If you're looking to buy some high-quality clothes today and you pay close attention to the labels as you shop around, you'll undoubtedly come across Modal and perhaps even MicroModal listed on the fabric contents. These are relatively new fabrics and you might not know what they are, so we're here to help!
Looking to learn the difference between Modal and MicroModal? Here's everything that you need to know, as well as some advice on proper care instructions.
What Is Modal Fabric?
Modal Fabric sounds fancy and futuristic, but it's actually just rayon fabric that comes from the fibers of beech trees. What is rayon fabric, you ask? Well, that's just the word that refers to fabrics and fibers that are derived from the wood pulp of trees. However, not all rayons are created equal.
While rayon fabrics are not traditionally what most would consider "natural fibers" (due to the various chemicals that are used within the processing stage), Modal is created through a more eco-friendly process that allows for 95% of the production materials and chemicals to be reclaimed in a closed loop. This helps to reduce emissions while also using fewer natural resources - a win-win for sellers and consumers alike.
Modal has its roots way back to 1951, when it was first used in Japan. In the interceding years, the fiber has spread around the world and it is now immensely popular. As sustainable fashion progresses, more and more eco-friendly alternatives to popular fabrics come to market.
The fabric is so popular today because it is incredibly soft and has a smooth finish. Best of all, it achieves these features while draping well and being resistant to creasing. To get more comfortable variations and fabric feel, modal is often blended with other materials like cotton and wool.
Modal is a great choice for summer clothes, given that it breathes well and stays cool to the touch. This helps wearers to keep cool throughout the warmer months. As an additional bonus, the fiber retains its colors well, making modal and micromodal ideal for bright summer outfits that last.
The fibers that make up rayon (and remember, modal and micromodal fabrics are eco-friendly variations of rayon!) are longer and stronger than the commonly-found alternatives, meaning that they are more resistant to shrinkage when compared to materials like cotton or linen. The strong fibers also retain their shape over months and years of washing - a great bonus that means fashion lovers can look forward to having their favorite pieces for many years to come.
The fiber is becoming more and more popular around the world, particularly in the US where it is used in a wide range of clothes and linen garments. In most cases, modal is blended with additional fabrics to get the perfect finish, regardless of whether the end use is in clothing or home decor.
What Is MicroModal Fabric?
MicroModal is a specific type of modal that is produced in almost the exact same way. The key difference between the two fabrics is that MicroModal fibers are made to be incredibly thin, meaning that they can be tightly woven into a fabric. This means that the final piece is both incredibly strong and impossibly smooth.
These qualities mean that MicroModal varieties are very highly sought after and admired among fashion lovers and designers alike. Due to this unique combination of qualities, it's little wonder that MicroModal fabric is used to create a wide range of garments and accessories, with a special focus on technical garments like athletic wear.
Because MicroModal fabric is so technologically advanced, it's typically produced within developed countries, which means that consumers can rest assured that only the most environmentally-friendly manufacturing methods are followed.
How Should You Care For Modal Fabric?
When it comes to caring for these fabrics, it's absolutely essential that owners carefully read the specific instructions for their garments. While there are some rules of thumb which can be followed in a pinch, every item is different and you may find that a specific cleaning method might be necessary.
With that being said, most modal garments can be treated the same way as cotton and linen clothes. This means that you should avoid using any strong chlorine bleach which could potentially compromise the integrity of the fibers. Of course, this could also remove color from the piece, too.
When it comes to drying, it's once again very important that you follow the specific instructions as outlined on the piece itself. In most cases, you will find that these items should be dried on a low to medium-high temperature to achieve the best results. To help avoid wrinkling, you should also iron the piece a little and hang it while it's still slightly damp.
If you do decide to iron the piece, you should use a pressing cloth to protect it. As always, you should avoid excessive heat and make sure to iron the wrong side of the fabric - this is an important step when it comes to avoiding shine.
To sum things up, we hope that this closer look at Modal and MicroModal fabrics has been useful for you. As you can see, there's a lot of reasons why this material is incredibly popular and why you might want to consider adding a few pieces to your wardrobe.