Mini Cart

  • No products in the cart.

How To Choose The Best T-shirt Material: A Guide To Fabric Blends

How To Choose The Best T-shirt Material: A Guide To Fabric Blends

When designing a t-shirt, it’s important to consider the material. Different materials have different properties, which can make them better or worse for certain types of t-shirts. In order to choose the best material for your t-shirt, it’s worth learning about these properties.

  • Cotton, for instance, is one of the most common t-shirt materials. It’s natural, cheap and easy to print on. Cotton t-shirts tend to make very comfy t-shirts and they are very breathable, making them ideal for leisurewear. However cotton tends to soak up moisture, shrink in the wash and can stain easily, making it largely unsuitable for activewear.
  • Polyester is another popular option. This synthetic material tends to be a little more expensive and is a little tricky to print on. It’s less breathable and comfortable than cotton, however it’s great at repelling odors and dries very fast. 

Other popular t-shirt materials include bamboo, hemp and linen - each of which have their own pros and cons.

And then there are fabric blends. These are combinations of two or more materials woven together. A lot of people overlook fabric blends when designing a t-shirt, however they can have added advantages beyond many pure materials.

Why opt for a fabric blend?

Fabric blends tend to have more well-balanced properties than pure materials. The most popular example of this is cotton-polyester.

This blend combines the breathability and comfort of cotton with the quick-drying and odor resistant properties of polyester. The result is a t-shirt that’s as suitable for lounging around in as it is for working out in.

The price of fabric blends can vary. They tend to be more pricey than pure cotton, but can be cheaper than pure polyester.

The most common fabric blends

There are all kinds of fabric blends on the market. Many items of professional activewear use complex blends of fabrics to maximise performance. However, when it comes to your average t-shirt, there are three main fabric blends to choose from.

  • Cotton-polyester 50/50: This blend is an even mix of cotton and polyester. It’s breathable, comfortable, quick-drying and odor resistant. Print quality tends to be very high. 
  • Cotton-polyester 65/35: This blend is about two thirds cotton and one third polyester. Polyester can irritate some people’s skin - this blend reduces the possible irritation, while still offering more water resistance and odor resistance than pure cotton. Print quality on this material is also very good.
  • Polyester/cotton/rayon tri-blend (50/25/25): This mix of materials contains rayon - a natural polymer made from wood pulp. Rayon provides an extra slippery texture to add extra comfort, while still possessing some of the breathability of cotton. Print quality is slightly reduced on this material, but some t-shirt companies like it for its ‘vintage’ aesthetic. 
  • Should I use a fabric blend for my t-shirt?

    When deciding how to choose the best t-shirt material, you should consider who your target customer is and what their needs are.

    Pure cotton may be better for customers that value 100% organic clothing. Pure polyester may be better for customers that value durability. Blends are good for customers that are likely to value versatility - a t-shirt that can be worn for all occasions.

    It’s worth also considering the print quality. Polyester-cotton blends will still deliver a vibrant look, while tri-blends may deliver a more faded look.

    Do you want to know how different types of t-shirt fabric affect the outcome of your design? Click here.

    Related Articles

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *