What industrial uses are there for cotton? The most obvious is the textile industry for which clothes are made from, but that is not the only thing cotton is being used for today. There are numerous items around each home that also have large amounts of cotton in them or are made of 100% cotton. This includes the drapes that cover our windows, the towels we use to dry ourselves off with and the coverings for a great deal of the furniture we all sit on.
Other places that most forget or do not realize that cotton is being used include the book industry. Cotton can be found in the bindings of most books and manuals. It is also used in the production of paper. With cotton in the paper, the pages of a book are more pliable, softer, stronger and last longer. Books that have cotton in their pages are known to have the ability to last hundreds of years with little to no fading occurring in the print that they possess. The use of cotton in the paper industry is for the production of high quality paper used by professionals that require a hard copy of their document to last the test of time.
Not all cotton products are made into woven items. The most common of these is the cotton pad. The personal hygiene products made from this raw material include diapers for both babies and the elderly, feminine hygiene products for internal and external uses, nursing pads, nasal strips, adhesive for dental plates and for the removal of cosmetics from a lady’s face.
Another primary user of the cotton pad is the medical field. This list includes the many types of medical wraps and packs used around a person’s wound, heat packs, medical bag liners, fixation tapes, incubators & mattresses to name a few.
The characteristics of cotton does not change so whether it is spun into a thread, yarn or made into a cotton pad, it is a fluffy fiber that is absorbent of moisture and becomes stronger when it is wet. It is also easily bleached so it can be used as a sterile covering when an infection is a source of concern in its medical usage.
There are other industrial uses for cotton that are also not thought of by most of the general public. Many of the fishing nets in the past and some today are made of cotton. The auto industry uses cotton in the cord of tires and the camping industry makes tents and tarps from cotton.
The use of cotton for multiple purposes has gone on for centuries back to before recorded history. Because of its unique characteristics that cannot be duplicated by any man made material, new uses for the wondrous cotton plant and the fibers it has will continue to grow as the years pass on to the future.