Materialkunde: mehr wissen, besser kaufen

Materials explained: know more, buy better

When searching for the new favorite piece, just checking which materials it is made of. Who is not familiar with that? A very important factor, especially with sports clothing, is a breathable, elastic and fast-drying fabric. While terms such as jersey or sweat mostly appear in the product description, the washing instructions suddenly only have cotton or modal. Somehow confusing. But where exactly is the difference?

What is material?

First of all, it has to be distinguished between the material and the type of manufacture. Material means what the fabric is made of and that is also the one that can be read in the label of the garment.

Materials are differentiated in: 

  • Animal fibers such as wool and silk
  • Plant fibers such as cotton and linen
  • Chemical fibers such as cellulose and synthetics

What materials are used?

Many different materials are used in the fashion industry, some of them more common and well known, others only for very specific products. At MANDALA, we use these materials:


Cotton is the most widely used fibre in the textile industry. Its share is about 50 %. Here, special attention should be paid to organic cotton, as the conventional crop causes much of the world's soil pollution through pesticides. At MANDALA, we only use certified organic cotton to ensure that our fabrics cause as little harm to the environment as possible.

Tencel outfit


This material is also known as Tencel ™ and is a fiber made of natural raw materials. Here wood serves as the basis and the fiber, which can often be found in the sports area thanks to their performance properties, is biodegradable. 


The material is obtained from beech wood cellulose fibers. The chinned wood is cut into small chips and the cellulose fibers are removed. The product is then spun with a machine over nozzles. Modal is particularly soft and resembles viscose or silk.


Elastane is like a kind of rubber thread that is incorporated into the fabric and ensures that the corresponding piece of clothing repeatedly contracts into the original form. Usually the elastane content is 2-10% and is visually invisible, except for a slight shine. Especially with Active Wear, which is tight, elastane is essential for elasticity.


The delicate fiber is a natural product made of cellulose, which can be found in plant cell walls and cotton remains of the textile industry. In a special process, this is dissolved and processed into a yarn.  Here you can also find a detailed blog post about vegan silk and everything you need to know about.

Bio-polyamide outfit


Polyamide is similar to polyester and is also a synthetic fibre, usually made from petroleum. At MANDALA, however, we rely on organic polyamide. The innovative material is made from castor oil and thus has a natural raw material as its origin. A special process saves water and CO2 during production. Bio-Based Polyamide has many great performance properties. Among other things, it is quick-drying, breathable and odour-neutralising.  You can read more about our organic polyamide here.


Polyester serves as an generic term for all materials and also fabrics consisting of polyester fibers or yarn. It is an artificial fiber that can be made from various plastics. We use a recycled polyester that cleans the environment per legging of 12 thrown away PET bottles. Additional raw materials such as oil are not required for this. Recycled polyester has breathable and only skin-friendly properties against its bad reputation.

How do I find the right material?

As with the example of cotton, the production and quality of the materials can vary greatly. So it is always worth taking a close look. For each material there are different certificates that look at the quality, the origin and the entire production process. You can use these certificates to check whether a product meets your requirements. You can read everything about our certifications here.

And what is a fabric in the end? We will also explain this to you on our blog soon.