10 Amazing Facts about Hemp that will Blow Your Mind
1. Hemp is Thousands of Years Old
We might not have heard very much about hemp, but it is far from a new idea – hemp cloth has been found by archaeologists that is around 6000 years old! It is believed to be the first fibre used for human clothing, and one of the first plants to be cultivated on a mass scale.
2. Hemp Clothing is Temperature Regulating
Most fabric types either warm you up, making them perfect for Winter, or they cool you down, and are sold as Summer clothing. Hemp clothing however, does what almost seems impossible, and achieves both. Its cellulose fibres are uniquely structured to allow both insulating and breathable qualities. This means you no longer need to completely flip your wardrobe every season, as you can continue to wear hemp clothing all year round. Not only does this save you money and space in your wardrobe, but it is also a very sustainable method of reducing the amount of clothing that eventually ends up in landfill.
3. Hemp Clothing is Naturally Organic
Conventional cotton farming consumes around 50% of the entire pesticides in the world. Compare this to the cultivation of hemp, which doesn’t require any pesticides, herbicides, insecticides or fungicides to grow incredibly well. This means hemp fibres are naturally organic and free from toxic chemicals, making them the perfect choice for clothing, particularly for those with sensitive skin.
4. Hemp Farming requires little water
Not only does hemp farming require no chemicals, little water is needed for the plant to grow prolifically, making irrigation usually redundant. Astoundedly, the hemp plant only requires about 1/20th of the water that conventional cotton needs to grow. When countries around the world are crying out for more fresh water, how much better and sustainable would it be for all conventional cotton crops to be replaced with hemp.
5. Hemp Plants Regenerate the Soil
Instead of leaving a farm depleted of all nutrients, hemp cultivation gives back to the land - pulling heavy metals out of the ground as it grows, and giving back nutrients. It is also one of the fastest growing plants – reaching maturity in 3-4 months! These phenomenal properties make hemp the perfect plant for crop rotation.
6. The Fabric is Antibacterial and Hypoallergenic
Hemp clothing fights the growth and spread of pathogenic bacteria, and repels most bugs, fungi, and dust mites. These protective properties make it an especially safe and healthful choice for both adults and children when wanting to keep their immunity high. Those who wear hemp clothing are far less likely to develop skin irritations, rashes, allergies, asthma…and even bad body odour!
Have you ever noticed how little you have to wash the antibacterial clothing you might already own, like wool etc? Compare that to synthetic clothing that usually stinks after just one use. Considering you could spend dollars a day on laundry costs (plus all your labour!), think about all the savings you'll recover over the life of your hemp clothing!
7. Hemp is Now Grown in New Zealand
In 2005, the New Zealand government approved the cultivation of hemp farms on our soil. Although a license is still required to grow hemp in NZ, this was such a massive step in the right direction for sustainability. The majority of the hemp farms are cultivated at the Canterbury Plains on the South Island, which provide the necessary sunshine, regular rainfall, and adequate drainage. Farms are also appearing in the Waikato, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu, and Wairarapa.
8. Hemp is Used for Over 25,000 Products
Every part of the Hemp plant is usable, and its range of product capabilities is astounding – hempcrete for housing, food, industrial products, body care, bed sheets, shoes, milk, sunglasses, sandals, tote bags, rope, fuel, batteries, paper, clothing…and over 25,000 more! In 1941, Henry Ford built a car out of hemp plastic, that ran on hemp fuel. It turned out to be stronger than a car made from steel (see HERE). I recently purchased a blanket for myself that I absolutely love – it is comprised of 100% hemp!
9. Hemp Clothing is Breathable
As a mum, there’s nothing quite as uncomfortable as a sticky, sweat soaked shirt when I need to stay on top of the game all day! Hemp clothing is breathable, greatly reducing the amount of sweat by taking advantage of the body’s natural cooling mechanism to evaporate moisture away from the skin and then quickly drying the clothing.
10. Hemp Clothing is Super Strong
Hemp fibres are one of the strongest and durable natural fibres, holding their shape, and stretching less than any other natural fabric. You might think this would compromise how hemp clothing feels, but it’s quite the opposite! It is extremely comfortable and becomes softer with use. So not only will your hemp clothing retain its shape, the more you wear it, the softer it will feel.
Do you know any facts about hemp that we haven’t mentioned? Or maybe you’d like to share why you also love it! We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
You can also check out our range of hemp clothing for nursing mothers HERE at Melody the Label.
Until next time,
Stay safe and healthy,