Bamboo Yarn

You don't have to worry about a panda trying to eat your bamboo yarn. It's too processed! And it comes from a different species of bamboo anyway.

bamboo yarn

A lot of clothing made from bamboo will say "rayon" on the label. It's a process of making a synthetic rayon fiber from wood cellulose, and that original wood can be bamboo, but it's undergoing a lot of chemicals and processing to turn it into fiber for spinning.

Bamboo Yarn Care

Items made from bamboo will last longer if you handwash them and lay them flat to dry. Bamboo is sometimes softer than silk and takes dye well.

It breathes and insulates, so it's sometimes blended with wool fiber to make wool cooler. Be extra careful about washing blends and check the yarn instructions.

The History of Bamboo Fiber

Bamboo grows very fast, but it's not a traditional bast fiber like hemp and flax. It must be broken down with chemicals then forced through the spinneret machine to create fibers.

Bamboo yarn is a modern invention with the Industrial Age. As part of processing, it must be boiled in lye and soaked in carbon disulfide. It's the same extrusion process used to produce rayon and soy fiber, and it destroys the antimicrobial properties found in raw bamboo.

It may be a sustainable crop, but it is not an environmentally friendly process to turn it into yarn. Often the only thing "green" is the dye!

It is possible for manufacturers to use a closed loop process that recycles the chemical baths for reuse. I encourage you to investigate the yarn manufacturer if you are eco-conscious.

More to Explore

cotton yarn
flax yarn
hemp yarn

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