An A-Z guide of the fabrics, materials, treatments and technologies used in the manufacture of your favourite outdoor clothing and equipment
Every clothing company uses different terms to describe their ranges and the fabrics and materials from which they are made. Some of the terms used are quite straightforward and pretty much universally know, such as nylon, cotton or polyester.
However, others can leave you a little in the dark, such as Polartech, Primaloft or Cordura. These are probably not as well known as the former terms, but you will find these fabrics and technologies in much of the clothing made by your favourite brands.
Outdoor clothing brands such as Harkila, Musto, Helly Hansen, Deerhunter or Seeland spend a great deal of time and resources on finding the perfect waterproof fabric, silent membrane or insulating filling – either working on its own materials or collaborating with industry leaders such as Gore-Tex.
But it’s not just clothing that leads the way in the technology stakes – much of the equipment and tools available on ArdMoor.co.uk are created using premium materials and techniques, too.
Here is an easy-to-use A-Z guide to some of the fabrics, materials, technologies and terminologies used to produce the shooting, hunting and outdoor footwear and clothing available at ArdMoor.
Clothing and Footwear
ABSS - Crispi
Ankle Bone Support System is a system developed by Italian Bootmaker Crispi that provides exceptional protection, sprain prevention and comfort to the whole of the ankle area.
Insulating and moisture-transporting woollen material that helps keep you warm and dry.
AFS - Crispi
The Crispi Anatomic Fit System wraps the foot and provides supreme long-lasting comfort and better control over uneven terrain.
Allied advanced down technologies is the benchmark for lightweight natural insulation made from the world's best insulating material - natural goose down.
Airtech by F.O.V.
Unique textile, combining extreme durability with great comfort. Soft, breathable, wind resistant, water and dirt repellent.
Durable and frost-proof material that stays flexible and comfortable down to -25°C.
Aware Technology is used by ISOtunes in a selection of its hearing protection and uses microphones to pick up outside sounds amplify them through your hearing protector, enabling you to hear ambient sounds and conversation while still protecting your hearing from sporadic loud noises.
A base layer sits next to your skin and provides a layer of warmth while absorbing and evaporating sweat and moisture away from your body. Essential for long days spent in multiple layers while being fairly active.
Bionic Finish Eco
An eco-friendly fluorine-free (PFC free) water and dirt repellent that’s impregnated into clothing to help repel water and dirt to keep the fabric drier and therefore lighter. Used in much of Pinewood's range.
BLC - Crispi
BLC is a system by Italian bootmaker Crispi that provides balance between torsion rigidity and flexibility achieved by a mechanical process that wraps the comfort area and soft part of the upper to the insole frame.
Boa Closure System
Easy one-hand tightening system for boots that replaces laces. Found on the Hakila Reidmar GTX Boot.
Breathability – MVTR
The Moisture Vapour Transmission Rate (MVTR) is the amount of water vapour that can pass through a square meter of fabric over 24 hours. Click here for more information on waterproof and breathable ratings.
Breathability – RET
Resistance to Evaporative Heat Loss (RET) – the lower the number, the more breathable the material will be. Click here for more information on waterproof and breathable ratings.
Breeks are designed for shooting and stalking and worn with long socks and usually wellington boots or hunting boots. Average inside leg of a pair of breeks is 21" and worn to the knee, as opposed to Plus Fours which are about 25" and worn longer below the knee. Click here for our full range of Breeks and Plus Fours.
Bridle Leather refers to how the cow hide is finished during the tannery stage. Both the grain and the flesh side of the leather is packed with greases and then finished with a wax, which is both a labour intensive and costly process. The term Bridle Leather comes the equestrian world, and is the type of leather used in making bridles for horses. Used by Croots in its exceptional Malton Bridle collection that includes gun slips, cartridge bags and accessories.
Byland Leather, used by Croots in its Byland collection of gun slips, cartridge bags and belts, is made from the finest leather hides available. Each hide is fully dyed using a natural drum dyeing and finishing technique that ensures a beautifully-smooth and uniform appearance.
CCF - Crispi
The Crispi Crossbow Frame is an innovative shock absorbing system in the sole and heel of the boot for exceptional stability and comfort throughout the day.
