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From Snark to Spark: Why I Went All In On Organic Cotton

Ting-Yi Shih

I’m skeptical by nature. You might say it’s my thing. So the rumblings I’ve heard about organic cotton always gave me more pause than intrigue. Why did it cost more? Was there really a benefit? Does anyone actually care?

Last year, I took a retail job. I was building a business plan to realize the dream of opening a kids clothing boutique of my own. I thought it would be a good idea to learn a bit more about the retail business world before entering it. The shop that employed me featured organic cotton, so I didn’t just get to learn about it—I had to! And learn I did. I learned how increasingly important it is, and I learned just how popular it was becoming in the apparel industry at large.

I went into the job only looking to discover how the retail business works, and how best to market/sell children’s clothing for my own shop. I never expected the most important thing I would take away from my retail adventure would be the importance of organic cotton clothing. Outside of the obvious benefit of it being non-toxic and soft to the touch of our skin, it keeps the farmers who harvest them healthy, and the production process doesn’t leave behind toxic waste that damages our earth. All of these can create a safer environment for our children.

What I learned empowered me. The world seems more chaotic than when I grew up, and I often worry about what the future holds for my young daughter. I can get paralyzed with worries and feel powerless to help make a difference and improve the world. It might sound strange to some, but what I learned in retail sales had a more significant impact on me than I expected. I discovered that there was a small part I could play to help make the world a better place for my little girl.

Simply by shopping for organic cotton clothing, I was contributing to my daughter’s future in a way that was both meaningful and achievable. By advocating for organic cotton as the best option for our loved ones’ present and future, I hoped that more people might support these farmers, choose this sustainable solution, make the world a healthier place.

I’m not one to walk you through the specific advantages of organic cotton when others have done it so much better than I could. But this article and this article are a great place to start. This is about the trek I took to organic cotton. It wasn’t what I was looking for, but it impacted me more than I ever expected.

I think we can do a lot to make things better for our kids, our farmers, and our planet. And I found one small way that I can help.

Feel free to ask questions or share your story about why you shop organic cotton in the comments section below.


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