What is ‘static cling’?

It wasn’t until at least four encounters with wearing double layer of clothes that made sparkling noises when you remove them that I decided to get them off my body, that instant !

Laying down tossing and turning as it gets warmer and then suddenly sitting up pulling off those layers and lurched out of bed.

The inner layer is a New Zealand made thermal top.


The outer layer is a made in China fleece pyjamas.


That was in the middle of the night (last night).  I wasn’t going to risk getting burns on my body or spark a fire. I took off those two layers of pyjamas and changed to another.

We have heard often of ‘Made in China’ kid’s pyjamas catching fire.  A New Zealand boy suffered third-degree burns after his Chinese-made pyjamas, a brand recalled for containing 500-900 times the safe levels of formaldehyde, caught fire after he sat near a gas heater.

I had the heater on in my room but I often make it a habit to turn it off before I go to sleep.  Wearing those two layers of clothes gets a bit too warm sometimes after the room is well heated up.  I had to take a layer off and that was when I heard sparks and I could also see an instant swift flame on the pyjamas.

The reaction was due to static.  Static cling is the tendency for light objects to stick (cling) to other objects owing to static electricity. It is found to be common in clothing, other objects and sometimes in hair too.  Static cling is the result of electrical charges that build up in your clothes due to dryness, friction, and other similar causes. 

I apply lotion to my body but in a cold winter night when windows are closed and heater on, the room gets hot and the body gets dry.  Static cling occurs due to friction between the body and the layers of clothes.

Further research showed that the cancer-casing chemical formaldehyde found in some clothing used to give a smooth finish to fabrics but the high levels in some products are thought to cause dangerous allergic reactions.

To avoid static cling or changes of fire, whether the pyjamas you are wearing is made in China, New Zealand or anywhere else, I guess we could keep the habit of

  • moisturizing our skin frequently
  • turn off heater before going to bed

In my case, I am a bit amazed that the two pieces of clothes I wore were ‘Made in China’ and the other ‘Made in NZ’.  The sound of sparks was apparent as I pulled those two pieces of clothes apart and brief flame seen on the China made pyjamas.


Does it really make one anyone safer by buying kiwi made where possible?


‘Made in China’ pyjamas caught fire
Clothes made in China under scrutiny
How to get rid of Static Cling
Recalls of Chinese made goods
How to get rid of static in hair

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