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Textile products that look newer for longer

The novel HeiQ polymer structures adhere to and reinforce the fabric yarns, reducing the tendency to pill and fuzz.

7th November 2017

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Zurich

Sports/​Outdoor, Sustainable

“Anti-pilling” is not a new terminology to the textiles industry. However, many conventional treatment technologies give a negative mechanical handle impact that leads to reduced fabric comfort, the company explains.

“Improved visual perception at the cost of worse mechanical perception is the conventional approach to the problem of abrasion-related damage on textiles. HeiQ No Fuzz is based on novel adhesive polymer structures that give targeted, localised and non-homogeneous “bridging” reinforcement inside yarns and/or on the outer surface of yarns,” the manufacturer reports.

Like tree roots protecting soil from erosion, the novel HeiQ polymer structures adhere to and reinforce the fabric yarns, reducing the tendency to pill and fuzz, keeping the appearance of the textile surface looking newer for longer, while minimising handle impact.

Fuzzing and pilling

While pilling is a historic challenge in the textile, apparel and home textile industries, the problem of abrasion-related damage extends beyond unsightly appearance and reduced comfort. Fabrics that rapidly form visible defects (like pills, fuzz, holes) can have lower perceived quality, reduced wearer confidence and negatively affect a consumer’s sense of brand image.

“Abrasion of textiles during use and laundry can lead to loss of fibres that ultimately have potential to contribute to ocean microplastic pollution. Increasing the abrasion resistance and reducing the pilling and fuzzing tendency of yarns means fibres are less likely to be released into water during laundry,” commented HeiQ’s co-founder and Chief Science Officer Dr Murray Height.

HeiQ No Fuzz family

The HeiQ No Fuzz family consists of various products that can be used in combination, tailored to the characteristics of different fabric and yarn structures to achieve an optimal balance between improving the physical resilience of the fabric and minimising negative impact on desirable handle and comfort properties.

Fabrics treated with this technology have been evaluated through Martindale and Pillbox tests and achieved exceptional efficiency initially and after washing (performance up to 50 washings), according to the manufacturer.

HeiQ’s Textile Market Knowledge Center surveyed 469 US consumers in April this year. The majority of surveyed consumers were aware of pilling problems on textile products with 84% of these respondents relating they would “prefer that these pilling balls didn’t exist”.

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