Every day of my life there’s a battle being waged over my extreme allergies. I have a lot of them – I’m basically allergic to the world. Sadly, I am particularly allergic to dust. This means that I have to wash my bedding once to twice per week in extreme hot in order to kill dust mites. Washing this often also kills my sheets and blankets – you can see in the photo (right) showing my most recent quilt death. My bedding dies hard and often. Essentially I am boiling my sheets and blankets several times a week because THIS IS WAR. With all of my chemical and scent sensitivities I also have to wash my clothes in unscented soaps for lower exposure to the things that trigger my allergies. With all of this in mind, when Essentia reached out to me about their organic cotton sheets and comfort pillow and asked me to review them, I said yes because lower chemical exposure for me is always a better thing.
While the Essentia Comfort Pillow was, indeed, comfortable to sleep with – it was very supportive and definitely helped my osteoarthritis pain that I have in my neck and upper back – the ingredient list on the manufacturer tag (photo right) is a concern because it says that the internal ingredients are not 100% cotton, only the exterior is 100% cotton. With that in mind, it does not give me a solution which works for my allergies. I have to be able to wash as much of the pillow as I possibly can in extreme heat in order to have it work effectively with my allergy problems. Memory foam melts in high temperatures.
The Sheets OHHHHHH The Sheets
What really worked for me was the 100% organic cotton sheets. Essentia did it right with these organic sheets because while they only have a 300 thread count, they are extremely soft. It’s like climbing into silk. I washed them before use and you can see in the photo at top that they are a bit wrinkly without ironing. To be blunt, I could care less about wrinkles because I’m after comfort and allergy help. Instructions suggest that washing in cooler temperatures will preserve the life of the sheets. However, I washed them in extreme heat with no problems whatsoever.
Why Use Organic Cotton
I’ve always been a Doubting Thomas when it comes to trends. I want to better understand why using an organic product is important, so I started by researching the topic. It turns out that organic cotton, while often more expensive, can help reduce the amount of chemicals you are exposed to. For instance, according to the Rodale Institute, non-organic cotton farmers use toxic amounts of chemicals to control insects and fungal issues and cotton is considered the world’s “dirtiest crop”, with 90% of cotton also being genetically modified.
Once the cotton products are created the waste bi-products from the chemical-filled cotton is used as feed, turned into oil (Crisco is mostly made from cottonseed bi-products), and small pieces of this waste is used as cellulose additives for food and makeup products. The world’s dirtiest crop is in many of the products we eat and use. We sleep on, dry off with, and live in cotton — what effect is this heavily chemical laden GMO product having on the human being? We’re exposed to so many chemicals daily, that it’s hard to tell what specific problems this exposure causes. However, common sense says that eliminating the amount of chemicals that touch our skin daily is a smart approach to our personal and environmental health.
Sleeping on organic cotton makes me feel as if I am doing a little something better for myself and for the environment. Silky softness also helps – living in soft, comfortable, and chemical-free is a step in the right direction. This post started out as a product review and ended up as a self-discovery on the amazing amounts of chemicals that are found in cotton as well as all the items in the world that are made from this chemical-filled bi-product. If given a choice, I’d rather live with less of these chemicals and more of the all natural organic cotton whenever possible.