CLAW - Crispi
The Crispi Claw sole has extended surface contact on the toe and heel areas to increase traction and stability. The CLAW sole also has a prismatic rubber construction designed to optimise the lightweight to durability ratio.
Chevalite is Swedish clothing manufacturer Chevalier's own weatherproof and breathable three-layer membrane system for exceptional protection from falling rain and snow. It also offers outstanding protection from wind.
Closed Cell Technology
Closed Cell Technology within the molecular structure of a compound of Musto footwear provides anti-microbial protection, odour resistance and an easy-clean surface.
This is a moisture wicking and breathable polyester fabric that absorbs little moisture and dries quickly. Used by many brands and incorporated into their warm weather clothing, Coolmax technology is found in everything from caps and hats, shirts and polos to trousers and socks.
Built to be durable, Cordura fabrics offer superior abrasion, tear and scuff resistance. Because of its durability you will find Cordura fabrics in luggage, workwear and military applications, as well as by many outdoor clothing manufacturers.
A class-leading waterproof and breathable membrane developed by Laksen especially for use while hunting and shooting. Completely watertight and highly breathable, the CTX membrane is 30% lighter than its closest competitor.
Is a near silent windproof membrane by Laksen to help keep the body’s core warm and comfortable while out in the wilds. Up to 50% lighter than other similar membranes and highly flexible.
With its excellent moisture movement properties and outstanding abrasion resistance, Dri-Lex is ideal for use in footwear during periods of intensive activity, such as horse riding. Many of the Ariat boots use Dri-Lex linings for exceptional moisture wicking and durability.
DTL - Crispi
Crispi's Dual Tech Lining combines Gore-Tex with finest quality Italian leather for supreme waterproof, breathable and long-lasting footwear.
A strong, double-sided coated polyester fabric favoured by Jack Pyke for many of its bags and back packs.
Durable Water Repellent (DWR) is a polymer coating for the surface of your garment that repels water by causing the water to bead and then run off rather than soaking in.
This is Deerhunter’s own high-quality waterproof loose membrane that comes with a five-year warranty. It sits between outer and inner layers and provides 100% waterproofing. The loose membrane is suited to clothing for activities such as stalking, where there is an emphasis on noiseless movement.
The Deerhunter Stormliner membrane is usually laminated to the garment’s outer fabric or between two layers and used mainly on clothing without taped seams. High levels of breathability.
Dymalux is a natural wood product made by laminating dried birch veneers and infusing them with resin for a hard-wearing that's perfect for knife and weapon grips. Click here to see the Buck Dymalux collection of hunting knives.
EFX - Crispi
The Crispi Elastoflex System is an 'active' insole system developed in the mountains and used by Crispi in a range of their hunting, hiking and everyday boots. The EFX system provides more effective and progressive flex, stability, improved posture and all-day comfort.
Functional fabric with both horizontal and vertical stretch. Perfect for outdoor clothing when comfort and mobility is required.
Fully Taped Seams
Waterproof ribbon tape that is glued over inner seams to keep water from entering between the stitches.
Gore-Tex is probably the most well-known waterproof fabric. It offers the wearer incredible weather protection while being breathable and lightweight. Its microscopic pores are 20,000 times smaller than a raindrop, but 700 times larger than a water vapour molecule – the water can’t get in, but the moisture from your skin can escape. This means you stay warmer when it’s cold and drier when you are active. It is often abbreviated to GTX when in product titles. Click here for more information on waterproof and breathable ratings.
A waterproof membrane for footwear with 360° breathability. Ideal for high activity in a warm climate.
Sticky rubber sole compound designed by Musto for greater on-deck traction, even in wet conditions.
Musto’s footwear technology for providing 360 degree grip on deck.
Helly Hansen's innovative system for storing warm air inside your snow jacket, while also allowing you to quickly vent in cool air to keep your temperature regulated when active out on the slopes.
Harkila’s innovative range of heated jackets and waistcoats powered by a powerbank in the pocket and controlled by an app on your smartphone. Click here to find out more.
As the name implies, this is technology developed by Helly Hansen, a company synonymous with world-leading waterproof clothing. Helly Tech is a waterproof and breathable outer layer that keeps the elements out while keeping you warm, dry and comfortable, and comes in three standards - Professional, Performance and Protection.
