. . . but your wool coat probably isn’t all wool. . .
unlike the above pictured collection of 100% wool samples from various Italian, Austrian and German weavers.
You might have had the wool pulled over your eyes, only it wasn’t real wool.
Most people have no idea how rare it is to find a coat made from a 100% wool fabric. Sounds simple enough right? But just do a quick search on any online store like Amazon or even a high-end store like Nordstroms and try to find one. What you’ll find a lot of are “wool blends”, which are fabrics with some wool fiber content and the rest a petroleum-based synthetic fiber, usually polyester. You’ll even find 100% polyester coats tagged as wool! Eventually, if you look hard, you might find some 100% wool coats, but they usually start at around $700, which doesn’t have to be the case.
Or take a look in your closet. According to U.S. law, every garment must list the fiber content on the tag, usually found on the inside left pocket of coats. Check what your, “wool coat” is actually made out of. You can share what you find in the comments section of this post.
The reason of course why companies use wool blends is because they’re less expensive than 100% wool. Trust me, it’s not because a blend is functionally or visually better in any way. Wool looks better, insulates better, feels better and is more durable than polyester. Basically for everything you want out of a coat, it’s better.
Now please don’t misunderstand me, synthetic fibers are great for lots of things. For example my rock climbing harness or my rock climbing rope! Certain synthetic fibers are much stronger than wool and can make very strong fabrics, but for a coat, wool is second to none.
So should you throw away a wool/polyester blend? Of course not, there is nothing wrong with a wool/polyester blend, it’s just not as good as 100% wool. 100% wool has a special feel; you know it when you wear it. It’s also reassuring to know that 100% wool = 100% natural, renewable and sustainable. How’s that for being green?
The big takeaway is to start paying attention to what your clothes are made out of so you don’t get ripped off or have unrealistic expectations about how long a garment will last. Personally, I’ve started to consider even clothing purchases like little investments and I want them to pay off over time. To do so, you better know what you’re buying.