Advantages and disadvantages of cotton, cotton care rules
What is cotton? Cotton is a soft towel thrown carelessly on the floor on a brisk morning… A fluffy bathrobe waiting in the bathroom in the evening. Even your favorite comfortable jeans hanging on the back of a chair. And yet — cotton is fragrant sheets on which we sleep sweetly at night. These are diapers that we carefully put on our babies. It’s even some of the dishes we eat. However, we take all these things for granted, as an invisible component of comfort.
And to imagine how important cotton is in shaping the picture of home comfort, let’s do a little experiment. Close your eyes for a moment, and imagine that all the cotton — abruptly and suddenly — disappeared on the Planet. And without this, a small and important lump, your day would look something like this.
You woke up. At this moment, even the most powerful electric light bulb can envy you. The static energy of you is just in full swing. After all, you slept on synthetic sheets! The morning shower weakened the power of your personal electricity a little, but … after it you had to use a towel that absolutely did not absorb moisture! And then — put on the same sparkling clothes.
All day long you had to drink water of dubious quality (since water filters are made using cotton fibers), wash your hands with it and dry them naturally (because an unenviable thing happened to towels). While preparing dinner, you accidentally cut your finger. It was necessary to treat the wound in an archaic way, applying plantain. After all, neither cotton nor bandage now existed in your life.
In the evening, finally getting rid of synthetic clothes, you walked around the house for a long time without anything. After all, your skin responded with an allergy to the lack of cotton in your life.
The conclusion suggests itself: cotton protects us, warms us, caresses us with its soft touch, gives us a smile and a feeling of peace and tranquility.
In fact, for about 7000 years, humanity has not imagined its life without cotton and products made from it. It was in 5 thousand BC, in the Indus Valley, that a sprout first appeared, which later was destined to become part of our daily happiness.
Statisticians have calculated that in our time (on average) one inhabitant of the Earth uses 7 kg of cotton products per year. If you consider that from one bale (227 kg) of cotton fibers you can make 215 pairs of jeans, 250 sheets, 1200 T-shirts, 2100 pairs of boxers, 3000 diapers, 4300 pairs of socks — this is not so little!
Why does humanity value cotton?
• Availability. Today, a significant percentage of the total of as many as 70 countries of the world is the cotton industry. Cotton (and fabrics from it — chintz, calico, poplin, percale, twill, cambric) is the most inexpensive material for the manufacture of goods and clothing for general use.
• High hygroscopicity. Just one small example: a cotton product, in conditions of high humidity, can take on about 30% of moisture, and remain dry to the touch! It is this property of cotton that is valued by manufacturers of home textiles.
• Practicality. Being the most natural, cotton products are easily contaminated. But, at the same time, it is enough for them to simply return the “original” look and wash it off. Cotton is not afraid of either machine washing or hand washing, or even boiling with powerful detergents. Moreover, cotton products (especially those intended for daily use) withstand about 50 washes, while maintaining their original appearance.
• Moth and other pest resistance. Unlike wool, cotton is “vulnerable” only at the flowering stage (then the weevil hurries to feast on it). In the form of tissue, it does not represent any «food» interest for any of the existing insects.
However, like any other natural fabric, cotton has a number of disadvantages. And, if we have already decided to tell you the whole truth about cotton, then we cannot miss this section either.
• wear and tear. Cotton fibers (both by themselves and in the product) are strong enough. But they are not elastic. Because of this — we can often observe (for example, in relation to bed linen) thread pulling, fabric thinning in some places, rubbing.
• Instability to light. Natural cotton clothing should not be dried in direct sunlight. From this, the fabric quickly turns yellow and is practically not ironed.
• Wrinkle. It is impossible to look absolutely neat in clothes made of 100% cotton. Due to the low elasticity of the fibers, the products quickly wrinkle.
• Shrinkage. Yes, not very pleasant, but true. Pure cotton jersey often stretches in width, or «shrinks» in length.
However, the disadvantages of cotton are not so terrible. Moreover, now manufacturers are trying to make life easier for consumers by adding 5-10% lavsan or polyester to cotton products (to soften the effect of wrinkling and shrinkage), or acrylic, viscose and silk (to give things more strength and shine). And, you can never see flaws (in relation to your favorite things), if you strictly follow the rules and secrets of caring for them.
Rules and secrets of caring for things made of cotton:
• Wash. The recommended temperature is 40 degrees (for colored things), and the maximum (for whites). Detergents (in the absence of very strong pollution) it is desirable to use the most non-aggressive. It is also desirable to use softening fabric rinses (to preserve the natural tenderness of cotton).
• Drying. It is recommended to dry cotton items at room temperature, away from direct sunlight. Very delicate items (robes, knitted dresses, sweaters) must not be hung up to avoid shrinkage. It is best to dry them by laying them out on a flat surface.
• ironing. Cotton items should be ironed slightly damp. If you overdry the thing, use wet-heat treatment with steam.
And the last thing I would like to mention, ending a truthful conversation about cotton. Often, manufacturers, to put it mildly, are cunning, adding not 5-10% of the declared synthetics to natural cotton, but much more. To recognize a fake, and not to break the charm of your home with a lack of peace and comfort, you need to know a few important consumer secrets.
How to recognize natural cotton?
• Light. When buying a cotton product, ask to bring it to the window. Natural cotton (or 90% of its predominance in things) will never reflect the sun with synthetic shine. Will be smooth and soft to the touch.
• Combustion. If you set fire to a thread of natural cotton, it will burn with a yellow flame. It is to burn, and not to melt and stretch! After burning, a handful of ash will remain, smelling like burnt paper.
• ironing. A product made of natural cotton will never stick to the iron if it is set to the maximum temperature. Unfortunately, this method can only be applied after the purchase of the item.
And one more, very important indicator. Price. Now the world is very popular greening the process of growing cotton. Companies that specialize in this are increasingly starting to use «organic cotton» technology, which involves the rejection of the use of toxins, pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and genetically modified seeds. It is clear that clothing made from such cotton cannot even hypothetically cause allergies, asthma, and other «diseases of the century.» It is produced mainly in Australia, India, Egypt and Turkey. However, it also costs a little more than clothes made from cotton grown using standard technology. But the price, after all, is a trifle in comparison with health, smile and comfort from such a thing!
I would like to finish our, we hope, fascinating story about cotton, with the wise thought of one of the ancient philosophers who held cotton in their hands and at the same time were in a hurry to enjoy life, master its wisdom and reveal its secrets. They said, “Life is like cotton. Adversity and sorrows make him plunge into the river of sorrow, which makes him 27 times harder. But it only takes a few seconds to blow the wind of joy, as cotton becomes, in the blink of an eye, fluffy and bright. Give each other moments of joy, pamper loved ones with your care and necessary, cozy gifts from «Minutes of Comfort»!
But how cotton grows, you can learn from the material «How cotton robes grow».
Bathrobes made of 100% cotton available:
Women’s bathrobes cotton
Men’s cotton bathrobes