Bamboo in Bedding
What are Bamboo Sheets Made of?
Bamboo sheets are made from viscose from bamboo or bamboo rayon. Both are highly durably, silky-soft fabrics which retain their feel and appearance for years to come with very little care and nothing more than a light detergent. Spun from bamboo yarn comprising bamboo fiber cellulose, both viscose bamboo (also known as regenerated bamboo) and rayon are of equal quality, with closely matching characteristics.
If you are looking for excellent temperature regulation, a feeling which is silky without slipping from your skin, and a cost set at a fraction of the price of Egyptian cotton, then bamboo is definitely for you. Here we’ll be taking you through how bamboo yarn is made, the thread which bamboo fabric is made of, while explaining the practical benefits of sleeping on a pillowcase.
How is Bamboo Yarn Made?
Bamboo yarn is manufactured using a range of processes and treatments, however the most common method for making bamboo yarn, which is spun into textiles and sheets, involves hydrolysis alkalization with a multi-phase bleaching treatment. This is the technique used for most regenerated bamboo fiber. First, the bamboo leaves and the soft, inner pith are extracted and then finely crushed. The crushed bamboo cellulose obtained as a pulp is then soaked in a solution of 15 to 20% hydrogen peroxide at a controlled temperature for roughly 24 hours.
This is pressed to remove the excess hydrogen peroxide solution, and then heated to a higher temperature for between one and three hours, or until it forms bamboo alkali cellulose. The alkali cellulose is then crushed and left to dry for a day. Carbon disulphide is then added to the mix which causes it to form a gel as the reaction to the solution. The remainder of the carbon disulphide is evaporated, leaving cellulose sodium xanthogenate. This is then mixed with a diluted sodium hydroxide which causes it to dissolve into a viscous liquid containing roughly 7 percent sodium hydroxide and 15 percent bamboo fiber cellulose.
The viscose bamboo cellulose then undergoes processing whereby it is fed into large spinneret nozzles within an acidic solution. The acid, most commonly sulfuric acid, causes the viscose bamboo cellulose sodium xanthogenate to harden and solidify, at which point it becomes cellulose bamboo fiber threads. Throughout this process the bamboo retains its bamboo kun, the natural bacteriostatic agent present in the plant.
These phytochemicals are antimicrobial and antifungal, and studies show that they remain present in all bamboo fabrics regardless of the individual process of manufacturing. This is also the same compound which makes the plant so resistant to pests and diseases. A range of various chemical manufacturing processes are employed to produce bamboo fabric; however, all involve a catalyst to form a fiber which is then spun into a yarn using industrial spinnerets.
Spun bamboo threads are then woven into bamboo fabric and then crafted into clothing, towels, pillows, bamboo sheets, and more. Bamboo fabric is highly sustainable, silky soft, antibacterial, and retains its color and feel for far longer than cotton. Thanks to the density and structure of bamboo fibers, bamboo fabric requires a lower thread count to match the softness of cotton.
Organic processing methods are at times used to manufacture bamboo sheets, modifying the process above slightly to reduce the amount of chemicals used. All bamboo fabric carry the same antimicrobial properties, while being highly durable and akin to silk in its softness.
You will find that bamboo fabric is on par with the softness of Egyptian cotton, while almost being as silky as true silk itself. Most bamboo sheets will come with specialized care instructions; however, most bamboo fabrics should be washed at a low temperature using a very mild detergent. Thanks to the unique nature of bamboo fibers, you will never need to run your item through a heavy wash using harsh detergents. There is also no need for fabric softener as bamboo remains smooth to the touch for many years.
Designers are coming to love bamboo fabric as it is far cheaper than silk and the fibers absorb dye far better. Bamboo fabric does not need to be mercerized in order to have the full vibrancy and luster of color brought out. In addition, bamboo fabric is far more wrinkle resistant that other types of material.
Bamboo Pillowcase Benefits
A bamboo pillowcase ensures that your head and neck stay cool, while the pillowcase itself never absorbs any of the oils from your skin. The superior moisture wicking and absorptive properties guarantee that your pillow stays dry throughout the night, while bamboo’s great antibacterial properties from the bamboo kun inherent prevents insects such as dust mites, and other microorganisms, from infesting the place where you rest your head. For the highest levels of cleanliness, healthiness, and comfort, look no further than bamboo pillowcases.
- Ling Lee