What Sensory Friendly Clothing Means to City Threads

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Kids Adaptive Clothing

Have you heard of the term – sensory friendly?

Sensory refers to our senses, which generally include: see, hear, taste, touch, and smell. But we actually have at least 8 senses – including your sense of balance, movement, and internal body sense. Sensory friendly is a concept that definitely has multiple meanings and definitions, depending on the person and context. Overall, it means that something is *friendly* to your senses, or less bothersome or jarring to your senses.

Some people have sensory sensitivity or sensory processing disorder (SPD), which is a condition that affects how your brain processes sensory information – it can make people overly sensitive to stimuli that may not affect others in that same intense way. There are many products or experiences that can be created in a more sensory friendly way, and for us – that means clothing.  

Again – sensory friendly clothing can also have varying interpretations, which we want to acknowledge, considering that sensory experiences are very specific to each individual. Our line won’t work for every child with sensory sensitivities, but it does work for many, based on feedback from our shoppers.

For us, sensory friendly means designing styles that provide extreme comfort for your kids. Comfortable clothing helps kids everyday – from concentrating in school to enjoying playtime.

Here’s our top priorities when creating more sensory friendly garments -

  • Soft & Breathable Fabrics – 100% cotton is our most used fabric throughout our line. Within cotton fabrics, there are always varying degrees of softness, and we always search for the softest options. Not only is cotton a breathable fabric, it is also derived from a natural source – the cotton plant. This helps reduce irritants (often found in synthetic fabrics) that can create discomfort for sensory sensitive folks.

  • No Irritating Fasteners, Zippers or Buttons – You won’t find irritating fasteners, zippers or buttons on the majority of our styles – specifically bottoms. 100% of our bottoms are made with pull-up elastic waistbands, and all waistbands are covered in soft, high-quality fabric to avoid irritating your child’s sensitive skin, so some styles may work for adaptive purposes. We continually focus on finding creative ways to ensure our clothing is easy for kids to put on and easy for them to wear, because clothing shouldn’t distract you from everyday activities.
  • Underwear With Fabric Covered Elastic WaistbandsMany brands’ underwear have exposed elastic on the waistband, where it touches the skin, often irritating kids’ skin. All of our underwear is made with fabric covered elastic waistbands, so only the fabric is touching the skin.

  • Soft Labels Some brands use a heat transfer, to remove the need for a physical label, but we have opted for a soft, silky label that can be easily cut out if preferred. The reason we chose this option is because some people are allergic to the ingredients used in the heat transfer.
Adaptive Underwear For Children Sensory Friendly

From our perspective, we think that most kids (and adults) have some level of sensitivity to uncomfortable clothing, because we are all sensory creatures – we feel things, which is part of what makes life beautiful. But it can also make it challenging, depending on the individual. There is a spectrum of what we can each handle, and we understand that the feel of clothing can be unique to each of us. 

At City Threads, we try to focus on making all of our garments feel like you’re wearing PJs, because for us – being comfortable helps you live life to the fullest!

Written by: City Threads Cofounders Shayna Samuels & Joe Willis, and Kestrel Jenkins, responsibility consultant & host of the Conscious Chatter podcast.