6 Reasons to Wear Wool

I am always surprised when I come across people who are ambivalent about wool or who think an acrylic jumper is the same as a wool one. Wool really is a kind of magic material and I have a feeling it’s a bit like marmite - people either know about it and are total wool converts, or they don’t know about it and they think real wool clothing is expensive and the only thing to care about is how soft it is and they forget that the alternatives (e.g. acrylic / polyester / fleece / ‘wool mix’) aren’t anywhere near as functional (maybe they don’t need ‘functional’ and that is fine - I don’t want to sound like some sort of annoying wool preacher!) but I thought it might interest you to read my list of reasons why it’s so impressive:

1. Antibacterial. the waxy coating contains fatty acids that inhibit the growth of bacteria and mould to grow. This is why wool doesn’t hold smell and you don’t have to wash it all the time. 

2. Stain resistant. The waxy coating means liquid rolls off easily. It does repel dirt too: you can simply brush it off or spot clean it.

3. Warm when wet. It can absorb half its own weight in moisture. It won’t feel wet to the touch until it is saturated with 60% of it’s own weight AND it retains 80% of its insulating value even when saturated. Think about that in comparison to cotton - it is quite amazing.

4. Strong. If you are in to ‘sustainable fashion’ you need to buy clothes that will last. Wool can be bent 20,000 times without breaking. Cotton breaks after 3,000 bends, silk after 2,000.

5. Regulates body temperature. In the winter it traps dry air and warmth near the skin and wicks the moisure away. In the summer it pulls moisture away from the skin as well as excess heat. I always find this hard to believe but Olly wears baselayers all summer so there must be some truth in it.

6. Sustainable. Wool uses 18% less energy than polyester and nearly 70% less water than cotton to produce 100 jumpers (according to British Wool’s website which goes on to talk about microplastic pollution in our oceans from clothing). 

‘Sustainable’ is an overused word and doesn’t mean that much especially when it comes to fashion. I’m sure that one of the best things you can do is to buy (less) clothing that you know suits your shape in colours that suit your complexion and that is well made so it will last. Natural fibres is not always possible but if you can then at least you know it’s not going to pollute the environment at the end of its life. It’s not about buying clothes made from recycled plastic bottles 😵‍💫