Why Synthetic Fiber made clothing’s are dangerous for our skin
Fibers are fine filaments that either occurs naturally or can be synthesized. Synthetic fibers are man-made fibers produced from chemical substances and are used for making clothes and other useful things. These are made by the process of polymerization. Synthetic fibers can either be completely synthetic or semisynthetic. Fibers that are purely synthetic like nylons, polyesters, acrylics are made from chemicals whereas semisynthetic fibers such as rayon’s are produced with the utilization of natural polymers as raw material.
Types of Synthetic Fibers
Synthetic fibers are mainly of four types, namely:
Rayon has properties similar to those of silk.
It is a man-made fiber and cheaper than silk.
It is obtained from wood pulp.
It is infused with cotton or wool to prepare bedsheets and carpets respectively.
It is also known as artificial silk and can be dyed in a wide variety of colours.
For people who regularly wear clothing made of rayon, it is a very hazardous fabric. Rayon production is very toxic. The manufacturing process emits poisonous gas. The chemicals used during rayon fabrication also pollute drinking water, the air, and soil, damaging ecosystems, plants and animals’ health.
These are strong elastic and light, lustrous and easy to wash fibers made from water, coal, and air initially.
The fibre is completely synthetic and stronger than steel wire.
It is used to make socks, ropes, toothbrushes, tents, seat belts, curtains, etc.
Used to make ropes for rock climbing and parachutes.
Compared to other plastic-based fibers, manufacturing and processing of nylon is energy-intensive, which causes emission of greenhouse gases leading to global warming. Moreover, the process releases nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas 300 times more potent than carbon dioxide, and which depletes the ozone. Also, some people who are sensitive to materials made from petroleum may react to nylon.
Polyester is made up of many units of an ester.
It is suitable for making dress material because it is easy to wash and stays crisp and wrinkle-free.
Terylene is a known polyester.
PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) is used to make many useful products like bottles, utensils, films, wires.
Skin exposure to Polyester can cause rashes, itching, redness, eczema, dermatitis, blistering or make existing skin problems worse for those with sensitive skin, up to 3 days later. Heat releases Polyester chemicals like Antimony oxide Sb2O3, which is used to make Polyester and is a known carcinogen.
Many sweaters and blankets are not created from natural wool but from a kind of synthetic fibre known as acrylic.
The clothes prepared from acrylic are cheaper and more durable.
Acrylic is more prevalent than natural wool.
However, synthetic fiber melt on heating. If they catch fire, it could be really dangerous. The fabric sticks to the body of the person wearing it. Therefore, one should avoid acrylic clothes while in the kitchen or a laboratory.
The main component of acrylic fiber is acrylonitrile, a carcinogen and a mutagen that targets the central nervous system, with similar effects to cyanide.
Acrylic is also a clastogen, a mutagenic agent with high genotoxicity that disrupts or breaks chromosomes.
Synthetic Fibers vs Natural Fibers
Synthetic fibers are man-made. Natural fibers, on the other hand, are obtained from plant, animal resources and geological processes and can be utilized in places where the orientation of fibers has an impact on its properties such as composite materials. In natural fibers, the length of the fibers is given whereas, in synthetic fibers, the length of the fiber is controlled by man.
As opposed to natural fibers, filament production in synthetic fibers is brought about by the spinning process which is either wet or dry. For the production of yarn, a chemical solution is used in synthetics fibers. When it comes to comfort, natural fibers are far more comfortable as clothing, compared to synthetic fibers.
Some of the fibers that occur naturally are:
Silk, Cotton, Linen, Hemp, Jute, Cashmere, Camel hair, Ramie
Other form of synthetic Fibers:
Modal is a form of rayon, another plant-based textile, though it is slightly more durable and flexible than the standard version. Modal is often blended with other fibers like cotton and spandex for added strength.
Is modal like cotton or polyester?
Modal is a man-made cellulosic fibre that has found fame in the age of activewear. Breathable and absorbent, this cotton alternative is used to manufacture underwear, pyjamas, bathrobes, bed sheets, and more.
What are the disadvantages of modal fabric?
Forest Destruction: Unless from Lenzing, there’s usually no guarantee that the pulp used to make modal clothes come from renewable forests. Harmful Chemicals: The production process of the modal fabric involves applying carbon disulfide to cellulose. Carbon disulfide is a neurotoxin.
Fabrics and whether it is good for health
Polyester, acrylics, rayon and nylon are common fibers that can have a negative impact on people with skin conditions. These fibers are hydrophobic and tend to trap moisture which can irritate your skin.
Viscose is semi-synthetic, unlike cotton, which is made from a natural, organic material. Viscose is not as durable as cotton, but it’s also lighter and smoother in feel, which some people prefer over cotton.
What are the disadvantages of viscose?
When washed in hot water, viscose can shrink. It also gets wrinkled easily. When exposed to heat and light, the fabrics fade and deteriorate. It is prone to mildew, and when wet, the fibres become weak. While viscose fabric is made from natural wood sources, creating yarns uses toxic chemicals such as carbon disulphide and sodium hydroxide, making it a semi-synthetic material.
Viscose (also called Artificial Silk or Art Silk) is the most common type of rayon. Viscose production involves a lot of chemicals, heavily harmful to the environment when they are released in effluents. Modal, another type of rayon using beech trees with a similar process to viscose. And when these toxins are absorbed by your skin it can cause nausea, headaches, vomiting and insomnia.
What is Georgette?
Georgette is typically similar to crepe fabric, that is, it is made from pure silk and synthetic fibers like polyester and rayon. It is lightweight, sheer, and has a matte finish. The fabric is woven by using twisted yarns that are created by applying a crinkle effect on the surface.
When it comes to choosing sweat-wicking, thin, and light garments for the hot summer, Georgette fabric should not be overlooked. Silk and synthetic yarns are used to make it. Furthermore, the fabric is widely used and popular because of its free-flowing, lightweight, thin, and soft texture.
Chiffon is a very light, transparent fabric in canvas weave and produced with crepe twist yarns. Chiffon fabric can be composed of a wide range of fibers or their blends: natural fibers, such as cotton and silk; semi-synthetic fibers, such as rayon; synthetic fibers, such as nylon and polyester.
Chiffon is made from fibers other than silk, like cotton and synthetic materials like polyester or nylon. Polyester is by far the most popular today. These blends offer a more affordable price range and a variation in fabric properties.
100% polyester chiffon is also made solely from 100% polyester and is the cheapest and easiest type of chiffon to find. It usually has a very soft feel and very cheap priced.