Lifestyle, Style

Fashion Fabrics: What To Expect When Shopping Online

Disclaimer: This post is collaborative (or contributed) and may contain affiliate links.



Once upon a time, if you wanted to buy a new outfit, you’d visit a physical store. You’d make your way through the crowds, find the garment in question, and then struggle in a cramped changing room – complete with unflattering lighting – to see if your choice suited you. If it did, you bought it; if it didn’t, the quest resumed.

It’s still possible to shop as described above, of course – but there’s no doubt that online shopping has become steadily more and more influential. There are numerous benefits to shopping online for clothes; you have the opportunity to order multiple products to find the best fit, and there are far more options than a single mall could ever provide. However, there is one problem that is eternally problematic when buying clothes online: fabric.

When shopping in a store, you can assess the fabric in person. You can feel if it will be comfortable to wear for a long period of time and make an educated guess as to how well it will stand up to washing. When shopping online, you don’t have that luxury, so you may want to make use of a few fabric-related pointers…

A lack of specificity is a cause for concern


If an online store doesn’t specify the fabric that a garment is made from – or just describes it as a “blend” – then be suspicious. Great clothing brands will use high-quality fabrics and, naturally, they are going to want to discuss this when describing their garments; check out Tencel properties here to see this in action. If a manufacturer isn’t happily discussing the fabrics and materials their clothing is made from, then don’t afford them the benefit of the doubt: the chances are that they didn’t forget to mention it, they just don’t want you to know. Why don’t they want you to know? Because they think if you do know, you won’t buy it – so take a lack of specific information as a giant warning sign.

The price point matters

If you are buying clothes where comfort is particularly important – for example, gym clothes – then price is a good indicator of what to expect from the fabric. While somewhat cliched, there’s no denying that there is a truth behind the idea that you get what you pay for. If an item’s comfort is a major concern, opting for a lower purchasing price may have a hidden cost in terms of how pleasant the fabric is to wear.


Take note of the washing instructions

The way that an item feels isn’t a perfect guide to how it should be washed, but it provides a pretty good clue. For example, if you touched a fabric that felt very delicate, you would likely know that it would require special care and attention during the washing process. That’s fine, of course – provided you know this extra care and attention is going to be necessary prior to purchasing.


As you cannot touch the clothes when shopping online, you could find yourself stuck with an item that has specialist washing requirements, as you purchased without the immediate tactile feedback that may have led to you checking the label before buying. To counteract this issue, check for specific washing instructions in the item description before buying, so you can be sure you’re making as informed a decision as possible.

In conclusion

When buying clothes, fabric isn’t the most important decision, but it is a vital contributory factor. To eliminate the risk of a fabric faux pas, keep the above points in mind the next time you’re shopping online.

Disclaimer: This post is collaborative (or contributed) and may contain affiliate links.

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