WHAT IS MERINO WOOL?
Merino wool is the name given to the high-quality virgin wool from the merino sheep. The fur of the merino sheep consists of light, thin hairs and can withstand extreme temperature fluctuations.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN VIRGIN WOOL AND MERINO WOOL?
Unlike ordinary sheep's wool, merino fibers are much finer and only half as thick. Merino fibers range from 16.5 to 24 microns (= thousandths of a millimeter). By comparison, human hair is about 30 to 80 micrometers thick.
WHY DOES MERINO WOOL NOT SCRATCH?
Fabrics feel scratchy when thicker fibers meet the skin and do not curl when touched. The human sensitivity threshold is 25 microns - that's why regular wool scratches, whereas merino wool feels pleasantly soft.
PROPERTIES OF MERINO WOOL
Merino wool naturally offers many advantages. It:
- does not scratch
- temperature regulating - cools in summer and warms in winter
- does not form unpleasant odors
- retains moisture without feeling damp
- warms even when damp
- transports moisture to the outside
- does not wrinkle
- flame retardant
- does not become electrostatically charged
- has natural UV protection
- a renewable, sustainable fiber
WHY IS MERINO WOOL WARM?
Merino wool owes these natural properties to the structure and shape of its fibers. Due to the strong crimping, the fibers lay tightly over each other and form so-called air chambers. These air chambers trap the body heat. This creates an insulating and temperature-regulating effect, since air is a very poor conductor of heat and does not give off heat to the outside.
MERINO WOOL IN SUMMER?
Yes, products made of merino wool are also ideal for hotter days. This is because wool has the ability to absorb up to 33% of its own weight in moisture. The moisture is then stored inside the fiber, while the fiber surface remains dry. For example, it absorbs sweat or rain from the skin and stores it in its fibers. The warm summer air causes the absorbed moisture to evaporate on the outside. This produces evaporative cooling, which leaves a cooling sensation on the skin. It is important to make sure that the textiles have a high wool content. The higher the wool content, the better the moisture transport.
WHY DOES MERINO WOOL NOT SMELL?
Did you know that sweat is actually odorless? The reason for the unpleasant smell is the bacteria that start to decompose the sweat. Synthetic fibers have a very smooth structure, in which sweat and bacteria can settle particularly well. Merino wool, on the other hand, has a scaly surface that makes it almost impossible for bacteria to settle. In addition, merino wool has a self-cleaning effect. It consists of two different types of cells that constantly rub against each other. Due to the constant friction process, the fiber cleans itself again and again.
WHERE DOES MERINO WOOL COME FROM?
The majority of merino sheep live in Australia, New Zealand, South America and South Africa. The sheep can be sheared no more than twice a year. When it comes to the origin of the wool, animal welfare is also an important aspect to consider. Especially by Australian farmers, the painful mulesing procedure is still used. This prevents the nesting of fly larvae, by removing excess skin on the rump.