If you know a thing or two about clothing fabrics, you might have heard the name ‘rayon’ before. But if you haven’t, then keep reading.
It is a fabric made of semi-synthetic fibre, making it comfortable and soft. On top of that, it sports a luxurious appearance, hence is a popular choice in the fashion industry. Rayon is available in several grades, which can imitate the texture and look of other fibres such as silk, linen and cotton.
Often referred to as artificial silk, rayon has become significantly popular over the years, not just in the fashion industry but also in traditional clothing stores. This article will look at the history and origin of this unique fabric and learn about its many benefits.
So, without further ado, let’s begin!
Origin Of Rayon
In the mid-1800s, the French silk industry went through a bad phase because of a disease killing the silkworms. So, people were trying to find an alternative that would look and feel like silk when Count Hilaire de Chardonnet, a French engineer, found a way to produce artificial silk.
Fast forward 40 years, the material founded by Chardonnet was called imitation or artificial silk. And by 1925, it had developed into an industry of itself and was called rayon. Today, it is a widely used fabric that is produced all over the world.
What Is Rayon Made From?
This fabric is made from plant cellulose or wood pulp, which explains why it is known as ‘cellulosic fibre’ in the same class as acetate, cupro, bamboo, modal, and lyocell. Viscose rayon is the most commonly used and versatile rayon, which can be mixed with natural or artificial fibres and woven into fabrics of varying texture and weight.
Advantages Of Rayon
These are some of the significant benefits of rayon
- Wrinkle-free fabric
- Retains its colour and shape
- Absorbs moisture and stays cool in hot weather
- It offers a luxurious and beautiful appearance
- Soft and comfortable to wear
Disadvantages of Rayon
While rayon has many advantages, it has some disadvantages as well. So, ensure that you keep these in mind when using rayon.
- Not at all sustainable
- Fabric isn’t stretchable
- It becomes less strong when it gets wet
- A bit difficult to wash as it shrinks quickly
Essential Tips For Washing, Drying And Ironing Rayon
As stated earlier, rayon tends to shrink quickly; hence, it is crucial to consider a few things. Firstly, ensure that you don’t wash the rayon with too hot water. Instead, go with a silk or wool wash program at a maximum of 30 degrees. However, we would strongly suggest washing it with hands if possible for the best results.
If you want, you can tumble-dry it, but again, make sure it is not too hot. Otherwise, you put your fabric at risk of shrinking. And as far as ironing is concerned, it shouldn’t be an issue; make sure you do it at a low temperature.
How Is Rayon Used In Clothing?
Since rayon’s fabric feels soft like silk and has an aesthetic appeal, it is widely used for making:
- Children’s clothing
How Sustainable Is Rayon
When it comes to sustainability, rayon is a double-edged sword. Since it is made of cellulose, it is biodegradable, and its production doesn’t contribute to plastic soup. However, it is essential to note that many chemicals produce rayon.
Plus, its production requires a ton of wood, which affects the wildlife and jungles. So, overall we’d say that rayon is not sustainable at all.
Understanding Rayon Fabric
And that brings us to the end of this article.
Hopefully, by now, you have gained enough information on rayon. In our opinion, the pros of rayon easily outweigh its cons, and therefore it is safe to say that it is a much better alternative to silk. Make sure that you are careful while washing this fabric as it shrinks quickly.
Let us know if you have any further queries. Until next time, bye.