The sublimation Polyester fabric and other synthetic fabrics like nylon and acrylic have gained widespread popularity because they’re easy to produce and cheap to collect. Unfortunately, the downside is that these fabrics can be harmful to both those who make them and those who buy them.
Harmful chemicals (many of them cancer-causing carcinogens) are used during all stages of polyester production. This makes textile factories (where over 300 million people work) a dangerous environment. Chemicals and toxins enter the air and water supply and have been known to cause major problems in villages near the textile plants.
The 2013 Dhaka garment factory collapse brought the terrible working conditions of textiles workers to light. Over 1,000 workers were killed and another 2,500 were injured while working in unsafe conditions.
Sadly, these incidents are not rare. Textile factories are infamous for having terribly low safety standards. Millions of workers (many of whom are children) are regularly subject to chemical exposure, machine injuries, building instability, and fires. Despite some movement towards safer regulations, the textile factories in areas like China, Indonesia, and Bangladesh still operate under lax laws and untreated water and air pollution.