Can Cotton Compete With Performance Fabrics?

— August 02, 2016

Two companies have teamed up to create cotton apparel with moisture-wicking technology designed compete with other performance fabrics.

Nanotex®, a Crypton company and fabric innovator providing nanotechnology-based textile enhancements to the apparel, home and commercial/residential interiors markets, and Cotton Incorporated, the research and promotion company of U.S. cotton producers, announced Nanotex® DRY INSIDE technology for cotton apparel.

The patented Nanotex® DRY INSIDE technology enables effective moisture transfer away from the skin, eliminating dampness and chaffing, in 100 percent cotton apparel, while maintaining the additional comfort aspects of garments made from the natural fiber.

The processing technology enables cotton to effectively compete with synthetic fiber fabrications in the active and athleisure markets. Extensive testing on the technology at Cotton Incorporated laboratories in Cary, N.C., showed that Nanotex® DRY INSIDE outperformed 100 percent polyester and untreated cotton in one-way moisture transport and cling.

"In the last five years, we have seen tremendous growth in the active and athleisure markets and with this movement, customers have come to expect a high degree of comfort alongside a high level of performance," explains Randy Rubin, CEO of Nanotex. "The stumbling block has been cotton's innate absorbency and limited wicking abilities," says Rubin. "Nanotex® DRY INSIDE for cotton is the solution; it enables Nanotex to give its customers what their customers are interested in -- high-tech performance plus the comfort of cotton."

Nanotex® DRY INSIDE applies a technical application to the back of the fabric, allowing moisture to move away from the body through invisible channels. Once moved from the inside to the outside of the garment, the moisture spreads and evaporates more readily; leaving the wearer dry and comfortable without clogging the fabric weave or compromising the look, feel or breathability of the fabric.

"We sent Nanotex® DRY INSIDE cotton through a battery of moisture management test methods, as well as our own cling force test," says William Kimbrell, director, technology marketing at Cotton Incorporated. "We found that the Nanotex ® DRY INSIDE technology created a high-performing cotton product. Specifically, we saw cotton finished with Nanotex® DRY INSIDE outperformed 100 percent polyester samples, as well as untreated cotton samples for moisture transport; and offered in 80 percent reduction in cling force."

Nanotex® DRY INSIDE expands the marketplace for cotton athletic apparel by offering all the comfort and breathability of cotton in garments that:

Wick moisture away from the body;
Do not hold moisture;
Reduce the likelihood of chafing; and
Dry quickly.

"We see Nanotex® DRY INSIDE for Cotton impacting the active and athleisure markets in a tremendous way - it allows for the touch, look and feel of cotton to be experienced in a revolutionary new way, one that has long been desired," adds Rubin.

The Nanotex web site features a short video explaining the Nanotex® DRY INSIDE technology and demonstrating its laboratory testing.
Nanotex is comprised of a family of 11 products, such as "Resists Spills", "Releases Stains," "Neutralizer" and "Coolest Comfort", and includes the important enhancement of the integration of a DNA marker to protect against counterfeiting. The brand has more than 100 manufacturer partners worldwide, including not only in branded apparel and outdoor gear, but home textiles and contract and residential interiors markets as well. In addition to Cotton Incorporated, Nanotex brand partners include the Gap, Banana Republic, Macy's, J.C. Penney, Gymboree, Target, Dickies, Cabela's, L.L. Bean, Burton, Under Armour, Ashworth, Nordstrom, Hanes, QVC and others.

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