With the advancement of technology, manufacturing has been made much easier with variations in process and techniques. However, the materials used can sometimes compromise the integrity of the product. Today, we will be explaining to our readers what exactly artificial wool is and why are they in trend? To help us do this, we will be showcasing some of our custom scarfs.
What is Artificial Wool?
Artificial wool is a type of synthetic fabric. It is otherwise known as synthetic wool or faux fur.
Traditionally, custom scarf manufacturers use genuine wool which are derived from animals – most commonly sheeps.
On the other hand, artificial wool does not use the hair/fur of animals. Artificial wool uses chemicals such as processing acrylic.
Therefore, the difference between artificial wool and genuine wool is substantially the manufacturing process.
Artificial wool has been able to replicate the textures of genuine wool. Therefore it has always been seen as a ‘fake’ counterpart of genuine wool.
Manufacturing : Artificial Wool vs Genuine Wool
Traditionally, genuine wool uses the hair/fur of animals – most commonly sheeps. They have different variations of real wool, one of the most expensive and popular being Cashmere. These ‘authentic’ wool products have gained quite a loyal following. Therefore custom scarfs made out of genuine wool are usually targeted for premium branding.
As mentioned earlier, artificial wool uses man-made chemicals i.e. acrylic. Believe it or not, acrylic is a combination of coal, air, water, oil, and limestone. Therefore it is much more cost-effective to produce artificial wool, because resources are much more abundant. This is because as compared to genuine wool, artificial wool manufacturing does not require harvesting of animals and their hair/fur.
A lot of resources are put to harvesting animal livestock like sheeps. Therefore it explains why it has a higher price point.
Quality : Artificial Wool vs Natural Wool
In terms of quality, artificial wool show impressive results in replicating its ‘authentic’ counterpart. The synthetic fibers are consistently being adjusted to replicate real wool, therefore there is room for innovation in manufacturing artificial wool.
In reality, these two types of fabric are hard to distinguish among each other. While the manufacturing process might be completely different, we would say that there is no significant difference in breathability and stretchability. Therefore, there is no substantial difference in quality.
One of the reasons why artificial wool is in trend right now is due to Vegan Culture. The Vegan community are commited at changing their lifestyle in order to protect animal rights. Therefore, this creates a demand for a substitute to genuine wool that does not exploit animals.
While many skeptics believe that using wool does not necessarily hurt animals, many vegan would rather not fund an organization that exploit or harm animals. Therefore, if your target market consists of mostly vegans, we would advice to manufacture 100% acrylic custom scarfs.
If we were to be completely honest, there is no clear winner between these two fabrics. Artificial wool is significantly cheaper than genuine wool, and it also does not involve animals in the process. On the other hand, artificial wool also has a ‘unauthentic’ stigma that surrounds it, just like everything in this world that is made to replicate.
Ultimately, we believe that the choice of fabric will be determined by your target market. Otherwise, we’ve also helped manufacture custom scarfs with a combination of artificial and genuine wool. We recommend our readers to try the best of both worlds. In the world of textiles, its easier to mix and match to pursue a comfortable garment like custom scarfs.
Case Study : Manchester United
In 2015, ODM helped manufacture custom scarfs for the executive club of Manchester United. We have been actively working with our clients to work with different samples and materials for their promotional merchandise. This was an exciting project, with different variations of scarfs for our favorite football club.