Acrylic is an artificial fibre made from crude oil, which is a non-renewable resource. It is a type of plastic and is usually used as a cheaper substitute for wool due to its wool-like look and feel. Acrylic can commonly found in knitwear and coats.
Cheap, durable, lightweight, warm, soft, shrink-resistant, machine washable
Non-biodegradable, Non-breathable, non-absorbent, might irritate skin, easy to pill, highly flammable, builds up static
Synthetic petroleum-based fibres are non-biodegradable and can take up to 200 years to decompose. They usually require a lot of energy along with toxic chemicals during the manufacturing process, which are later washed into our water. Most of these chemicals are impossible to decompose and cause permanent water pollution. Besides, when washed in a washing machine, these fibres release micro-plastics in our oceans, which are later consumed by fish and other marine life and consequently enter human food chains.
More sustainable alternatives
SHOULD AVOID, wool