Quick Guide

Major Generic Fibers Characteristics Major Domestic and Industrial Uses
ACETATE
  • Luxurious feel and appearance
  • Wide range of colors and lusters
  • Excellent drapability and softness
  • Relatively fast-drying
  • Shrink-, moth-, and mildew-resistant
Apparel: Blouses, dresses, and foundation garments. lingerie, linings, shirts, slacks, sportswear.
Fabrics: Brocade, crepe, double knits, faille, knitted jerseys, lace, satin, taffeta, tricot.
Home Furnishings: Draperies, upholstery.
Other: Cigarette filters, fiberfill for pillows, quilted products
ACRYLIC
  • Soft and warm
  • Wool-like
  • Retains shape
  • Resilient
  • Quick-drying
  • Resistant to moths, sunlight, oil and chemicals
Apparel: Dresses, infant wear, knitted garments, ski wear, socks, sportswear, sweaters.
Fabrics: Fleece and pile fabrics, face fabrics in bonded fabrics, simulated furs., jerseys.
Home Furnishings: Blankets. carpets, draperies, upholstery.
Other: Auto tops, awnings, hand-knitting and craft yarns, industrial and geotextile fabrics.
ARAMID
  • Does not melt
  • Highly flame-resistant
  • High strength
  • High resistance to stretch
  • Maintains its shape and form at high temperatures
Hot-gas filtration fabrics, protective clothing, military helmets, protective vests, structural composites for aircraft and boats, sailcloth, tires, ropes and cables, mechanical rubber goods, marine and sporting goods.
BICOMPONENT
  • Thermal bonding
  • Self bulking
  • Very fine fibers
  • Unique cross sections
  • The functionality of special polymers or additives at reduced cost
Uniform distribution of adhesive, Fiber remains a part of structure and adds integrity, Customized sheath materials to bond various materials, Wide range of bonding temperatures, Cleaner, environmentally friendly (no effluent), Recyclable, Lamination / molding / densification of composites.
LYOCELL
  • Soft, strong, absorbent
  • Good dyeability
  • Fibrillates during wet processing to produce special textures
Dresses, slacks and coats.
MELAMINE
  • White and dyeable
  • Flame resistance and low thermal conductivity
  • High heat dimensional stability
  • Processable on standard textile equipment
Fire Blocking Fabrics: Aircraft seating, fire blockers for upholstered furniture in high-risk occupancies (e.g., to meet California TB 133 requirements)
Protective Clothing: Firefighters’ turnout gear, insulating thermal liners, knit hoods, molten metal splash apparel, heat resistant gloves.
Filter Media: High capacity, high efficiency, high temperature baghouse air filters.
MODACRYLIC
  • Soft
  • Resilient
  • Abrasion- and flame-resistant
  • Quick-drying
  • Resists acids and alkalies
  • Retains shape
Apparel: Deep pile coats, trims, linings, simulated fur, wigs and hairpieces.
Fabrics: Fleece fabrics, industrial fabrics, knit-pile fabric backings, non-woven fabrics.
Home Furnishings: Awnings, blankets. Carpets, flame-resistant draperies and curtains, scatter rugs.
Other: Filters, paint rollers, stuffed toys.
NYLON
  • Exceptionally strong
  • Supple
  • Abrasion-resistant
  • Lustrous
  • Easy to wash
  • Resists damage from oil and many chemicals
  • Resilient
  • Low in moisture absorbency
Apparel: Blouses, dresses, foundation garments, hosiery, lingerie and underwear, raincoats, ski and snow apparel, suits, windbreakers.
Home Furnishings: Bedspreads, carpets, draperies, curtains, upholstery.
Other: Air hoses, conveyor and seat belts, parachutes, racket strings, ropes and nets, sleeping bags, tarpaulins, tents, thread, tire cord, geotextiles.
OLEFIN
  • Unique wicking properties that make it very comfortable
  • Abrasion-resistant
  • Quick-drying
  • Resistant to deterioration from chemicals, mildew, perspiration, rot, and weather
  • Sensitive to heat
  • Soil resistant
  • Strong; very lightweight
  • Excellent colorfastness
Apparel: Pantyhose, underwear, knitted sports shirts, men’s half hose, men’s knitted sportswear, sweaters.
Home Furnishings: Carpet and carpet backing, slipcovers, upholstery.
Other: Dye nets, filter fabrics, laundry and sandbags, geotextiles, automotive interiors, cordage, doll hair, industrial sewing thread.
POLYESTER
  • Strong
  • Resistant to stretching and shrinking
  • Resistant to most chemicals
  • Quick-drying
  • Crisp and resilient when wet or dry
  • Wrinkle- and abrasion-resistant
  • Retains heat-set pleats and creases
  • Easy to wash
Apparel: Blouses, shirts, career apparel, children’s wear, dresses, half hose, insulated garments, ties, lingerie and underwear, permanent press garments, slacks, suits.
Home Furnishings: Carpets, curtains, draperies, sheets and pillow cases.
Other: Fiberfill for various products, fire hose, power belting, ropes and nets, tire cord, sail, V-belts.
PBI
  • Highly flame resistant
  • Outstanding comfort factor combined with thermal and chemical stability properties
  • Will not burn or melt
  • Low shrinkage, when exposed to flame.
Suitable for high-performance protective apparel such as firemen’s turnout coats, astronaut space suits and applications where fire resistance is important.
RAYON
  • Highly absorbent
  • Soft and comfortable
  • Easy to dye
  • Deep rich colorations
  • Versatile
  • Good drapability
Apparel: Blouses, coats, dresses, jackets, lingerie, linings, millinery. rainwear, slacks, sports shirts, sportswear, suits, ties, work clothes.
Home Furnishings: Bedspreads, blankets, carpets, curtains, draperies, sheets, slipcovers, tablecloths, upholstery.
Other: Industrial products, medical,: surgical products, non-woven products, tire cord.
SPANDEX
  • Can be stretched 500 percent without breaking
  • Can be stretched repeatedly and recover original length
  • Light-weight
  • Stronger and more durable than rubber
  • Resistant to body oils
Articles (where stretch is desired): Athletic apparel, bathing suits, delicate laces, foundation garments, golf jackets, ski pants, slacks, support and surgical hose.