• Luxury Hair Fibers for Fashion Industry

    The fashion industry has been captivated by natural fibers, particularly animal hair fibers due to their specific characteristics—such as fineness, warmth, suppleness, visual appearance, and finally mystique—since ancient times. Animal hair fibers protect the animal from extreme weather particularly at high altitude/low temperature, and thus generally their production is not as high as fine wool fiber from sheep. The limited production and unique characteristics lead them to be used in the fashion industry to enhance the aesthetic and prestige look of garments. Being utilized in luxurious fashion industry, they are also known as luxury or exotic fibers. To reduce the cost of the end product and impart novelty, these hair fibers are used often in conjunction with either sheep’s wool or other natural fibers. These blends produce special effects, such as additional beauty, texture, colour, softness, resilience, durability, and luster, on garments. Luxury hair fibers are exceptionally fine (8–16 μ) and are in high demand for the production of fashion garments and accessories, which led to brink of extinction of luxury hair fibre-producing animals such as antelope in Tibet. To help sustain the luxury hair fiber industry, this chapter considers the existing luxury hair fibers in the fashion market and their potential applications. more »