Bamboo Fabric Facts: Learn All About This Eco-Friendly Clothing | Kidadl


Bamboo Fabric Facts: Learn All About This Eco-Friendly Clothing

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Read these Tokyo facts to learn all about the Japanese capital.

Did you know that the fashion industry is responsible for the majority of land pollution worldwide?

The majority of us might have used and eaten bamboo shoots in our vegetable broth, but the benefits of bamboo goes further than that. One such benefit comes from the textile industry; clothes made out of bamboo fabric.

With many designers and local artisans realizing the kind of damage non-renewable clothing items are doing to our lovely planet, exploring eco-friendly alternatives is slowly on the rise. Fabrics made out of bamboo have been around for many centuries, but it was only in later years that bamboo fabric has become mainstream.

More and more people are preferring these sustainable textile options for a plethora of reasons. To begin with, clothing products made out of bamboo fabric are both safe and inexpensive at the same time.

Let's learn more about the environmentally friendly, bamboo fabric.

What is bamboo fabric?

Also known as bamboo rayon, bamboo fabric refers to a variety of different textiles that are originally manufactured from the pulp of bamboo sheets. Bamboo fabric is made of cellulose fiber extracted from bamboo plants, including stems and leaves. Put simply, bamboo fiber is cellulosic fiber, which is used in a range of apparel types in the textile industry.

Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on Earth compared to other hardwood trees, that may take up to centuries to harvest.

Rural Asia is home to a variety of bamboo species. The bamboo plant is an excellent renewable resource and has the amazing ability to hold up to three times its weight in water.

Be it hot climates or cold, bamboo crops are easy to cultivate and produce in various climatic conditions. Even more so, bamboo production does not need excessive harmful chemicals, such as pesticides or insecticides, to enhance growth. Farmers usually plant bamboo grass in the spring months.

You may be wondering how these large bamboo shoots and bamboo leaves turn into a soft fabric. Making bamboo fabric is not that complex, but requires a lot of intense work. Bamboo material is processed into a textile through one of various processes.

The mechanical method to process bamboo involves crushing the raw bamboo grass and then applying various natural enzymes to break the cell walls, resulting in the production of bamboo cellulose.

Once the mushy mass is created, the natural fibers are then mechanically combed out and spun into bamboo yarn.

Another method of processing bamboo fabric is through the chemical process, which requires toxic chemicals. This chemical process is very similar to that of linen fabric, cotton, or rayon production from woods.

The most common procedure is the viscose process, which applies the method of hydrolysis alkalization with multi-phase bleaching using strong chemical solvents, such as sodium hydroxide and carbon disulfide.

Once cooked, the liquid created is then pushed through a spinnerette into the sulfuric acid solution for the liquid to harden.

Features Of Bamboo Fabric

People do not only use bamboo fabric for its eco-friendly characteristics or its high-end bamboo clothing. In fact, there are several reasons why designers and fashion influencers are promoting bamboo clothing in their upcoming collections and photoshoots. Here are some reasons why bamboo fabric has become one of the most popular fabrics of our time.

Organic bamboo is cultivated in farms all around the globe and thus, bamboo textile is intrinsically organic and environmentally sustainable.

Bamboo viscose rayon is as smooth as silk and is often regarded as one of the softest fabrics out there. This is because it is manufactured with the least amount of chemical treatment.

Its antibacterial and antifungal properties keep you odor-free and fresh for hours. The bamboo fiber, thus, does not then lead to allergic reactions.

Unlike many natural fibers, such as hemp or wool, which can cause severe skin allergies, clothes made out of bamboo fiber are highly unlikely to cause allergies, even to the most sensitive skin.

The quality of the bamboo fibers is highly insulating, which means that in summer, it keeps you cool and in winter, it keeps you warm.

Bamboo yarns have remarkable elasticity. In pure bamboo yarns, an elasticity property of 20% can be experienced.

