There are a lot of benefits from wearing women’s cotton polyester tee shirts. As such, it’s essential to learn about both polyester and cotton products and why this combination works well.
We know there are seemingly endless styles and brands on the market. With that said, we’ll help you to understand what material to search for, giving you an advantage and ensuring you’ll choose the best one for your needs.
Why the Tee Shirt Is so Popular
The tee shirt is so humble and classic, while still being simple and wearable with almost anything. Everyone searches for the perfect item, but there are so many to consider. You’ve got dozens of primary brands, various styles, and many fabric options, so it’s a lot with which to deal.
How is it that the tee-shirt became so complicated? Is it possible to find an ideal one that fits well and has all the features you desire? We’re here to help and have tried to come up with all the points you’ll need to know. By reviewing the different fabrics and their features, including their pros and cons, you’ll have a better idea of which one might be most suitable for you.
Top Three Fabrics
Manufacturers have tried a variety of materials with which to make tee shirts, including human hair and alligator leather. We don’t think, though, you’re going to be interested in nonconforming things like that. As such, there are three primary fabrics. They include polyester, cotton, and a blend of the two.
Of course, you can also find spandex and rayon, which work well for tri-blended products. Nevertheless, they are primarily suited for athletic gear, and we’re focused more on the traditional tee-shirt style.
One of the most popular fabric options for tee shirts is cotton. It’s a natural, fluffy fiber found inside the cotton plant. The fibers are usually spun into thread or yarn, which makes them a breathable, soft material everyone enjoys.
If you take a look in your closet right now, you’d probably find that most or all of your tee shirts have some cotton in them. It’s popular because cotton is hypoallergenic, which means it’s not likely to cause any allergic reaction.
Polyester is a synthetic fabric that’s highly durable and resilient. It can dry quickly because it doesn’t absorb moisture as easily. In the trade, this is called moisture-wicking technology.
Many manufacturers call it hydrophobic as if polyester were scared of water. As such, the material keeps its shape at all times and rarely stretches or shrinks. Therefore, you can wash it in almost any cycle without fear.
Athletes and outdoors-people love it because of the many features we’ve already listed. It does have some resistance to odor, as well. If that weren’t enough, polyester could resist stains, so there are many reasons to love your poly clothes.
A blend is a fabric made up of two or more different fibers. They are highly popular right now and take up most of the tee-shirt market. In most cases, blended options are the best of both worlds, and you can find three primary categories.
The 50-50 blend is usually made up of polyester and cotton, and you have the same amount of each fiber. CVC (Chief Value Cotton) is mostly cotton but also has some poly. A tri-blend is also available, and it usually consists of polyester, rayon-spandex, and cotton in nearly equal amounts.
Which Material Is Right for You?
It’s not easy to answer the question of which fabric is best for you. It depends on a variety of factors, which include:
- Qualities you need (softness, structure, breathability, moisture-wicking)
- The print method you want (screen prints, direct-to-garment, embroidery)
- The price you’ll pay
- The purpose of the tee-shirt (work needs, family reunion, merchandising, sporting events)
- The person wearing it (style preferences, expectations, age)
Pros and Cons of All Types
Shirts made of 100% cotton tend to be breathable, comfortable, soft, and gentle on the skin. They’re also less clingy, customizable, and traditional. While it has many things going for it, cotton is also heavier, can shrink and stain, is slow to dry, and can get wrinkled quickly.
Tee-shirts made with 100% polyester are usually highly durable, won’t shrink or wrinkle, and are odor-resistant. Plus, they’re quick-drying and have a silky-smooth drape. The downside is that the fabric is less breathable, can feel clingy, and could possibly irritate the skin.
Blends of cotton and polyester have many of the same properties as each of the other categories. For example, they’re more lightweight, durable, and have better drape. They don’t wrinkle or shrink as much, they dry quickly, and blended products are still comfortable and soft to wear.
Cotton-poly blends can still be clingy at times and, on rare occasions, might irritate the skin of people with severe allergies. They’re also a bit more expensive than other options.
How to Choose the Softest Tee Shirt
Blends of any kind are a cut above other tee-shirt styles where softness is concerned. If you choose a tri-blend, you’ve also got rayon-spandex in the mix with polyester and cotton. All three form a more powerful alliance to create a super soft feeling that you’ll want to wear all the time.
You also have the right combination of drape, breathability, and durability to make it the winner in every category. Surprisingly, this fabric style hasn’t been on the market long enough; only about 15 years, but it became the most popular quickly.
Typically, if you’d ask someone what their favorite tee shirt was, the label would say tri-blend or cotton-poly blend. There aren’t many downsides, but there are a few things to consider.
For one, they tend to run smaller than other products because of the fashion fit style; you might need a size bigger. They’re also lightweight, so they don’t usually have graphics or printing.
Women’s Cotton Polyester Tee Shirts: Points to Consider
When searching for the perfect tee shirt, you need to focus on a multitude of things. See some of the key terms so that you’re prepared.