This is a lightweight, waterproof and breathable fabric that allows movement without restriction made by New Zealand company Ridgeline.
Technical fibre with insulating properties.
Harkila’s Storm Pro membrane system designed for hunting. Windproof, lightweight, breathable and low-noise membrane.
Harkila’s Weather System membrane specially designed for hunting. Waterproof, windproof, lightweight, breathable and low-noise.
ILS (Interchangeable Lining System)
Baleno’s innovative system that enables you to create your own micro-climate by zipping a fleece into a jacket.
Long-lasting odourless way of repelling mosquitoes, ticks, flies and fleas. Approved for humans and pets.
Developed and used by Scandinavian hunting experts Pinewood Clothing, InsectSafe is a technology that creates a long-lasting, effective shield for your outdoor clothing that works against most insect species, including mosquitoes, ticks and flies.
Used by British welly maker Grubs, Insufoam-ultra is a neoprene that provides exceptional insulation and allows their boots to fit almost any calf.
Many of Helly Hansen's ski jackets possess a 'Life Pocket' that helps prolong the life of your phone or other small electronic devices in cold environments.
The original Helly Hansen base layer was developed in the 1970s. Lifa fibre technology moves moisture away from the body keeping you warmer for longer.
Lifaloft insulation, developed by world leaders Primaloft, is based on Helly Hansen's Lifa fibre technology that is engineered into a lightweight structure to trap more warm air for extra warmth. The fibre doesn't trap water so makes the ideal insulation for intensive outdoor activities throughout the year. Used extensively by cold weather clothing giants Helly Hansen in much of its padded jackets and gilets.
Merino wool is great for insulation, it's non-itch, lightweight and keeps its shape for longer. Merino wool transports moisture away from the body and has anti-static properties. It does all this in a completely natural and sustainable way.
A wicking fabric draws moisture away from the skin, keeping you more comfortable. The moisture wicking fabric also dries quickly to avoid saturating the material and other materials close to it.
MTD is designed by Aigle's outdoor experts to perform in any weather. Its microporous membrane stops water ingress and is extremely windproof. Used in clothing and footwear, MTD allows humidity to escape to keep you as dry and comfortable as possible.
A waterproof fabric by Musto with a minimum hydrostatic waterhead of 5,000mm-10,000mm. Its breathability rating is 5,000g/24hrs.
A waterproof fabric by Musto with a fully seam taped construction. BR2 has a minimum hydrostatic waterhead of 10,000mm-15,000mm. It also has great breathability with a rating of 7,000g/24hrs.
NanoGlide fibres help to reduce the friction between sock and skin eliminating blisters and irritations. Used by several of our favourite brands, NanoGlide is especially useful in hunting and trekking footwear where much of your day will be on your feet.
A side-entry chest pocket, usually zipped and perfect for wallet or phone.
This is part of the synthetic rubbers family and maintains flexibility over a wide range of temperatures. The foamed neoprene is a great insulator and is commonly used in fishing waders, wellington boots and wetsuits.
A performance fibre that inhibits the growth of bacteria to keep you feeling fresher in your clothes for longer, even during periods of extreme activity.
Nitrocell utilises millions of nitrogen bubbles that insulate the footbed from cold terrain. The soft underfoot cushioning is similar to that of a good athletics shoe. Used by Grubs in the majority of the wellington boots
OD Green Micarta
OD Green Micarta is Olive Drab Canvas, a tough, durable material that's resistant to corrosion, acids, oils, heat, cold, moisture, compression and impact. OD Green Micarta is formed by a special high pressure process using layers of the finest canvas. Click here to see Buck's OD Green Micarta collection of hunting knives
Quality insoles that are moisture wicking, breathable and antibacterial.
Gill's ocean-standard range of sailing apparel made with Gill's XPLORE+ three-layer waterproof fabric with XPEL water and stain repellent treatment. The OS1 range is durable, highly waterproof, breathable and designed for high performance on the open ocean.
Gill's OS2 range is made with the latest generation of recycled fabrics and components for a lightweight two-layer fabric system that provides exceptional waterproof and breathable protection.
