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What is "Mercerized Cotton" - Definition & Explanation

Mercerization is a treatment for cotton fabric and thread mostly employed to give cotton a lustrous appearance.
A wet finishing process for cotton yarn or fabric, which results in a stronger and more lustrous yarn that takes dye better with brighter, deeper colors.
Mercerized cotton is cotton thread (or cotton-covered thread with a polyester core) that has been treated with sodium hydroxide (NaOH). The thread is given a caustic soda bath that is then neutralized with an acid bath. This treatment increases strength, luster, affinity to dye and resistance to mildew, and also reduces lint. Long staple fibre lengths respond best to mercerization.
A treatment using heat and streatching to increase luster, strength and ability to dye. Usually the yarns are soaked in concentrated sodium.

Some other terms

Some more terms:

Enzymes used for treatment of yarn, fabric, and garments in wet processing operations such as pretreatment, including desizing, scouring, and bleaching; and finishing operations including surface...
Resistant to a specified agency either by reason of the physical structure or the chemical non-reactivity of the textile, or arising from a treatment designed to impart the desired...
refers to the application of material such as plastic resin, wax, oil, varnish or lacquer to the surface of the fabric. Application methods include dipping, spraying, brushing, calendering or knife...
Fiber sources are found in nature. That is, "any fiber that exists as such in the natural state." (TFPIA) Natural fibers used to create upholstery fabric include cotton, linen, hemp, silk and wool....
To achieve a matte, cotton-like texture, a jet of air is blown on a fiber to give it a rough, non-reflective surface. Textured fibers offer greater bulk and airiness to a fabric without increasing...

Companies for Mercerized Cotton:


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