What Does Moisture-Wicking Fabric Mean & Mechanism Of Wiking

“What is wicking fabric or what does moisture-wicking mean?” is a common question in textile learners. Wiking finish is the special finishing procedure in textile. The fabric is treated with a wicking agent called wicking fabric.

Wicking fabric:

wicking fabrics are the special ultramodern technical fabrics that make the moisture away from the body. This fabric high technical polyester which unlike cotton and absorbs the very little amount of water.

Normally cotton absorbs 7% of the water of its weight. On the other hand, polyester absorbs only 0.4% of its weight. So that cotton absorbs water and makes itself heavy. But wicking polyester has a special cross-section and large surface area. They Pick up moisture and carried away from the fabric.

So that wicking fabric makes the body cool and dry. wicking fabric has two main properties:

  1. It Picks the water from the inside to the outer side of the body.
  2. Quick-dry the surface of the fiber molecule.

Where use wicking fabric: Wicking fabrics are used for the special purposes of use are stated below

  • For sports wear
  • Sportswear use
  • Active wear or clothing.

Mechanism of wicking fabrics:

Mechanism of wicking fabric depends on three major factors:

  1. Yearn cross section.
  2. Fabric construction.
  3. Wiking finish.

Yearn cross section:

The main considering factor wicking fabric mechanism is the yarn cross-section. The normal yarn cross-section is a regular round shape. The wicking yarn cross-section is like a cross or flower in shape. So that there is a space to move water.

Here the water passes through the fiber cross-section with capillary properties. In this fabric, air can also pass through the fiber cross-section. This is why it is also called breather fabric.

What is wicking fabric
Fig: wicking fabric cross-section
  1. In the first number the yarn cross section is round in shape. Here we see that the space between two round is so small. As a result the water passing space is lower.
  2. On the 2nd number the cool max yarn cross section is butter fly shape and water passing space is higher. So that here wicking properties is higher.
  3. On the last 3rd one the yarn cross section is cross shaft. here water passing space is higher. So that it contains wicking property.

Fabric construction:

Fabric constriction is the second considering factor for wicking fabric. Our knit fabric structure having celebrity property. As a result, the sweat comes into contact with the fabric for diffusion into the outer large surface and evaporates quickly.

Wicking finish

Wicking finish is the special finishing which makes as usual polyester fabric to wicking fabric. Here the wicking agent adds to the fabric and increases the wicking properties. Wicking agents increase the hydrophilic property.

This wicking agent can apply to the fabric in the exhaust as well as continuous finishing procedure.

Application of wicking agent in exhaust method: step by step we are discussing the application below

Fabric load

Scouring and bleaching




Wash and clear the water

Dossing Wicking agent at 30’C temperature

Run for 15 min


Applicating of the wicking agent in continuous finishing:

Unload after dyeing


Stenter 1st bath: wicking agent 50g/l( Depends on the concentration of wicking agent)

Stenter 2nd bath: Cationic softener: 40g/l (depends on the concentration of the agent)


Delivery to cutting

Conclusion of “what is wicking fabric”:

wicking is a special fabric that has wicking properties.

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