Merino wool is the result of millions of years of evolution. Rich in natural properties that inspire some of the worlds leading brands. And its unique benefits flow through to the luxuriously soft and stylish clothing crafted from it.
The core-tex (the inner core textile), can absorb about 30% of its weight in water (sweat, condensation, rain etc), but the cuticle (the outer sheath) is hydrophobic (water hating), so when merino garments get wet, the core-tex absorbs the moisture (until it is saturated), but the cuticle feels dry against your skin. By contrast, a polyester fibre garment repels moisture, so the moisture stays on the fibre's surfaces and between the fibres, where it can come in direct contact with skin.
Below are the key bullet point features and benefits of Merino Wool.
SOFT AND COMFORTABLE
The secret to Merino's softness is its exceptionally fine fibres. Merino fibres are extremely fine, enabling them to bend far more than traditional, coarse lowland bred sheep wool fibres. This makes Merino wool feel soft and luxuriously gentle next to your skin
Natural elasticity helps Merino garments stretch with you, yet return to their original shape. So Merino clothing is ideal to wear when exercising or in leisure pastimes.
Merino fibres can absorb large quantities of moisture vapour then move it away to evaporate into the air, making Merino clothing is are extremely breathable and less prone to feeling clammy. Merino wool socks make a great layer for long journeys to wick away the moisture.
One key difference with Merino to synthetic fabrics is Merino "holds" moisture whereas synthetics eradicate it. So Merino wool can be heavier when wet and hold up to 3 or 4 times its own weight in moisture but still keep its natural thermo regulating properties in tact. This is why mountaineers, sailors, cyclists and many other sports enthusiasts love Merino wool clothing. It's highly efficient at wicking moisture, it's just what it does with it after it's absorbed the moisture (think of a sheep and how heavy they are after it's been raining). This makes Merino wool garments so versatile across so many sports and leisure disciplines.
WARM AND COOL
In contrast to synthetics, Merino is an active fibre that reacts to changes in body temperature. So it helps you stay warm when the weather is cold and cool when the weather is hot.
Because Merino can absorb moisture vapour, it tends not to create static electricity, helping it to drape beautifully and be less likely to cling uncomfortably to your body.
Gone are the days when woollen garments had to be hand-washed and dried flat. These days you can machine wash your Merino Wool garments with the utmost certainty they will not shrink, using one of the many gentle wash cycles on most machines. Spinning and even tumble dring are acceptable too "IF" you select a good quality garment brand that has been pre-washed. There are many cheaper options on the market......just try machine washing and tumble drying, you'll be buying a new one every week!
In contrast to synthetics, Merino can absorb 3 times its own weight in moisture vapour which means less sweat on your body. Merino even absorbs the odours from sweat, which are then released during washing. You can wear merino wool for several days without the need for washing. Less washing is good for the environment and good for garment integrity!
Merino fibres have a natural protective outer layer (Lanolin) that helps prevent stains from being absorbed. And because Merino tends not to generate static, it attracts less dust and lint.
At microscopic level, each Merino fibre is like a coiled spring that returns to its natural shape after being bent. This gives Merino garments a natural resistance to wrinkles so we don't even iron ours any more. Get a mix of Merino with synthetics and the Ironing industry could be at an end.....:-)
REASSURINGLY SAFE & SUSTAINABLE
The whole family is safer wearing Merino clothing. Many brands these days breed their sheep organically and in a sustainable ethical way to maximise returns and minimise impact on the environment.
You are safer in Merino because it is naturally flame retardant and doesn't melt or stick to the skin.
NATURAL UV PROTECTION
Merino is much better at protecting you from UV radiation than most synthetics and cotton. So the whole family will be safer wearing it on sunny days.
Merino is an entirely natural and renewable fibre and farmed using modern ethical farming techniques. Merino is grown year-round by consuming a simple blend of water, air, sunshine and grass.
When Merino fibre is disposed of, it will naturally decompose in soil in a matter of years, slowly releasing valuable nutrients back into the earth.
Every year Merino sheep produce a new fleece, making Merino a completely renewable fibre source.
Designers love working with Merino for a variety of reasons.
- Sleek and Elegant: Merino benefits from what designers call excellent handlling and drape. To the wearer this means clothes that effortlessly, elegantly and beautifully follow the form of the body
- Colourful: When Merino clothing is dyed it is colourfast; and newly developed colouring techniques give designers full scope for their creativity.
- Fashionable: Merino is lively and flexible, coming in a wide choice of textures, weaves and weights and importantly, can be blended with synthetic fabrics to enhance fabric performance.