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Is Fleece Good?

Feb 9

Fleece is a warm, silky fabric that keeps us warm in the winter and while we're out in nature. But have you ever considered the environmental effect of our fleece jackets? We wonder how long fleece will last.


What Exactly Is Fleece?

Fleece is a synthetic insulating fabric manufactured from polyethylene terephthalate (PET), a kind of polyester, or other synthetic fibres. It's lightweight and anti-perspirant, and it enables moisture to dissipate while preventing dampness from the outside. It's breathable and quick-drying, making it ideal for sporting and winter wear. Fleece is a vegan alternative to wool since it is made entirely of synthetic fibers.


What Is The Composition Of Fleece?

Fleece fabric is commonly woven and brushed into a light weight fabric using a form of polyester called polyethylene terephthalate (PET) or other synthetic fibres.

Other materials, such as natural fibers like wool or recycled fibers like recycled PET plastic, can be utilized and incorporated to the fabric.

An Overview Of The History Of Fleece

Malden Mills, an American textile company that is now known as Polartec, began exploring with polyester's possibilities in the late 1970s.

In 1981, the firm collaborated with Yvon Chouinard, the proprietor of Patagonia, a then-unknown climbing outfitter, to bring fleece to the sportswear industry.

Synchilla was the first fleece generation, and it was extensively utilized in sports and outdoor wear within a decade. Fleece became fashionable due to its lightness, warmth, and variety of colors, as well as its relative affordability, and it revolutionized the way we dress for cold weather. Fleece yarn is now as fine as cashmere and can even be created from recycled plastic bottles, thanks to advances in technology.


Is Fleece A Long-Term Solution?

Let's take a look at how fleece affects the environment. It's produced from non-renewable materials and requires a chemical coating to make it windproof and/or water resistant, which is bad for the environment. Furthermore, fleece may only withstand so many washes and dryer cycles before displaying symptoms of deterioration, necessitating its replacement on a regular basis.

Eco-fleece, which is made from recycled polyester, is a superior alternative since it saves both raw petroleum and energy. It may also help to minimize the quantity of bottles that end up in landfills.

Synthetic fibers, whether recycled or not, are an issue because they do not biodegrade and interact with molecules of dangerous chemical pollutants prevalent in wastewater, such as pesticides.


Microfibres, What About Them?

A recent research financed by Patagonia discovered that synthetic fleece jackets shed 1.7 grams of microfibres every wash, or up to 250,000 synthetic fibres, and that older jackets shed nearly twice as many fibres as new coats. Even when firms utilize recycled plastic bottles to produce their fleece, studies show that the plastic may wind up in the water.

Since of their small size, synthetic microfibres are particularly harmful because they may be swallowed by fish and other creatures, moving up the food chain and concentrating poisons until they reach us.

Although fleece is a lighter and less scratchy alternative to wool, its environmental effect, as well as the impact it has on animals and customers, makes it a poor choice! So, if you're seeking for warm clothing, stick to natural fibers!