The apparel industry has come a long way from the 100% cotton tee. Tri-blends continue to increase in popularity and it's not without good reason. Combining just the right amount of cotton, polyester, and rayon gives you a shirt with amazing softness, strength, and drape. It's the best of all worlds.
Cotton: breathable, durable, comfortable. All excellent attributes of the classic fabric we know and love. Cotton has improved dramatically over time and has evolved from a scratchy industry standard, to combed and ring spun yarns that produce a surprisingly soft touch.
Polyester: smooth, shiny, resilient. Polyester is a tough, yet lightweight fabric that can hold up wash after wash. We can thank this fabric from saving us from hours of pesky ironing or steam cleaning--wrinkles don't stand a chance against a good poly. And while we can't thank it for the pills on our sweaters and shirts, the other fabrics in the blends have it's back.
Rayon: soft, excellent drape, radiant. Bringing rayon into the mix makes for a garment with superior drape and flow. It is a very soft, breathable fabric with high moisture absorbency. This means that it is an ideal choice for summer, as it absorbs sweat and wicks it away from the skin. This high absorbency also means dyes will appear rich, deep, and bright. Rayon helps reduce the amount of pilling, but does not combat wrinkles quite like polyester.
With the right balance of all 3, you can harvest all the benefits each fabric brings to the table. It's no surprise tri-blends are so sought after. Knowing the pros and cons of each fabric will help you make a more informed decision about your purchase.