t-shirt fabrics swatch card

T-shirt Fabrics

T-shirts are a must-have for any men/women’s wardrobe. Most of them have a variety of T-shirts in many different styles & colors. Whether a customer wants a T-shirt for lounging around the house or for working out at the gym, they should keep in mind a few other factors while shopping like different fabric and weave options. There are various fabrics available in the market to create T-shirts. People may have a preference for one fabric over the other. However, the most critical question is which fabric are you comfortable wearing? One of the most common materials to make t-shirts is Cotton. Several fabrics include Linen, Polyester, Rayon, etc.

Choosing the right t-shirt fabrics and weave for a specific need impact the function and comfort of the T shirt.

T-shirt Fabric Categories

100% Cotton: Most tees are 100% COE (carded open-end) Cotton. The higher-end garments utilize combed & ring-spun Cotton for a softer, smoother feel, Cotton will shrink if washed or dried with heat.

50/50 Blends: The most popular blends are 50/50 blends & Tri-Blend t shirts. The 50/50 T-shirt has the feel of Cotton & the polyester helps to prevent shrinkage. Tri-Blends have a lighter feel that lends well to high fashion & fitness.

50/50 Blends: Most Performance Brands use polyester for its moisture-wicking properties. They can be form-fitting or loose-fitting like a t shirt.



Various types of fabrics are available in the market to produce T-shirts. It is helpful to know a bit about the materials before buying each fabric. Moreover, we should know when to wear each type of cloth to stay prepared for the environment.


It’s a popular fabric for T-shirts. Cotton fabric is soft, sturdy & breathable. It is also affordable. To avoid wrinkles on the Cotton, remove it from the dryer immediately. Cotton is suitable for everyday wear & is casual. Several types of Cotton used in apparel & each one slightly different.

Combed Cotton:

It is slightly more expensive than basic Cotton. Combed Cotton is exceptionally soft. It is produced by specially treating the cotton fibers before spinning them into yarn. To do this, fine brushes are used to remove short strands & straighten fibers. The outcome is a more durable, smoother fabric.

Organic Cotton:

It grows using methods that do not significantly impact the environment. For example, organic cotton production maintains soil fertility & reduces the usage of fertilizers & pesticides. Due to the strict growing methods, organic Cotton is more expensive than regular Cotton. However, it is very soft to the touch.

Pima Cotton:

It is an ultra-soft fabric that carries long cotton fibers. Most cotton varieties have relatively short fibers. However, Pima is one of a few types of Cotton that are considered to be extra-long staple (ELS) cotton, which means they’re composed of fibers that are longer than 34 millimeters. It is made from the “Gossypium barbadense” cotton plant. It is a beautiful fabric & almost feels like silk.

Slub Cotton:

It seems to have slight lumps in the fabric. This is because of the method before weaving, where the cotton goes through a twisted process, creating unpredictable twists. Hence, the result is a unique fabric with texture to it. Slub T-shirts are light & airy & do not dangle to the body. There is no need to iron because the material naturally looks textured, and it is not designed to look flat.


Linen is created from the flax plant & has a textured weave. It is lightweight, breathable, & moisture-wicking, making it the right preference for summer season wear. By the very nature of the fabric, it’s more potent when damp. With repeated washings, it gets softer and softer. The only downside to selecting a linen T-shirt is that it wrinkles easily & often requires ironing.


You often have heard the term lycra. Well, this is the brand name for the material, ‘Spandex.’ It is the most common material for athletic or sports apparel since it allows for smooth movement.


It’s a solid fabric that has many advantages. It is quick-drying, doesn’t mold or mildew & is very easy to machine wash & dry. After repeated wear & washings, it retains its shape & resists shrinking or stretching. Thus, it’s an excellent material for athletic apparel.


This is an artificial fiber created from trees, Cotton & plants. Rayon is a more affordable alternative to silk. It is woven or knitted into a silky, breathable fabric & is often used in sportswear. It drapes effortlessly, is simple to dye & extraordinarily absorbent. However, it does not hold up well over prolonged wear; it tends to end up yellowed and pilly & gets wrinkles quickly.


It is a super soft fabric produced from beechwood plant fibers having a beautiful drape and a slinky feel. The modal is soft & breathable. It is cool to the touch & dries quickly when wet making it perfect for summer wear. It is shrink-resistant & fade-resistant. It stays soft & does not pill soon.


It’s a combination of two or three materials to create t-shirts. A good example is a cotton & polyester blend. This blend remains cool & lights from the cotton fibers, yet it also has the strength & wrinkle-resistance of polyester.


How to access the quality of the Garments?

Is the fabric soft?

Touch it!

Even cotton t shirt fabric that is sturdy, thick and or even stiff should feel soft on the skin. If it doesn’t, it was probably made with shorter fibers and will be less durable in the long run.

Does it feel breathable and comfortable on the skin?

Put the garment on and walk around for a while.

Are there any pills?

Cotton is generally not as prone to pilling as other fabrics, so if you already see a trace of pilling on a new garment, move on!