The Allied Market Research reported that the global activewear sector is predicted to reach over $540 billion by 2024 as fast fashion brands persistently face-off the conventional sportswear suppliers in the competitive market. And within the fast-fashion and quick trends industry, sustainable activewear slowly yet steadily made their footings as more consumers begin to upcycle to become more environmentally-friendly.
Aside from being able to transition from workout attire to casual wear, sustainable activewear helps protect the environment with the use of eco-friendly textiles. From natural cotton to wool fabrics, this article gives you a walkthrough on the five best fabrics for sustainable activewear.
Unlike the generic cotton, this type of cloth has Global Organic Textile Standards for ecology and social responsibility. This feature means that organic cotton benefits the environment and the employees’ health with the following attribute:
- Organic cotton does not contain any synthetic pesticides and toxic chemicals
- Organic cotton wastes less water during the manufacturing process
Natural cotton is especially useful in the industry as it has natural wicking properties. It can absorb dye color well and is able to stabilize other eco-fibers. Sustainable activewear made with organic cotton is anti-allergenic since they do not have allergy-causing chemicals.
Clothing with organic cotton gives a linen feel but without the weight. And since its natural wax remains intact, most weaves have distinct smoothness and pressure, which makes the material particularly flattering when it comes to its drape. It also reflects and absorbs light in a mellow way.
Bamboo is exceptionally sustainable and has been used to make many workout gears. It feels soft and comfortable. Bamboo is up to 40% more absorbent than the most delicate natural cotton; wicking moisture away from the skin at a much faster rate and keeps the users dry at a quicker rate. It is also cleaner, has a better smell and contains natural antibacterial properties, which helps decrease the bacteria thriving on fabrics and the human’s body.
Linen is a textile created from flax plant’s fiber and is well-recognized for its capability to keep fresh, cool and dry in extreme heat and dampness. It also has substantial athletic advantages, especially when it comes to comfort, durability, breathability and water absorption. Compared to cotton clothing, linen is two to three times stronger and smoother.
However, linen apparel typically costs higher than other fabrics since it is quite heavy and hard to manufacture.
Wool is a natural fiber infamous for its durability. Some of its benefits include high breathability, resistance to odor, dry quickly, and can regulate humidity and temperature. Activewear with this type of fabric is suitable for outdoor activities, such as hiking, trailing and climbing.
Nevertheless, wool attire needs special care when washing and drying, and the raw material can be subject to climate and other manufacturing problems. Thus, wool activewear can be quite expensive.
Tencel is a branded version of the same fiber, lyocell. This type of fabric is famous for its softness and sustainability. It came from sustainable wood sources and made through an eco-friendly procedure with low environmental effects. It is an ideal fabric for athletic clothing as it keeps the user cool and dry naturally.
Other benefits of Tencel include being able to absorb moisture effectively, supporting the body’s thermoregulation mechanism, biodegradable, breathable and anti-wrinkles.
Natural fibers-based fabrics, including wool, organic cotton, linen, bamboo, and Tencel, produce premium quality sustainable activewear. These apparel are suitable for both professional athletes and active people, who want to stay healthy while contributing to the environment and lessen the carbon footprint of the apparel sector.