Cotton – Questions and Answers

Cotton – Questions and Answers

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What is cotton?

Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. Under natural conditions, the cotton bolls will tend to increase the dispersion of the seeds.

What is mercerized cotton?

John Mercer (chemist and fabric printer) of Great Harwood, Lancashire, England, developed a treatment process in 1844 to give fabric or yarns more strength and luster. Named in his honor, this process is called Mercerization. It is also used on hemp and wool.

What is combed cotton?

This is not a type of cotton. Rather, it describes a process of preparation of the cotton prior to spinning in which the shorter fibers are removed and the longer fibers are lined up for spinning. This process follows the carding process and is usually only performed on better quality cottons. Regular upland cotton’s can be combed and the resulting yarn and garment will be better than a regular cotton that has just been carded. The term combed cotton is generally used to identify a product that is a step up from commodity type products that are just made with carded cotton yarns.

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What is supima cotton?

Supima is a premium quality cotton and is 100% Extra-Long Staple variety. Because of its length all Supima has to be combed before it is spun. Better quality cotton used will result in a better quality product.

What are the cotton’s properties?

Cotton is cool in warm climates, it is highly water absorbent, it breathes, easy to wash, usually soft. Cotton is a natural resource that is fully renewable. Cotton is strong and very durable, however it also creases very easily, as do most natural fibers, this property is not a problem now due to some advance finishes applied on the fabric during processing.

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