We all love T-Shirts with sayings, don’t we? @MySmallStore (check them here) we have quite a few and we continue to hunt for more. Catchy words, meaningful ones, funny short sentences, we get them all – almost all. We avoid crude T-Shirt slogans not only not to make the wearer look bad, but also because we feel it’s not what we want.
When we pick T-Shirts with sayings we skip copyrighted material illegally manufactured – like branded themes, bands, etc. for example, all our AC/DC T-Shirts are tagged “Officially LICENSED Band Merchandise.”
When selecting a tee, don’t go too cheap and don’t overpay because some “artist” designed it. I say “artist” as some are not afraid of copying a t-shirt design and making it their own – I receive weekly “offers” from those.
Avoid cheaply made in China tees – around $5 free shipping. Often they are made of broadcloth cotton which should be good enough unless the cotton blend is from poor quality raw material. Completely skip licensed designs from big sites such as Alibaba, Aliexpress, etc. Sellers can claim they are licensed while they are not and trouble could occur while importing these. We read horror stories about it.
Now that we set the discussion 😉 let’s see what t-shirt you want to wear, what are you looking for? A funny Christmas sayings t-shirt, a dark humor tee, or a t-shirt design that is like you? This is important but for us, the important part is the material used.
Let’s see options for T-Shirts With Sayings:
100% cotton tee
These are quite common and come with a few downsides as the material is not very soft, may shrink after wash. 100% cotton doesn’t mean it’s the highest quality and the treatment that comes with it can cause itching – you know the bleach and all the chemicals uses to grow cotton 🙂 Remember that to grow enough cotton for a tee about 9oz., it takes about 18 teaspoons of chemical!
100% organic cotton t-shirt
These are quite different you would say but no, they are not. They are way softer… nope. The cotton is exactly the same as the conventionally grown cotton. It’s definitively more environment friendly but not softer. If you go that route, always verify that it 100% organic cotton and not n% organic, n% polyester and nn% conventional cotton – if it does, it would be a very funny sayings t-shirt 🙂
100% Ring-Spun Cotton tee
We do sell those ring-spun cotton ones. The cotton is spun processed which allows having long fibers twisted together making the cloth very soft, difficult to shrink, and quite comfortable to wear. We noticed that print “stay” in place as the cotton doesn’t deform during washing. Ring-spun cotton exists in 100% organic and conventional.
Blend Cotton t-shirt
These tees come in many flavors:
- Polyester and cotton blends – they come a bit softer than classic cotton t-shirts, some come with recycled polyester with a higher price tag.
- Rayon, polyester, and cotton blend, or tri-blend tees, or next level tri-blend. Rayon is a natural manufactured product and it’s plant-based: wood pulp, but the process is very chemical. These tees are very soft as rayon can be manufactured to feel like silk. A must-try but these T-Shirts with sayings or without can be very expensive up to $40 for real tri-blends tees without any design.
Alternative t-shirt material
Opening a new can of worms for your next T-Shirts with sayings:
- Bamboo or cotton bamboo blend. Bamboo is known to be anti-bacterial and moisture-wicking (keeping moisture out of the skin). Quite an expensive option with 100% bamboo tees tagging at $30+ and no design. Read the tag, many manufacturers have no issue claiming bamboo when in fact it’s a little bamboo and mostly polyester and cotton.
- Viscose – don’t say it… viscose is like rayon derived from wood pulp 🙂 not 100% natural due to the process but it’s still better than polyester. Like Rayon, Viscose can mimic almost any material.
- Hemp or cotton/polyester blend tees. This is quite the big hit of this century and I do not agree at 100%. First, the cost can be outrageous – Jungmaven basic tee for $42 which is in fact 30% hemp and 70% cotton. The 100% hemp tee is priced at $98 and that without your favorite funny quotes 🙂
I do not agree as for bamboo and wood pulp the process to transform hemp into silk feel cloth takes a lot of energy and chemical products.
- Recycled material tees. Another greyish area as we can feel recycled is great but the recycling process can be very extensive thus not that great for the environment. As for the others, check the tag to make sure that the recycled part is not a tiny % of the overall material.
So, my favorite Star Wars T-shirt is… 100% organic ring-spun cotton – much cleaner for the environment, a plain mechanical process to go from raw cotton to the cloth, quite soft and light without any degradation of the graphics or shrinkage due to washing – about $20+ before prints.
My big problem with bamboo, hemp, wood pulp for my next set of T-shirts with sayings is all the process needed to transform them into useable fibers. I’m a bit concerned when I read words like sodium hydroxide, carbon disulfide, sulfuric acid, cellulose sodium xanthogenate, or N-methyl morpholine-N-oxide… not toxic to humans but what about the rest of the environment? I recommend reading the thesis of Fardous Wahid Anik for more information.
Organic cotton is much better for the environment compared to traditional cotton which is a very pesticide-intensive crop as it consumes 16% of all the insecticides and 6,8% of all herbicides used worldwide for 2.5% of the worldwide agricultural land.