Durable and lightweight fabrics made to keep you dry and comfortable whatever the weather.
Pinewood TC-1200, TC-Lite and TC-Stretch
A range of hard-wearing fabrics from Swedish shooting clothing manufacturer Pinewood that posses different characteristics suitable for many different outdoor activities.
Delivering warmth without the weight, Polartec is a soft, breathable fabric that has a high loft of fibres which trap warm air and provide highly effective insulation. Hydrophobic Polartec fibres repel water for quicker drying times and increased comfort. Used by many of the top outdoor brands, including Harkila, Musto and Aigle
Odour control technology that stops bacterial growth in sweaty clothes.
A type of synthetic fabric that contains moisture-wicking and water-repelling properties which makes it ideal for jackets and outerwear.
Poron XRD is ultra-lightweight padding that offers extreme impact protection and allows for soft, non-restricting padding and cushioning while still absorbing more than 90% of the impact energy. Used in many of our Blundstone boots.
One of the best synthetic insulation available, Primaloft provides the wearer with water-resistant warmth and breathability and used by some of the world’s most respected outdoor brands.
Prooftex is a waterproof and windproof drop liner membrane used by Hoggs of Fife in many of its tweed shooting and country jackets.
QUIET-TEX is a range of innovative waterproof, windproof and breathable fabrics from Ridgeline with the added benefit of being super quiet when hunting and stalking.
Recco technology, available in certain Helly Hansen garments, makes it possible for you to be searchable for organised rescue teams in the event of an avalanche or accident when out on the slopes.
A hi-tech yarn combining artificial or natural fibres with pure copper. Has anti-static characteristics, excellent thermal conduction and anti-bacterial properties. Used in Harkila Trail Socks, among others, for exceptional comfort and to help you perform at your best throughout the day.
Ripstop fabrics are woven fabrics, often made of nylon, and are created using special manufacturing techniques to make them resistant to extensive tears and rip.
RL-TEX and RL-TEX PRO
RL-TEX is Ridgeline's own three-layer system for outstanding waterproof, windproof and breathable weather protection. Its 'top of the line' is RL-TEX PRO is a three-layered fabric with exceptional weather protection. The Ridgeline RL-TEX PRO offers 10,000mm H2O rating and a 5,000 g/m2 breathability rating.
SafeMax Hearing Conservation Technology
Used in many of ISOtunes' Bluetooth-equipped ear defenders, SafeMax Technology is used to limit the volume output to 85 decibels, so your hearing is protected from explosive outer noise as well as loud inner noise, too.
SEETEX is Seeland's own innovative membrane that provides outstanding weather protection with lightweight breathability.
Clothing with a 'shooting fit' has extra fabric around the shoulders and back for freedom of movement when raising your arms.
Softshell products are made from woven fabric, usually with a fleece backing, making them warm and comfortable. Although not 100% waterproof like a ‘hard shell’ Gore-Tex-based jacket, a soft shell garment will keep you fairly dry in light rain and will provide fantastic breathability and comfort if you are active. Softshells are a great all-rounder, so perfect for day-to-day wear.
Southern Star Fleeces
Southern Star is a range of different weight fleeces used by Ridgeline in their fleeced clothing. The Southern Star fleece triple twisted construction creates multiple air pockets that can trap warmth. These innovative fleece fabrics do not retain water, but allows it to evaporate keeping the fabric dry.
The storm flap is a front placket or flap that covers the zip or press studs on a jacket or coat. Some shooting and hunting jackets feature double storm flaps to envelop the zip in twin layers of fabric and help to prevent water ingress when the rain is horizontal.
A high-tech, lightweight, strong and super soft fabric that dries eight times quicker than cotton.
TC-1200 is Pinewood's hard-wearing fabric that's used as an outer material in its jackets, trousers, vests and caps. It is a tightly woven fabric that offers excellent windproof protection and is quick drying easy to clean.
TC-Lite is lightweight and breathable summer fabric by Pinewood that's fast drying, durable and wind resistant.
TC-Stretch is a Pinewood fabric made for life outdoors, that's extremely comfortable with high levels of breathability when worn in warm weather. The fabric is impregnated with a water repellency treatment and provides 50+ UV protection.
