In 2010 Toray debuted the original version of PrimeFlex a stretchable polyester with a bimetal structure. Then came PrimeFlex 2.0 a bi-component nylon version with a 50-percent improvement in four-way stretch capabilities with a high rate of moisture absorbency.
Toray has taken PrimeFlex a step further incorporating what they call “Nanodesign” technology that controls the cross-sectional shape of the composite fibers in the fabric. In doing so, the textile giant has succeeded in creating a microfiber “PrimeX” polyester with a thin core-sheath structure and a fine composite yarn with a single filament count of 0.8 deniers or less.
The fineness in the single filament creates a flat, smooth to the touch appearance, soft hand and four-way stretch and the use of a biomaterial derived from corn, uses less water in the manufacturing process than materials like Spandex or Lycra.
The application for use in the athleisure category is tremendous. The benefits include lightweight breathability, abrasion resistance and softer feel next to the skin. The result is a textile that hits the sweet spot Toray calls the “Soft-fit Zone” between the “Hard-fit Zone” of Spandex and the “Loose-fit Zone” of regular textured yarn.
Photos and video courtesy Toray