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About Wool

Wool fibre facts & benefits

Merino wool is famous worldwide for its next-to-skin softness, strength, innate versatility and technical benefits. Merino wool's versatility extends from luxury fashion to high-performance activewear, accessories, homewares and everything in between.

 

Properties of wool

 


100% natural
Wool is 100% natural grown year-round by Australia’s 68 million sheep, consuming a simple blend of water, air, sunshine and grass.
 

100% biodegradable
When a wool fibre is disposed of, it will naturally decompose in soil in a matter of years, slowly releasing valuable nutrients back into the earth.
 

100% renewable
Every year Australian sheep produce a new fleece, making wool a completely renewable fibre.

Wrinkle resistant
At microscopic level, each Merino wool fibre is like a coiled spring that returns to its natural shape after being bent. This gives Merino wool garments a natural resistance to wrinkles.
 

Innovative
Fashion designers and activewear brands can choose from a range of innovative treatments and manufacturing techniques to create unique textures and finishes on Merino wool garments.
 

Naturally breathable
Merino wool is one of the most breathable fibres. Wool fibres can absorb large quantities of moisture vapour then move it away to evaporate into the air.

 

VIDEO
lemlem x The Woolmark Company

Warm and cool
In contrast to synthetics, Merino wool is an active fibre that reacts to changes in body temperature. So it helps you stay warm when the weather is cold, and cool when the weather is hot.
 

Odour resistant
In contrast to synthetics, Merino wool can absorb moisture vapour which means less sweat on your body. Merino wool even absorbs the odour molecules from sweat, which are only released upon washing.
 

Soft on skin
Merino wool fibres are extremely fine, enabling them to bend far more than traditional, coarser wool fibres. This makes Merino wool feel soft and luxuriously gentle next to your skin.
 

Naturally elastic
Natural elasticity helps Merino wool garments stretch with you, yet return to their original shape. So Merino wool clothing is ideal to wear when exercising.
 

Easy to care for
Most Merino wool garments can be machine-washed and tumble dried, providing a simple solution to the common question of ‘How to wash wool?’
 

Stain resistant
Merino wool fibres have a natural protective outer layer that helps prevent stains from being absorbed. And because Merino wool tends not to generate static, it attracts less dust and lint.
Video
Wool for workouts

Wool is the most reused and recycled fibre
Even though wool represents only 1.2% of the virgin fibre supply, surveys have shown it represents about 5% of clothing donated to charity. Wool is also one of the most sought after recycled textiles for converting into new long-lasting products, such as garments, mattresses and upholstery.
 

Fire resistant
Wool’s inherent chemical structure makes wool naturally flame resistant. It is a highly trusted natural fibre in public areas such as hotels, aircraft, hospitals and theatres. Whilst cotton catches alight at 255°C, the temperature must reach 570-600°C before wool will ignite; while polyester melts at 252-292°C and nylon succumbs at an even lower 160-260°C, wool never melts so it can’t stick to the skin like many common synthetics.
 

UV resistant
Merino wool clothing provides good protection from the sun, compared with the protection from other fibres. As a natural fibre, evolved over millions of years to protect sheep against the elements, Merino wool absorbs UV radiation providing protection from the sun. This makes it a good choice for a wide range of outdoor activities.

 

Where does Merino wool get its supernatural benefits?

The complex chemical structure of a wool fibre is what allows it to have so many inherent benefits.

 

Fibre diameter
Fibre diameter refers to the ‘thickness’ of the fibre. Fine fibres bend easily, making them soft. Thick fibres bend less easily, making them resilient. Fine yarns and fabrics are used to make clothes. Thicker yarns can be used to make carpets.

Cuticle scales
Cuticle scales are tiny overlapping scales, which surround the wool fibre. If untreated during processing the cuticle scales can cause wool to felt and become thicker and more hairy during washing. Moisture vapour penetrates beneath the scales, allowing the fibre to 'breathe'.
 
Ortho-cortex and para-cortex
The ortho-cortex and para-cortex cells form the core of the wool fibre. The arrangement of the cells causes the ‘crimp’ (wave) in the wool fibre and traps air (providing insulation), which produces wool fabrics that keep us warm during winter.

Cell membrane complex
The cell membrane complex surrounds each strand of internal cortex cells (fibrils). It holds fibrils together and absorbs colour, allowing wool products to achieve deep vibrant colours, which don’t fade.

Microfibril and Macrofibril
The cortical cells are made up of macrofibrils and microfibrils. The material binding these fibrils is often called the ‘matrix’ material.

Matrix
The matrix consists of high-sulphur proteins. It absorbs moisture to resist static and burning, delivering cleaner and safer clothing and carpets.
 
Alpha helix
The protein chains that form the helical coil are the smallest parts of the wool fibre. They give wool its flexibility, elasticity and resilience, which delivers easy-to-live with, durable and wrinkle-resistant products.

Epicuticle
The epicuticle is one of the outer cuticle cell layers, on the surface of the wool fibre. It repels liquids and resists abrasion, which gives the fibre its stain and water resistance, making it easier to clean.

Why is Merino wool so soft?

Why is Merino wool so soft?

Australian Merino wool is the world’s finest and softest wool in the world. Its natural benefits are so great that no other fibre - natural or man-made - can match it.

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Wool is good for your skin

Wool is good for your skin

Science has shown that wearing superfine Merino wool significantly improves the severity and symptoms chronic skin conditions, with medical experts also finding wool is not an allergen.

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Meet the woolgrowers

Meet the woolgrowers

These are the people who grow your clothes. Their passion, dedication and commitment, woven together to produce the world’s best wool.


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<h3 style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: #ffffff;"><strong>The world&rsquo;s most versatile fibre</strong></span></h3>

The world’s most versatile fibre

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