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Organic Cotton Fabric: An In-Depth Guide to Organic Cotton Clothing

What is organic cotton?

Organic cotton grows without harmful chemicals, pesticides or synthetic fertilizers, making it one of the healthiest clothing options.

This textile is more than just natural fabric with a fantastic feel. Organic cotton offers your little bubs the gentle touch of nature in their clothing. This premium material is soft, soothing, and healthy—and organic cotton outfits look adorable, too.

At Nest Designs, we only use premium materials to make clothing, bedding, and accessories for you and your family. Keep reading to learn more about why we love organic cotton.

Organic cotton

How is organic cotton fabric made?

Organic cotton fabric is grown sustainably to create a pure and natural material. Farmers grow cotton plants in their fields, and these plants flourish without the use of harmful pesticides, fertilizers, or synthetic additives like genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Organic cotton plants sprout and grow naturally, creating a raw material that’s just right for creating clean and healthy clothing.

To keep the organic cotton pure through harvesting and production, manufacturers comply with the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). GOTS is a thoughtful process with strict regulations that ensure no harmful substances are used to produce organic cotton and other natural fabrics. Look for GOTS certification on a garment tag or packaging to ensure top quality.  

Is organic cotton GOTS certified?

Organic cotton often carries the GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) certification, but not always. An organic product with GOTS certification ensures that a product is made with a minimum of 95 percent organic fibres. GOTS certification assures parents that the organic cotton used for their little bubs' clothes adheres to high environmental and social standards.

When you see GOTS certification, you can rest assured that the organic cotton fabric meets strict criteria throughout its production process, from the fields to the final fabric.

Organic cotton washcloth

What are the different types of organic cotton fabric?

You'll likely come across multiple options when considering organic cotton fabric for your little one. Here are a few types of organic cotton fabric and what they are best suited for:

  • Organic Cotton Jersey: This fabric is soft, gentle, and stretchy enough to offer a range of movement and flexibility, making it a fantastic choice for clothing like PJs and onesies. 
  • Organic Cotton Muslin: Light and breathable, muslin fabric has a soft and airy feel that's perfect for swaddles and light blankets.
  • Organic Cotton Fleece: Fleece is soft and plush, offering some added warmth for colder days. Jackets, hats, or cozy pants made from this fabric keep little ones comfy when the temperature dips.
  • Organic Cotton Flannel: Soft flannel is gentle on delicate skin and helps keep babies and adults snuggly and warm. It's well-suited for sheets, blankets, and cool-weather outfits. 
  • Organic Cotton Terry Cloth: Absorbent and soft, terry cloth is an excellent natural fabric for bath towels or bibs. 

The various types of organic cotton fabric offer a range of options to wrap your baby in natural comfort.

Nest Designs hooded towel

What is the difference between organic cotton and regular cotton?

The main difference between organic cotton and regular cotton is the standards used to grow, harvest, and process the cotton plants. Not all cotton is created equal.

Regular cotton can be grown using fertilizer, pesticides, chemicals, and GMOs. According to The Organic Center, conventional cotton is one of the world's most chemically intensive crops; it's terrible for the Earth, climate, and people.

Organic cotton aims to ease these issues with stringent growing, harvesting, and producing regulations to keep the end fabric as pure and healthy as possible.

Is Egyptian cotton the same as organic cotton?

There are a few ways that Egyptian cotton differs from organic cotton.

Egyptian cotton earned a prestigious reputation because it was exclusively grown in Egypt (hence the name). However, it now grows in other countries with similar climates. Egyptian cotton fibres are longer than regular or organic cotton, resulting in smoother, finer, more durable cotton fabrics. Egyptian cotton may or may not be organic; unfortunately, there isn't a widely recognized certification for authentic Egyptian cotton.

On the other hand, organic cotton may come in various fibre lengths, typically shorter than those of Egyptian cotton. Organic cotton can be certified by multiple organizations (such as GOTS), ensuring that it meets specific standards for organic production. 

How does organic cotton feel?

Organic cotton takes the familiar feel of conventional cotton but gives it an extra touch of softness. The fabric feels super gentle and plush, which likely comes from the fabric’s pure, chemical-free production. Skipping the unnatural additives in the growth and manufacturing processes may make the organic cotton feel cozier, as chemicals can damage the makeup of textile fibres.

Is organic cotton non-toxic?