Fabrics such as pure new wool Scottish Tweed will often be treated with Teflon to help repel excess water and dirt while keeping the material light.
Jackets made from tricot fabric are usually warm and good at wicking away moisture from the body, but less wind and water resistant than typical polyester or nylon jackets, unless combined with a waterproof and windproof membrane.
A brand of synthetic fibre insulation used in footwear, gloves, hats and gloves. Its fibres are thinner in diameter than polyester fibres which makes Thinsulate a great waterproof substitute to down insulation.
ThermoCool fibres keep you warm when it’s cold and keep you cool when it’s warm.
Insulating material for clothing, which is low weight and allows good freedom of movement.
TWT - Crispi
Crispi's innovative lightweight Thermo Wire Technology system that supports the outer of the boot for better stability and protection.
UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor and is usually followed with a number, such as 30, 40 or 50. The number stands for the amount of harmful UV rays, as a percentage, that the fabric or sun screen is blocking out. Many sailing brands, such as Musto, Gill and Dubarry, make UPF clothing for those spending prolonged periods under the sun's warm rays.
Ventile is a completely natural fabric made from cotton and used by Laksen in its Dynamic Eco range. Ventile fabrics are 100% cotton that are naturally waterproof with fibres that close tightly together when they get wet, which provides a waterproof barrier against moisture. Click here to read more about Ventile.
Soles used by footwear manufacturers worldwide, which provide excellent traction and abrasion resistance on a wide range of surfaces.
Rubber boot and shoe compound for optimal grip on cold, icy and snowy surfaces.
Rubber designed for footwear that experience extreme temperatures at both ends of the scale (-20°C to +250°C).
Same great quality as Vibram soles but with added grip on wet and dry surfaces with outstanding durability for a long life.
A treatment for fabrics, made by HHL Technologies, to repel biting insects, including mosquitoes, bed bugs, sand flies and fleas. Can be applied to shirts, T-shirts and trousers to repel troublesome insects. Used by hunting clothing expert Deerhunter in the anti-insect summer range of hunting and shooting gear.
Robust, technical press studs and zips.
WFW - Crispi
Crispi's Wrapping Framework system is a structural over-wrapping of plastic polymer on the outside of the boot for support, strength and protection.
The process of drawing sweat or moisture away from the skin to keep you dry.
Gill's revolutionary plant-based repellency treatment used on its latest OS1 and OS2 clothing.
Water drainage technology developed by Musto that prevents pooling in the shoe for better comfort, hygiene and odour control.
Gill's three-layer fabric fabric system designed for enhanced levels of waterproof protection and increased durability.
Gill's two-layer fabric fabric system designed for lightweight durability and reliable levels of breathability and performance in a variety of weather conditions.
High-quality, robust zips from world-leading Japanese zip manufacturers YKK.
ZQ Natural Fibre
Used by New Zealand hunting experts Swanndri, ZQ wool is considered to be the Gold Standard when it comes to wool production. Animal welfare and social responsibility are among the top priorities when it comes to producing the wool. The ZQ programme governs every stage of the the production of wool, from the health and welfare of the farmers and their families to that of their animals. The ZQ programme also ensures sustainability of the farming practices. Each sheep is guaranteed 'Five Basic Freedoms' to ensure the animals are well cared for: Freedom from discomfort, disease, distress, thirst, and to live naturally.
A tough stainless steel used in a variety of applications including knife blades.
A versatile high carbon stainless steel used in many popular knife blades.
A high-carbon content stainless steel that is hard and durable. Used to produce ball bearings and quality knife blades.
A premium grade knife steel. Hardened stainless steel designed to be hard-wearing and corrosion resistant.
An upgraded version of S30V stainless steel. Easily sharpened without the need to remove the edge of the blade, ideal for long-term outdoor activity.
This is the latest in impact protection, with intelligent molecules that flex freely with your movement but upon impact lock together to absorb the impact energy, protecting you from the blow. D3O technology is available in Musto’s D3O Kneepads.
MOLLE is an acronym for Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment used by a number of NATO armed forces, especially the British Army and the United States Army. These types of MOLLE sheaths are used by many hunting knife manufacturers, and by Leatherman for some of its multi-tools.