Affordable, wrinkle-free, easy to clean, and resilient. How’s that for your bedding? Impressive right? These are some of the irresistible traits flaunted by polyester. It’s little wonder that we are lured into stacking it in our closets.
But did you know that polyester is a health hazard? Did you know that it should not be in your sleep environment because of its toxicity? This article will explore the hazardous nature of polyester and why you should consider hurling it out of your bedroom.
What Is Polyester and Why Is It So Popular?
Polyester is purely a synthetic fabric. This means that it is manufactured through a chemical process. It is among the most widely used fabrics across the globe. Here are some reasons why it garners a lot of accolades:
- Doesn’t shrink or stretch easily
- Easy to clean and dry
- Wrinkle resistant
- Resistant to abrasion, mildew, and most chemicals
On its own, polyester has an overriding synthetic feel. It is mostly blended with natural fibers like cotton to achieve an array of textures. A cotton-polyester blend would for instance combine the breathability cotton offers with polyester’s versatility and anti-wrinkle properties.
How Is Polyester Manufactured?
Polyester is derived from petroleum and is manufactured through a highly toxic process as summarized below:
- The first stage involves creating a monomer under high heat. Monomers are small molecules that can bind to similar molecules to form very large molecules.
- The monomer is then combined with dimethyl terephthalate to create a polymer. Polymers are materials made of long repetitive molecule chains.
- Long strips of the molten polymer are then extracted, allowed to cool and dry before being broken into small pieces.
- The small pieces are melted once more and passed through a spinneret to form fibers.
- The resulting polyester fibers are processed further to achieve the desired type of polyester.
5 Grave Health Risks Posed by Polyester and Why It Should Not Be in Your Bed
Polyester abounds in our homes. From clothes, bedding, hats, furniture, ropes, seatbelts, and many other items. Here are some of the health hazards that polyester shoves into our homes.
1. It Is Uncomfortable
Polyester is not breathable. This means that moisture from the body gets trapped between the skin and the fabric. If your bedding has polyester in it, you will most likely be writhing in a sweaty pool at night during summer. Winter nights will also be awfully chilly for you.
2. It Is a Potential Carcinogen
Yes, you read that right. They actually throw in a carcinogen known as antimony to act as a catalyst while producing polyester. Antimony can also wreak havoc on the lungs, heart, liver, and skin.
3. It Can Meddle With a Baby’s Normal Development
Polyester has several toxic substances that are dangerous to growing children. A Baby’s skin is thinner than that of an adult. It is, therefore, more permeable and chemicals can seep through much faster.
Because a baby’s liver detoxification system is still immature, any chemicals that seep through the skin may not be flushed out. This may in turn trigger developmental problems.
4. It Can Irritate the Skin
The harsh chemicals in polyester may irritate the skin and trigger rashes, redness, eczema, and other skin ailments.
5. It’s Horrible for the Environment
Polyester is horrible for the environment. Here’s why:
- It is manufactured in an energy-intensive environment that uses monstrous amounts of energy.
- It is a source of pollution since the chemicals used in its production often leach into the environment.
- It is often used in the fast fashion industry to produce cheap poor-quality clothes that fall apart after a few washes.
- It is non-biodegradable. This means that it can linger in the environment for up to 200 years.
Natural Fibers to the Rescue
Polyester causes great harm to both humans and the environment. Children are especially at a greater risk since their immune systems are still immature and their skin very delicate. Choose your bedding carefully to avoid inviting toxins into your sleep environment. When in doubt, natural fibers like cotton are a sure bet for both you and your little cherub.