Durability Properties of Natural and Manmade Fibers

Last Updated on 16/01/2021

Durability Properties of Fibers:

There are many properties of fiber. Among them durability is one of its most desirable properties of fiber. Fabric has become very important to consumers in the last few years. For example, when buying sheets 75% of shoppers said durability was the most important factor in their purchase. Proof of its strength can be found the great number of uses it has.

The durability of clothing to average wear and tear depends somewhat more on the elasticity, flexibility and resistance of the textile fiber and fabric, rather than the absolute strength of either fiber or fabric. If a fabric possesses these three properties, its garment will absorb or counter more readily stresses and strains during wear. It will allow itself to be deformed with less resistance, thus reducing the chance of intermediate tearing or twisting. For these reasons wool garments owe much of their durability to the elasticity, resilience and flexibility of the fiber and fabric, even though wool is a weak fiber.

Durability evaluations of textile fibres
Fig: Durability evaluations of textile fibres

Strength combined with these properties provides excellent durability that is why nylon and polyester fiber fabrics seem to last forever. Strength and reasonable flexibility can also provide good durability as illustrated by cotton which lack elasticity and resilience.

Felting, matting or bonding of fibers in fabrics tends to increase fabric strength and thereby enhance durability. A raised fabric surface increases fabric resilience and provides longer resistance to abrasive surfaces, e.g. carpets, ribbed fabrics, etc.

Durability Properties of Fibers
Fig: Durability Properties of Fibers

Durability Properties of Natural Fibers:

StrengthGoodFairVery Good
Moisture AbsorbencyVery GoodExcellentExcellent
Resistance to AbrasionGoodFairFair
Stability to LaunderingVery GoodGoodGood
Wash and WearPoorFairPoor
Pressed crease RetentionFairVery GoodFair
Pilling ResistanceGoodPoorGood
Resistance to MildewVery GoodExcellentExcellent
Resistance to Moth/InsectsExcellentVery PoorPoor
Effect of BleachingBecomes weak in concentrated or hot bleaching solutionCl bleach harms, careful use of H2O2/PerboratesCl bleach harms, careful use of H2O2

Durability Properties of Man-made Fiber:

StrengthVery GoodVery GoodVery GoodFairVery Good
Moisture AbsorbencyPoorPoorVery PoorVery PoorVery Good
Resistance to AbrasionExcellentExcellentVery GoodFairVery Good
Stability to LaunderingExcellentExcellentExcellentGoodExcellent
Wash and WearExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellent
Pressed crease RetentionGood GoodVery GoodVery GoodVery Good
Pilling ResistanceFairFairFairFairVery Good
Resistance to MildewExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellentInsufficient data
Resistance to Moth/InsectsExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellentInsufficient data
Effect of BleachingBecomes weak in concentrated or hot solutionGoodGoodVery GoodInsufficient data


  1. Introduction to Textile Fibres by H. V. Sreenivasa Murthy
  2. Handbook of Textile Fibres: Natural Fibres by J. Gordon Cook

You may also like:

  1. Physical and Chemical Properties of Wool Fiber
  2. Application of High Performance Fibers for Special Purposes
  3. Technical Properties of Cotton Fiber
  4. Different Types of Man Made Fibers with Their Application
  5. Chemical Composition of Cotton Fiber
  6. Difference between Natural Fiber and Man Made Fiber
  7. Impurities of Different Natural Fibers with Percentage

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