The main difference between lyocell and viscose is that lyocell is more absorbent and has a better drape ability than viscose.
Both lyocell and viscose are semi-synthetic fabrics made from cellulose. Therefore, they share several common characteristics. They are neither truly natural fabrics like cotton and wool and neither truly synthetic fabrics like polyester and nylon. However, there are several differences between lyocell and viscose.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Lyocell
– Definition, Features
2. What is Viscose
– Definition, Features
3. What is the Difference Between Lyocell and Viscose
– Comparison of Key Differences
Lyocell, Viscose, Rayon
What is Lyocell
Lyocell is a semi-synthetic fabric we often use as a substitute for silk or cotton. Lyocell is a form of rayon, mainly composed of cellulose obtained from wood. Production of this fabric involves wood – mainly eucalyptus, though production sometimes also involve oak and birch. The wood is cut into small pieces and then ground into a pulp. It is then dissolved by a chemical known as amine oxide. This results in raw cellulose, which is a sticky and viscous liquid. This mixture is then pushed through spinnerets, through which white lyocell fibres emerge. After washing and drying, they are ready to spin into yarn and ultimately become fabric.
Originally, the American Enka company developed lyocell in 1972. However, this fabric began to be popular in the later years. Since lyocell production involves organic ingredients, most people see it as a sustainable alternative to fully synthetic fibres like polyester. Lyocell has several advantages. Basic lyocell fabric is soft to the touch, although it can have many different textures. Moreover, this fabric 50% more absorbent than cotton; this means it’s ideal for activewear. In addition to these, lyocell is hypoallergenic and doesn’t cling.
What is Viscose
Viscose refers to regenerated manufactured fibre made from cellulose. The name viscose actually comes from the manufacturing process – the viscose process. Viscose is a semi-synthetic fabric. It is not truly natural like cotton, wool or silk or truly synthetic like nylon or polyester. It was first produced in the late nineteenth century as a cheaper substitute for silk. In fact, in the early days, people called it artificial silk. Viscose has a drape and smooth feel to silk. Most importantly, it is a low-cost fabric, unlike silk.
Viscose is available in cotton end uses, as well as luxurious velvets and taffetas. Structurally, it is similar to cotton, but production can involve a variety of plants like bamboo, sugar cane and soy. This fabric has several uses; it is used in the apparel industry to create various types of clothing. We also use it for products like bed linen, upholstery, diapers, feminine hygiene products, etc.
Difference Between Lyocell and Viscose
Lyocell is a semi-synthetic fabric that is often used as a substitute for silk or cotton while viscose is a semi-synthetic fabric made by treating cellulose with sodium hydroxide and carbon disulphide.
Production of Lyocell involves modern methods, which require less energy than traditional viscose production.
Lyocell has a higher absorbency than viscose.
In addition to these, lyocell has a better drape ability than viscose.
Effect on the Environment
Lyocell is considered to be more environmental-friendly than viscose.
We can use lyocell in everyday fabrics like denim and chinos, upholstery, conveyor belts, specialty papers, and medical dressings. Viscose, on the other hand, has uses in the apparel industry to create various types of clothing and are ideal for products like bed linen, upholstery, diapers, feminine hygiene products, etc.
Both lyocell and viscose are semi-synthetic fabrics. The main difference between lyocell and viscose is that their production method. Production of Lyocell involves modern methods, which require less energy than traditional viscose production. Besides, lyocell is more absorbent and has a better drape ability than viscose.