Cotton is the most versatile fabric. It is also one of the oldest cloth known to humanity. The earliest reference dates back almost 5000 years ago to Indus Valley Civilisation. For years, it has been a popular dress material for the masses. The situation continued until synthetic factory-made fabrics such as nylon and polyester took over. As synthetic clothes gained popularity, cotton moved into the premium category. Here it occupies an unrivalled position with linen.
A question naturally arises, what makes cotton so popular?
First and foremost, it is its moisture-soaking properties. It absorbs sweat from the body and allows it to evaporate into the atmosphere. Cotton acts as a natural cooler for the body and prevents fungal and bacterial growth making it one of the most popular fabrics for hot and humid temperatures.
It also acts like an insulator and keeps the body cool during the summers and warm in the winters.
Besides, cotton is soft and comfortable to wear, anti-allergic and 100% natural.
But most of all, cotton is versatile. You will find cotton everywhere—from bandages and draperies to clothes and furnishings. Go out and open anyone’s wardrobe, and despite the popularity of fast fashion, you will definitely find cotton. Denim, corduroy, chino, calico, and gingham escaping cotton is next to impossible.
Environmental costs of cotton
Despite the advantages of cotton over other fabrics, it suffers from a few shortcomings. The one that gets the most on the people is its propensity to wrinkle. Not only does it requires heavy ironing, but you cannot put on cotton clothes two days in a row. Cotton is also prone to damage. A synthetic cloth can last much longer when compared to cotton. The colours also fade in the sun faster compared to synthetic fibres.
However, the argument against cotton that is gaining traction in recent times is its environmental footprints. As sustainability is emerging as a paradigm in development, cotton is facing the heat.
Future of cotton
Definitely, cotton is 100% natural. It is bio-degradable and a non-pollutant. At the same time, it is also a fact that cotton cultivation uses lots of water. Since cotton is hugely popular and used in one form or the either in 70% of the world’s fabrics, it depletes the land. There are issues with genetically modified seeds, pesticides, fertilisers and other chemical agrochemicals.
The answers to these challenges could lie in promoting the use of organic cotton. Organic cotton at present accounts for around 5% of total cotton production. Further, cotton can be easily recycled and reused.
Choose the best for your child
Now that you have understood the benefits of cotton, some of its demerits and the efforts to promote sustainable cotton, go ahead and decide how you want to proceed with your fabric.
But whatever you may decide, there is no denying the fact when it comes to your kid’s clothing there is no denying that cotton is the best.