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Does Nylon Have PFAS?

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that many everyday products made from nylon contain toxic per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS “forever chemicals.”
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt
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What’s the Problem With Nylon?

Nylon is made from petroleum, and in its purest form, it is one of the safest plastics known to man. However, nylon is often combined with many other plastics that may contain additives for additional functionality. For example, nylon fabric may be treated with highly fluorinated PFAS chemicals to make it waterproof.

Study Finds PFAS Forever Chemicals in Nylon Yoga Pants, Bedding

A new report by the environmental advocacy group Toxic-Free Future [1] found detectable levels of toxic PFAS in consumer textile products like nylon sportswear, bedding, and tablecloths.

For the study, researchers tested 60 items from 3 product categories – bedding, outdoor apparel, and tablecloths and napkins – for total fluorine and for specific PFAS. They found at least 35 products that contained fluorine at levels above 100 parts per million (ppm). The presence of fluorine is a very strong indication of PFAS, the study’s authors said.

Those 35 products were then tested for specific PFAS chemicals. Approximately 75% of those products contained a PFAS mixture that included long-chain PFAS compounds, which have been phased out in the United States over health concerns. PFOA, perhaps the most notorious and well-known type of PFAS, was detected in at least 28% of the 60 tested products.

A total of 34 of the 47 stain- or water-resistance products were found to contain PFAS. The 13 non-water-resistant products did not contain PFAS, the researchers found.

Related Article: PFAS Exposure Lawsuit Update

Are PFAS Labeled on Consumer Products?

A study conducted by researchers at Duke University in January 2022 tested anti-fogging sprays and cloths used on eyeglasses and face shields for the presence of PFAS chemicals. All of the products were found to contain fluorotelomer alcohols (FTOHs) and fluorotelomer ethoxylates (FTEOs). Even more shocking was that none of the tested products listed PFAS in their ingredients.

A different study performed at the University of Notre Dame in 2021 tested 231 cosmetics for PFAS. More than half of the products were determined to contain PFAS, and most did not list any PFAS on their labeling.

In July 2021, the House of Representatives passed legislation to protect all consumers from toxic PFAS. The House version of the PFAS Action Act contains a requirement to create PFAS-free labeling on consumer products.

How Dangerous is it to Wear PFAS-Containing Nylon Clothing?

It is still unclear exactly how much the presence of PFAS in clothing contributes to a person’s overall exposure to the chemicals. However, because many PFAS build up in the body over time, clothing made with the substances may gradually increase potential health risks each time the product is worn. Any use of PFAS is concerning, and consumers should eliminate exposure as much as possible due to the health risks.

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The Product Liability Litigation Group at Schmidt & Clark, LLP law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in lawsuits. We are handling individual PFAS litigation nationwide and currently accepting new legal challenges in all 50 states.

If you or a loved one was injured by PFAS contamination, you should contact our law firm immediately for a free case evaluation. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.

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