// you’re reading...

Eco your ego


Ever since they started this whole ‘organics’ thing, I’ve quietly, or not so quietly wondered if it were a scam or not. It wasn’t until I moved near a Whole Foods market, that I started swearing by organic food. Now there is organic clothing, and at first, I thought ‘well, if I like organic food, then, I’ll like organic clothing’. Sure, but um, I don’t eat my clothes… So how do you tell the difference?

Cottons and other natural fibers (hemp, bamboo) have long been considered better for the ‘environment’, and more and more it’s becoming apparent the toxins we live in are causing health problems, from headaches and allergies, to infertility and cancer… I’m only starting to learn about eco friendly and ethical wear. I just think it’s important to have this stuff floating around in my brain, not that I’m gong to throw out all my clothes, and run out and buy all new eco-friendly clothing… but just so I can try to move in that general direction.

Why Organic?
Conventional cotton producers around the world nearly $2.6 billion worth of pesticides — more than 10% of the world’s pesticides and nearly 25% of the world’s insecticides. (from Pesticide Action Network of North America)

What’s wrong with pesticides?

  • In California, five of the top nine pesticides used on cotton are cancer-causing chemicals (cyanazine, dicofol, naled, propargite and trifluralin).
  • In Egypt, more than 50% of cotton workers in the 1990s suffered symptoms of chronic pesticide poisoning, including neurological and vision disorders.
  • In India, 91% of male cotton workers exposed to pesticides eight hours or more per day experienced some type of health disorder, including chromosomal aberrations, cell death and cell cycle delay.
  • Over 1 million Americans will learn they have some form of cancer and 10,400 people in the U.S. die each year from cancer related to pesticides.

Not to mention what they do to animals:

  • In 1995, pesticide-contaminated runoff from cotton fields in Alabama killed 240,000 fish.
  • It is estimated that pesticides unintentionally kill 67 million birds each year. (statistics from Organic Clothing)

Photo is taken from Skin and Threads, an organic clothing designer.

Share and Enjoy:
« Today’s Attire: Tree, meter, me Today’s Attire : Shiny Fabrics »


12 comments for “Organic”

  1. Thanks for breaking this down, at least for me. I found this post a very helpful summary. there are lots of articles on eco freindly clothing that are full of jargon (!) so thank you

    Posted by riz | October 9, 2007, 5:57 pm
  2. Good post! I’m definitely interested in the idea of organic. The problem is that right now you can use the “organic” label on practically anything. The USDA is introducing standards (http://www.ams.usda.gov/
    nop/indexNet.htm) but companies are still using the term very loosely. There are lots of loopholes. :-/
    Hopefully things will become more standardized soon. And I’m not sure I believe that one million Americans a year being diagnosed with cancer related to pesticides at ALL. That’s a huge number of “definite causes” for something as complicated as cancer, which is influenced by many factors. Unless that entire 1 million number works on farms and in pesticide plants, it seems far-fetched.PANNA’s agenda is pretty blatant. I’d have to go through that whole site with a fine-toothed comb to be able to tell if their science is valid. The study linking pesticides to autism was composed of only 29 women. That’s a hypothesis, not evidence. Sorry to get carried away; inconclusive science is one of my obsessions in addition to fish feet.

    Posted by WendyB | October 9, 2007, 8:51 pm
  3. Mothra hates pesticides.

    Posted by Mothra | October 9, 2007, 10:10 pm
  4. Lynda Grose introduced me to patagonia’s effort and alternative textile awareness some many years ago. I’d thought you’d enjoy this article, amongst the myrads about her online. XO


    Posted by meli | October 9, 2007, 11:04 pm
  5. I think pesticides would be especially dangerous to Mothra.

    Posted by WendyB | October 9, 2007, 11:46 pm
  6. Very informative!

    My mom says, “they slap eco-friendly on anything and it sells.” I say if we can, we should definitely do our part. That top photo is amazing too. I’ll have to check out their site.

    Posted by Heather | October 10, 2007, 9:36 am
  7. I tend to buy eco-friendly clothes from some serious companies like howies.co.uk, which btw has some loveliest things. But the field where I’m most “ecological” is cosmetics: years ago I developped a very annoying intolerance to traditional shampoos - I had dermatitis and at first I didn’t understand why! So I discovered a world of amazing products which are so good to my skin and hair but also to the environment. I’m glad more and more people are interested in these topics.

    Posted by Raffy | October 10, 2007, 11:44 am
  8. @ wendy… lol… i love it! inconclusive science! isn’t that all science? heh… but it’s good to ask questions like what exactly does organic mean… i still have no idea, but as more people are aware of it, the more standardized it will become.

    @mothra… don’t be a baby.

    meli! thanks for the link!

    raffy… i tried the whole cosmetics thing too, but for some reason i lost it at some point. but it’s probablly a good idea as a lot of times i put make up directly on my skin. eh…

    Posted by jennine | October 10, 2007, 3:15 pm
  9. Blend Apparel is a really cool company with a focus on bamboo and organic cotton. check ‘em out!

    Posted by Jessica Joan | October 11, 2007, 1:01 pm
  10. Thank you for touching on this very important subject. I’m a designer and have always dreamt of having my own line but now it just seems so frivilous considering the state of the world. So, I now only want to do it if I can at the very least incorporate sustainable materials.

    Posted by Cece Marie | October 12, 2007, 1:50 pm
  11. we talk about this topic all the time in my textiles class. Cotton is one of the worst polluters.

    These posts are informative keep em coming.

    Posted by Sara | October 14, 2007, 1:27 pm
  12. Kick ass - you did a great job summing up the important of using and buying organic fabrics :D

    Posted by Victoria E | October 15, 2007, 7:57 pm

Post a comment