In today’s world of fast fashion and high street saturation, it has almost become expected that clothes won’t last the test of time, especially when rugged travel is involved. As a remedy to this however, one company has taken a traditionally delicate item – the puffer jacket – and worked to make it both environmentally friendly and nearly indestructible.
Eco-conscious and warm, the Indestructible Puffer from Vollebak is made from dyneema, a special material that is pound for pound 15 times stronger than steel. The ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene combines extreme strength with very low weight, and has been traditionally used in body armour and in mooring systems for giant container ships. Designed to be worn in temperatures down to -40 degrees Celsius, dyneema actually gets stronger the colder it gets.
“We wanted to create a jacket that could withstand the toughest challenges in the coldest places on Earth. Nature claws at you, hits you and freezes you. So in our testing we exposed the puffer jacket to the shearing, tearing, and blunt-force traumas that you’ll get in the real world from rocks, ice, trees, and falls. Dyneema is so strong this jacket is almost impossible to rip. Blunt-force trauma will have almost no impact on it other than marking it,” Vollebak said about the Indestructible Puffer.
According to the company, the jacket was inspired by nature, specifically, the notoriously-tough cockroach. Vollebak also wanted the jackets to be long-lasting so that they would have much less impact on the environment. In place of the duck feathers traditionally used in puffer jackets, the company created insulated synthetic fibres from recycled plastic bottles.
“As staying warm is all about trapping as many pockets of air next to your body as possible, these synthetic fibres are built to be hollow, which means you’ll automatically have millions of air pockets trapped next to your skin. And as the curl of the fibres traps more air than straight fibres, the microscopic texture of the fibre itself also retains heat,” Vollebak told Lonely Planet. The material is also a better choice while on the move, as the synthetic fibres breathe well and help regulate body temperature.
The Indestructible Puffer costs €895. More information is available at Vollebak’s official website.
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