Are you confused about choosing between cotton and polyester? Do you want to know what are the major differences between these two fabrics? Let’s quickly dive into the article to know more about the unique properties of these fabrics
Cotton is a natural material that has been in use for ages, whereas polyester is a man-made fabric which has gained popularity in recent years. Both of these fabrics are widely used in today’s world. Some prefer working with cotton as it is easy to sew the material, while others prefer polyester for its long-lasting quality.
Let us first take a look at each of these fabrics to understand their unique characteristics
Cotton is a 100% natural fabric that is obtained from plants. Cotton plants majorly grow in subtropical countries with warm temperatures. It is the finest form of cellulose that is available in nature. Cotton is admired by the apparel industry due to its natural availability and soft nature. The material is breathable and the fabric can absorb sweat to keep skin rashes away. Cotton is widely used to manufacture t-shirts, jeans, dresses, and sweatshirts.
There are four major types of cotton: Egyptian cotton, Asian cotton, Central American, and South American cotton.
Polyester is a man-made fibre which rose to prominence in the 1940’s. It is yet another popularly used fabric in the clothing industry. The artificial fabric is made of chemical substances and oil products such as purified terephthalic acid (PTA) and monotheluene glycol (MEG). It is known for its durability, wrinkle resistance, ability to stretch, and resistance to fading. Polyester is mostly used to manufacture sportswear and activewear.
Polyester is available in three common varieties: Ethylene Polyester, Plant-based Polyester, and PCDT Polyester. While the first two types are more popular in the market, the plant-based one is biodegradable in nature.
Now, let’s take a look at their individual differences
|Origin||Cotton is naturally obtained from plants.||Polyester is a man-made fiber with chemical products.|
|Breathability||The material is breathable.||The material is not breathable.|
|Absorption levels||Cotton absorbs more moisture than polyester.||Polyester does not absorb moisture as cotton does.|
|Cost||Affordable||Cheaper than cotton|
|Wash||More chances of shrinking||Wrinkle-resistant and does not shrink easily.|
|Feel||Gives a natural soft and light feeling||It is also soft in nature despite being man-made.|
|Fading||More chances of fading||Lesser chances of fading|
|Allergies||Cotton can protect the skin from allergies||May trigger allergies|
|Seasons preferred||Mostly good for the summer months. Can be comfortable in any season.||Good for all seasons except summer.|
|Sustainability||Environmental-friendly||Not biodegradable but can be recycled|
As we can see from the table, both the materials have their pros and cons, right? Yet, both are unique and different in their own ways.
Polyester was made with the purpose of saving time as it is easy to use and handle whereas cotton requires constant ironing being more prone to shrinking and wrinkling. Polyester is stronger and more durable; it can last for a longer period, but cotton has a short life span. Also, polyester is much cheaper than cotton. Cotton, on the other hand, is environmentally friendly but polyester is not.
Cotton is the most widely used fabric and owing to its global demand, most of the textile factories devote significant attention to cotton. Cotton is the fabric that can be the present and future of the textile industry. Comparing all the elements of both the fabrics, we feel cotton scores more since it is environment friendly and feels better against the skin.