When it comes to hiking, expect to sweat a lot and meet with a ton of insects, dirt, and water! That’s why it’s crucial to choose the right type of hiking clothes based on what they are made of. One particular material everyone likes to use for exercise and hikes is polyester.
But is polyester good for hiking? I can safely say YES, but you have to be wary!
This material has its advantages and disadvantages, so while it may be great for most hikers, some may not like it!
Read on as I show you what polyester is, why it’s great for hiking, as well as its minor disadvantages.
- What Is Polyester? And Is Polyester Good For Hiking?
- The Pros of Polyester
- The Cons of Polyester
- Should I Use Polyester Over Other Materials?
- Wrapping It Up
What Is Polyester? And Is Polyester Good For Hiking?
Before we get into the pros and cons of polyester for hiking, what is this material in the first place?
Polyester is one of the most-used fibers worldwide, having the fastest-growing demand compared to other fibers. They are most popular in various articles of clothing, especially in sportswear! In fact, polyester is used for extreme weather clothing, high-performance clothes, as well as fleece jackets.
Because of its wide versatility, polyester is the main fiber in texting and apparel, with types of polyester specifically made for sportswear and hiking.
With that in mind, it’s safe to say that YES, polyester IS good for hiking! However, it is advantageous only when you use the right type of polyester clothing.
Meaning, you have to make sure that the polyester clothing you invest in is made for hiking and other extreme activities. It should have the absorbent material, as well as be able to keep you cool and comfortable.
The Pros of Polyester
Why choose polyester over other material types? Here are its advantages for hikers:
1. It’s Breathable and Dries Quickly
The reason why polyester is such a popular product is because of its breathability! It’s one of the best for its moisture-wicking properties, which is what’s needed for hiking and other outdoor activities.
This means that it can move sweat and other liquids fro your body to the fabric, which is useful for hot temperatures to keep the skin dry and cool. Furthermore, it dries quickly, which prevents chafing and blisters while hiking, adding to its comfort.
2. You Get Better Sun Protection
Another benefit of polyester is the way it can defend your skin from the sun’s UV rays, as it’s woven with a tight pattern. This lets little light through, keeping the skin safe. When dyed lighter colors, it can further protect the skin from UV rays, which is beneficial for hikers, who also need to be easier to spot.
3. It’s Lightweight Yet Good For All Temperatures
The material is lightweight and easy to pack in backpacks for hiking and increasing its comfort. Because of that, it’s suitable for hotter temperatures to keep you cool. But you can also use this as a good first base for colder weather, keeping you warm and wick away moisture when you sweat under your layers.
4. Inexpensive Price But Strong and Durable
Polyester fiber is very strong and durable, with better wear and abrasion resistance compared to other materials. You get your money’s worth as it can last for many hikes for years to come. Furthermore, it can retain crease and won’t wrinkle easily, so there’s no worry about looking too ruffled up!
5. Easy to Wash and Resistant to Dirt
Polyester is easy to wash, as you can either wash it by hand or machine. It won’t shrink when washed, known as a low-maintenance fabric without the high price.
Besides this, polyester is hypoallergenic and resistant to most microorganisms and insects, improving your safety and lessening the risk of allergies.
The Cons of Polyester
While polyester is an awesome fiber for hiking, bear in mind that it also has its disadvantages.
- Polyester is not environmentally-sound or sustainable, as it’s technically a man-made “plastic.” It also can’t decompose easily, though some polyester clothing is made from recycled materials.
- Some people may not like the overall feel of polyester, especially for those who have high deal sensitivity. It may feel itchy or scratchy as you use it in hikes.
- Polyester clothes also have the reputation of being a bit smelly, because of how it absorbs moisture. While a good trait when dealing with water, it absorbs sweat and natural body oils as well, which does not evaporate and stays within the fabric until the next wash.
- Polyester is very flammable and you’ll need to be careful when near open flames.
That’s why polyester may not be for everyone, and if you feel like it’s not suitable for you, you can opt for other materials, such as nylon.
Should I Use Polyester Over Other Materials?
If polyester fiber is beneficial and made for hiking, should you disregard the other materials?
That’s completely up to you, as different materials like nylon have its own advantages and use as well. Nylon is much thicker with a different texture that doesn’t smell as bad, though it may be a bit pricier compared to polyester.
There are mixed reviews between both popular hiking clothing materials, which is why it’s best to test both, or even have clothes made of a mix of nylon and polyester.
If you want to learn more about the wonders of polyester for hiking, check out this informative video:
Wrapping It Up
Polyester is an excellent material that helps with hiking and other intense activities. This is thanks to its moisture-wicking properties and breathability, which regulates body temperature no matter where you hike. However, it isn’t for everyone, so you have to test it out and see if it suits your comfort level!
I hope that this article answered your question, “is polyester good for hiking?” If you think that polyester is best for you, then start shopping for awesome hiking clothes made of the material now!