Fleece is a generally used term for synthetic woven fleece made of polyester or nylon. Clothing made of fleece is lightweight, provides good insulation and transports moisture well. Our fleeces tend not to pill and are tearproof. They are flexible and comfortable, giving you lots of room for movement. We use almost exclusively fleece made of polyester as this material absorbs very little moisture. Polyester fibres retain only about 1-5% of their own weight in water. This means that a fleece shirt with a dry weight of 300g weighs only about 10g more when wet and wrung out. A cotton shirt of the same weight absorbs about 60g, that is 20%, of its own weight in water.
The base of a fleece material is a stretchable knitted fabric. Multi-fibre threads are looped into the knitted fabric and these are then cut open and clipped back. The individual fibres therefore create a much larger surface area. This is called the pile. The greater the fleece’s pile, the more air can be stored between the fibres, creating a greater insulating effect.
Advantages of fleece materials:
• Particularly high insulating properties without compromising on weight
• Hardwearing and therefore long-lasting
• Very quick-drying
• Pleasantly soft on the skin (no scratching like pure new wool)
• No exploitation of animals (as with natural materials such
as leather, fur or down) as synthetic polyester fibres
• Depending on the material components may be recyclable,
and some recycled fibres already available in range
Disadvantages of fleece materials:
• not windproof, therefore additional membrane necessary
• not waterproof
• electrostatic charge