What Makes a Fabric Performance Fabric?

You may have come across the term “performance fabrics,” but have you ever wondered what exactly they entail, and what makes them a valuable choice? From its origins to typical types of performance fabrics, this blog goes into the comprehensive details of these materials.


After reading this blog, you’ll have gained expert insight into performance fabrics and can decide which type is best for your upholstery project. Better yet, if after reading this blog you’re interested in purchasing performance linen fabrics by the yard, we have a wide selection of them available on our website. So, don’t forget to browse through our catalog!


What is Performance Fabric?


In the textile  industry, the term “performance fabric” oftentimes refers to fabrics known for their durability and ease of maintenance amidst the rigors of daily life. Basic stains should be easily removable with minimal effort, typically requiring only water and gentle blotting. Even more stubborn stains like wine spills or spaghetti sauce stains can usually be effectively treated with common household or upholstery cleaning products. Performance fabrics are also designed to withstand long-term wear and tear, ensuring that the material remains intact and doesn’t deteriorate after a year of use. When it comes to high-traffic areas and living spaces that need to stand the test of time, performance fabric is the smart choice.


The evolution of Performance fabrics?


Performance fabrics have undergone significant evolution over time. Initially, these fabrics were primarily recognized for their elevated abrasion counts. However, with the progression of technology, we now witness a noteworthy transformation whereby numerous high-durability fabrics not only exhibit impressive resistance to abrasion but also boast stain-repellent properties. In recent years, there has been a remarkable development in the textile industry, introducing fabrics that showcase resilience against high abrasion counts, staining, moisture, and UV rays. While it’s important to note that not all fabrics labeled as “Performance fabrics” are universally comprehensive, a substantial portion of contemporary performance fabrics frequently incorporates two or more of these exceptional attributes. This amalgamation serves to craft aesthetically pleasing and enduring pieces of furniture.


What are its Traits?


They are known for their ability to repel water and resist stains, preventing mold and mildew growth. Additionally, they showcase excellent lightfastness, ensuring bright colors over time, and possess remarkable durability. Many performance fabrics also feature antimicrobial properties, making them suitable for various applications.


4 Common Types of Performance Fabrics


  1. Acrylic
  • Good dimensional stability
  • Resistance to chemicals
  • Colorfastness and dyeability
  • Resists mildew
  • Resists shrinkage and wrinkles
  • Hydrophobic (resist water)
  • Easy cleaning


  1. Olefin
  • Exhibits moisture and mildew resistance
  • Reacts sensitively to elevated heat temperatures
  • Does not require chemical treatment to possess performance characteristics
  • Shows resilience against abrasion
  • Offers stain resistance
  • Simple to clean
  • Demonstrates chemical resistance


  1. Polyester
  • Exhibits resistance to stretching and shrinkage
  • Mixes seamlessly with other fibers
  • Dries quickly
  • Resists the effects of many chemicals


  1. Nylon
  • Known for its durability
  • Displays elastic properties
  • Shows limited tolerance to light exposure
  • Typically undergoes treatment to prevent staining
  • Possesses low absorbency
  • Exhibits resistance to mildew and mold
  • Has a relatively low resistance to heat
  • Generally boasts a lustrous, shiny appearance


See Our Selection of Performance Linen Fabrics Available for Purchase by the Yard!


Leon’s Fabrics has a wide range of performance upholstery fabrics available for purchase online. Sign up for an account with us today and see full details regarding pricing and more!