Polartec, a brand best known for its fleece and technical jackets, has now entered the world of warm-weather fabrics with it’s Delta Cooling fabric.
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While things like Coldblack treatment and Castelli’s Prosecco Ice and Strada fabrics have been around for a while, Delta's new cooling fabric utilises construction rather than treatments to work its cooling magic.
Polartec's Delta Cooling technique is similar to Castelli’s Prosecco fabrics, which use a hydrophilic treatment to spread water droplets over a larger surface area in order to promote evaporation and cooling. The difference is that Castelli’s fabric relies on a treatment that can wash out over time, whereas Polartec says the Delta Cooling fabric's action is mechanical, permanent, and totally chemical free.
According to Polartec the new fabric was inspired by the car radiator and is made using a mix of Tencel, a fibre derived from wood pulp known for its hydrophilic (moisture absorbing) properties, and polyester, which is known for its hydrophobic (moisture repelling) properties.
The fibres are woven together in such a way that they quickly wick moisture away from the skin, but hold the moisture in the fabrics outer layer to promote cooling and let the fabric breath.
Despite the garment remaining wet, Polartec says because the fabric holds moisture off the skin it reduces that nasty clinging feeling of a wet jersey that often leads to chafing and helps with odour control too.
While the fabric is still quite new, a few smaller cycling brands have jumped on board already including Kitsbow and its Radiator tee mountain bike jersey, and Velocio with the Radiator base layer.
Polartec is also one of the title sponsors of the Alberto Contador Foundation’s RH + / Polartec Junior and Under 23 Teams, so we think it’s a safe bet that we’ll be seeing Polartec's Delta Cooling fabric popping up in some bigger name road kits and base layers in the coming months.