Here is all the information you need to know about Lenzing Modal fabric, including its uses, production, characteristics, drawbacks, environmental impact, and sustainable alternatives.
Are you trying to find a soft, high-quality fabric to purchase? both for you and a loved one? Chances are that you have come across Lenzing Modal at some point (which is likely what brought you to this article).
On this page, we’ve compiled a complete history of the fabric. To help you understand how crucial Lenzing Modal is to the textile industry, this post examines it in detail.
What is Lenzing Modal?
A cellulosic fiber in the rayon family is called a modal. It is produced at a very low cost and is regarded as a semi-synthetic material. Lenzing produces Modal fibers by solubilizing quality cellulose extracted from plants or wood. Tencel Modal is a material produced under strict environmental standards.
In 1951, Modal was first found in Japan. However, the first commercial sale of Modal fabrics occurred in 1964 by the Austrian company Lenzing. Modal is the second generation of cellulosic fibers. It’s a modified version of viscose with higher tenacity. It’s stronger when wet, more durable, and flexible.
But cotton, rayon, and viscose are more expensive than modal. Its manufacturing process also uses more energy than processing natural fibers.
Lenzing Modal is a unique material with unique properties. The delicate fiber feels as opulent as silk and is cozy, unbelievably soft, light, breathable, strong, and durable. The fibers of Tencel Modal feel incredibly soft to the touch, are water-absorbent, and dry quickly. Furthermore, they are mold and moth-resistant.
Lenzing Modal fabrics have good drapes and hang. They come in a variety of colors, and sheens, and have good resistance to pilling and wrinkling. Tencel Modal is adaptable, permeable, simple to wear, and durable. It makes excellent fabrics for underwear, sportswear, and everyday wear.
Fabrics made of modal, however, are not heat resistant. When exposed to UV and sunlight, they lose longevity and have poor thermal stability.
Here are some of the best advantages of Lenzing Modal fabrics:
- High comfort and softness
- A luxurious look and hand feel
- Good elasticity
- Good tensile strength
- Good resilience
- Good durability
- Good pilling resistance
- Good wrinkle resistance
- Easy to wash
- Moth and fungus resistance
The main downsides of using Lenzing Modal fibers are:
- Low chemical protection
- Low resistance to UV and sunlight
- Low thermal stability
- Low heat resistance
- Low abrasion resistance
How is Lenzing Modal Made?
Sustainable sources, such as plantations and untouched forests, are used to harvest beechwood. Once harvested, the raw wood is broken into fragments which are in turn converted into pulp.
The pulp is then spun into thread and fibers that can be used to create fabric. The natural fibers in the beechwood allow for the creation of a strong, soft, sustainable fabric.
Lenzing Modal Fabric Applications
Lenzing Modal fabric is used in the fashion industry to produce clothing and accessories. It is sheeny, smooth, and reasonably priced. Modal is similar to expensive silk. Modal fabrics make blouses, evening dresses, formal shirts, and knitwear. Sportswear, suits, coats, sweaters, pajamas, and undergarments are all produced using Modal by numerous clothing companies.
Like other soft and opulent fabrics, Lenzing Modal can be found in home furnishings, towels, bed linens, curtains, furniture, upholstery, carpets, bathrobes, and home decor. In place of petroleum-based synthetic fibers like nylon, acrylic, and polyester, cellulosic fibers like Tencel Modal have become very popular.
In the upcoming years, there will be a slight increase in the demand for Lenzing Modal fabrics. Particularly in China, new applications for clothing and home furnishings will emerge. Tencel Modal is frequently combined with other fibers, including polyester, nylon, cotton, wool, silk, spandex, and others, by clothing manufacturers to reduce the cost of raw materials.
To make affordable clothing, many fashion companies use Lenzing Modal fabrics. As the main fiber or a sizable portion of the fiber composition, modal produces inexpensive clothing.
How to Care for Lenzing Modal Fabrics?
Pure Lenzing Modal fabrics should only be hand washed in cold water that is under 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit), and washing machines should not be used to clean Modal.
One of the best ways to make sure that your Modal clothing lasts longer is to take good care of it. Tencel Modal fabrics need special attention because they cannot withstand high temperatures.
Read the care instructions on a fabric’s care tag before washing a Modal item. This will enable you to decide whether the garment can be washed. Depending on the fabric’s blend, the washing instructions might change.
