Acrylic yarn is one of the man-made yarn that is cheaper than other yarns. So it is a popular choice for knitting and crocheting. All the companies that have a yarn product line, have at least one type of acrylic yarn.
Even if it is cheap and popular, acrylics are at the end of the day, a kind of plastic. It gets a bad reputation often for that. Since it is plastic it is not good for the environment but clothing-wise it is pretty good.
When making baby clothes you have to consider many things. Unlike normal grown-up people’s skins, baby skins are more sensitive and some materials may suit the baby more than the others. So here we will discuss acrylic yarns and should you use them for baby clothes or blankets.
Is Acrylic Yarn Safe for Babies?
In one word, it is pretty safe for babies. Now, not all babies are the same. Some might have different kinds of skin that may be reactive to acrylic in which case it is best to avoid it. Here we will discuss why it is a good or bad idea to use acrylic for a baby.
Is it Toxic?
Way too many articles on the internet criticize acrylic yarn for being toxic just because it is made of plastic. Just because it is made of plastic doesn’t mean it is toxic.
The main reason it is called toxic is that acrylic uses acrylonitrile which is a carcinogen that can be harmful to factory workers. But we could not find any report on the yarn itself causing any problem.
So while people may consider it as a toxic yarn and bash it and say to go for the natural yarn, it is not a bad choice for your project. Also, on top of being cheap, there are many benefits of acrylic which makes it great for a baby project.
Benefits of Acrylic
There are some things you have to look out for when you are making cloth for the baby. Acrylic has some nice quality that makes it good for baby clothing.
Acrylic is very much washable and lasts a long time. It is also machine washable. You have to make baby cloth with a washable material. Because baby clothes constantly need washing.
Baby clothes or blankets being already small cannot use any material that would shrink after washing. You need to use loose clothes on the baby. Acrylic is very good at resisting shrinkage. So you can use it even after many washes.
Cheap and Lightweight
Acrylic is cheaper than wool or any other yarns. Since babies grow up fast, you need to keep buying and making new clothes constantly. So, having a cheaper option really helps with it.
Acrylic is significantly lighter than wool. Wool-based clothes can be a bit heavy which may not be ideal for some. So lighter acrylic is better to make baby clothing with.
Problems of Acrylic
Of course, everything has a good and a bad side. Even though acrylic has some pretty good benefits it can also be a problem in some cases. Here are some of the problems that acrylic has.
If the parents have a problem with wool then there is a likelihood that the baby’s skin will also be irritated by wool. If that’s the case then there is the option to use acrylic clothes. The same can be said for acrylic in some regards.
Nowadays, acrylic has become a lot smoother. In the past, they were kinda rough which could have irritated the baby’s skin. In some cases, acrylic is even smoother than wool.
But you have to look out how smooth the acrylic you are using. If it is not smooth enough, it can be a problem for the baby, and the skin will get irritated.
One problem with acrylic yarn is it is more flammable than the other yarns. So you have to keep it in mind when you are cooking around a fire with the baby if the baby has any acrylic on or there is any acrylic stuff around the kitchen.
Acrylic can be a bit itchy when worn on bare skin. Over time it has gone a lot better and smoother. So, not all the acrylic is going to feel itchy on the skin but it is safe to say most of them have a higher chance to feel like that.
Machine Filter Detection
When you wash acrylic it emits some micro-plastic fibers which are too small to get caught in the filter.
Which Ply to Use For a Baby Blanket?
Weight is a big factor when making a baby blanket. If you use a yarn that has too much weight, it can be uncomfortable for the baby. A 4 ply yarn is always recommended for the baby blanket.
You can also buy the baby clothing special yarn ball to do your work. That way you can have a comfortable blanket for your baby.
Q. Is acrylic fiber safe for baby skin?
Ans: There is a high chance it will irritate the skin if you are using it on bare skin because the baby’s skin is too sensitive.
Q. Is acrylic yarn toxic?
Ans: Some toxic materials are used to make it, so sometimes there’s been a complaint that factory workers get sick from it but none from the yarn or clothes.
Even though a group of people will always be against using acrylic yarns, in my research, I didn’t find anyone who has faced problems just because of using acrylic. But I found many people who used acrylic and are satisfied with it.
Many of the baby care products are made of acrylics and people use them day to day. So, in the end, it is not harmful to the baby unless the baby has a skin condition that gets irritated by acrylic.