Remedywear: Our Fabric with Zinc Oxide

The material that goes into our Remedywear clothing is a soft, stretchy blend of sustainably and responsibly made fabric. Fabric composition for Remedywear:

  • 75% lycocell/TENCEL™
  • 19% Smartcel™ Sensitive (lyocell/TENCEL™ + zinc)
  • 6% Elastane
eczema clothes
eczema clothes

Nature’s high-tech, sustainable materials

No doubt you are familiar with natural fibers like cotton, linen, silk, and wool. But there is a lesser known natural fiber that’s growing in popularity because it’s ecological to produce and has a ton of beneficial applications, wood pulp! Our Remedywear fabric is made from the natural wood pulp fibers of European beech trees sourced from natural forests and sustainably managed plantations. This eco-friendly made fiber is called lyocell. We use the most trusted brand of lyocell available, called TENCEL™.

Combining the softness of cotton, the breathability of linen, the smoothness of silk, and the antimicrobial properties of wool, our TENCEL™ fibers are spun together with Smartcel™ Sensitive fibers (TENCEL™ containing zinc oxide) to produce one very skin friendly fabric.

Why Zinc Oxide for Eczema Clothes?

Zinc oxide not only stops bacterial growth and blocks odor, but it’s also soothing to the skin. Zinc oxide powder is actually an active ingredient in calamine, the stuff that goes into anti-itch soothing calamine lotion as well as countless creams for eczema, psoriasis and other inflamed skin conditions. It can also be found in creams for diaper rash, which believe it or not is a form of dermatitis!

We use Smartcel™ Sensitive in our Remedywear garments because using zinc oxide for eczema has proven clinically effective in reducing flares [1] and since it offers many benefits for people with eczema and other sensitive skin conditions:

  • Strong antibacterial and anti-odor properties.
  • Soothes redness and irritation.
  • Clinically shown to improve quality of sleep in people with itchy skin [1].
eczema-clothes---zinc-icon

We use zinc in our fabric instead of other antimicrobial agents because other nanoparticles that have been added as antimicrobial finishes to textile, like silver and chitosan, have the possibility of cross-reacting with skin, promoting resistant-strains of bacteria, and pose an ecological concern for particles that are not filtered by wastewater treatment after washes. Unlike silver or chitosan, zinc is a naturally occurring mineral (not a metal), approved for use in a number of products, from supplements to sunscreen. It does not get absorbed by the skin because it stays embedded in the fabric even after many washes.

zinc-oxide-for-eczema

Since zinc is embedded in Remedywear, and not encapsulated or applied as a finish, is safe to use, even in babies and children. It does not come off the clothing or penetrate the skin, even irritated skin areas with eczema or atopic dermatitis flare-ups. Our eczema clothes are also safe to use on even the most delicate skin, including newborns and babies.

Use of Remedywear can significantly improve quality of life in patients who have itchy or sensitive skin, including people with eczema, atopic dermatitis, and psoriasis. Dermatologists in a recent study [1] found that a group of patients with atopic dermatitis noted rapid improvement of eczema severity, less redness and itching and improved sleep quality after using TENCEL™ clothing embedded with Smartcel™ Sensitive (zinc).

How It’s Made

Remedywear is made from eco-friendly, natural fibers. Beech wood is processed into wood pulp in a closed loop process. Then cellulose extracted from the wood pulp, a substance found in all raw plant material, is used to produce a smooth fiber called lyocell via a signature process with high resource efficiency and low ecological impact. That’s our first fiber, TENCEL™.

zinc oxide for eczema - Tencel

To produce our second fiber, Smartcel™ Sensitive, separate lyocell fibers are then embedded with medical grade zinc oxide through a patented process where zinc powder is added to the natural wood pulp before it gets spun into lyocell. The zinc physically becomes part of the fabric. This process ensures the zinc oxide stays in place even after many washings.

All liquids and water used in these processes are recycled and reused. All fibers and leftover waste in this manufacturing process are fully biodegradable and 99.5% of the solvent is recycled, ensuring our products meet the highest environmental standards.

Finally, the two fibers (TENCEL™ + Smartcel™ Sensitive) are spun together, yarn is produced and then knitted into fabric. And voilà! Soft, soothing Remedywear is born.

zinc oxide for eczema

About Our Dyes

Natural white, undyed fabric gets discolored and dingy easily, especially when using natural laundry detergents and soaps, which is what we recommend. With Remedywear, we chose to offer materials in colors that will last, stay vibrant and maintain a fresh look. Not all dyes are created equal, so we chose the very best. Our dyes are disperse free, Phenylenediamine free and Okeo Tex 100 certified, safe for allergies and sensitive skin. We still offer natural white fabrics for those that are opposed to dyes of any kind.

Learn more about our sustainability & ethics.

Fabric Certifications

zinc oxide for eczema 2

References:

[1] Wiegand, 2013, Skin-protective effects of a zinc oxide-functionalized textile and its relevance for atopic dermatitis. Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol; 6: 115–121.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3656624/