Bamboo clothing is anti static and shows anti-UV rays protections, making it a perfect fabric to wear in summer.

Given that bamboo fibers contains micro-holes, bamboo textile provides better ventilation and moisture absorption than traditional fibers.

Bamboo fabric offers a lot of benefits to its consumers.

Benefits Of Bamboo Fabric

With so many fascinating elements in bamboo fabric, such as those listed above, there is no denying that wearing clothes made of bamboo fabric offers many potential benefits. So, what are some of the benefits of bamboo fabric? Let's take a look.

Bamboo textiles are very soft and light on the skin and help reduce allergic reactions. They are so light, that designers, these days, are even using this fabric to design intimate undergarments.

Bamboo yarns absorb dyestuffs faster and therefore, need lesser quantities of dyestuff than other natural fibers, such as cotton or viscose. This means you can easily experiment with colors when it comes to bamboo fabric clothing.

It is considered extremely hygienic due it its antibacterial properties. That is why bamboo fabric is also used in making sanitary napkins, bags, mattresses, and even masks.

This eco friendly fabric is a good insulator, which is why bamboo linen is the perfect clothing choice for all weather types.

One of the most important factors about bamboo fabric, is that clothes made from bamboo fabric are biodegradable. In other words, you now no longer have to worry about the impact on the environment when discarding your old clothes.

While most bamboo fabric helps reduce greenhouse gases, some types of bamboo fabrics are equally harmful to our environment and the workers who make them. This is why it is imperative to know which type of bamboo fabric you should choose to wear.

As mentioned earlier, some bamboo textiles are also manufactured through intense chemical treatment. Harmful chemicals such as sodium hydroxide can cause severe skin and eye irritation.

In addition, carbon disulfide and sulphuric acid are also associated with the early onset of neural and respiratory disorders.

Using chemical solvents while bleaching bamboo can also pose a serious threat to the environment, such as land pollution.

How to take care of bamboo fabric?

Like any other fabric, bamboo fabrics also require the owner to follow instructions concerning washing, drying, and ironing. For those who are not sure about maintaining their bamboo fabrics for many more years to come, we will tell you how.

Wash your fabric in cold to warm water, not exceeding 40 C (104 F).

Always use a mild detergent, soap, or liquid free of bleach.

Hand wash your fabric. If you cannot, make sure you only give a gentle spin to your garments. Avoid using the strong wash setting of your washing machine at all costs.

If your fabric is dyed with vegetable dyestuff, it is recommended to dry your fabric inside and away from direct sunlight exposure.

Bamboo fabric may develop some wrinkles after a wash. So, ironing your clothes is highly advised. Dampen your fabric first to get a better ironing experience.

Avoid hanging them up on a rope when you are storing heaving clothing items made out of bamboo fabric, such as sweatshirts or jerseys.

Since jerseys are very elastic, hanging them can cause their weight to pull downward, eventually leading them to lose their original shape. So, it is better to fold them neatly.

Did you know...

If you cannot get enough of these facts, here are some more random bamboo facts to keep you amazed.

Viscose from bamboo fiber is as thin as human hair. Some varieties are even thinner than a human hair.

India celebrates bamboo fabric festivals every year in different parts of rural India. For example, the 2019 Bamboo Cultural Festival featured a theme where exhibitors had to wear bamboo fabric clothes.

China is the largest producer of bamboo and exports a significant fraction of its production of wood cellulose and wood pulp for textile production.

Some of the famous international fashion brands that have promoted bamboo fabrics through their collection include Stella McCartney, ASOS, Beaumont Organic, and Shift to Nature.

Since not all bamboo fabrics are manufactured using environmentally sustainable methods, many countries have issued a requirement for the correct labeling of textiles made from bamboo.

For example, the Competition Bureau of Canada has explicitly mentioned textile producers for their articles to contain 'rayon from bamboo' instead of labeling it as simply 'bamboo'.

Written By
Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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