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Stain protection in performance apparel: striking a balance between functionality and sustainability

Stain protection in performance apparel: striking a balance between functionality and sustainability

Stain protection is a key functional feature of performance apparel—especially medical clothing and industrial workwear where it is important to prevent spills which could potentially cause harm. However, stain resistance is also in demand for everyday wear. Stain repellent treatments minimise the need to launder and dry clean garments, and a combination of stain resistance, wrinkle resistance and anti-odour treatments helps to keep clothes looking fresher for longer. But several stain repellent treatments are based on fluorocarbons—whose manufacture can result in the generation of chemicals which may have adverse effects on the environment and on human health. This has prompted several companies to invest in innovation and the development of treatments which are environmentally sustainable without compromising on performance. This report provides a wealth of information on stain repellent treatments, applications of stain repellent clothing, and developments in stain protection technologies. The report also features information on: the market for stain repellent clothing; the properties of stain repellent materials; the benefits of stain protection; methods used to achieve stain repellency; materials and technologies used for stain protection in textiles; innovations in stain repellent clothing; and the outlook for the stain protection market.


  • SUMMARY
  • INTRODUCTION
  • MARKET FOR STAIN REPELLENT CLOTHING
  • APPLICATIONS OF STAIN REPELLENT CLOTHING
  • BENEFITS OF STAIN PROTECTION
    • PRESERVATION OF GARMENT AESTHETICS
    • PROLONGATION OF THE LIFE OF A GARMENT
    • CONTRIBUTION TO ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
    • SAVING TIME
  • PROPERTIES OF STAIN PROTECTION MATERIALS
    • HYDROPHOBICITY
    • SUPERHYDROPHOBICITY
    • OLEOPHOBICITY
    • SUPERAMPHIPHOBICITY
  • DEVELOPMENT OF STAIN PROTECTION TECHNOLOGY
    • INFLUENCE OF MODELS IN NATURE ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF STAIN PROTECTION TECHNOLOGIES
  • STAIN PROTECTION TECHNOLOGIES
    • STAIN RELEASE TREATMENTS
    • STAIN REPELLENCY
    • COMBINATION OF STAIN RELEASE AND STAIN REPELLENCY
  • METHODS USED TO ACHIEVE STAIN REPELLENCY
    • CHEMICAL MODIFICATION: MATERIALS AND METHODS USED
    • SURFACE MODIFICATION: METHODS AND MATERIALS USED
  • FLUOROCARBON-BASED FINISHES
    • STRUCTURE AND PROPERTIES OF FLUOROCARBONS
    • EFFECTS OF FLUOROCARBONS AND THE PROCESSES USED TO PRODUCE THEM ON HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT
    • GUIDELINES ON THE PRODUCTION AND USE OF FLUORINATED CHEMICALS
    • US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 2010/15 PFOA Stewardship Program
    • EU Directive 2006/122/EC on the use of perfluorooctane sulphonate (PFOS)
    • The Madrid Statement regarding fluorinated compounds and the FluoroCouncil's response
    • Role of the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) Programme
    • The positions of manufacturers and other suppliers on the use of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
  • METHODS FOR TESTING THE STAIN PROTECTION PROPERTIES OF FABRICS
    • AATCC TM22-2014, Water Repellency: Spray Test
    • AATCC TM79-2014, Absorbency of Textiles
    • AATCC TM118-2013, Oil Repellency: Hydrocarbon Resistance Test
    • AATCC TM130-2015, Soil Release: Oily Stain Release Method
    • AATCC TM193-2012, Aqueous Liquid Repellency: Water/Alcohol Solution Resistance Test
  • MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGIES USED FOR STAIN PROTECTION IN TEXTILES
    • ALBERT-LUDWIG-UNIVERSITÄT FREIBERG (UNIVERSITY OF FREIBURG): SELF-REPAIRING MATERIAL
    • CHEMOURS: TEFLON
      • Table Versions of Teflon fabric protector and their properties, 2017
    • Teflon EcoElite
    • COLUMBIA SPORTSWEAR: OMNI-SHIELD
    • DROPEL FABRICS: DROPELTECH
    • HARVARD JOHN A PAULSON SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING AND APPLIED SCIENCES (SEAS) AND THE WYSS INSTITUTE FOR BIOLOGICALLY INSPIRED ENGINEERING AT HARVARD UNIVERSITY: SLIPPERY LIQUID INFUSED POROUS SURFACES
    • HEIQ: HEIQ ECO DRY
    • INSTITUTE OF TEXTILES AND CLOTHING (ITC) AT THE HONG KONG POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY: FABRIC MODELLED ON THE MICROSTRUCTURES OF AQUATIC BIRD FEATHERS
    • MIT: SUPERHYDROPHOBIC MATERIAL MODELLED ON NASTURTIUM LEAVES AND MORPHO BUTTERFLY WINGS
    • NANOTEX: AQUAPEL
    • NANOTEX: RELEASES STAINS
    • NANOTEX: RESISTS SPILLS
    • NANOTEX: RESISTS SPILLS & RELEASES STAINS
    • POSTECH: ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY SUPERHYDROPHOBIC COATING MADE WITH SALT PARTICLES
    • RMIT UNIVERSITY: TEXTILE WHICH DEGRADES ORGANIC MATTER WHEN EXPOSED TO LIGHT
    • SCHOELLER: 3XDRY BIO AND ECOREPEL BIO
    • SCHOELLER: NANOSPHERE
    • UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN: DURABLE, SPRAY-ON COATING WITH SELF-HEALING AND SUPERHYDROPHOBIC PROPERTIES
    • W L GORE & ASSOCIATES (GORE): FABRICS WITH DURABLE WATER REPELLENT (DWR) TREATMENTS WHICH ARE FREE FROM PERFLUORINATED COMPOUNDS (PFCs)
  • INNOVATIONS IN STAIN REPELLENT CLOTHING
    • ABLY APPAREL: ABLY
    • LABFRESH: SHIRTS WITH STAIN REPELLENT, ANTIODOUR AND ANTI-WRINKLE PROPERTIES
    • ODO: JEANS WHICH ARE RESISTANT TO ODOURS AND REPEL STAINS
    • OLD NAVY: STAY WHITE JEANS
    • THREADSMITHS: THE CAVALIER
    • VARDAMA: STAIN REPELLENT MEN'S WEAR
  • OUTLOOK
  • APPENDIX: CLASSIFICATION OF STAINS, STAIN PROTECTION CHARACTERISTICS OF DIFFERENT FIBRE TYPES, AND SURFACE FREE ENERGY OF SOLIDS AND SURFACE TENSION OF LIQUIDS
    • Table Classification of stains
    • Table Stain protection characteristics of different fibre types
    • Table Surface free energy of solids and surface tension of liquids

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