Covid-19 leads to flurry of new developments in antiviral fashion technology
As the fashion industry struggles to come to terms with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, antiviral textile technologies are fast becoming a trend that could become a valuable new revenue stream for brands and innovators.
According to data analytics company GlobalData, research into antimicrobial, antiviral and antibacterial solutions for textiles and apparel has gone into overdrive in the last few months. As well as technologies that can be applied directly to clothing in order to stop viral activity, researchers have also been exploring sanitizing products for both apparel and footwear.
“This frenzied activity, which has seen new solutions rolled out in a matter of weeks as opposed to the pre-Covid timeline of several months or more, is a direct response to the pandemic, which has led to a surge in demand for such technologies to help try and restore consumer confidence,” commented GlobalData apparel correspondent Beth Wright in a release.
One of the first textile technologies which has proved to be effective against the virus that causes Covid-19 is HeiQ Viroblock. UK-based industrial thread maker Coats is now researching how to incorporate the technology into threads and engineered yarns that could be used to make antiviral clothing.
Sweden’s Polygiene – a specialist in odor control – is also working on its own antiviral treatment for denim in partnership with Italian fashion brand Diesel. According to the companies, the solution stops 99% of viral activity of any kind within two hours of contact.
Elsewhere, in Brazil, Santista Textil is busy developing an antiviral textile treatment focusing on protecting workwear and denim from SARS-CoV-2, the viral strain responsible for the current health crisis.
Other companies are concentrating their efforts on products that can be used to sanitize clothing. Spanish denim treatment specialist Jeanologia, for example, has come up with a sanitization box that apparently eliminates the coronavirus from footwear, apparel and other textiles.
Californian biotechnology company Püre, on the other hand, is targeting retailers with its sanitizing closet, the PüreCouture, which uses UV light to destroy 99.9% of pathogens, while leaving retail tags intact.
“Such technologies not only act to boost consumer confidence in this new era, but also present a potential new revenue stream for innovators savvy enough to recognize the potential such solutions pose post-Covid,” explained Wright. “It will be interesting to see how this new wave of fabric innovation continues to grow and how tech pioneers will build on the solutions already available.”
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