How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk? 8 Methods

How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk? 8 Methods

We’ve put together a list of techniques so you can determine whether the silk you’re eyeing is real or fake in order to assist you.

Despite what might seem like an increase in the availability of silk fabrics, consumers find it difficult to choose pure silk when they want to buy it for their homes or clothing because it is all-natural.

Burning is a good test because real silk burns in a very specific way, making burning the best way to identify silk (please don’t do this to your clothes at home). It burns quickly and cleanly, and when you rub it between your fingers, it disintegrates into dust rather than forming a plastic ball of burned material.

We are here to help you determine whether your silk is real or fake.

How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk?

While it may seem difficult to know if you’re really purchasing genuine silk before you’ve already handed over your hard-earned cash, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you to work out the differences between a quality silk fabric and a synthetic man-made material.


Silk fibers’ triangular shape, which reflects light from all directions, is a result of their structure. The result is a material with a rainbow-colored sheen. No matter the direction of the light, the artificial fabric will not reflect anything but white light.

Holding the fabric up to the light will allow you to see the colors of shimmering light, so try it out if you get the chance. If they have multiple colors, you are probably looking at silk.

How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk? 8 Methods


There are ways to determine whether the fabric is real silk if you also have the opportunity to touch it. Put the fabric in your hands and first try to bunch it. Walking on fresh snow can be compared to the scrunching sound made by silk. Additionally, silk will warm up when you rub it between your fingers, while other fabrics stay the same temperature.


Of course, money is always involved when determining a real from a fake, whether it’s to snag that designer bag or get yourself a new silk gown.

Finding a silk garment that is reasonably priced should immediately raise red flags. Silk is a very expensive fabric, and while some reliable manufacturers can afford to sell it for fair prices, if you see something for a very low price, it’s probably not what it seems.

Generally, real silk costs at least ten times more to produce than synthetic fibers, so it’s unlikely that you’ll manage to grab too much of a bargain when buying the real deal. So there’s a good chance the £10 silk blouse you’re looking to purchase is actually made of a polyester material that looks just like silk.

However, it’s important to exercise caution because sometimes the cost of fake silk is raised to make it seem more expensive. In this situation, we suggest perhaps conducting some background research on the company in question and perhaps contrasting their ostensibly high prices with those of genuine goods.

Satin Or Silk?

Watch out for anything listed as satin, or “silky satin”. The untrained eye frequently believes satin to be a type of silk, but this is untrue.

Sure, there are satin silk qualities such as crepe-backed satin, satin-faced georgette, and so on, but this is because satin is a type of weave. It’s a term that refers to the weaving process and has nothing to do with the actual material.

Instead, you want to be looking out for products that are described directly as ‘Silk’ or ‘Silk Satin’ when looking for genuine silk.

How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk? 8 Methods


A dead giveaway is a visual distinction between genuine silk and its imitations. Silk has a unique sheen that cannot be matched by any other fabric and cannot be imitated.

Highly regarded for its shimmering properties, the triangular prism-like structure of silk fibers not only helps it to shine but also allows it to reflect light in different ways. This enables a multicolored sheen because it refracts light in a variety of ways to produce a wide range of colors.

When made of synthetic fibers, the fabric may appear to shimmer, but no matter the angle, all that shines through is white.


It can be difficult to tell if something is genuine silk or not, but you can probably tell if something is fake by carefully examining the weave.

Since real silk is frequently created by hand, there may be a few minor weaving flaws. Machines are usually used to produce fake silk in large quantities, and it is almost always perfect.

How to Test If Your Silk Is Real?

Once you’ve got your hands on your silk (or fake silk) there are a few simple tests that can be done at home if you’re really unsure of its legitimacy.

Ring Test

A great method for distinguishing between genuine silk and imitation silk is the ring test. Simply try slipping the fabric through a finger ring all the way. Other fabrics are likely to get caught and bunch up in the ring, whereas silk should delicately glide through it with ease.

The silk’s thickness can occasionally influence this test result. For instance, it will be more challenging to pull through thicker silks.

How to Tell If Fabric is Real Silk? 8 Methods

Burn Test

As it involves destroying the fabric, you won’t typically be able to perform this test, but if you can, it’s a surefire way to determine whether something is true. Silk will stop burning when the flame is removed after gently burning with a lighter and giving off an unpleasant aroma reminiscent of burned hair. Additionally, brittle ash is produced.

Artificial fabrics, on the other hand, won’t produce ash and will smell more like plastic.

Is Real Silk Expensive?

Yes, it is pricey, but that price is justified by all the advantages. Every item of clothing you own made of silk will last for decades because it is the most prestigious and long-lasting textile.

Consider vintage clothing that continues to look brand-new; these items are typically made of silk. The prints won’t fade, the structure and shape won’t change, and they will last for a very long time.

The fact that silk is hypoallergenic, in addition to how it feels against the skin when worn, and the fact that it doesn’t absorb odor—even if you perspire, it will still show—make it one of the best materials for your skin.

Conclusion: Real Silk

Not everything that shines is silk, and not all that glitters is gold. Finding the fakes can be difficult once you realize how happy some brands are to deceive you and steal your money.

Silk feels extremely soft and almost “alive” in your hands, there is this sense of slippery material with life in between your fingers. When you stretch it next to this, it feels extremely strong and durable; you can’t really rip it with your hands.


How Can You Tell the Difference Between Real Silk and Fake Silk?

Fake silk will have a ‘white sheen’ (like plastic) from all angles, whereas silk fibers will only shimmer from a combination of light and angles. While real silk frequently has a slink that is “water-like,” fake silk is also stiffer. Excellent fake silk that feels like silk when touch. All bunched up.

What Does Natural Silk Look Like?

In fact, artificial silk frequently has a shiny appearance as opposed to a lustrous one. Genuine silk is always lustrous, never shiny. Fake silk is shiny.

Is Silk Shiny on Both Sides?

Silk and satin differ primarily in that silk is a natural fabric and satin is woven using a wrap-dominant pattern. Silk is shiny from both sides but satin has a glossy surface and dull back. Although satin was discovered in the middle ages, silk was the first fabric created, 12000 years ago in China.

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