Organic cotton is non-toxic and does not contain pesticides. To be considered organic cotton, the fabric must be made without chemicals, pesticides, GMOs or manufacturing methods that harm people or the planet.

So, when you opt for organic cotton, you choose clothes made in a safer, more natural way—keeping your little love cozy and comfy without any of the stuff you wouldn't want near them.

Nest Designs hooded blanket

Does organic cotton have formaldehyde?

Organic cotton does not contain formaldehyde. This natural fabric follows strict rules that forbid any harmful stuff from being used when it's grown and made. That's why it's safe and healthy for you and your little ones!

Is organic cotton sustainable?

Organic cotton is more sustainable than standard cotton. The difference is that organic cotton uses less water and no chemicals compared to standard cotton. Due to the standards that organic cotton is held to in its manufacturing and production, it is a sustainable option, especially for those looking for eco-friendly clothing.

What are the benefits of organic cotton?

Organic cotton brings a world of benefits because it's:

  • Gentle on all skin types: Organic cotton is grown without harsh chemicals, reducing the risk of skin irritation or allergies—even for sensitive skin.
  • Environmentally friendly: The natural fabric uses eco-friendly production methods that are kinder to people and the planet.
  • Durable: Organic cotton is robust and long-lasting, perfect for clothing.
  • Healthy: GOTS-certified organic cotton is free from pesticides and harmful substances, promoting a safer option for little ones.
  • Oh-so-soft: In addition to all of the advantages above, this fabric is also extremely cozy!


What are the downsides of organic cotton?

Though organic cotton has many benefits, this natural fabric has a few drawbacks: Organic cotton can take more time to produce, as it tends to have lower yields due to the lack of growth hormones and chemicals. Although organic cotton uses less water than standard cotton, it still requires a lot of water to go from the plant to its final state.

Is organic cotton safe for babies?

Organic cotton is exceptionally safe for babies, including newborns. The fabric is gentle and non-irritating, perfect for delicate newborn skin.

Since it's free from harmful chemicals and substances, organic cotton dramatically reduces the risk of allergic reactions or skin irritations. It provides a healthier and more comfortable material for even the smallest babies.

Which cotton is best for a newborn baby?

Organic cotton is best for a newborn baby because baby skin is more sensitive as it's thinner and more porous than adult skin.

Which type of organic cotton is best for your little bubs depends on the use case. For example, organic cotton jersey is exceptional for clothing, organic cotton muslin makes incredible newborn swaddles, and organic cotton terry cloth makes for premium towels.

Nest Designs swaddle blankie

Is organic cotton clothing good for babies with eczema?

Organic cotton clothing is well-suited to most babies with eczema as it has no added chemicals or fabric bleaching that might irritate their skin. A softer weave like organic cotton jersey or muslin may also help minimize discomfort.

As a natural fabric, organic cotton can be gentler on sensitive skin, reducing the risk of irritation or flare-ups commonly occurring with synthetic materials. However, individual reactions vary, so always check how your little love responds when introducing a new type of fabric.

Is organic cotton breathable?

Organic cotton is a natural and highly breathable fabric, allowing air circulation, which helps keep babies comfortable and cool during summer or in warmer climates. It's one of the best options when the weather warms up.

How is organic cotton used?

Organic cotton can be used in many clothing and textile products because it’s so soft, versatile, and durable. At Nest Designs, we use organic cotton in many of our premium products for babies, families, and homes. For example:



Nest Designs sleepwear



Nest Designs bedding


Nest Designs makes beautiful and beloved clothing and other products for the whole family. Shop the above organic cotton products and more here.

How do you wash organic cotton clothes?

As with any garment, it is essential to wash organic cotton fabrics according to the information on their tags. Following the wash instructions adds to the piece's longevity and keeps it in good condition. For organic garments and natural fibre clothing, it is best to keep them away from heat sources (wash in cold water and air dry).

Does organic cotton shrink in the wash?

Organic cotton can shrink slightly after the first wash. Typically, organic cotton shrinks less than regular cotton due to its more natural and untreated fibres.

Premium Quality Fabrics at Nest Designs

At Nest Designs, we love organic cotton. It’s soft, healthy, and the perfect material to lovingly wrap your little bubs. From seed to finished product, organic cotton remains natural and gentle, giving you and your loved ones a fabric you can feel good about.

Find out more about our other first-class Nest Designs fabrics.