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Types of Bathing Suit Fabric

While shopping for an attractive bathing suit, it is not just the color, pattern, and the design that should strike us. The fabric is as important as any of the other factors that are mentioned.

"People shop for a bathing suit with more care than they do a husband or wife. The rules are the same. Look for something you'll feel comfortable wearing. Allow for room to grow." ―Erma Bombeck

Bathing suits come in a wide variety, especially for the lucky ladies. They have a wide range to choose from. Not only does it come in different patterns and designs, but also the fabric has changed with time, giving it a more comfortable and wearable feel. The more enhanced version of swimsuits include a variety of options, and one of the most important factors that vary each one of them is the suit fabric. Earlier, bathing suits were simply made of polyester or nylon, that did not provide much comfort. But now, considering many factors and reviews from the consumers, manufacturers have allowed themselves to try a combination of materials to make the piece of clothing more comfortable.

Nowadays, the swimwear industry has upgraded itself with the use of enhanced fabrics such as lycra, spandex, and nylon spandex fabrics, that has indeed improved the quality of swimwear products, including bathing suits. Spandex fabric is one of the most commonly used fabrics used now. The popular brand in spandex fabric is 'Lycra'. Many of us confuse Lycra as a type of fabric, and we call it lycra fabric. The fact is that lycra is not the name of the fabric but it is a popular brand that produces spandex fabric. It is produced by Invista, that used to be a part of DuPont, an American chemical company that invented spandex.

Spandex is a highly elastic synthetic fiber that is much stronger and more durable than rubber. Invention of this synthetic fiber revolutionized the clothing industry, the swimwear industry being one of the most beneficial amongst all. Spandex is used as a fabric not only because of its form-fitting nature, but also because this fabric breathes. This fabric's unique feature is that it can expand up to three to four times the normal size, and spring back to its original form without losing its integrity. Swimming is an activity that involves immense body movement, and spandex fabric provides the comfort to do so with ease, because of its elasticity.

Basically, bathing suits consist of either polyester plus spandex fabric, or they are made of nylon spandex fabric. What it means is that, a considerable amount of the material contains polyester or nylon, and spandex is only an additional synthetic fiber that is added to bring in the elasticity. A bathing suit usually consists of 20 - 25% spandex fabric or lycra spandex, and the rest is nylon or polyester. Nylon spandex material is known to be more durable. Also, unlike cotton and other fabrics, bathing suits are easily washable, and can be quickly dried.

These days, many of the swimsuit manufacturers do use fabrics containing spandex or the more popular 'lycra' spandex. It is imperative to check the fabric composition of the bathing suit as attentively as you look for the color, pattern, and design. A bathing suit fabric that does not contain spandex would not just be a waste of money, but it will also cause discomfort and make the whole swimming experience unpleasant.

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