Nikwax® Directional Textiles

 

Nikwax Directional Textiles Nikwax® Directional Textiles are different – more than ‘waterproof’, better than ‘breathable’.

They’re different for a reason, providing significant benefits for active outdoor professionals and enthusiasts looking for gear to keep them comfortable, dry and safe in all weathers.

Fabric breathability on its own is not enough – it’s essential to avoid a build up of water in your clothing when you are working hard. Too much moisture in your clothing will lead to sudden and rapid cooling when you stop and rest.

An adult working hard can produce upto 1 litre of sweat per hour – no ‘breathable’ waterproof can transfer that amount of water as moisture vapour, even when the outside air is dry.

In fact, most breathable waterproofs stop transferring moisture altogether in cold, wet and windy conditions, leading to an uncomfortable and dangerous build-up of water in your clothing.

Sweat is produced more at some parts of your body’s surface than others – unless that moisture is spread it can’t evaporate to cool you down. The less efficient your evaporation of sweat is, the more sweat you produce – leading to even greater build up of condensation inside your clothing.

Directional® Fabrics keep you more comfortable and safer because they move both sweat and liquid water to where your body needs it to be:

To the outside of your garment to keep you dry and therefore warm
or
spreading it evenly around your body to keep you cool and prevent it ‘pooling’.

 

Directionality

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efficient water  movement

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stable body temperature

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comfort and safety in outdoor clothing

Combine Directional base layers and fleeces with Directional waterproofs and you get a clothing system which lets you control water and air movement to achieve the optimum body temperature whatever the weather and whatever your activity.

 Nikwax® Directional Textiles between them provide the four key functions that are important in any outdoor clothing system:

1. Wicking
2. Warmth/ Insulation
3. Windproofing
4. Waterproofing

Comfort in the outdoors depends on achieving the right balance between these four functions to suit the weather conditions, your activity level and your physiology.



Nikwax® Directional Textiles Family Tree

Click on an individual fabric or fabric group below to find out more

 

 

Analogy

 

Parameta

Nikwax Analogy Waterproof

Nikwax Analogy Insulator  
Parameta® T
Parameta® T +
Nikwax Analogy Fleece Nikwax Windproof   Parameta® S Parameta® A
         
Nikwax Analogy Fleece     Parameta® X
Parameta® X
         
     
Parameta® X
 

  
  Fabric name: Parameta® A (including Parameta A Cotton+)

What it does:  All Parameta® A fabrics are Directional fabrics that wick very effectively, rapidly spreading perspiration over a large area to provide maximum evaporation in order to keep you cool at higher temperatures. They also blocks out virtually all damaging UV rays, making garments that are ideal for travel and warm weather activities.

Parameta A comes in assorted weights to suit different requirements

  • Ultra light for Trek & Travel Shirts (100% polyester)
  • Standard weight for trousers (100% polyester)
  • Cotton+ used in shirts and trousers (cotton blended with modern synthetics for rugged comfort)

Key benefits:

  • Lightweight and comfortable – you hardly know you’re wearing it.
  • Exceptional UV protection
  • Wind resistant
  • Insect resistant because of dense weave
  • Antibacterial finish for freshness
  • Maximum evaporation and cooling through spread of perspiration over a large area
  • Rapid drying – eliminating cold spots after exercise by reducing ‘pooling’ of perspiration
  • Ideal when travelling – minimal weight to wear and carry and quick and easy to wash and dry on the move

How it works:


1. Skin surface

2. Parameta® A fabric draws perspiration away from the skin and spreads it rapidly over a large surface area.

3. Moisture spreads and evaporates to ensure maximum cooling

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  Fabric name: Parameta® G  


What it does:   Parameta® G is a Directional polyester fabric that wicks very effectively, spreading perspiration over a large area and drying out rapidly to provide comfort to the wearer.

Key benefits:

  • By wearing the fabric next to skin or by combining with outer layers with or without venting, you can modify the amount of insulation or cooling to suit the weather conditions, your level of activity and your own physiology.
  • Combined with a windproof outer, the fabric provides excellent insulation.
  • Once this is removed or moderated by venting the outer layer, significant cooling can be achieved.
  • If you wear Parameta G alone, without an outer windproof, water will still be wicked away from you, but warm air will be dissipated and the wind will speed up evaporation of perspiration to keep you cool.

