How Did Antimicrobial Fabrics Become the Best? Find Out

antimicrobial fabrics

The word antimicrobial states it characteristics by itself and which means active against microbes. So, we can say that the products which are antimicrobial, have the ability to fight against microbes. Although the ability of this protection may be vary from product to product. But on the whole, the ultimate purpose of this feature is to protect consumers from germs. Moreover, there are so many daily use items like socks, workwear suits, uniforms, towels and other footwear products. Those have the tendency to grab certain odor during and after use. Since these types of products are normally made by synthetic materials so that odor or microbes presence is obvious. The washing is not an ultimate solution to get rid from odor and germs issues. An antimicrobial treatment is the only way out for not only germs issues but also works for odor related issues.

There are so many products which are right now have the characteristics of antimicrobials. But today, we are going to discuss its contribution in our textiles and apparels industry. The antimicrobial fabrics market is no doubt is growing worldwide. The main reason behind this growth is an increasing rate of new diseases and infections.  So, this is why, the precautionary measurement awareness about health and safety of the general public is increasing. The most of the people prefer to adopt preventive approach instead of suffering from any illness.

Why Antimicrobial Fabrics:

The regular textile fibers don’t have any inherent feature to protect against microbes. On the other hand, it provides the room for growth of microbes due to sweating. Especially in warm or humid weather, the growth rate of microbes gets double. Keeping in view this thing, an antimicrobial fabrics finish is introduced to protect the wearer from germs. There are so many famous brands which are already offering such type of finish garments to their end users. Since the hygiene conscious approach in end users is increasing and now on top priority. This is why, consumers are really conscious about their wearing which is directly touching their body all the day.  As per the customers, the apparels which are direct interaction with your body normally considers as second skin. So, it should prevent or protect us from microbes instead of giving them room to grow.

Antimicrobial Fabrics Application:

The Potential of the antimicrobial fabrics and garments is really hot and trending now days. Although the antimicrobial products concept is old in healthcare industry and we can see so many products with this technology.  But with the passage of time, its implications or scope is getting broader day by day. Now, we are using this into our fashion and textile industry, military and other consumer industry as well. This is why, the experts are predicting that antimicrobial fabrics and textile market will be US$ 1,076.1m till year 2026. The estimated growth rate of antimicrobial products is about 7.5% per year. If we review the growth trend from regional market (Europe, North & Latin America, Africa, Middle East and Asia) point of view.  Then Asian market is on number one from growth point of view. After that European market is standing on number two and North America comes on number three.

The main reason of high growth rate in Asian market is an improvement in lifestyle, increasing income and especially tremendous investment in healthcare sector. And as the expert’s prediction, this list numbers will remain same for upcoming years. Because there are so many economic factors which are directly support this trend. And there is no doubt in this thing that medical industry is a key industry behind this positive growth rate. Other than the medical industry, the fashion or apparel sector is also influenced with this technology. This is why, the most of the fashion apparel brands and especially sportswear brands are using this technology. And now you can see so many products both outer and inner wears which have antimicrobial features.

Antimicrobial Fabrics Market Analysis:

For last few years, due to high potential growth rate, the Asian market is standing number one in antimicrobial textile market. Since the potential of the market is still too high so it is attracting the big giants of this industry to invest aggressively here. If we analyze the competition level of antimicrobial fabric industry then we observe a severe competition between the leading companies. Some of the leading companies include: Sciessent LLC, Sanitized AG, Trevira GmbH, Microban Int’l, Lonza Group, The Dow Chemicals, Biocote Ltd, Herculite Products etc. And in order to dominate into the industry, we observe several mergers and alliances between the big companies. The reason behind these mergers or alliances is just to offer unique and vast product line to the maximum market segments.

And if we closely review the target potential market of these big companies then we further conclude it few countries. These are the countries where companies are putting extensive efforts and finance to get maximum market share. And these countries include China, India, Singapore, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Brazil. This is not the end as the demand growth rate in Europe and Latin America is also very encouraging. So, we can’t ignore these markets too for more future business opportunities and shares.

Sustainability Feature in Antimicrobial Fabrics:

Although the key features of antimicrobial fabrics are really tremendous from all aspects. And there is no doubt this thing too that most of textile companies are extensively using it into their product line. But the traditional treatment of this technology is not as environmental friendly as it should be. So, keeping in view the current scenario, the experts are striving their best to come up with some perfect solution. The solution, which is not only, covers the germs problem but the treatment is also sustainable and eco-friendly.

The Canadian based firm “Flispec” introduced two sustainable alternatives for antimicrobial treatment. The first one is “Rayon”, it takes its main ingredient from oyster shells. And this ingredient offers antimicrobial feature (moisture absorption, soft hand-feel) to the wearer. So, such kind of material are normally suitable for sportswear or footwear (socks). The second alternative is “RecoveryFil”, it uses zinc oxide as main ingredient. This ingredient combines with Tencel which gives the wearer to ultimate protection from UV rays. So, you are taking double benefits from your clothes. On one side it is protecting you from microbes and on the other way, it also keeps you safe from Ultraviolet rays.

