TENCEL: What You Need To Know About Your New Carpet

Carpets made from TENCEL will be more resilient than those made from viscose.

So, you’ve decided to invest in a new carpet. You have the right measurements, you know what color will look best, and you have agreed on a budget. However, despite all the careful planning you have made, you might have overlooked a crucial question. What is your new carpet made of? It might not sound like an important question to some, but if you’re looking for a carpet that will last, its critical to know this data. Over the years, many carpet  have been made from viscose, also known as rayon. However, this fiber isn’t quite the natural fiber people once thought. Therefore, many carpet manufactures have started to use TENCEL®. Much like viscose, TENCEL® is made from wood pulp which is then made in to cellulose before resulting in silky looking carpets. Yet unlike viscose, carpets made from TENCEL® will be more resilient and last longer.

Why TENCEL® is better than Viscose:

The main difference between the two is the strength of the fibers, both wet and dry. Essentially, TENCEL® is formed by a physical process rather than chemical changes thus allowing it to maintain its integrity when wet. For this reason, it behaves better during the dying and manufacturing process, making for a better product overall. As mentioned before, it is regenerated from wood cellulose and since it is a sustainable fabric, it is one of the most environmentally friendly regenerated fabrics.

If you look at the pictures above, you will see the comparison between the two sets of fibers. The photo on the left shows the uniform and beautiful finish that you can only get from TENCEL®. These long cylindrical yarn fibers made up of long straight chains of molecules gives you a stronger more resilient product. Generally speaking, this can not be said for products containing viscose fibers. If you look at the photo on the right, you will notice their stark differences. Instead of uniformed cylindrical fibers, you have disjointed and staggered ones.

In a real world application, there is a dramatic difference when these fibers get wet. Viscose fibers bunch like papier-mâché when wet will not completely unbunch as the fibers dry. Because of this, there will be a discoloration in the wet spot. Conversely, TENCEL® fibers unbunch as they dry which allows the fiber to return to its original color. While this makes TENCEL® outstanding for interior areas like bedrooms, executive offices, or to fabricate into rugs that might be used under tables, neither fabric is recommended in areas where they will take on water, such as entryways.

TENCEL® Process VS. Viscose Process:

In the TENCEL® process, solvents are used to help dissolve the cellulose in water. At that point, a spinnerette is used to pull long cellulose fibers. It is important to note that during this physical process, there is no chemical change to the cellulose. The physical pulling of the fibers is what causes the long straight chains of molecules thus resulting in it’s final form. Plus, since it is a closed process, the catalysts that are used are refined back out of the water and 98.9% of it can then be reused.

During the viscose process, cellulose is dissolved in water before strong chemicals, such as carbon disulphide and caustic soda, are added to physically change the chemical structure into alkali cellulose. Through this process, the fibers are formatted with random chemical structures. This causes the product to have less strong and less uniform fibers.

Carpet made from TENCEL®:

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‘Satara’ from Jacaranda Carpets is one of the best collections we can think of that demonstrates the beauty and strength of TENCEL®. With deep saturated colors and over 18 shades to choose from, ‘Satara’ is simply stunning. If you’re looking to be the envy of your friends, than this is the product for you! Not to mention, you will be able to confidentially say that your new rug is going to last a long time, thanks to TENCEL®!