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All You Need to Know About Polyester Fabric

The development of fiber chemistry has had a significant impact on the composition of modern fabrics. They are rarely made from the same material. More often they contain synthetic additives, such as the popular polyester fabric

It is created from the products of oil, coal, and gas processing. Let’s get acquainted with the types of the canvas, properties, pros and cons, use, and care rules.

Appearance and properties

Polyester (pes, polyester, PE) is available in the form of plastics, films, and fibers. At first, he went mainly to the manufacture of plastic containers. Today it is widely used in the textile industry. It has water-repellent properties, withstands prolonged abrasion, and retains its shape well.

Polyester is soluble in a number of organic substances such as:

  • Ethyl acetate;
  • Toluene;
  • Benzene;
  • Acetone.

The synthetic matter is “too tough” for any of the living creatures that live on Earth, therefore it accumulates and pollutes the natural environment. New technologies have managed to turn the disadvantage of polyester, namely its excessive durability, into a virtue. 

As a result, many well-known brands have recycled polyester clothing that looks good. Recycled material is used in the production of furniture upholstery, durable cords, CDs, household appliances, plastic containers, bottles, and bags.

Origin of fibers and fabrication

Polyester is a group of fabrics made up of polyester fibers. Produced from polyethylene terephthalate (C 10 H 8 O 4) n ─ polymer, which under normal conditions has the appearance of a white solid. Different manufacturers may have different methods for manufacturing PE, but the basic principles remain the same.

The process of creating polyester is a chain of complex chemical transformations involving many reagents and certain conditions.

The raw materials are products of oil refining, namely:

  • Ethylene glycol;
  • Terephthalic acid, or rather its dimethyl ester, that is, ether.

Interesterification and polycondensation of reagents with the participation of catalysts leads to the formation of polyethylene terephthalate, which has the form of a resin. The manufacturing process also includes steps that increase the viscosity of the polymer.

When heated, polyester melts, and if it is passed through the smallest holes, then the thinnest streams are obtained. When cooled, they solidify and form threads. By changing the production technology, it is possible to obtain fibers of varying degrees of smoothness and thickness.

Types of 100% polyester fabrics

The variety of 100% polyester depends on the fiber weaving technology. On this basis, polyester can be textured, filament, voluminous, staple, and also in the form of monofilaments. These fabrics are used to make soft toys, textiles, and clothing. 

Their different types, such as holofan, synthetic winterizer, holofiber, are used as a heater. Hollo fiber consists of hollow twisted threads, and the synthetic winterizer is made of dense, but filled fibers. Both are distinguished by environmental safety, the ability to remove excess moisture, as well as the ability to retain heat.

Polyester is a multi-faceted material and can be hidden under a number of names, among the main ones:

  1. Trevira
  2. Dacron
  3. Terilen
  4. Lavsan
  5. Diolene
  6. Teteron
  7. Tesil

Polyester is often used to make up a nonwoven fabric called fleece. Visually, it looks like warm sheep’s wool. The frost-resistant fabric is suitable for sewing thermal underwear, warm jackets and trousers. Sometimes supplemented with linen or cotton fibers.

Lightweight microfiber fabric is also based on microscopic polyester fibers. The material does not get wet, does not let the wind through. Micropolyester clothing keeps you warm in cold weather and protects you in windy conditions.

Combination with other fibers

Polyester improves the properties of popular fabrics. Here are examples of the most successful combinations:

PE + cotton

Cotton is an eco-friendly, pleasant to the touch, hygroscopic, breathable material. From it sew summer clothes and underwear. But capricious cotton quickly wrinkles and loses its attractiveness. When combined with polyester fibers, a wrinkle-free, shape-holding, strong, durable fabric is obtained. 

At the same time, it remains hygienic, environmentally friendly, hygroscopic. All kinds of textiles are produced from it, including bed linen and children’s clothing. At the same time, the durability of such bed linen is 2 times greater than that of pure cotton. The most standard proportions are PE: cotton (35/65%).

PE + polyamide

Two synthetic materials, of which the second is smoother and lighter. It does not absorb moisture and is destroyed by direct sunlight. Hypoallergenic polyamide does not irritate the skin, as suture material is used in surgery. It is not very suitable for hot weather, but it does not let wind and rain through, therefore it is in demand when sewing demi-season outerwear.

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