Similar to cotton, bamboo fibre is a naturally breathable fibre that absorbs moisture from your skin. Bamboo allows quick evaporation of moisture into the air. Therefore, when sweating occurs, the user does not stay wet. Bamboo fabric is silky soft and super light.
The natural attributes of bamboo fibre also include:-
- Thermoregulating ( so you are cooler during summer and warmer during winter)
- Highly durable
You help the planet when you are using bamboo fabric
These are also days when the world is extremely concerned about global warming and climate change issue that is impacting our lives in more ways than one. Thus, it is a great idea choosing bamboo in preference to cotton. Bamboo needs a minimal amount of water for growth and yields over 30 times to an acre when compared to cotton, and that makes bamboo a crop that is significantly lower on resource needs.Other benefits of using bamboo fibre include:-
- Bamboo needs no pesticide or fertiliser
- Bamboo growth extremely fast
- Continuous re-harvesting without any impact on the environment
- Bamboo fabric can be disposed of off in the soil since it is bio-degradable.
Among various reasons for the new found love for Bamboo is the fact that cultivation of bamboo is more than comfortable since no diesel spewing tractors are needed nor does it need the kind of care and attention that most other farming activities demanded. If all these were not enough, the mature bamboo sticks could be cut off from the root, and in another couple of months, a new shoot grows into a full length. That leaves the farming community with the singular worry of getting their bamboo crop consumed by the market. Thankfully, bio-biodegradability and environment-friendly means of cultivation are very helpful in promoting consumption.
Is bamboo fibre entirely free from chemicals?
While bamboo fibre can be used in making modern textiles of exceptional quality, the conversion of bamboo poles into fibre does involve the use of chemicals. Predominantly, caustic soda is employed in this process, and you may, therefore, want to check if this substance is agreeable to your skin condition. Caustic soda is exercised in nearly every fibre making process to dissolve the harder material and make it softer for making yarn that finally gets converted into fabric.
Bamboo is a highly sustainable resource and raising bamboo farms can be a very profitable enterprise in regions that have large tracts of land with meagre water resources. With appropriate planning and marketing efforts, the returns from bamboo farms can be exponential compared to most other farming activities.
Bamboo linen is a different story since the bamboo fibre used for this fabric is mechanically produced by crushing the bamboo sticks and broken up into mush mass with the help of natural enzymes. The natural fibres are then combed out mechanically to was converted into yarn. But the production of bamboo linen on a global scale is minimal. The process is also pretty expensive and labour intensive.
The growing popularity of bamboo in fashion wear
Bamboo is luxuriously soft, gives a gentle and flowing drape, is smooth on your hands, and relatively cheaper, particularly when you compare with cashmere or silk and eco-friendly too. These are the major reasons for the growing popularity of bamboo in the fashion world.
Fabrics made out of chemically manufactured bamboo yarns have a good fan following
Though we discussed some of the potential health risks from chemically made bamboo yarns and fabrics from those yarns, there is no dearth of fan following for this line of garments for many reasons that users appear to love, side-stepping the potential hazards. This preference appears to stem from the following advantages among others:-
- Bamboo fabrics are easier to handle on washing machines and dryers
- The natural softness and sheen of Bamboo fabrics give the drape and feel of silk but significantly less expensive while being more durable
- Bamboo clothing does not irritate, thanks to the round structure of the fibres giving a smooth feel which keeps even sensitive skin from the hazards of irritation. However, there can be odd instances of skin sensitivity which may or may not be attributable to the bamboo wear. More research is needed to establish this factor.
- The anti-fungal and anti-bacterial that exist naturally in bamboo and some constituents in bamboo also resist odours.
- Bamboo clothing is reckoned as hypoallergenic
- The highly absorbent character of bamboo helps in taking the water off the body about 4 times compared to cotton. In humid, warm and sweaty weather, bamboo garments help keep the user cooler, drier and more comfortable since the clothing does not stick to the skin.
- Bamboo fabrics are more breathable because of its structure and thermal regulation ability compared to cotton, wool, hemp, or other synthetic fabrics.
- Wrinkle resistance is higher with bamboo fabrics though they might still need to be ironed post wash, you can use a lower temperature to iron bamboo fabrics when compared to cotton fabrics. Shrinkage in the process of washing and drying is also minimal provided the temperatures are warm.
- Absorption of dyes is not only faster but also more through with bamboo fabrics when compared to cotton, viscose, or modal and the colour clarity is better. Mercerization is also not needed for bamboo fabrics, unlike cotton which needs to be mercerized to enhance lustre and dye-ability.