How to Identify Viscose

Known as the beautiful fabric that is brilliant at imitating other more natural fabrics, viscose is becoming more popular these days, not only as an alternative to certain unsustainably harvested fabrics, but as a more modified version of these materials.

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Its fluid existence means that its everywhere without you realizing. And you’ll be glad you discovered this fabric after you learn how to identify it.

Even Softer than Cotton

Cotton is one of my all time favorite fabrics. It’s so comfortable, and its softness is its winning quality. However, I dare say that there is another fabric that takes its place for softness – viscose.

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Unlike cotton, is moves more freely and is less prone to becoming stiff and rigid. After it’s been laundered, it maintains its ability to feel very fluid, and drapes very well. Where cotton likes to just sit on your body, viscose dances around your body when you wear it. That’s how I like to describe it.

It does this as it’s more dense and weighty, so this helps to pull it to the ground more. This feature shines when its in its glossy satin form, imitating the higher end version of silk.

It Feels Cool to the Touch

Many viscose garments feel very similar. In addition to the weight bearing fabric, I find it feels less insulating, and more cool when you touch it.

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Most of this is down to it’s formation. When it is formed, it’s mixed with a solvent that turns it into long and strong threads. This process of mixing it into a liquid form and creating threads also gives way to a kind of sheen it produces due to the smooth perfected results of technology.

Viscose garments have a very slight way of reflecting a tiny bit of light thanks to this, as the threads are so smooth that they almost shine a little.

No Stretch

This is where it matches it’s natural counterparts again. Like cotton and linen, viscose is not naturally stretchy.

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Though it is soft and drapes well, it tends to lose a bit of shape if it’s worn in a lot over time. So it will feel a lot like touching very soft cotton.

Burn Test

It’s no surprise since viscose is very similar in many ways to cotton that it would react pretty similarly too. However there is a small but vital difference.

When viscose moves away from the flame, it usually keeps burning with hardly any flame on it. It can go for longer than cotton does.

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Because of the lack of flame, this means that it doesn’t even glow when it continues to burn.

However, the result is just the same. Not only does it smell like burning paper, it also crumbles away into a find black or grey ash like cotton does.

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