How it works:


1 Skin surface

2 Parameta G worn next to the skin, drawing perspiration from the skin and away from you, spreading it rapidly over a large surface area

3 Warm air generated is dissipated by moving air to keep you cool.

If you wear Parameta G with an outer Páramo windproof or wind resistant layer, the fabric moves perspiration away from you while trapping warm air to keep you warm.

1 Skin surface

2 Parameta G worn next to skin, drawing perspiration from the skin and away from you to keep you dry, while trapping warm air.

3 Shown here with a Nikwax Windproof layer worn over the top, which allows moisture to escape while deflecting the wind and helping to retain warm air.

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  Fabric name: Parameta® T  

Parameta® T What it does: This Directional fabric, the reversible Parameta® T is amazingly lightweight and stretchy, and offers the choice of two levels of cooling. It is an asymmetrical, wicking fabric that directs water from one face to the other as well as rapidly spreading moisture to speed up evaporation and the resultant cooling.

Key benefits:

  • Extremely light-weight and fine fabric.
  • Constructed with two different faces to offer you two different levels of cooling – two garments for the price and weight of one.
  • Moisture spreads really rapidly and evaporates very quickly for maximum effect and so also reduces pooling of perspiration.
  • Very quick and easy to wash and dry making it perfect for travel.

How it works:
Parameta® T - How it works


In hot conditions, especially when you are working hard and/ or feel hot

  1. Skin surface
  1. Fabric’s smooth water-attracting face worn next to the skin keeps water close to your skin
  1. Moisture wicks and evaporates rapidly to cool you down most effectively – offering maximum comfort during maximum perspiration.

Parameta® T - How it works 2


When you need a lower level of cooling – in cooler conditions or if you feel cool

  1. Skin surface
  1. Fabric’s honeycomb, air-containing face worn next to the skin, giving a feeling of dryness and offering a lesser level of cooling.
  1. Water is directed away and held away from your skin, but effective evaporation of excess water is still able to occur.

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  Fabric name: Parameta® T+

Parameta® T What it does: The latest Directional fabric, the new reversible Parameta® T+ is amazingly lightweight and stretchy, and offers the choice of two levels of cooling. It is an asymmetrical, wicking fabric that directs water from one face to the other as well as rapidly spreading moisture to speed up evaporation and the resultant cooling. Parameta® T+ robust fabric resists ‘pulls’ that baselayers can be prone to.

Key benefits:

  • Extremely light-weight and fine fabric that feels good against the skin.
  • Constructed with two different faces to offer you two different levels of cooling – two garments for the price and weight of one.
  • Moisture spreads really rapidly and evaporates very quickly for maximum effect and so also reduces pooling of perspiration.
  • Very quick and easy to wash and dry making it perfect for travel.

How it works:
Parameta® T - How it works


In hot conditions, especially when you are working hard and/ or feel hot

  1. Skin surface
  1. Fabric’s smooth water-attracting face worn next to the skin keeps water close to your skin
  1. Moisture wicks and evaporates rapidly to cool you down most effectively – offering maximum comfort during maximum perspiration.

Parameta® T - How it works 2


When you need a lower level of cooling – in cooler conditions or if you feel cool

  1. Skin surface
  1. Fabric’s honeycomb, air-containing face worn next to the skin, giving a feeling of dryness and offering a lesser level of cooling.
  1. Water is directed away and held away from your skin, but effective evaporation of excess water is still able to occur.

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  Fabric name:  Nikwax Cotton+

Nikwax Cotton+ What it does: Nikwax Cotton+ is a lightweight yet tough fabric that blends cotton with modern synthetic fibres to provide rugged comfort. By combining the best of the properties of both fibres, Nikwax Cotton+ offers easy wear and easy care qualities ideal for outdoor activities and travel.

