Best Quality Cotton and Parameters Used in Measuring Cotton Quality

An OCS reader asked these questions “I would like to know about (1) best quality of cotton and (2) which parameters affect on measurement of quality. (3) Which is best quality cotton for men and women underwear’s? (4) What is GSM? (5) What is Yarn? (6) Which factors should be considered for the selection of Cotton underwear garment?”

See the answers.

1. Best quality cotton:

  • Pima cotton (long fibre length-USA), 
  • Giza cotton (long fibre length-Egypt) 

2. Parameters for categorizing cotton quality:

Following are the major parameters considered to decide quality of the cotton material.
  • Fineness (count), 
  • Fibre length (staple length), 
  • Fibre's tensile strength, 
  • Fibre elongation, 
  • Fibre uniformity (CV% of diameter), and 
  • Fibre maturity index/ratio

3. Cotton for fine quality of men's and women's underwear-

100% cotton of 70-80's 2-ply combed yarn (2-ply is extra softness and better moisture management). TPI could be around 15 (TPI=Twist per inch).

4. What is GSM?

Fabric weight in grams per square meter (fabric density in simple term) is termed as GSM. Read this post to learn more about GSM.

5. What is yarn?

Long strands of fibres aligned and bound together to give individual fibre strength needed to convert them into fabric. It is an intermediate form between fibre and fabric.

6. Factors for cotton underwear garment:

Soft handle, moisture absorption/management, resistance to bacterial growth etc

Hope you will find this post helpful.

PS: One of my friends answered these questions (He is shy publishing his name here).

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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