Warmer and lighter than anything in its weight class! The Alpaca Hybrid Crew contains 70% baby alpaca fiber and 30% merino wool. Alpaca fiber is a relatively underutilized fiber due to its high price and low availability in comparison to merino. Alpaca is superior to traditional wool in warmth, dry time, moisture wicking and it is innately easier to wash. Alpaca fleece has a hollow core which makes it warmer, lighter weight and also allows increased moisture wicking capabilities.
Warmer than sheeps wool: Alpaca is a hollow fiber, where sheep wool has pockets of air. Much like polar bear fur, the hollow fibers allow for heat to be trapped, creating greater thermal capacity. Thus, Alpaca does tend to be warmer than wool.
Wicking Properties: Wool will absorb up to 50% of its weight in moisture, but after the maximum saturation point, the sweat will sit next to the skin, in turn, increasing discomfort. Because alpaca is hollow, it traps in more heat and mechanically pushes the water away, very little moisture is held next to the skin. Essentially, the water evaporates because of the hollow fiber's resistance to absorb water.
Merino is superior in tensile strength/flexibility which is why we made this garment from a blend of the two. The result is a combination of durability with greater warmth and faster dry times in a single fabric.