and healthy.
The comfort of your baby’s clothing as well as the environmental impact of its manufacture has a lot to do with the fabric from which it is made. Clothing made from natural, sustainable fibres is more breathable and comfortable, while having a minimal environmental impact.
Organic cotton is grown without pesticides, herbicides or synthetic fertilizers. Instead, more traditional methods are used to keep the ground fertile, such as manure spreading and crop rotation. Organic baby clothes are generally bleach free and dyed with natural plant dyes. The farming of organic cotton works in harmony with nature rather than against it, with rainwater harvesting providing the majority of the water needed for the cotton to grow. Organic cotton is naturally more durable than its synthetic counterpart, meaning your baby’s clothes will last longer.
Bamboo is a fast growing and sustainable crop. It requires very few added nutrients as it enriches the soil naturally as it grows, having little harmful impact upon the surrounding area. It’s natural hardiness also allows it to be grown completely organically. Bamboo is 100% biodegradable, making bamboo organic baby clothes less of an environmental burden when disposed of.
Bamboo clothing is also ideal for your baby to wear. It produces light and silky fabric which is perfect for delicate skin, particularly if your baby suffers from eczema or other skin problems. Bamboo is naturally moisture wicking and thermally regulating which keeps your baby’s skin cool and dry, perfect for maintaining their skin’s health.
Hemp is a highly sustainable plant which absorbs CO2 as it grows, making it a carbon neutral product. The plant suppresses weeds as it grows making the use of chemical herbicides unnecessary. Hemp produces 250% more fibres per acre than organic cotton whilst using just a fraction of the water making it a far more efficient plant to grow and harvest. A small number of suppliers sell hemp baby clothes in the UK, but hemp is easy to buy by the meter to make your own.
Don’t be tempted to buy too many baby clothes before your baby arrives. Babies quickly outgrow their first sets of clothing, with some babies already being born too big to fit into them. It is usually sensible to start small, buying items as and when they are needed.
When washing and caring for your organic baby clothes, ensure not to wash in detergents which can irritate your baby’s delicate skin and allow toxins to enter their system. “Eco balls” are a soap-free alternative to conventional detergents, which release ionised oxygen to remove dirt without adding harmful chemicals to the fabric.