Natural or synthetic fibers, learn to recognize them!

Have you ever wondered what your clothes are made of? And, when you look at the labels, it often ends up being a fiber you don't know. We will help you clarify this so that the next time you shop you will know what you are buying!

A fabric is an interlacing of threads made of fibers, there are two categories of raw materials for fibers, those of natural origin and those of chemical origin.


Natural sources are of animal, vegetable or mineral origin.

Fabric of animal origin are generally warm, elastic, absorb water slowly, and are biodegradable. A good tip if you have a woolen coat and need to clean it, leave it outside overnight and it will clean itself. Examples of fabrics of animal origin are cashmere, mohair, merino wool, angora, alpaca, silk, etc.

Plant tissues are made from seeds, stems, roots or leaves. Fabric from seeds are cotton, kapok (a plant fiber that is collected inside the fruits of trees of the Bombacaceae family), coconut (these fibers surround the shell of the fruit which serves as protection, it is a thick layer of woody fibers), etc. Cotton is a strong fabric with high absorbency, not very insulating, biodegradable and it can be recycled to create a new yarn. When it is not organic, cotton requires a lot of pesticides for its processing. New varieties of cotton are being developed to be more resistant, to eliminate chemical treatments and to use less water. With the stems produced fabrics of flax, hemp, jute and nettle. They are easy to dye, soft to the touch, resistant to degradation and absorbent.


From chemistry, we obtain artificial and synthetic fabrics. Artificial fibers come from the cellulose of wood pulp or proteins. They are tough, soft and absorbent. Their disadvantages are that they are wrinkled and not very insulating. The fabrics obtained from artificial fibers are viscose, lyocell, tencel, rayon fibran, modal, etc. Their advantages are stability and resistance to degradation. They have the disadvantages of melting at high temperatures, of being neither absorbent nor biodegradable. For synthetic fibers we speak of polyamides, polyester, acrylics, chlorofiber, elastane, fluorofiber, aramids, nylon, acetate, tergal, spandex, etc.


This information forces you to understand what your clothes are made of. If it was part of your intention to sort through your wardrobes to control what you wear, this is a good starting point for organizing yourself and being aware of your wardrobe build-up.