Natural fibres – what’s all the fuss about?
Wearing clothes made from natural fibres has many benefits from being breathable to eco-friendly. Did you also know that cotton, linen, wool and silk aren’t the only natural fabrics? I thought I’d give you the low down on natural fibres and why it may be worth you giving them a go!
What are fabrics made from?
Fabrics fall into 3 categories
- Natural: made from animal or plant fibres. For example, cotton; wool; silk; leather; hemp; flax (linen)
- Regenerated, eco-friendly or semi-natural: these tend to be modern creations from a blend of plant based extracts or fibres and often manufactured in an eco-friendly way. For example, bamboo; Modal (made from beech tree pulp), Lyocell (made from vegetable or plant pulp); viscose or rayon (made from plant pulp)
- Synthetic: completely man-made fabric. For example, acrylic, nylon, polyester, spandex.
What are the benefits of natural fibres?
- Clothes made from natural fibres are “breathable”. This means that the fabric absorbs perspiration and releases it = a natural ventilation system. Conversely, man-made fabrics retain heat and water, which will leave you feeling clammy or sweaty.
- As a breathable fabric, wearers are less likely to develop skin rashes or allergies. They’re also less likely to aggravate existing conditions.
- You’re often supporting the economies of developing nations because most of the production of these fabrics is from agriculture. For example, more than 60% of the world’s cotton is grown in China, India and Pakistan. In Asia, cotton is cultivated mainly by small farmers and its sale provides the primary source of income of some 100 million rural households.
- It’s the sustainable and environmentally friendly solution. They are carbon neutral (they absorb the same amount of carbon dioxide they produce), in their creation they generate mainly organic waste, and they are 100% biodegradable.
Natural fibres are a great choice for:
- Holiday wear
- Summer days or nights
- If you’ve sensitive skin or allergies
- Are pregnant or menopausal (to manage any hot flushes)
- Bed linen
- Scarves because they’re worn next to the skin.
At Just g Boutique…
We have a number of designers in store that use only natural or eco-fabrics. The choice of fabric is often a combination of the designer’s values or because of the properties of the fabric.
For example, Petit Bateau uses 100% cotton in their garments, which they manufacture in their factories in France. The cotton is soft, making it feel fabulous when you wear it; it won’t pill or age prematurely and it will keep you cool (aka French chic). These garments are great to invest in because of these features.
Skater style dress 100% cotton by Petit Bateau – £85
We also stock Nancy Dee and they use organic cotton, bamboo and modal in their garments. They have chosen their fabrics for their ethical qualities and because they love the drape, stretch and softness it brings to enhance their designs. Nancy Dee clothes are made in the UK.
Brooke dress in bamboo & cotton by Nancy Dee – £55
Or there’s A Postcard from Brighton that uses viscose to make beautifully soft and draping clothes. They use the fabric because it washes well, doesn’t pill / bobble and enables them to produce the look and colour that the designer wants to achieve. Postcard also makes their clothes in the UK.
T-shirt dress in viscose by A Postcard from Brighton – £45
Next time you’re out shopping take a look at the label to see what the clothes are made from – is it what you are looking for or want from a garment?