Swimwear fabrics stretch to fit the contours of the body. Fabrics are lightweight and made of thin, delicate fibres designed not to weigh you down when wet, and feel soft and smooth to the touch, resulting in a comfortable fit. The fabrics themselves vary in composition and are often made of a blend of nylon, also known as polyamide; and elastane often referred to by the brand name LYCRA®.
Over time, exposure to chemicals such as chlorine, elastane fibres will break down losing their firmness and stretch. If you are regularly exposing your swimsuit to chlorine, look for a style with as little elastane as possible, for instance, less than 15%. At the bottom of every product page on LACE, you will find the fabric composition, just above the care instructions.
Polyester is also found in swimwear fabrics, and swimwear made of 100% polyester is often found in competitive and athletic swimwear as it is more chlorine resistant than elastane blends, and is less prone to the colours fading, drying quickly. When combining PBT with polyester, the fibres will have a similar stretch to swimwear with elastane, and will also be chlorine resistant. Sunflair New Line style 22226 is chlorine resistant as it is made from 100% polyester fibres.
LYCRA® XTRA LIFE™ fabric has been designed for a long-lasting fit and resists breakdown from chlorine, heat and sunscreen, up to 10 times longer than other elastane fabrics. Most quality brands such as Sunflair, Aubade, Fantasie, Freya, Miraclesuit, Miss Mandalay and LACE Swim use the LYCRA® XTRA LIFE™ elastane in their collections, with many noting the special properties of the fabrics on attached hang tags.
For care tips to help your swimwear last longer, visit the Swimwear Care Guide.