Babies spend up to 15 hours in pajamas -- and there is nothing cuter than a baby in pajamas - the one exception might be babies in holiday pajamas!
The thing with holiday pjs (and all pjs) is that they are not all created equally. By law, pajamas for children between the sizes of 9 months through size 14 must be flame resistant or fit snuggly. The main fabrics used for pajamas are cotton (organic, pima, flannel etc) or polyester. Cotton is flammable and thus should always be used tightly fitting. Tight fitting cotton pajamas do not contain flame retardant chemicals. Any pajama made of cotton that is loose fitting will likely have added flame retardant chemicals to meet requirements. Luckily for parents, it is becoming increasingly rare to find loose fitting 100% cotton pajamas - increasingly, when you see a loose fitting pajama it will likely be made of polyester or a cotton polyester blend.
Why do we want to avoid pajamas with flame retardants? Just how bad are flame retardants?
Flame Retardants have been linked to
The main problem with flame retardant chemicals is that they are not bound tightly to the products they are applied to and thus leech out into the environment- making their way into your children’s skin. Children, particularly, tend to have higher levels of certain flame retardants than adults do.
How do you know if your pajamas contain added chemicals?
If you look closely at all children’s pajamas you will notice they all have one of two different tags attached:
When a garment is flame resistant it means that either the manufacturer has doused the fabric in flame retardant chemicals or, increasingly more common, it could be made from synthetic fabrics that are naturally more flame resistant (like polyester).The main problem with flame retardant chemicals is that they are not bound tightly to the products they are applied to and thus leech out into the environment- making their way into your children’s skin. Children, particularly, tend to have higher levels of certain flame retardants than adults do.
Are polyester pajamas a better option? Pajamas made of polyester are inherently flame resistant, because polyester is resistant to flames. While they are definitely safer and less toxic than pajamas with chemical flame retardants, do keep in mind that polyester is made from petroleum- and producing polyester is terrible for the environment.
The least toxic option? Choose snug fitting pj's ideally in 100% organic cotton (say no to loose fitting and flannel)! By opting for organic cotton sleepwear over conventional cotton you make sure the pajama is not treated with any additional insecticides, pesticides or formaldehyde based finishing treatments that conventional cotton commonly is and that could lead to rashes, asthma and even headaches and fatigue for the wearer.
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