Humans have more than 200 species and 10 million bacteria per square centimetre on their skin. The bacteria main function is to help protect the skin from pathogenic bacterial colonization. Up to 1 kg of our body weight are in fact living bacteria!
Body odor is influenced by the skin flora, especially by the family of Corynebacteria. Bacteria produce enzymes that break down the fat and sugar present in sweat into propionic acid, a smelly acid similar to acetic acid.
When we sweat, we transport onto textiles nutrients like lipids and sugars, on which bacteria can feed and rapidly grow – doubling their numbers every 20 minutes.
The odor development is particularly strong on synthetic textiles, already after just a few hours. How can this bad odors and discomfort be minimized or eliminated? Sukano antimicrobial masterbatches specific formulations are available to address each of your needs.
And that’s not all.
For most textiles, more than 80% of emissions that affect human beings and aquatic ecosystems are generated during the use phase. Laundry detergents and hot wash temperatures are the main culprits!
By staying fresh and comfortable for longer, people who wear these clothes could potentially reduce their laundry needs by over 50 percent. If more people on earth wore antimicrobially-treated clothing, we could save thousands of cubic meters of water, drastically reduce the amount of detergent needed, and slash the amount of electricity consumed by all that washing – in turn reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
Can Sukano also help to decrease water consumption from laundry? We certainly think so, via our antimicrobial additives masterbatches portfolio.
In the early 1900s, people would put silver coins in milk bottles to prolong milk's freshness by preventing bacterial growth.
Natural silver can be found in tap water. In Switzerland, a county known for its high-quality water resources, normal tap water can contain up to 100ppb of silver.
The quantity of silver entering wastewater from clothing is negligible compared to the background levels of silver in the water. Many studies conducted by world experts have shown wastewater treatment plants are capable of immobilizing and effectively removing more than 99 percent of the silver without impacting the function of the waste facility.
In addition, silver ions quickly transform in the natural environment to their natural insoluble salt form.
On our skin, silver ions deactivate almost immediately, turning into silver salts that are benign to bacteria. As a result, they have no impact on our skin’s natural balance. The activity of the silver ions are limited to the surface of the textile, keeping it free from bacterial colonization.
The ingredients selected by Sukano for their antimicrobial activity are non-toxic, non-irritating and non-sensitizing – as tested and confirmed by several independent and certified laboratories.
Our selection is based on microcomposite technology with a particle size distribution between 1 and 3 micrometers. This is well above the conventional definition of nanomaterials, which are limited to overall particle sizes below 0.1 micrometers (100nm). The microcomposite particle is made out of elemental silver and amorphous silicon dioxide, commonly used in everyday items like orange juice and pharmaceuticals as a stabilizing agent.
Our core ingredients are registered by the US Environmental Protection Agency, complies with European REACH and Biocide legislation and have been assessed as safe by the sustainable textile consumer labels Oekotex and bluesign. This puts our products among the most extensively researched textile technologies – and among the safest.
We use established, industry-standard testing methods like JIS L1902, ISO 20743 and AATCC 100 for silver-based textile technologies. We also conduct laundry tests to assess the lifelong functionality of the garment. In this regard, Sukano uses ISO 6330, corresponding to an extremely thorough wash.