Modal-based blends with other fibers are typically used to create semi-synthetic fabrics, which are typically simpler to wash. They can be washed in the washer in the cold wash setting. To avoid using a fast cycle, use a gentle one. A maximum of 600 revolutions per minute should be adhered to when washing. If not, Tencel Modal fabrics might get very creased.
When cleaning Lenzing Modal, avoid using any chlorine-based or potent detergents. In its place, use a mild, natural soap. Do not dry Modal fabrics in a tumble dryer either. The dryer decreases its durability and increases the chance of the clothing being harmed because of its relatively low thermal resistance.
Leaving your Tencel Modal clothing to air dry is a more environmentally friendly option. As opposed to using a dryer, hang them outside in the open air. It preserves their quality and saves energy.
Lenzing Modal materials are simple to flip over after being laid out on a towel for a while. Place the clothing on a flat surface to allow it to dry naturally rather than on hangers.
Difference Between Modal and Lenzing Modal Fabric
Between Modal and Lenzing Modal fabric, there isn’t much distinction. Modal was created in Japan in the 1950s. “Lenzing” is the name of the company that produces most of the modals in use today – Lenzing AG, an Austrian business. Lenzing AG has multiple brands including:
- Lenzing Modal
- China Modal
- MicroModal (a lighter finer-knit version of Modal)
- “Modal Air by Lenzing” (an even finer knit version that makes it even softer, but can be prohibitively expensive.)
How Soft is Lenzing Modal?
Lenzing Modal fabric, in comparison to regular cotton, is frequently cited as being much silkier and softer. Lenzing Modal fabric is generally thought of as being very soft to the touch, despite the fact that there are premium cotton options like Egyptian and Pima (which are considered soft).
Chemical transformation is used to transform beechwood chips into fibers, which are then spun into yarn. The end result is a fabric that is, for many people, a lot softer than cotton. Lenzing’s methods for producing their modal fabric can also make use of various weaving structures.
Depending on the weaving structures employed, the texture and sheen of the fabric, as with all thread/yarn spun and woven into sheets of fabric, can differ, which can impact the softness.
Is Lenzing Modal Sustainable?
The health of the workers is put in danger when modal production takes place in poorly regulated facilities, which also harms the environment nearby. Waterways can quickly become contaminated by acids and other hazardous chemicals.
Heavy processing is necessary to produce fabrics from plants or wood. And producers create Modal with chemically-intensive processes harmful to people and the environment. Energy, water, and hazardous substances like sulfuric acid, carbon disulfide, and others are needed in large quantities for the production of modal.
Chemicals can seriously harm workers if manufacturers don’t commit to handling them carefully. Modal is produced using highly corrosive chemicals that cause severe burns to the skin and eyes. They harm the nervous system, irritate the nose and throat, and, at high concentrations, severely harm the lungs.
These harmful substances can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, and confusion if they come into contact with your skin, are ingested, or are inhaled. Thankfully, Lenzing uses an eco-friendly process to produce Modal. The business recycles up to 95% of the chemicals used during production. However, Modal fibers contribute to microfiber pollution that escapes through our plumbing and sewage systems.
Conclusion: Lenzing Modal Fabric
Lenzing Modal fabric is made in Lenzing, Austria. It is made primarily of threads that are made with the pulp of beechwood trees. Although cotton was intended to be replaced by Lenzing Modal, the two fabrics have many unique characteristics.
One of the main areas where Lenzing Modal shines the brightest is sustainability. It is undoubtedly more environmentally friendly than a lot of the procedures involved in growing and producing cotton for clothing.
Is Lenzing Modal Breathable?
Given their similarities, and the fact that Lenzing produces both, modal and lyocell are frequently confused. Modal is a little softer and more delicate, but both are cozy, breathable, and moisture-absorbing.
Is Modal Better Than Cotton?
Modal fabric is warmer, absorbs 50% more than cotton, retains its shape after every use, shrink-, pill-, and fade-resistant. Even in hot, humid climates, it is comfortable to wear and has a good drape. Therefore, a modal should be your first choice if you’re looking for a fabric that is more durable and will last for many years.
Is Lenzing Modal Toxic?
Lenzing’s technologies are less-toxic and have a high rate of recovery for process ingredients, meaning fewer chemicals end up being wasted. Additionally, they purchase their trees from PEFC or FSC-accredited forests that have beech tree plantations that are sustainably managed.