MERINO SHEEP ORIGIN
The origin of Merino sheep is uncertain. It is thought that it was bred for the first time in the Mediterranean areas by some Spanish farmers until the mid-eighteenth century. In the Middle Ages the Merino sheep could not be exported outside Spain for any reason; the exportation of a Merino sheep was punishable even by death.
Since the end of the eighteenth century this type of sheep spread first in France, then in Australia and New Zealand. Then, the most important breeding farms in the world began to develop in these countries. Today, in New Zealand, there are about 20 Merino sheep per inhabitant.
Merino sheep are considered so important because they resist very well to difficult environmental conditions, they also live in poor soils and in very dry climates with strong thermal excursions. This is possible because the thick layer of wool keeps the animal warm during the night and in winter and protects it from the heat in summer.
MERINO WOOL CHARM
Our pure wool products are made of a fine quality wool, obtained from the fleece of Merino sheep.
The quality and the value of wool depends on numerous parameters. Among these, the most important are: the origin (if it is obtained from animals alive or not), the cleaning (if it is washed or not), the purity (if is obtained from virgin or recycled wool), the fineness, the length, the uniformity, the color, the strength and the elasticity of the fibers.
Merino wool is considered the best among many types of wool, for fineness and length of its fiber. An important parameter of Merino sheep wool is curling: it has about twelve curls per centimeter, instead other wools have only one or two curls. The curling of the fibers acts as a thermal insulator, as it traps more air and heat, protecting both from the cold and the intense heat.
All these qualities have contributed to making Merino wool particularly known, and for this reason it is identified as the highest quality product on the market. Our Merino wool is thinner, softer and more comfortable and it is made up of very curled fibers.
MERINO WOOL FEATURES
The natural fiber of Merino wool has some functional features that distinguish and differentiate it from synthetic fibers.
- It is neutral: It has an antibacterial action, it does not release bad smells when you sweat. Furthermore, thanks to it you sweat less as moisture is absorbed directly into the fibers. The bacteria responsible for bad odors are destroyed by keratin in the fibers, so we don’t have to to wash so often Merino wool garments.
- It regulates moisture: it absorb 35% of its own weight in moisture. In this way, in contrast to synthetic fibers, Merino wool remains warm and comfortable even when wet. The proteins contained in the fibers heat up as soon as they get wet, so wool continues to heat up.
- It is breathable: the fibers absorb large quantities of moisture vapour and move it away to evaporate into the air, when the moisture level is lowered. Merino wool clothing is extremely breathable and dries quickly. In this way it keeps cool even in summer.
- It is temperature regulating: wool fibers keep you cool in summer and warm in winter. In fact its curled fibers compress the body heat favoring an optimal thermal insulation. Merino sheep can survive during the very hot summer thanks to this insulating layer.
- It is soft: its fibers are 18-19 microns (one micron = one thousandth of a millimeter), very thin compared to the others, they do not irritate your skin and they are very soft.
- It is convenient: even if Merino wool has an inherent odor-neutralizing effect, if it get dirty, you can wash it in the washing machine at 30 ° or 40 °.
- It is sustainable: it is naturally 100% ecological. Merino sheep are shorn once to twice a year. To grow these natural fibers are necessary only water, fresh air, sun and tasty grass. The shearing process is purely manual labor and causes the animal absolutely no pain. In addition, Merino wool is biodegradable and doesn’t use any chemical additives.
- It provides UV protection: it absorbs part of the UV rays thus removing them from the skin.
- It is particularly durable: Merino wool fabrics are very durable, in fact a fiber can be bent up to 20,000 times without breaking.
MERINO WOOL BENEFITS ARE EVIDENT
Øldberg doesn’t use synthetic fibers but only high-quality natural products.
Merino wool benefits are evident. Chemical fibers, as polyamide or polyester are generally cheaper, stronger and quick-drying, but unlike Merino wool they absorb less moisture. The temperatureregulation depends on the type of product ,if this is more breathable or more inclined to heat production.
In addition, unlike wool, synthetic fibers don’t absorb moisture, but take it directly to outside where it evaporates quickly, so the body doesn’t feel like sweating.
In synthetic fibers bacteria can retain themselves better and cause unpleasant odors because they are smooth. Furthermore, they aren’t sustainable as Merino wool because are necessary chemical processes to create synthetic fibers.