About 65% of our clothing is made using fossil-based polyester because of its strength, durability and cost-effectiveness. Polyester is, however, oil-based and sourced in the Middle East, and thus comes with a significant environmental impact.  

HEREWEAR aims to provide a more sustainable alternative for polyester with the use of biopolyesters. Polylactic Acid (PLA) was found to be an ideal candidate as a base polymer for the biopolyester yarns, due to its cost, availability and ability to be used for the production of fine filament yarns with good tenacity and elongation. Also, the durability assessments were promising, with positive results in resistance against sweat and washing. A summary of the PLA-based yarn properties is shown below: 

Table. Properties PLA yarn for clothing applications
Filament fineness (dpf) 
Tenacity (cN/tex) 
30 – 35
Elongation (%) 

To fine-tune the properties of PLA and increase its comfort properties, a range of blends was evaluated. For the experiment, different biopolyesters were tested as blend components for improving the comfort of PLA. The results indicated that low concentrations (5 – 10 %) are sufficient to significantly increase the softness of PLA, to values even better than the reference fossil-based polyester. Moreover, the blending didn’t affect the mechanical properties and the processability.

The production of the biopolyester yarns was carried out on the pilot multifilament extrusion line of Centexbel as seen in the video below:

Further fine-tuning and optimisation work will be carried out. This will result in the industrial processing guidelines for melt spun biopolyester yarns. These guidelines are expected by October 2023 and will be made publicly available. Stay tuned to the HEREWEAR channels and subscribe to our newsletter for more updates.

Contact Info:

  • Lien Van der Schueren (email)


  • Youtube video pilot multifilament extrusion line Centexbel 
  • Youtube video Lien explaining the development of biopolyester yarns