Nikwax, the outdoor aftercare company, is partnering with Rab to provide Nikwax Hydrophobic Down in all of Rab’s down apparel and down sleeping bag pieces beginning in 2014. Nikwax Hydrophobic Down offers stunning performance with zero fluorocarbons.

Water-soaked duck/goose down clumps together and quickly loses its insulation power. The Nikwax Hydrophobic Down treatment is applied to raw down in the cleaning process, ensuring that Rab products will absorb substantially less water and retain more loft and warmth, under normal conditions. Nikwax Hydrophobic Down also demonstrates improved drying times, and will withstand repeated washing. The treatment won’t add weight or reduce the loft.

“There are many treatments on the market, but when we wanted to develop fluorocarbon free, hydrophobic down, there was only one real choice: Nikwax,” said Rab CEO, Matt Gowar. “The Nikwax technology will ensure all the down in our garments and sleeping bags will not only be as environmentally safe as possible, but waterproof too. We have been working with Nikwax over several months to optimize the process, to produce a great product.”

Nikwax founder, Nick Brown said, “We are proud that Rab has chosen Nikwax not only for our exceptional technology, but also our environmental credentials. Nikwax is proof that fluorocarbon-free products can outperform other waterproofing products. There is no reason why brands should be not using fluorocarbon-free alternatives.”

The treatment will also be used by Rab’s sister company Lowe Alpine. Rab will recommend Nikwax Down Wash and Nikwax Down Proof as the only solution to care for all Rab down items.

Rab’s Hydrophobic Down complies with the European Down and Feather Association code on traceability. This code of conduct determines the source of down, and ensures that the down is a by-product of a slaughterhouse or harvested during molting periods and is not illegally live-plucked.