Key benefits:

  • Lightweight and quick drying
  • Tough and durable
  • Can be proofed with Nikwax Cotton Proof to provide a degree of water-repellency
  • UV and wind resistant

How it works:

Nikwax Cotton+
1. Skin surface

2. Páramo baselayer worn next to the skin.

3. Nikwax Cotton+ provides a quick-drying, sturdy outer, which is wind-resistant but lets perspiration escape.

 

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  Fabric name: Parameta® S

Parameta® S

What it does: Parameta® S is a reversible, asymmetrical, wicking fabric that directs water to one face and captures still air in the other, so it can be used to cool you down or warm you up as you choose, in response to the temperature, your level of activity and your own physiology.

Key benefits:

  • Specially constructed fabric so that water concentrates naturally in one face of the fabric only – the smooth face.
  • As a result, it can provide protection from wind-blown mist and drizzle and recovers fast from immersion.
  • Offers excellent temperature control and comfort – you can react to different temperature and activity levels depending on the way out you wear it.
  • You need only one garment to fulfil the role of two – offering both value for money and less to carry or wear.

 

How it works:
Parameta® S - How it works

If you are working hard or are hot you need to wear the smooth face of the fabric next to your skin, which holds water close to your skin to evaporate and so keep you cool.

1. Skin surface

2. Smooth, water-attracting face of the fabric worn next to the skin holds water next to the skin to cool the body

3. Fleecy face of Parameta® S

Parameta® S - How it works 2

If you are in colder conditions or keeping still you need to wear the fleecy face of the fabric next to your skin to trap still air and keep you warm:
1. Skin surface

2. Fleecy face of the reversible fabric worn next to the skin captures air between fabric and skin, and pushes water away from the skin, in order to warm the body

3. Smooth water-attracting face of Parameta® S draws water to the outer layer away from the skin

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  Fabric name: Parameta® X

Parameta® X

What it does: Parameta® X is a light-weight, asymmetrical, wicking, stretch fabric that directs water away from the surface of the skin and traps air next to the skin to keep you both warm and dry.

 

Key benefits:

  • Provides excellent comfort and freedom of movement through stretchiness.
  • Protects your insulation by trapping air between fabric and skin.
  • Keeps you comfortable by wicking away perspiration and reducing pooling of perspiration.

How it works:
Parameta® X -  How it works

1. Skin surface

2. Parameta® X fabric draws water away from the skin to keep you dry, allowing air to be captured between fabric and skin to warm the body.

3. Water is directed away from the skin

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  Fabric name: Nikwax Windproof

Nikwax Windproof

What it does: Nikwax Windproof uses a closely woven microfibre fabric which cuts wind chill and protects your insulation but still allows the movement of moisture away from the body. It can be treated with Nikwax durable water-repellency to deflect the rain.

 

Key benefits:

  • Prevents windchill, to keep you warm.
  • Easily treated and re-treated with Nikwax Aftercare products to keep you dry too.
  • Excellent moisture vapour transfer or breathability minimises condensation.
  • Extremely resilient and durable fabric, it won’t degrade in UV light
  • Folds or compresses without any damage making it ideal to carry

How it works:
Nikwax Windproof - How it works

1. Skin surface

2. Parameta S is shown here worn next to the skin drawing water away to keep you dry

3. Nikwax® Windproof's closely woven microfibre provides wind proofing and Nikwax durable water-repellency.

4. Wind is deflected away from the body, while perspiration as water vapour can escape. If treated with Nikwax Waterproofing® products it can also provide durable and renewable water-repellency.

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  Fabric name: Nikwax Analogy Fleece

Nikwax Analogy Fleece

What it does: Nikwax Analogy® Fleece, like mammal fur, repels water and actively pushes both liquid water and water vapour away from the body. Fleeces keep you warm by trapping still air between their fibres. Soak a conventional fleece in water and it loses up to 95% of its insulation. Nikwax® Fleece offers superior comfort, especially in humid conditions.