From the manufacturer’s point of view, the term breathability refers to water vapor movement from side to side on the fabric. It primarily describes the fabric’s porousness. Airflow can also be used in this case.
Most tee shirts have a degree of breathability, but that isn’t the same as moisture-wicking. Lighter, thinner fabrics tend to breathe better, but the knit style also plays a role. For comparison purposes, a mesh is highly breathable, and latex isn’t at all.
The sense of touch is essential when searching for the right tee shirt. You can find firm, soft, smooth, and rough versions. It’s not likely to be mentioned in the product description, but it could be.
Sometimes, the term hand can also refer to the prints. For example, a soft hand means it uses water-based ink, or less ink was used.
Most people are familiar with the term drape, which is how the garment behaves and moves. You’ll find three levels, including full-bodied, moderate, and fluid. Many tee shirts fall into the average category, but you can find fashionable ones which are fluid. This means the tee-shirt moves with you and acts as a second skin.
4. Blend Amounts
It’s important to consider how much of each fiber was used in the tee-shirt. For example, common options include 50-50 and 60-40. Usually, if the materials are used equally, you get the perfect balance of both.
You’ll get all the benefits of cotton and polyester, without having to deal as much with the drawbacks. It’s important to note that most blends are 60-40 with more cotton. This is because it’s less expensive but also more comfortable and softer on the skin.
5. Travel Needs
If you plan to travel, you want clothing which is comfortable and easy to care for, and cotton-poly blends work well. The polyester material helps with moisture-wicking, while the cotton is breathable and soft.
That way, you can go hiking or be outside in the heat or humidity without feeling like your clothes are sticking to you. We’ve talked primarily about tee shirts, but you can also find poly-cotton blend pants, socks, and undergarments.
6. Price and Value
We couldn’t talk about the benefits of cotton-poly shirts without also discussing value and price. Many times, blended fabrics cost a little extra, but they don’t cost as much as pure polyester. As such, 100% cotton clothing costs less.
However, it all comes down to value, which is measured by how long it lasts and how often you wear it. Blends are designed to last a long time without color fading. This means you can use it often and wash the articles of clothing without them falling apart or losing color.
Understanding the Tee Shirt Description or Label
You now know why cotton-poly blends are one of the most popular and their benefits. Now, it’s time to focus on the product description and label so that you don’t get confused when learning about the shirt.
Sometimes, a retailer includes terms familiar to them but unknown outside of the industry. It’s helpful to understand the lingo so that you know what you’re buying.
We’ll go over some common terms so that you know what they mean. We’ll also talk about the characteristics and properties of the cotton-poly blend.
Most cotton-poly blends use the term pre-shrunk, which seems to mean the item has been washed so that it is a true size. In all honesty, most blended fabrics don’t shrink at all. Regardless, you know that it’s going to fit one day and not the next because you washed and dried it.
Cotton is often listed a pre-shrunk, but the manufacturer doesn’t wash it. Instead, the shirt is made in such a way as to compact or push the fibers together, which removes space and condenses the fabric. It replicates the process of shrinking.
Sometimes, your tee shirt is going to shrink a little, but you might not notice it at all. The goal here is to prevent significant shrinking, so you don’t end up with something two sizes too small.
Of course, most women think about fit and believe it means size, but it actually refers to the cut or construction of the product. Standard fits are likely to be boxier than others while a fashion fit is tailored.
You’ll also see “slim-fit” a lot for women’s clothing. This can be the same as the fashion fit. Regardless, it’s essential to find what works best for you. Petite women might like the fashion fit while larger ladies might like the boxy cut.
Yes, it is a thing, and most people want it regardless of what they’re wearing. Nonetheless, real moisture-wick technology is reserved for athletic wear.
Tee shirts aren’t considered active-wear, so they aren’t likely to remove all wetness immediately. Cotton-poly blends can wick some moisture away and will dry a little faster because of the polyester.
However, it’s important to know why you want this feature. Have you ever gotten wet from the rain and felt like you were sticky, damp, and uncomfortable? Your shirt didn’t have moisture-wick technology, so it didn’t dry quickly and made you uncomfortable.
This is a hot buzzword, but its meaning is quite unclear. It can mean sportswear designed for athletic activities, leisurewear, or athleisure wear. Any manufacturer can call its tee shirts “performance shirts,” but that doesn’t have to mean anything specific.
If it wasn’t enough to have all these labels and descriptive words to contend with, you’ve also got many styles available. Most tee shirts take on the classic rounded collar, but you can find V-necks, scoop necks, and more.
Along with such, the style of the shirt can also indicate its length. Mid-length options usually go to the waist or a bit below, while tunics go to the thighs and midriffs stop above the belly button.
With so many choices available for shirts, women might find it hard to choose the right one. Of course, you might have a favorite style and try to get others like it, but you can also learn about why you like a particular shirt.
We chose to talk about women’s cotton polyester tee shirts so that you can get a better idea of what’s out there. You’ve learned about the benefits of such blends, the drawbacks, and the other materials available. Now, you can make a more informed decision about what lays next to your skin.