Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pajamas - Chemicals or No Chemicals?

As the seasons change, I find myself sorting through piles of boys clothes that seemed so big last spring and have somehow gotten so so small. I did some careful on-sale shopping earlier this year, so now it's just filling in the gaps. Buster needs a few more pairs of SOFT pants. He's very specific about this. Q-ster needs more pajamas.

Ah, pajamas. It's gotten really difficult to find good ones. They all seem to be covered in flame retardant these days. I'm sure they are less carcinogenic than the kind my parents avoided in the 70's by traveling to Canada to find untreated nighties for my sister and me (hello, Canadian friends!) Still, my sons spend 10-12 hours each day in pajamas, and I'm not crazy about them wearing chemical-laden fabrics.

So far, I've been able to find cotton, "snug fitting" jammies that are not legally required to have the flame-retardant, but the selection seems to get smaller each season. I'm think I'm going to hold the line and keep trying for cotton, even if that makes giving up some of the new Clone Wars and Cars designs that the boys would like. The best article I've found so far on avoiding flame retardants is here.

What do you do? No big deal compared to all the other chemical risks in the world? Is the risk of fire higher? Or do you also look for snug-fit cottons?


Mir said...

I just find those flame-retardant-coated fabrics to be scratchy and gross, personally. I certainly wouldn't want to sleep in them!

I opt for cotton jammies for the kids 90% of the time (Children's Place always has them, and when they were littler, Disney Store was a good source, too), and polar fleece the rest of the time (polyester, yes, but soft). I really never understood the whole "here, put on this crunchy outfit and SWEET DREAMS!" expectation.

Magpie said...

Yuck to the yuck. I refuse to buy those scritchy scratchy pajama. My favorites are the Hanna Andersson pajamas - soft and durable. They are spendy though, so I try to find them (and sell them) on eBay.

Anonymous said...

time to get out the sewing machine?? how hard can it be, right??
Mme A

Bob said...

It's really tough for parents getting PJs 40 years ago and now again. Nothing wrong with cotton but may be its the Star War/Fancy prints that need fire retardants. May be we have to get them from Canada again ( a not-overly-protective country).

Anonymous said...

I don't really sweat fire risk, myself. Which may be irresponsible, but we don't light candles, there are no smokers in our house and we don't light fires in our fireplace. I think the actual risk of either of my kids catching fire in my home is very low.

Given that I think they're unnecessary, I would rather not risk the flame retardants. I'm not sure what the scoop is here in Canada now. I know that our kids' sleepwear doesn't have the same warning labels, but that doesn't mean that it's not treated, necessarily. I definitely need to investigate this further.

Anonymous said...

We use long soft pajamas when it's cold (probably flame-retardant but I hadn't given it too much notice), but during warmer weather we often put her in regular clean cotton t-shirts and shorts. Like Amber wrote, I'm not too worried about fire danger -- though who knows, that may change once we're sleep-deprived again..

Desiree said...

Maybe you could just get some extra cotton t-shirts and "soft pants" - in Busters words. :) Andrew is not a big fan of fitted clothing so that is not an option for us. Many of our "pajamas" are just old t-shirts and comfy pants.

mayberry said...

I like the cotton ones too. We have (or usually, the grandmas have) mostly gotten them at Gymboree. They have some cute designs that make up for the lack of Star Wars characters.