“Soft” polymer latexes were synthesized by Pickering emulsion polymerization. O/W emulsions were prepared using monomers as oil phase, and a mixture of zinc oxide nanoparticles and polymerizable surfactants ammonium allyloxtmethylate nonylphenol ethoxylates sulfate (DNS-86) as stabilizers, and then the “soft” polymer latexes were prepared by free radical copolymerization of monomers in oil phase of the O/W emulsions. Stabilities of both the O/W emulsions and the polymer latexes with an increase of DNS-86 were discussed. Effect of the dosages of DNS-86 on water resistance of the polymer films was reported. The polymer latex was applied as a binder for pigment printing of cotton fabrics. The emulsion droplets became smaller, the drop sizes became more homogeneous, and the gel contents of the polymer latexes decreased to almost constant with an increase of the DNS-86 concentration. TEM showed that some zinc oxide nanoparticles were located at the surface of the polymer particles. DNS-86 was conducive to improve water resistance of the polymer films. Fabric printed with the prepared polymer latex had smaller color difference, improved color fastness and excellent ultraviolet radiation shielding performance in comparison with that printed with commercial binder. However, hand feel of the cotton fabrics printed using the synthetic latex was reduced compared with that of the cotton fabrics printed using commercial binder.