There are special rules for children's nightclothes, and labels on them that can help you make safer choices for your children. It is important to be aware that almost any fabric can burn. Burns from clothing fires can cause serious injury and even death.
When you use heaters in winter, or use open fireplaces, you need to be very careful. Burning candles and cigarettes are also dangerous and can set clothing alight.
Fabrics made with cotton, rayon and acrylic, or cotton/polyester blends, are generally more flammable than 100% polyester, nylon, wool and silk.
There are two labels to assist you when choosing children’s clothing:
- Low fire hazard label: This means that the garment is a lower fire risk. It is either made of a fabric that burns more slowly, or that the garment is close fitting.
- High fire hazard label: This means a high fire risk garment — because of risk from open fires or heaters it would be better for summer use than winter use.
Some garments are so flammable that they can’t be given a label and are not allowed to be sold in Australia.
Learn more about product safety standards for children's nightwear.
If you sew your own clothes, consider using polyester. It does not burn very quickly and is suitable for nightwear. If you are using cotton, make close-fitting, ski-type pyjamas, and use polyester thread. Avoid lightweight fabrics and fabrics that are fluffy, fuzzy or have loose dangling tassels.
Choose close-fitting nightwear with cuffs around the legs and arms. Flames spread more easily over loose-fitting garments.
Remember to keep your child away from fires, radiators, heaters, BBQs, candles, lighters and matches. Teach your child that if their clothing does catch on fire, they should: STOP, DROP, COVER face and ROLL.
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Last reviewed: January 2019