Monday, January 31, 2011

Formaldehyde in Wrinkle-Free Clothes and Bedding May Pose Skin and Health Risks

At Yes It's Organic, we frequently receive calls from individuals who are chemically sensitive or have what is commonly called Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS). There are a wide range of chemicals to which different individuals are sensitive. They range from the pesticides and other toxins used in growing crops to the chemicals used in clothing and bedding manufacturing.

These chemicals to which they are sensitive are used in non-Organic crops and production processes. We haven't had anyone sensitive to the Certified Organic crops or Certified Organic or certified eco friendly production processes used in our clothing and bedding.

An article in the New York Times, titled "When Wrinkle-Free Clothing Also Means Formaldehyde Fumes" discussed “wrinkle-free finish [clothing and bedding]...that are great right out of the dryer.” It stated:
"Though it is not obvious from the label, the antiwrinkle finish comes from a resin that releases formaldehyde, the chemical that is usually associated with embalming fluids or dissected frogs in biology class.

And clothing is not the only thing treated with the chemical. Formaldehyde is commonly found in a broad range of consumer products and can show up in practically every room of the house. The sheets and pillow cases on the bed. The drapes hanging in the living room. The upholstery on the couch. In the bathroom, it can be found in personal care products like shampoos, lotions and eye shadow. It may even be in the baseball cap hanging by the back door.

'From a consumer perspective, you are very much in the dark in terms of what clothing is treated with,' said David Andrews, a senior scientist at the Environmental Working Group, a research and advocacy organization."  (See the full article: Formaldehyde in Wrinkle-Free Clothes May Pose Skin Risks -

Formaldehyde, of course, is just one of many chemicals that may be involved in clothing and bedding manufacturing.

Individuals with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) may be the warning to the rest of us of just how polluted our lives have become. No one thinks they will become chemically sensitive. It's always the "other person"...until it actually happens to them.

Our society and governments have operated on the principle of "let's use it until it is proven harmful." There's a principle that is increasing in popularity called The Precautionary Principle that states that we should prove something is not harmful before it is used.