How To Tell The Difference Between Poor Quality and High Quality Cashmere
At N.Peal, we are famous for our cashmere garments of the highest quality, as we use 100% Mongolian cashmere to construct beautiful super-soft and stylish pieces that will last a lifetime.
However, with so many low quality products becoming readily available, it is important to understand the differences between high quality and low quality cashmere so you can be sure that you’re buying the right product.
Discover our guide below on how to tell the differences between high quality cashmere and low quality cashmere, so you can guarantee that the cashmere you own is both special and luxurious.
As one of the most valuable natural products on the market, it should come as no surprise that the quality of cashmere wool varies on everything from the region it is sourced, the season, and even the age, size and type of Cashmere goat it is sourced from.
Cashmere grades help determine the quality of the cashmere, as defined by the thickness and length of hairs on the fibre. The grades range from A to C, with A being the highest quality, and most expensive. As cashmere is known for its lightweight, soft properties, the highest-grade cashmere will feel the softest and will be better at retaining its shape, so it is well worth the investment compared to its cheaper counterparts.
The highest quality cashmere as the fibres will both be the longest and finest. The diameter of the fibres can be as low as 14-15.5 microns, with a length of 34- 36mm. N.Peal always use the highest Grade cashmere in our products to ensure an exceptional and beautiful product that will last.
This will be thicker, and not as soft as Grade A, with a diameter of 19 microns. This is still considered a high-grade cashmere, but will be noticeably less valuable and durable compared to Grade A.
This is the lowest quality grade for cashmere, as the fibres are much thicker with a diameter of around 30 microns. This is much cheaper than the other grades, and will not feel as soft.
How To Tell The Difference Between High and Low Quality Cashmere
The most obvious difference in the quality of cashmere is price but this is not always a strong indicator. High quality cashmere pieces are priced fairly and are well worth the investment as they are significantly more luxurious, well-crafted and have better longevity.
You can also check the below criteria to ensure that your cashmere is high quality…
Check The Label
Like our N.Peal products, the label should always read 100% cashmere. Products which have other fabrics or yarns listed will be considered ‘blends’ and legally cannot be labelled as 100% cashmere. This also applies to any products that claim a ‘cashmere feel’ or ‘cashmere touch’.
Feel For Quality
The highest quality cashmere will feel light and incredibly soft to the touch. The feel will be noticeably softer when compared with a cashmere garment of a lower grade. A good test for this is by holding the cashmere in your hand, or by running the cashmere over a sensitive skin area such as the underside of your chin or inner arm. If the fabric has a rough, itchy quality, it suggests your product is not made from a high quality cashmere.
Structure & Craftsmanship
Clues to the quality of your cashmere garment can be found in both the stretch of the cashmere, and the craftsmanship on the garment itself.
A high quality cashmere jumper will hold its shape, even after multiple wears and hand-washing. To test, stretch a small section of the fabric and see if this ‘bounces back’; lower quality cashmere will not do this, and instead may sag or become misshapen over time.
Similarly, you may notice that the seams and stitching are not as well constructed. High quality cashmere will always be 2-ply (made with two pieces of cashmere yarn so that you cannot see through the wool), with even, closely-spaced, flat stitching on the seams.
Colour & Treatment
Improper treatment of the cashmere fibres through dyeing and manufacturing can also cause the fabric to become rough, and therefore lower in quality. This may be more noticeable on garments that are dyed darker colours and shades.
For timeless, exquisite cashmere pieces, it is always better to shop for high quality cashmere garments made with pure, 100% cashmere. This is the only way to ensure that your pieces capture the ultimate luxury, and will stand the test of time. We invest in our production process from start to finish ensuring the highest standards of quality for our customers.