When it comes to workout clothes, the fabric you choose is critical. It must be breathable to stay calm, wick sweat away from your body, and dry quickly.
Polyester is the workhorse of fitness fabrics, and for a good reason – it’s incredibly durable, wrinkle-resistant, moisture-wicking, breathable and lightweight.
We know synthetic fibers are often used in activewear because they offer many performance benefits. Still, a few natural options are also eco-friendly and sustainable. These natural fabrics are lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking, perfect for workout wear.
Bamboo is famous for eco-friendly activewear because it’s soft, comfortable, and moisture-wicking. It also holds up well under stress, is naturally UV protective, and can be dyed or printed to make it stand out.
Merino wool is another excellent choice for natural sportswear because it’s lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking. It’s also warm, odor-resistant, and antimicrobial, and it can be blended with spandex to help you retain your form during exercise.
Hemp is another excellent option for natural fibers in athletic wear because it’s naturally UV-protective and durable. It stretches less than other fabrics, so it holds its shape more. Hemp also grows more densely than cotton, returning almost 70% of its nutrients to the soil, making it a more sustainable alternative.
Recycled polyester (rPET) is a high-performance, sustainable material produced from ocean-bound plastic or post-consumer polyester waste. It’s the best fabric for athletic wear, typically blended with a percentage of spandex for added stretch and comfort.
Synthetic fibers are a common fabric choice for athletic wear. They can be used in various garments and offer many technical advantages over natural fabrics.
Polyester: This synthetic fabric is a popular choice for sportswear because of its durability and moisture-wicking qualities. It also offers excellent abrasion resistance, stain resistance, and resistance to static and sunlight.
Nylon: This is another popular fiber for sportswear because of its strength and stretchability. It can be used for various products, including jackets, leggings, and pants.
Spandex: This material is a favorite for sportswear because it can be highly stretchy and comfortable for movement. It’s also breathable and quickly absorbs sweat to keep you cool during exercise.
While these benefits are appealing, they’re not without their downsides. One of the biggest is that synthetic fabrics aren’t able to biodegrade as well as natural fibers, and their production processes can cause an outsized climate impact.
Additionally, synthetic materials often release microplastics when washed – which can end up in our oceans and waterways. An International Union for Conservation of Nature report found that 35% of ocean microplastics come from synthetic textiles. And even worse, these microplastics can’t be easily removed from the environment.
The best fabrics for athletic wear are often created from a combination of fibers. This is typically done to increase the fabric’s performance, improve its feel or add durability. For example, if cotton is mixed with spandex, it often produces a lightweight, stretchy fabric. The percentage of each of the different fibers in a blended fabric is critical, as too high a rate can make the material heavy and stiff, while too little can leave you feeling constricted.
Another common material used in activewear is polyester. This type of fabric is lightweight, wrinkle-free, breathable and moisture-wicking. It is often used in running jackets, sweatpants and activewear shirts.
However, it has disadvantages, as every synthetic fiber releases microplastics during washing. These are released into wastewater and subsequently into the environment.
Blended fabrics made of recycled polymers or other eco-friendly fibers, such as bamboo or hemp, are an excellent choice for sustainable athleisure wear. They are also more environmentally friendly than their conventional counterparts, avoiding the waste that goes into producing and transporting synthetic fabrics.
The best blends for athletic wear often combine the highest quality natural and artificial fibers. These can include merino wool, recycled polyester, bamboo or hemp. This will vary depending on the sport or activity you plan to participate in, but you should be fine finding an ideal fabric for your needs.
A suitable fabric for athletic wear is crucial to making it feel comfortable and look great. It also needs to be durable enough to withstand the wear and tear of exercise. Many fabrics are suitable for sportswear; the best choice depends on the sport you create.
Some of the most popular fabric types for sportswear are polyester and cotton. These materials are lightweight, wrinkle-free and can be infused with moisture-wicking technology to keep you dry during workouts.
Another type of fabric that is often used in sportswear is brushed poly. This material has small loops on the backside, making it moisture-wicking and antimicrobial. It is available in two weights, medium and heavy.
The best way to identify the suitable fabric for your sportswear is to test it yourself. This will help you determine your style’s optimal weight, durability and stretch.
There are plenty of brands out there that can help you create an excellent activewear collection. These brands have made a name for themselves through their bold marketing campaigns and strong brand identity.
The key to success is creating an enticing brand identity that translates well across every aspect of your products. This includes your logo, labels and hangtags, packaging and point-of-sale material. This will help you build a loyal following that will continue to support your brand long after you launch.