Prior to industrialization, the textile industry relied upon the domestic system, alternatively referred to as putting out or the workshop system that relied upon a network of weavers and textile workers at their domiciles that delivered finished textiles, fabrics and clothes to a central agent. Rising scales of production in textile manufacturing following industrialization possible through mechanization reduced the role of household textile production in a number of regions and economies.
Mechanized and mass-produced textiles were increasingly used to clothe populations and meet demand. Larger distribution channels, product specialization, rising consumer preferences regarding textile quality and durability and diversifying textile materials all contributed to the rise of the global textile chemicals market, which now predominates among developing countries where the majority of worldwide textile manufacturing is completed. China and India are especially large markets for textile chemicals.
Textile chemical products include chemicals for consumer apparel (the largest application market), followed industrial and technical textiles and home textiles or consumer textiles not used for clothing or apparel. Major market emphasis for textile chemicals has recently been on the technical textile front, as its products are used in various industries such as agriculture, environmental protection, transportation, packaging, health care, and construction. Textile chemicals include dyes, dye carriers, printing agents, reducers, oil and water repellants, colorants, brightening agents, surfactants, stabilizers, equipment cleaners, bleaching agents, leather tanning, soil release agents, softeners, detergents, flame retardants, flocking additives, antistatic agents, UV absorbers, oxidizers, dye migration prevention agents, liquid alkali, wetting agents, and preparation auxiliary chemicals.