We are WILD about WOOL. No other fiber, natural or synthetic, even comes close to matching the multitude of benefits found with wool. As a starting point for kids clothing, so many things about it just make perfect sense. It’s that simple and this complex…
SOFT + SKIN
Nui merino is silky soft and itch-free. It provides warmth without bulk and is non-irritating to even sensitive skin. Scientific studies in the US have shown that wearing superfine merino eases the effects of eczema.
It is scientifically proven (by multiple studies no less) that people sleep better wearing and/or on wool. It is soothing and regulates temperature for uninterrupted slumber. Merino pajamas are a seriously smart investment for all the family.
BEND + STRETCH
Wools natural elasticity means it will keep its shape wash after wash, year after year. Wool fibers can be stretched many many times and still bounce back to their original shape, so there is less chance of garments sagging or losing form over time. This also makes it incredibly comfortable to wear, allowing for growth and movement. This also means garments are in great shape to hand down to siblings or friends when that time comes.
With millions of tiny air pockets, merino wool is the perfect insulator. It creates its own microclimate around the body with unique temperature regulating qualities. It keeps you warm when it's cold, and cool when it's warm. Infants and children have a higher surface area to mass ratio than adults so thermal regulation for them is even more important. This makes Nui merino great for everyone and perfect for a newborn's fragile temperature mechanism.
Merino wool breathes and is able to wick moisture away from the skin. It can actually absorb up to 30% of its weight in water without feeling clammy or wet to touch. It then releases this moisture into the atmosphere to keep the wearer feeling warm and dry. This ensures the layer between Nui merino and your baby’s skin remains dry and rash free. This is unlike synthetic fleece, which is warm but does not breathe easily. It also has tiny overlapping scales that case the wool fiber. They're hydrophobic (water resistant), like tiles on a roof. This allows the wool to repel liquid spills with ease. When it does get wet it stays warm, unlike cotton and synthetics.
FIRE + SUN
Naturally fire retardant, Nui merino is very safe for children. When confronted with a flame merino will simply char at first, then self-extinguish. Out, just like that. This is unlike synthetic materials such as polypropylene (made from petroleum) that will melt and stick to your child’s skin. Merino also has high UV protection, defending against the harsh sun.
MERINO VS. TRADITIONAL WOOL
By ‘traditional wool’, we mean the thicker coarser itchy scratchy wool that is not merino. It is possibly the wool your carpet is made from and almost certainly the wool used to make the unwelcome itchy scratchy sweater gift you received from your Grandmother as a child. Merino wool, on the other hand, is smooth and fine. It creates a silk-like feel that is 'itch-free', even on sensitive skin.
MERINO VS. SYNTHETIC
When you wear petroleum-based synthetic fibers such as polypropylene & polyester, it’s the clothing equivalent of wearing a plastic bottle. They have a much simpler structure than merino wool fibers and cannot absorb or release moisture or breathe. When knitted into fabric, they are limited to one-way moisture movement - simply no comparison to the superb insulation elements of merino wool. They also hold odor and unless treated with a chemical fire retardant are highly flammable. Flame. Poof! There goes your baby.
SAVE OUR SEAS
Microfibers are tiny fragments of plastic. Plastic like the kind they use to make fleece clothing. Every time you wash that fleece jacket the water carries these fibers away and out into the waterways, the ocean and eventually into our food chain. Wearing natural fiber clothing, like merino, means your laundry isn’t adding to the TRILLIONS that are already out there.
Certified organic sheep farms have fewer sheep per acre and are not subjected to mulesing. Any chemical or process used with the sheep is first approved by their local organic certifier – making sure it is safe for them, the farmer and the environment. Baa.
Nui Organics merino resists soiling because of it’s naturally water repellant surface. It needs far less washing than cotton and synthetics and often simply hanging your merino clothing outside on the line for a few hours is enough to refresh and renew. When it does need to be cleaned, it can be machine washed and tumble dried. (Note: We mean our thermals NOT the knitwear!) It is incredibly durable and will keep its color and shape for years. Merino wool dries fast, making it perfect for a family on the go. The merino fiber has a natural protective layer that prevents stains from being absorbed. It also picks up less dust as it’s static resistant.
Merino wool is not stinky. Since the wool fiber’s core absorbs water and its hydrophobic exterior repels it, there’s no moist surface for microbes to grow on, making wool naturally antibacterial. So it can be worn for days without developing a stinky pong like a synthetic garment might. This is one of the reasons woolen socks are so popular. Feet stay dry and warm and don’t smell. As much.
Merino wool comes in a wide choice of textures, weaves, and weights. It is lively, flexible and tailors easily. Our products will retain their unique color long after other fabrics have faded. Merino fiber is also longer and stronger than other wools and less likely to pill. We love how it feels against the skin, the fun knit structures we can create and the multitude of looks afforded by merino.
NATURAL AND ORGANIC
Nui merino clothing uses merino wool that is certified organic to GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standards). It is completely free of harsh chemicals normally found in wool growing that can contribute to wool sensitivity or wool allergy in some people. Nui merino is a natural resource that is biodegradable, sustainable and a renewable resource, growing back year after year. It is by far the better choice for your child and the environment they will grow up in.
Note: Some of our woolen garments, such as our socks, are not yet made from organic wool because of supply or sourcing issues. If they are not yet organic they are at a minimum Okeo-Tex 100 certified. We are constantly working with our supply partners to meet the environmental and sustainability goals we set ourselves and will update collections where possible. All product listings on our website and tags on the garments themselves will indicate if a garment is 100% GOTS, GOTS yarn only or non-GOTS.
CHLORINE FREE WOOL AND WHY THAT'S IMPORTANT.
Most wool, in order to make it machine washable, is still treated with CHLORINE. Chlorine might seem cheap and easy upfront, but it is most definitely BAD and more costly in the long run. Nui GOTS certified organic merino wool is NOT processed using chlorine. Instead, we use a GOTS approved PLASMA treatment, safe for the wearer AND the environment. This is important. Please make informed fiber choices and choose the environment. To elaborate; wool has an abundance of characteristics that we LOVE. But it also has small barb-like scales all over it. Without treatment, when the wool is washed and dried, these scales all tangle together and cause shrinking and felting. Unfortunately, the most common way to render wool machine washable is to treat it with chlorine. This process, however, results in wastewater with unacceptably high levels of adsorbable organohalogens (AOX) – toxins created when chlorine reacts with available carbon-based compounds. Dioxins, a group of AOX, are one of the most toxic known substances. This wastewater is so toxic in fact, that the process is not even permitted in the USA. It happens in ‘other countries’ and the processed wool then imported into the US. This is just one of the reasons we choose chlorine-free GOTS organic wool. We care about children, families and the environment EVERYWHERE. For more information, you can check out the Environmental Working Group Website’s information on chlorination byproducts. www.ewg.org/research/consider-source As well as the oecotextile website clarification on organic wool. www.oecotextiles.wordpress.com/tag/shrinkproofing-wool/
Nui supports the Campaign for Wool. This is a cross-industry initiative convened by HRH The Prince of Wales in January 2010. As a serious environmentalist, the Prince believes that the natural, sustainable and highly technical abilities of wool can offer fashion, interiors and the built environment many superior benefits. Choosing real wool - as the Prince understands - will also help to care for our planet. Since launch the Campaign for Wool has grown into a global initiative adopted by the wool textile trade, international brands and small independent businesses all of whom want to support rising consumer demand for one of the world’s finest natural fibres.