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What Is Lyocell?

by Toni Olukiran

1min read

Lyocell is a new material being used more and more in everything from clothing to mattresses to seatbelts. So what is it, and is it truly a sustainable material?

What is lyocell?

Lyocell is a man-made material that has been enjoying success and attention from big designers as well as high street clothing brands. It’s ideal for a lot of clothing, as it’s hypoallergenic and super soft and breathable. 

What is it made from?

Lyocell is made from raw wood pulp, typically eucalyptus, though sometimes other types such as birch. The wood is then dissolved in acid, leaving a thick liquid, and then undergoes a process known as spinning, which dries it out. It is then pushed through holes, forming individual holes, which can then be spun into cloth. 

Is lyocell sustainable?

Being biodegradable and coming from sustainable wood, lyocell at first glance does look sustainable, and while it is a good alternative to other materials such as polyester, it does come with its own problems. Lyocell may be produced in countries where fossil fuels are used to produce it, which of course comes with its own environmental implications. Lyocell can also be used in clothing with other materials such as rayon or polyester, which are less sustainable and can also prevent a garment from being recyclable. However, when considering other materials, especially polyester, it is definitely the lesser of two evils. 

For more information about sustainability and fashion, check out our blog post here.

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Toni Olukiran
by Toni Olukiran

Toni is one of our lovely Content Marketing Assistants, and when she’s not writing posts about everything from Jamaican cooking to vegan champagne, she’s making a Spotify playlist (she was at 200, at her last count) or playing tennis in the park.

Read more from Toni


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