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Is Lyocell Sustainable?

Is Lyocell Sustainable?

There are a lot of different fabrics available to us these days. Polyester. Rayon. Viscose. Tencel. Lyocell. Acetate. Some of these have already been widely accepted as 'unsustainable' textiles - we all know that polyester isn't good for the environment by now - but others are still up for debate. 

(Better Than Silk, by Citizen's Mark - Made from Lyocell)

Today we're talking about Lyocell. More commonly known by its branded name of Lenzing Tencell, Lyocell is a cellulose-based man-made textile produced in a closed-loop production process that has been internationally recognized for its low environmental impact. 

Lyocell - like other cellulose-based man-made textiles - is made by taking a cellulose base (in the case of our Better Than Silk we use certified sustainably forested Austrian tree pellets) and essentially turning it to goo in a chemical bath. The goo is pushed through something like a tiny shower head to make it into fine filaments, and then either put through a second chemical bath or heated to re-solidify it. 

(A basic overview of the synthetic and man-made textile production)

Sounds like a lot of chemicals, right? The trick with Lyocell that makes it better than polyester and other synthetic fibers is the way in which the chemical bath is used. Other synthetics and man-made textiles have incredible chemical run-off, and some processes don't even aim to recycle their chemical baths at all - polluting local water-ways and contributing to resource depletion. Lyocell is produced in a closed-loop, resource-efficient, low environmental impact process with a solvent recovery rate of over 99%.

At Citizen's Mark we have always been passionate about seeking out the most sustainable materials possible for our products. This began with sourcing premium Italian wool from a factory that purified its water output after the dyeing process, and continued on until we ended up spending a year developing Better Than Silk - the machine-washable and sustainable alternative to your favorite silk blouse. Learn more about how we made Better Than Silk here.

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