Cotton is a really helpful fiber that has many great qualities: It’s hypoallergenic, it wicks away moisture well for a great dry feel, it’s relatively soft, and it washes and dries well. But cotton is also the most heavily sprayed crop in the world and 25 percent of the world’s pesticides are used for cotton production. These pesticide residues build up in cotton as it develops, and they can be transferred directly to your bedding if it’s made of non-organic cotton. As soon as you sleep on this infected cotton, pesticide residue can pass through your skin and into your body.
Non-organic cotton is bad enough, but the polyester, which includes the other 50 percent of your 50/50 blend bedding, consists of petrochemicals which shouldn’t be anywhere near the human body. Polyester comprises compounds caused phthalates, which can be utilised to generate the fibers more elastic, and these compounds mimic the female hormone estrogen in the human body. Continuous exposure to phthalates and other plasticizers in food containers, dinnerware, polyester upholstery and other resources, has been associated with the dramatic drop in male fertility which has occurred during the past 60 years. Polyester also traps water vapor, which causes night sweats, jock itch and athlete’s foot. It’s included in sheets because it’s affordable and makes sheets more lasting and wrinkle-free. However, is this worth the possible health consequences?
The answer to this dilemma is to use organic cotton sheets and pillowcases on your bed. Since the issue has grown over the pesticides in conventionally grown cotton as well as the phthalates in cotton, organic cotton bedding is becoming more widely available. Organic grown cotton is currently being produced globally, from Texas to India. The organic cotton is woven into sheets and pillowcases that feel and look like commercially available bedding, without the dyes and the polyester. I also find these sheets to be a lot more comfortable for sleeping because they do not trap moisture such as 50/50 cotton/polyester blends.
Better organic sheets are pre-shrunk using steam and are completely machine washable and dryable. They have only a few more wrinkles out of the drier than the 50/50 blends, but this is a small price to pay for a wholesome bed. We can all live with a few wrinkles, but we might not have the ability to live with cancer.
Organic cotton sheets, pillowcases, mattress pads, and blankets from such makers are now being sold across the USA through local retailers that focus on natural fiber bedding. Additionally, there are numerous nationally Internet retailers for organic cotton sheets and bedding.