Future of Antimicrobial Fabrics:

Although there are so many alternatives that are now exists into the market to make any fabric or product antimicrobial. But we can’t sure about the method sustainability through which it becomes antimicrobial fabrics or garments. That’s why; the researchers and scientists are focusing on natural ways through which the fabric gets sustainable and antimicrobial features. And for this, plants materials are consider as best antimicrobial agents.

So, the research is going on these lines that how they could take maximum benefit from bioactive textile. And how they could utilize its maximum benefits for the protection of wearer from microbes which causes diseases. Moreover, these natural agents are non-toxic as well as don’t spread any allergy issues. Although there are some other natural antiseptic agents are already available yet there is still need to dig out more. That how we could utilize or take more and more benefits from these natural available antibacterial agents in textile industry.

How You Can Save Environment from Waste Clothes

How You Can Save Environment from Waste Clothes

The fashion industry is swinging on its full pace. Since clothing is a vital part of human’s life and became the eighth largest segment in day-to-day household spending. The big players are constantly launching new and stylish trends with highly competitive prices. Although it sounds good to follow the fast paced fashion trends with comparatively cheap prices. But it is creating a sheer load on our environment in shape of textile waste. The clothing consumption has significantly increased for last 03 decades. And according to Greenpeace study, today we buy 60% more clothing than we did 15 years ago. The fast fashion trend and our crazy buying behavior are polluting our environment desperately. Unfortunately, the fashion industry was estimated the second largest waste producer after Oil and Gas.

According to “The Atlantic”, the average North American consumer buys 64 items of clothes per anum. It means, an average consumer buys 1.2 garments per weak. And he/she creates 82 pounds of unwanted clothes per anum for the environment.  On the other hand, as per Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs data, it is estimated that 1,130,000 tons of clothing was purchased in UK in 2016. And this was almost 180,000 tons higher than year 2012. And as per the research findings, the average clothing life in UK is around 3.3 years. Whereas, the other research shows that it is only 2.2 years and then it discarded or donated. For the last ten years, the turnover of waste clothes in UK has been significantly increased.

Brands Efforts Toward Waste Clothes:

Since the contribution of fashion industry towards environment pollution is increasing day by day. So, the joint efforts are being carried out by the big players to sustain the environment. The below you will see the story of some brands from the them:

H&M:

The big chain H&M launched its Conscious Collection which is made with recycled material. Not only this, the Garment Collection (Year-2013) range was also made with recycled material. As per company’s announcement, you can drop your old clothes/home textiles of any brand to our local store. We will recycle it and give it new life. Up-till now, the company claimed that they have collected 32000 tons waste garments to give them a new life. Moreover in 2017, H&M offered $5.8 million to Hong Kong Research Institute of Textile and Apparel to develop such chemical technology which recycle blended textile.

Sainsbury:

The famous retailer Sainsbury in collaboration with Oxfam, trying to urges its customers to donate unwanted clothes to its collection points. But as of now, the overall result regarding donation is not as good as expected. As per UK research findings, around 49% respondents don’t donate clothes because they are worn out or dirty. Whereas, 16% respondents don’t have enough time to sort out old clothes or visit collection center for donation. And 6% respondents don’t know this thing that the clothes can be recycled.

Levi & Strauss:

The same thing Levi’s did in 2016, it has partnered with EVRNU and created first sustainable jeans. This jean was made with 05 discarded T-shirt’s renewed fiber. And this “511” jeans was not only use waste clothes but also use 98% less water than virgin cotton products.

Inditex:

The Spanish brand Inditex is teaming up with Lenzing for its 2016-2020 environment strategy plan. The Lenzing recycles its off cuts into cotton Lyocell mix. This project will start with 500 tons of textile waste and with an aim to uplift it around 3000 tons within few years. As per company’s statement, they will provide enough fabric to Lenzing to produce 48 million garments. Moreover, they are collaborating with local charity Cáritas, now they are planning to install 1500-2000 garments collection bins in Spain’s major hubs.

Keeping in view the current consumer’s buying trend and behavior and it’s directly effect on environment. We need to restrict our buying behavior and extend the garment’s wearing life. If we add nine months in current life then we can definitely reduce environmental impact around 20-30%. While buying a new cloth, we need to see this whether we could use the same around 30 times? If no then leave this item. And for this, always buy quality garments and don’t prefer quantity over quality. And last but not least, Donate, Donate and Donate. As this is the only way, we could play a healthy and positive contribution towards our environment.

