Silk has a lengthy history of trade. The natural fiber is known for its luster, shine, strength, and durability. It is pretty luxurious due to its high cost of production, soft feel, and elegant appearance. As a result, it is a common textile in high-end and fashion design. But why is it known as the queen of fibers? Let us find out!
Silk is hypoallergenic, making it a great fabric for people with sensitive skin, allergies, or asthma. Silk allergies only affect a small portion of the population. However, it can benefit those who suffer from allergies because it naturally repels common allergens, such as mold, dust, and mites. Silk is excellent for maintaining hydrated, supple skin. It keeps moisture close to the skin as it is a natural insulator. In addition, it won’t irritate the skin as it has an exceptionally smooth texture. These factors have recently improved silk sleeping masks and pillowcases’ popularity. Sleeping on Silk can keep the skin moisturized and beautiful. Other fabrics, like cotton, absorb your skin’s moisture and leave it dry.
Recyclable and Biodegradable
The fashion industry significantly exacerbates the global warming problem. Normally, synthetic clothing is in landfills worldwide as the fiber cannot be recycled or decomposed. Such pieces of clothing break down and release methane while in landfills. Methane is a harmful glasshouse gas that escalates the level of global warming. Consequently, silk fiber is long-lasting with a minimal impact on the environment. Besides, it is recyclable, which helps in reducing landfills. In addition, Silk is a naturally occurring, highly biodegradable fiber. Clothes made of natural fibers, such as Silk, cashmere, cotton, hemp, and wool, age naturally over time. A 100% silk clothing takes 1 to 5 years to decompose, depending on the environment. The rate of degradation of synthetic textiles is much slower than this. For instance, polyester can break down after 200 years.
The best thing about Silk is that you can use it again as soil or mulch once it has served its purpose. You can eventually compost your old silk clothing because silk is compostable. To do so, shred the clothing into little pieces and remove any tags, buttons, and anything else that won’t decompose. Then place it in your compost bin or bury it in the ground.
Visco-elasticity and lightweight
Visco-elasticity refers to the property of a material that has both viscous and elastic features. Silk fiber shows this feature, making it the best fabric to use when making items like bedsheets. Visco-elasticity enables silk fabrics to recover from creep, hence no need for ironing. In addition, this property makes silk fabric tearproof. It can get caught as you pull it and won’t tear. Instead, it will stretch and regain its shape once you disentangle it. Silk is also remarkably lightweight of the fabric properties. This property makes it easy to fold silk material. And, you won’t feel an additional weight if you wear silk-made clothing. Furthermore, such clothes have an attractive shine. Nothing beats this fabric if you want a lightweight piece of clothing that stands out.
Strength and Durability
This fabric is strong and durable despite its soft texture. Some specific types of silk fabric have about 0.5 gigapascals tensile strength. Researchers have proven that Silk is stronger than steel if compared pound for pound. This nature explains why Mongolians from years ago used silk to make vest armors that dampened the impact of projectiles. It’s safe to say that silk-made clothes are strong and can serve you well. However, note that long exposure to sunlight weakens silk fiber. In addition, you need to be careful when washing the fabric to maintain its strength. For starters, you should pretreat stains with detergent and then hand wash them in cold water. Regarding durability, silk can last longer compared to other fabrics. Therefore, buying silk-made clothing is a worthy investment regardless of price.
Silk has a fair amount of breathability. Besides keeping you cool in summer, a piece of silk clothing will also keep you warm in the winter. The fiber can absorb between 10 and 30 percent of its weight in moisture. Silk is incredibly thin and light, which aids in keeping you cool. Loose-fitting silk apparel and accessories like silk scarves are best in the summer. Although animal protein fibers like silk and wool are porous, they are not as absorbent as vegetable cellulose fibers like cotton. Silk cannot effectively absorb a lot of sweat as a result. To prevent perspiring, you should lose silk clothing in tropical climates, such as scarves, tank tops, and maxi dresses. Silk is a fantastic insulator, but wearing tight silk clothing close to the skin can make you sweat in the summer heat.
Thanks to the outlined benefits, silk will continue to be the most widely used natural fiber. Nothing compares to 100% silk clothing in terms of comfort and beauty.
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