Our entire business is built around the wonder of Silk, a fabric that has never lost its popularity. It's magical, it has been a luxury choice for almost nine thousand years and we're more than happy to raise a glass to the next nine thousand!
Silk is heavenly. It feels cool and slippery to the touch. It's naturally shiny and bright. It drapes beautifully. It cleverly regulates moisture and temperature and lies against the skin in a wonderfully natural way. We adore Silk, the planet's most magical fabric. Here's why.
The Properties of Silk
Silk is an entirely natural material whose fibres are made from two proteins, Serecin and Fibroin. The Fibroin gives the fabric its strength, made of tough amino acids and the material's unusually high tensile strength is down to powerful bonds between hydrogen atoms, which don't break when stretched. The Serecin is sticky and protects the Fibroin but the beauty secret is that it mirrors the proteins in both skin and hair. Sleeping with one of our Pure Mulberry Silk products means your hair and skin is effortlessly hydrated and nourished making them the perfect addition to your beauty routine.
That gorgeous shimmering look comes from the triangular structure of the Silk fibre which refracts light at various angles to create different colours. The weaving process of Dupion Silk uses this characteristic to the full by purposefully using threads of differing thicknesses to create slubs which give the fabric more luminescence.
Silk naturally has a smooth, soft texture and is one of the world's strongest natural fibres. It loses as much as a fifth of its strength when wet but it's still amazingly durable – take the silken garments found aboard a shipwreck in 1840, still intact even though the ship had sunk in 1782: “a pair of black satin breeches and a large satin waistcoat with flaps were got up, of which the silk was perfect but the lining entirely gone.”
Not forgetting the usefulness of silk parachutes and even maps printed onto fine Silk by the military for many years. Almost weightless, almost impossible to crease yet fine enough to be hidden in linings and other secretive places Silk has been a vital resource during wartimes….as were the Silk stockings certain young military men were famed for having easy access to!
Because it emits high levels of infrared light, Silk is lovely and cool to the touch helping to regulate body temperature. This is why explorers and adventuresses use Silk sleeping bag liners in the coldest of temperatures whilst we all know the cooling joy of wearing Silk clothing when the thermometer rises.
Interestingly Silk also protects the wearer from insects whose bite can't penetrate the material, including mosquitoes and horseflies. It's so light and airy that a large square of it can easily be pulled through a wedding ring. We're not quite sure why anyone would want to do that but it's an interesting fact!
Silk has plenty of industrial uses including upholstery and wallpapers, rugs, parachutes and bicycle tyres. There are medical applications too, since removing the Serecin coating makes Silk the ideal material for non-absorbable surgical stitches. Clever people have started manufacturing special silken underwear to soothe skin conditions like eczema and Silk fibres are even being used in cutting-edge medical tissue engineering.
The Beauty of Pure Mulberry Silk
Mulberry Silk in particular is an excellent way to protect skin and hair whilst you sleep and Silk’s beauty benefits have been harnessed by the Chinese for centuries. The mirror smooth finish eliminates friction reducing skin and hair damage by up to 50% compared to Cotton. As the protein structure of hair and skin are similar to that of the Silk fibre, hair and skin glide across the surface of our Silk Pillowcase
So not only do you feel truly pampered as you sleep but you wake with almost tangle and damage free hair. That’s less split ends, less breakage and hair that feels less dry than usual. Ideal for those who suffer from nightly hair loss and hard to brush morning locks…it also means you don’t have to spend so long straightening your hair so that’s at least another 5 minutes in bed!
Recommended by hairstylists and beauty experts Mulberry Silk is ideal for anyone wishing to protect their skin. We are constantly moving in our sleep and unfortunately, even the highest quality Cotton will cause friction damage as you turn your head on it. Silks amino acids are also thought to reduce some of the signs of ageing, including wrinkles. In fact, it's recognised as a natural anti-ageing product, widely used in towels and bedding and recommended by dermatologists to slow the visible signs of ageing while revitalising human skin. Albumen is also a naturally-occurring chemical in Silk, thought to speed the skin's metabolism and let new skin cells develop and repair faster than usual. Long-term use improves the skin’s appearance, not unlike a good night cream.
If you suffer from eczema or asthma, Silk is perfect. Its natural proteins and hypoallergenic properties mean it's safe for every skin type even when really delicate. The dense structure of Silk means house dust and mites can't build up, protecting you from everyday allergens. The proteins in Silk actually repel dust mites plus its long fibres don't irritate the skin. No wonder so few people are allergic to Silk making it an excellent hypoallergenic solution to skin sensitivity
And the really great bit…..Mulberry Silk products are easily cared for by machine washing on a 30° delicates cycle.
The History of Silk
One of the most exciting things about Silk is its ancient history. Caterpillar nests were joined together by the Aztecs to create fabric and silken spider webs were used in ancient Greece to dress wounds, something scientists today are continuing to explore; not surprising as it is 5 times as strong as steel. Whilst wild Silk, produced by other caterpillars, has been woven in China, South Asia and Europe since ancient times. The main producer of the gorgeous, luxurious fibres that make the Silk we love so much is the Bombyx Mori Silk moth. Not a particularly beautiful creature but one which is astonishing in its ability to produce such fine, gorgeous fibres that we use to weave sumptuous and iridescent Dupion and gloriously mirror finish smooth Mulberry Silks.
These days most commercial Silks come from specially-farmed silkworms, bred specifically for their ability to make Silk thread that doesn't have minerals on its surface. The Silk, formed into a cocoon, is unwound in one long continuous thread and it is these long smooth threads which are needed to weave Mulberry Silk in particular. To make full use of this wonder of nature the almost empty cocoons are steam sterilised so that we can use them as fingertip topping Silk Beauty Cocoons. The perfect way to exfoliate in a totally natural way whilst benefiting from the anti-ageing compound Serecin which is left behind.
A surprisingly strong material, Silk as we know it today was developed in ancient China around 8,500 years ago. Originally reserved for the Emperors of China, who were keen to keep the method of Silk production secret, it reached Korea in about 200 BC, the Kingdom of Khotan by AD 50 and India by AD 140. It then spread gradually throughout Asia where it fast became a luxury fabric for the wealthy. Before long Silk production became an important international industry. Ultimately the Silk trade arrived in the Middle East, Europe and North Africa and the major trade route along which it travelled was christened The Silk Road.