Merino Wool - Odor Control
There are a number of aspects of the physical and chemical structure of Australian Merino that make it naturally more resistant to odors than other textiles, especially synthetics.
While sweat itself has no odor, if it remains on the skin in time bacteria develop and create unpleasant body odors. Merino reduces the opportunity for odors to generate because it is more efficient than other textiles at absorbing sweat and evaporating it into the air.
No Microbial Attraction
Studies have shown that bacteria are more attracted to the smooth, positively charged surface of a synthetic fiber than the scaly surface of a Merino fiber which carries no charge.
The Merino has a much greater capacity than other fibers to absorb moisture. In fact, it can absorb 35% of its own weight in liquid. The moisture is bound within the structure, and so is not available to microbes, which are unable to penetrate the scaly surface of the fiber.
In water and conditions of high humidity, Merino passes through what is termed a glass transition at which point it dramatically increases its rate of absorption and dispersion.
The rate of diffusion of small and large molecules into the fiber increases and it is able to absorb odors faster. When the temperature drops, and the fiber once again falls below the glass transition, the odors are trapped within the structure even if the moisture evaporates. Later, during laundering, the garment again passes through the glass transition point and the odors are carried out of the structure by the water. Synthetics are not able to benefit from this same effect because they do not pass through glass transition during normal wear.