Key benefits:

  • Two layer construction traps still air giving superior insulation to keep you warm.
  • Outer layer provides Directional water-repellency while the Pump Liner actively pushes liquid moisture away from the body keeping you dry from precipitation, perspiration and condensation.
  • Continues to work just as effectively even in high humidity or very cold conditions.
  • Water-repellency can be easily renewed for the lifetime of the garment with Nikwax Aftercare.
  • The fabric is soft, flexible and hard-wearing.

How it works:
Nikwax Analogy Fleece - How it works

1. Skin surface

2. Parameta® S is shown here worn next to the skin, drawing water away to keep you dry.

3. Nikwax Analogy® Pump Liner pumps water away from the body.

4. Nikwax® Fleece outer fabric allows air to be trapped between Pump Liner and outer to give insulation.

5. Outer fabric is treated to give Directional water-repellency, deflecting water away from the body.

- Nikwax® Fleece can be combined with Nikwax® Windproof to provide a fully Directional waterproof and windproof system.

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  Fabric name: Nikwax Fleece

Nikwax Analogy Fleece

What it does: Nikwax® Fleece is both water-repellent and wind resistant, plus it is Directional – actively pushing water vapour and liquid water away from the body to keep the wearer dry. The fabric traps still air to keep the wearer warm, but offers a lower level of insulation than the two layered Nikwax Analogy® Fleece. Combined with a Nikwax® Windproof outer to deflect raindrops, Nikwax® Fleece will provide full weatherproof protection, working well in all temperatures and humidity conditions.

Key benefits:

  • Traps still air giving superior insulation to keep you warm.
  • Moves water away from the wearer, allowing perspiration to escape for comfort in all conditions
  • Provides water-repellency which can be easily renewed for the lifetime of the garment with Nikwax Aftercare.
  • Combined with a Nikwax Windproof outer layer, an equivalent to an Analogy waterproof is achieved, keeping the wearer dry from precipitation and removing perspiration.
  • Continues to work just as effectively even in high humidity or very cold conditions.
  • The fabric is soft, cosy and hard-wearing.

How it works:
Nikwax Analogy Fleece - How it works

1. Skin surface

2. Páramo base layer is shown here worn next to the skin, drawing water away to keep you dry.

3. Nikwax® Fleece is treated to give Directional water-repellency, and also helps to insulate and to direct water away from the skin to the outside to keep the wearer dry. Combine Nikwax® Fleece with Nikwax® Windproof for a fully Directional waterproof and windproof system.

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  Fabric name: Nikwax Analogy Waterproof

Nikwax Analogy Waterproof

What it does: The Nikwax Analogy® Pump Liner mimics the action of animal fur – pushing liquid water outwards to protect you from rain, condensation and perspiration, while protecting your insulation. This is combined with a Directional microfibre outer to deflect wind and rain.

Key benefits:

  • Two layer construction traps still air giving superior insulation to keep you warm.
  • Outer layer provides Directional water-repellency while the Pump Liner actively pushes liquid moisture away from the body keeping you dry from precipitation, perspiration and condensation.
  • Continues to work just as effectively even in high humidity or very cold conditions.
  • Water-repellency can be easily renewed for the lifetime of the garment with Nikwax Aftercare.
  • The fabric is soft, strong, silent and durable.

How it works:
Nikwax Analogy Waterproof - How it works

1. Skin surface

2. Parameta® S is shown here worn next to the skin, drawing water away to keep you dry.

3. Nikwax Analogy Pump Liner pumps water away from the body.

4. Closely woven microfibre outer provides windproofing and Nikwax durable water-repellency. Air is trapped between Pump Liner and outer to give insulation.

5. Wind and rain is deflected away from the body while perspiration and condensation as liquid water or water vapour can escape.

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  Fabric name: Nikwax Analogy Insulator

Nikwax Analogy Insulator

What it does: Nikwax Analogy® Insulator combines Nikwax® Windproof closely woven microfibre outer with Nikwax synthetic, water-resistant fill to cut windchill and provide excellent insulation for overlayering with other Nikwax fabrics.  It retains body heat very effectively to warm the body quickly and deflects the rain while providing excellent moisture vapour transfer.  It packs down small, giving a high warmth to weight ratio. The fill gives a down-like feel and performance with the benefit of still working well when wet.