Why Sustainability in Fashion Industry is Essential

Why Sustainability in Fashion Industry is Essential

Sustainability is a big and productive step towards economic reform. The toxic rivers/lakes, cancer-causing pollution levels and mass water shortages became a big challenge for the future world. Sustainability is no more a dream but a practice which pushed 2000 factories to implement corrective action through its Green Supply Chain project. It’s a complete guideline that how does one can use the natural resources without impacting external environment. And for this, the manufacturing facilities are trying various methodologies to maintain equilibrium, by minimizing exploitation of natural resources.

Big companies/brands have the power to influence the beginning of a supply chain. And they can also ensure this thing that both working conditions and materials sourcing reach a high ethical standard. And the positive thing is that they are doing good job for this as The Pulse of the Fashion Industry Report proved this thing that the big players performing good as compare to mid size and smaller companies. Even then, the big names need to do much more because they are one who damaged the environment the most.

Companies Sustainability Initiatives:

A number of clothing companies including M&S, Asos, Levi Strauss, Nike, Kering and H&M have all strive to ensure this thing that the 100% cotton which they will use for the garments should come from sustainable sources by 2025. Similarly,The VF Corporation’s brand named Wrangler has already launched a pilot program. The said program is helping the US cotton farmers reach the next level in sustainable growing practices. Here we should also mention the productive efforts of renowned jeans brand “Levi Strauss”. As it is pledging USD 350,000 to develop innovations in the apparel supply chain. The less water intensive products, expansion of a normal indigo dyeing facility and developing wastewater treatment solutions more accessible to artisan workshops are also part of this part of this project.

H&M also took some major steps in this area and their new conscious exclusive collection and their conscious choice range. H&M’s conscious exclusive collection is normally launched every April and pushes forward in both sustainability and style. The Collection features pieces made from the pioneering sustainable material BIONIC®, a polyester made from recovered plastic from our shorelines; a productive and healthy step for protecting our oceans from plastic pollution. Moreover, H&M has announced to share their product’s (Conscious Exclusive Ladies collection) manufacturing journey with us. And everyone can read about the materials, the factories where the garments were made and much more at their official website www.hm.com.

Sustainability Gains:

In the future, it will be really interesting to see that how more brands (especially mid size and small companies) will come and join the sustainability as part of their core social, economic and moral responsibility. And this would be the time to see that how it will affect the overall fashion industry. Along with that, the end user also has an obligation to be sustainability aware. Because, the understanding of sustainability in the young experts will make them the game changers. And the hope for the transformation of the industry can be possible in the next decade.

Why UK Plus Size Clothing Market is Growing

Since the inception of fashion world, the needs and trend of a market is changing with the passage of time. Sometime, it drastically changes the whole wearing pattern of people and sometime it adds/subtracts few changes in current trend. Almost every week you would have some new studies or data analysis from the research people. And this research work helps the trend setters to move their direction accordingly. Despite of growing health awareness, the obesity level in both genders is increasing sharply. As per the UK Health survey research data, the obesity level in young female generation (16-24age) has increased upto 3% (12.9% to 15.9%) within one year 2014-15. As per NHS Health Survey UK, the 26.8% women are encountering the obesity problem. The male percentage is also not far and as per the experts the plus size men’s fashion garments UK market will grow upto 22% till year 2022

Plus Size Clothing Market Growth:

Due to sharply increase in obesity percentage in young population, the industry’s fashion’s icons pay special attention to this segment. The River Island, Marks & Spencer, New Look and Quiz made necessary investments in plus size clothing product line which is sharply growing and still under served. The efforts are not stop up to this level only. Since plus size clothing segment has now good market share and still on growing phase so you can also observe its presence in fashion shows (like plus size fashion models) and social media activities.

Why UK Plus Size Clothing Market is Growing

There are number of fashion retailers which realized this increasing obesity trend and already well prepared for it. Now the UK fashion market is offering a handsome range for plus size clothing market segment. Due to different body types in same size, the fit is most important thing after the price factor. According to research and consulting firm GlobalData, this segment is usually prefer to shop online. As the research study proved this thing that 45% of female shopper and 36% men’s shopper normally buy online. Moreover, the retailers are also quite happy to sell this product via online. Because, in the recent past the sale of plus size clothing wasn’t justifying it’s in-store space.

Fashion retailer’s Focus:

In past decade, the fashion retailers were only focusing and offering plus size clothing range to women. Whereas, the men’s plus size clothing market was not focused and undeserved during that period. As per the fashion analysts, the plus size UK men’s garments market has a great potential and it would be the strongest performer driver in next five years. So, the retailers are now paying adequately attention in both gender’s product line with improved availability and multiple choices in plus size clothing range and now the shoppers can be catered better than ever before.

Photos: River Island Men’s Big & Tall, Evans Ladies Plus Size Clothing