Do you think all terry towels are produced with the same cotton yarn?
Of course no! There are 3 different cotton yarn types for traditional terry towels depend on the fiber length. So, you find below which kind of cotton yarn is best for terry towels?
We can divide cotton yarns into 3 categories depending on the fiber length;
- Open End Cotton yarn fibers length: < 20 mm
- Carded Cotton yarn fibers length: 20 mm-30 mm
- Combed Cotton yarn fibers length: > 30 mm
I mentioned in the previous article that many factors affect towel prices such as yarn, weaving and dying types. I will explain here only yarn types.
All terry towels are weaved from a ground warp, weft thread, and a pile end. Warp, Weft and Pile yarn consumption in most towels are 20-20-80 percent respectively. That’s why my whole point is going to be about pile yarn properties in this article.
There are 3 different cotton yarn types that are used in towel production. There are also other yarn types like air cotton or micro cotton yarns but ı am not going to mention them here.
Combed Coton Towels
The Combed cotton yarn is the best quality for terry towels because longer fiber means thinner and softer yarns for terry towels.
The combed cotton yarn is a kind of yarn that has been combed to separate shorter fibers to make the yarn stronger and softer.
Almost 12-15% of the cotton fibers volume is removed in this way. Which results in a finer, stronger, higher-quality and more durable cotton yarn. It means very soft yarns but slightly more expensive than carded yarns.
We prefer to use mostly combed yarns in luxury towels and bathrobes because towels are height-weight products in the textile industry. That means it is really high-cost raw material for regular towels.
Combed yarns are also used in soft twist towels because soft twist yarns are produced in low twist quantities.
Carded Cotton Towels
The most used yarn in towel production is the carded cotton yarns.
Carded yarn offers enough quality at the best price in terry towels. Therefore carded yarn is the ideal yarn type for terry towels.
The carded yarn production process is similar to the combed yarn production process but there is no ”Combing machine” to separate short fibers in spinning. That’s why carded yarns have shorter fibers and more hairy appearance than combed yarns.
This is a suitable quality for home and hotel towels.
What Is The Carded Yarn Towel Properties?
- The carded yarn is roughly 20% cheaper than combed yarns. That is enough reason to be preferred in towel production because terry towels are really heavyweight products.
- The shrinkage of carded yarn is higher than combed yarn but this property is not as important in the towels as it is in the clothes. I mean there won’t be a problem if the hand towel size is 50×95 cm instead of 50×100 cm after washing.
- Towels made from carded yarns are highly enough absorbent and quick dry.
- There is not too much different between combed and carded yarns in the context of colorfastness to light and to washing. On the other hand fastness to rubbing is less than combed yarns.
Be careful! Fastness to rubbing is important in yarn-dyed towels. Especially in towels with contrast colors like white-black yarn-dyed towels.
Open-End Cotton Towels
Open-end yarns have shorter fibers. We don’t wanna prefer to use these yarns in towels production. But there is a vortex spinning technology that allows the yarns as a bulky appearance in terry towels. That yarn is highly used in terry towels in Denizli/Turkey.
Short length of cotton fiber means cheap yarns. Open-end yarns are produced with shortest fibers. That yarns offer the best prices for terry towels to producers.
Open-end spinning is completely different from the carded or combed spinning process. There is not a ring frame and winding process in open-end yarn production. That means open-end production rate is higher than carded yarn machines so open-end yarns are cheaper than carded or combed yarns.
What Are The Open-end Towel properties?
- There is no difference in the water absorption rate of ring-spun and open-end terry towels.
- The abrasion resistance of open-end towels is lower than that of ring towels in both wet and dry states. That towels have hairy appearances after washing.
- The softness of ring towels is similar to open-end towels because open-end yarns are bulkier than carded yarns.
- Be careful! open-end towels are looks like ring towels with some chemical treatments like silicon. we can understand after washing if it is an open-end towel or carded towel.
- Open-end towels are cheapest towels so it can be preferred in promotion towels.
Main Differences between Open-End, Carded and Combed Yarn Towels
|Properties/Yarn Types||Open-End Towel||Carded Towel||Combed Towel|
|Fibers Length(cm)> Long lasting+Less Pilling||Low||Medium||High|
|Hairiness after washing||Noticeable||Low||Very low|
|Absorbency of Water||High||High|
|Price(Eur)||1,00 Eur||1,10 Eur||1,25 Eur|
I added a representative table to see the differences in the towels produced from all kinds of yarn types. That table gives you an idea to make a decision on the buying process.
As a result, combed towels are almost 20% more expensive than carded towels and carded towels are 10% more expensive than open-end towels.
If you like that article, you can read my another article about weaving types for towels: Choosing Towels | Weaving