Key benefits:

  • Very efficient retention of body heat to warm you quickly;
  • Cuts windchill and provides excellent block insulation;
  • Down-like feel and performance continues to work when wet;
  • Packs down small with a high warmth-to-weight ratio;
  • Deflects the rain while allowing excellent moisture vapour transfer to minimise condensation;
  • Can be treated with Nikwax TX Direct to give renewable waterproof performance;
  • Very durable outer to endure regular use in all conditions.

How it works:
Nikwax Analogy Insulator - How it works

  • Skin surface.
  • Parameta® S is shown here worn next to the skin, drawing water away to keep you dry.
  • Nikwax Insulator fill retains body heat to warm the body quickly.
  • Nikwax® Windproof’s closely woven microfibre provides windproofing and deflects the rain.
  • Nikwax Analogy Insulator provides excellent heat retention while allowing moisture vapour transfer and directing water away from the body.

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Why Analogy?

Polar bear

Nikwax Analogy® got its name because of the way it mimics animal fur in providing both insulation and water-shedding which works in all conditions.

In the same way that seals, otters and bears keep warm in very wet conditions, the Nikwax Analogy® Pump Liner pushes liquid outwards to keep you warm and dry inside.

Not only does this give superior waterproof protection from the elements – while both Soft Shell and conventional waterproof breathable fabrics can only cope with around 20% of the sweat you produce when working hard, Nikwax Directionality will pump away all of it.

The special characteristics of Nikwax Analogy result in significant advantages over conventional waterproofs and Soft Shell:

  • Warmth – providing warmth as well as waterproofing allows you to leave some of your insulation layers at home.
  • Works as effectively in all conditions – Both conventional waterproofs and Soft Shell fail in conditions of high humidity, while Nikwax Analogy® continues to pump water away whatever the weather.
  • Soft but very strong fabrics – because Nikwax Analogy® doesn’t need coatings or laminates to work, the fabrics are much softer and more flexible but just as strong and tough.
  • Silent – Nikwax Analogy® is rustle-free, a pleasure to walk in or with.
  • Not compromised by puncture – You could fill a Directional Waterproof garment with pins, take them out, wear the garment in the rain and still stay dry! Puncture of the outer or inner fabric will not lead to leakage.
  • Renewable – The performance of Directional Waterproofs can be indefinitely renewed by caring for them with Nikwax products, while conventional membranes can eventually crack and cannot then be repaired.

Testing and standards
As well as our in-house laboratory facilities in East Sussex and our panel of very critical gear testers all around the UK, we call upon the independent testing facility at Leeds University, the ‘Rain Room’, to ensure that our stringent standards for the Nikwax Analogy® label are consistently maintained.

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Rain Room Testing

The Rain Room at Leeds University Textile Department (UK) was especially built and donated by Nikwax to enable the realistic and independent assessment of outdoor fabrics as garments.  

The process of testing is as follows:

  • Mannequins are clothed in fleece cotton tracksuits and balaclavas.
    These are absorbent but do not wick easily, which aids detection of water movement.
  • Test garments made with Nikwax Analogy® fabrics are placed over the top.
  • The clothed mannequin is positioned under the shower tester with one arm pointing forward and the other slightly downward to mimic a walking position. The mannequin revolves six times per minute, for up to four hours.
  • Heavy rain is simulated - with a range of drop diameters at an intensity of 28-32mm per hour some 10 times the intensity of normal heavy rain in the UK).

 The results: Standards Guaranteed by the Nikwax Analogy® Label

Nikwax Analogy Pump Liner - the Directional liner that transfers liquid water from one face to the other.

       Minimum static water transfer face to face

300gms per hour
       Maximum water content after 30 minutes static draining 20%

Nikwax Windproof – the outer fabric treated with durable water-repellency.

       Minimum tear strength

20 Newtons
       Maximum air permeability  2.5 cubic feet per minute
       Spray rating 5

Nikwax Analogy Directional Waterproof - these two fabrics combined.

       Minimum four hour resistance to 3cm of rain per hour.

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