Nylon is a synthetic material that is flexible and known for its ability to stretch but still maintain its shape. Nylon was originally developed by the DuPont Corporation in the mid-1930s as an alternative to silk stockings, and then developed to fabrics in the search to find better alternatives to silk and hemp for parachutes in World War II. Nylon is a type of Polyamide, it is composed of a long chain of carbon-based molecules called monomers. There are many different types of nylon, the most common is PA 6,6. All types of Nylon are derived from polyamide monomers that are extracted from crude oil (petroleum), so a non-renewable man-made fiber. Nylon is not biodegradable and release micro plastics when worn and washed. Recycled Nylon fabric is available, for example from old fishing nets, this is a better option than virgin Nylon, but will still release micro plastics when worn and washed.

bergstrand material GUIDE ranking*

Nylon is durable but not a natural material and not biodegradable.


Discouraged materials may be made from synthetic or non-renewable resources, and may be produced using methods that have a high environmental impact. While these materials may be less expensive or easier to work with than other options, they may not be the most sustainable or ethical choices for clothing production.
* The Bergstrand Material Guide Ranking is only a guide. Our consultants can help with accurate assessments of your brand’s use of materials.
Photography credit:
Lukas Ballier

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