You’ve probably heard about modal fabric. It’s lightweight, stretchy, breathable, and more environmentally friendly than many other textiles.
Modal is used for many clothes, from underwear to t-shirts, and has become a beloved fashion industry fabric choice.
One thing, however, confuses many shoppers. Are modal t-shirts natural or synthetic? What is the modal fabric actually made of, and what about various fabric blends?
If you’re interested in fashion and want to learn more, keep reading as we investigate!
What is modal?
Modal is something between natural and synthetic therefore can be called a semi-synthetic fabric. Made by spinning reconstituted beech tree cellulose, it’s a plant-based textile that many brands use to make everything from bedding to t-shirts.
Modal is a version of rayon and can be mixed with, e.g., cotton or various stretchy fibers for the desired fabric and different purposes (activewear, loungewear, etc.).
Modal is durable, breathable, soft, and versatile. Also known as TENCEL, modal is considered naturally more sustainable than other textile crops because beech trees need less water.
Production and ecology
Modal was originally developed in Japan in the 1950s and, due to its excellent properties and softness, has become one of the most luxurious yet affordable options.
Modal t-shirts, shirts, and women’s garments are beloved worldwide and chosen as a stylish and higher-end option.
Modal is not entirely natural, though, because such chemicals as sodium hydroxide and carbon disulfate are used during the production process.
However, the production of this textile uses less water, takes up less space, and cuts down fewer trees than other fabrics. Modal is entirely biodegradable, and generally, fewer chemicals are used in the production process than with different types of rayon.
That’s why modal is often considered a more sustainable fashion choice than many other fabrics.
Why choose modal t-shirts
Brands often use modal to blend with other fabrics to add softness and a luxurious feel. You can find both pure modal or blended modal t-shirt options with such brands as Fresh Clean Tees and other companies.
Haven’t had a modal tee yet? Here’s why you should consider choosing modal or modal blend t-shirts for your next purchase.
Stretchy, doesn’t shrink or crease. Modal is elastic, which is excellent quality for making comfortable t-shirts. It also doesn’t shrink in the wash and is mostly wrinkle-resistant which means less ironing! That’s always a win in our book!
Soft and breathable. Modal t-shirts are very soft and are super comfortable and pleasant to wear. They’re also breathable and make an excellent choice for summer and activities when you need protection from the hot sun and excessive sweating.
Doesn’t pill or bleed color. Modal tees have a smooth finish and don’t pill even with daily wear. The fabric also doesn’t bleed dye when in the wash, so you don’t have to worry about the color transferring to your other clothes.
Durable. Modal fabric has a tight weave and long fibers, making it a durable choice for all your tees and saving you money for new purchases.
How to care for your modal tees
The great thing about modal t-shirts is that you can machine wash and tumble dry them without any worries! Always read the label, though, as many tees are made from a modal blend that might require special attention or care.
Generally, you can wash modal in any water temperature, but choose colder water if you want to be on the safe side.
Don’t bleach your tees with chlorine bleach, as it will damage or weaken the fabric.
You can either air or tumble dry your modal t-shirts, but we recommend air drying to minimize wrinkling!