Antimicrobial fabrics: The future of textiles


Health and cleanliness have long been major global concerns for everyone. However, as the Covid-19 epidemic struck, people’s perceptions of cleanliness began to change significantly. The textile industry is prepared to raise the standard for environmental hygiene thanks to growth in the healthcare sector and rising personal hygiene awareness.

We are shielded by textiles from humidity, heat, and chilling weather. But in the present Covid-19 environment, the pressing need for antimicrobial materials has given rise to a brand-new market for textiles. In order to combat the coronavirus, healthcare staff now employ a lot of personal protective equipment (PPE) made with antimicrobial textiles.

How does the textile business benefit from antimicrobial fabric?

The industry uses antimicrobial textiles in a variety of ways. Specially treated textiles can be used widely to lower the likelihood of disease spread and prevent infection, including clothing, scrubs for the hospital, and medical mattress coverings, fabric, and upholstery. The cloth used for treating wounds and even for specialized medical treatment is always antibacterial by nature and fully promotes the healing process.

In the military and defense industry, the antimicrobial fabric is used to make clothing and other accessories for counter-chemical and biological warfare, which is a significant additional use. In addition to apparel, antimicrobial textiles are a great option for athletic footwear and clothing since they reduce or eliminate smells.

Antimicrobial textiles are used in a variety of sectors based on health and sanitation issues, including automotive and contract furniture fabric, food packaging, safety equipment, air filters, the garment industry, and more.

As we are on the topic, here are some more applications of antimicrobial fabric:
1. These materials are used in a variety of home textiles.
2. There are several requirements for this fabric within the sportswear business.
3. These materials are used for commercial purposes such as food packaging and air filtration.
4. Storage, ventilation, and water purification systems can all benefit from the usage of antimicrobial fabric.

Given their significance and applicability in the present, the industry’s use of these materials is gradually expanding, and this trend is expected to continue as more people become health concerned.

Market changes brought on by the epidemic

The Covid-19 epidemic has brought hygiene and health to the forefront of the global discussion. The healthcare sector is growing, and people are becoming more conscious of the need for personal cleanliness, so the textile industry is ready to set new benchmarks for hygiene. With the help of antimicrobial technologies, the textile sector is promoting hygiene.

In 2022, people are more concerned than ever with their personal cleanliness and health. The epidemic has had a huge impact on how people utilize textiles worldwide. According to surveys, antimicrobial textile is about to grow by 4%.

Asia Pacific has become one of the crucial markets with the highest volume and value growth thanks to all the technological advancements over the years. Future fabrics will be made of antimicrobial materials. In the field of textiles, researchers and developers are working together to create ground-breaking breakthroughs that, if implemented, will fuel new commercial collaboration initiatives.

Unquestionably, these initiatives will alter the properties of commonly used textiles while supplying the worldwide textile sector with scientific assurance through the employment of stronger materials. We shall be protected from microscopic microbes and germs by these recently introduced materials.

The global need for the creation of antimicrobial textiles has increased because to the Covid-19 crisis. Additionally, the industry will undoubtedly grow in the next years.

Scientists collaborating with textile technologists and the finishing industry are advancing with a number of notable techniques using new, patented technology with tried-and-true methods and improvements.

The challenges that one should consider

Companies in the antimicrobial sector face difficulties in addition to expansion. Strict environmental controls on antimicrobial fibers created with risky chemicals are by far the largest business issue.

Despite the fact that antimicrobial textiles offer several health advantages, end-user items are more sanitary. Antimicrobial compounds are the unsavory side of antimicrobial materials, though. Many of these compounds might be hazardous to the environment and occasionally even to human health.

Antimicrobial compounds come in a variety of compositions, which impacts their properties. These substances, which come into contact with the skin and pose a health risk, are used to polish completed goods.

Additionally, antibacterial substances including triclosan, PHMB, quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs), and others are produced when these products are washed. These contaminants contaminate water bodies, endangering aquatic life and subsequently the ecology. If these chemicals get into the soil, they can also make the area barren and easily pollute farmland.

The most challenging issues for any manufacturer of antimicrobial fabrics are resolving environmental and public health issues related to antimicrobial chemicals and making the business more ecologically and environmentally friendly.

The price and accessibility of raw materials have an impact on the use of antimicrobial fabric. One of these fundamental materials is cotton, which is treated with antibacterial substances including silver, zinc, copper, and QACs.

The market’s conditions have an impact on raw material pricing every day. Because of this, it can drive up the already high manufacturing costs of antimicrobial textiles. The market’s both supply and demand for antimicrobial textiles may be impacted by pricing as well.

Opportunities for the antimicrobial fabrics

Researchers, producers, and consumers are growing more and more interested in antimicrobial textiles. To lead a safer and more satisfying life, consumers are looking for products of greater quality.

Market researchers are always attempting to develop products that are cost-effective, ecologically friendly, and kind to the skin, while manufacturers are vying to distinguish their items by utilizing novel active ingredients or fabrics.

As a consequence of continued research and developments in technology, the antimicrobial fabric market is rapidly growing.

The industry for antimicrobial fabric is both developing and emerging. The antimicrobial fabric market is anticipated to rule the worldwide textile industry over the anticipated time.

The healthcare sector’s increasing demand for antimicrobial fabric might help the antimicrobial fabric sector. Hospital expansion and increased public awareness of personal cleanliness are anticipated to be major development drivers.
People must work to prioritize the development of antimicrobial fabric and offer the world better and more secure clothing options.