Backpackers often wonder whether they need to choose between Nylon or Polyester for the material of their backpacks. There is a long debate over Nylon vs a polyester backpack, but the backpack would suit you, no matter what you decide to pack inside or the kind of place you want to use it.

However, Nylon is a much stronger fabric when compared to Polyester, but Polyester is easier to clean and stain-resistant. In addition, Polyester is more water-repellent and dries faster than nylons after washing.

When choosing which materials to use in a bag, you should consider durability, how easy it is to clean them, whether they’re resistant to shrinking, whether they’re flexible, and whether they resist wrinkling. Here are some of the properties of polyester vs nylon backpack that you should consider when choosing your travel backpack. These include weight, size, durability, price, and colour.

Nylon vs Polyester Backpacks: Why choose Nylon?

Is Nylon suitable for backpacks? Yes, Nylon is good for a backpack because it is a durable material, lightweight, and recycled.

Here we will know first what Nylon is?

Nylon is an artificially produced polymer, also known as a thermoplastic, usually made from petroleum. Nylon is often used by travellers because of its smoothness, minimal weight, and very durable nature Nylon can be used in clothing, luggage, backpacks, shoes, and other products.

Due to its flexibility, It can be moulded into any shape or design simply by adding a customizing agent to it during the moulding stage of manufacturing.

Nylon is a good material for backpacks because of its durability, lightweight, and ability to be recycled. However, it isn’t without its drawbacks.

Nylon backpack Fabric

Pros and Cons of Nylon Backpack

Pros of Nylon Backpack

1. Elasticity

Nylon is very elastic, meaning it can comfortably hold large amounts of luggage without tearing it apart. Furthermore, the fabric can be returned to its original shape without any wrinkles or creases because of its excellent flexibility. When this material is stretched out into a long piece, the fibres become thinner and softer, but they still retain their strength.

2. Low absorbency rate

If water or any other liquid lands on it, you can expect the Nylon to roll off the material quickly and for it to dry out quickly. If you’re going to a tropical area, then a nylon backpack is the best option because they’re waterproof and easy to clean.

3. Easy to clean and wash

When comparing Nylon vs Polyester, one of the areas in which they stand out is their ease of cleaning and washable properties. Dirt doesn’t stick to the fabric’s smooth surface, so it’s easy to wash it off with some clean water or wipe it off with a damp cloth. Nylon can retain its original shape when washed, but hot water should be avoided during washing because it can cause wrinkles on the fabric.

4. Mildew resistant

Unlike other materials that might start to grow mildew if they’re exposed to humid conditions and light, Nylon is 100% immune to mould, mildew and fungi, no matter what you’re using it for. Likewise, it’s also resistant to insects such as moths and alkali in the environment, as well as fungi.

5.Strength and resilience

It’s one of those durable materials that doesn’t get worn out quickly but isn’t too heavy. This fabric has a high strength-per-weight capacity and excellent wear resistance. It can last for a long time, and wrinkles on the surface from everyday activities can easily be removed.

Cons of Nylon Backpack

1. Retains heat

Nylon is manufactured from close construction fibre. Closed construction fibres keep heat and moisture from dissipating into the environment. While such fabrics may work well in cold weather, they are not suitable in hot weather when heat can become too oppressive. If you store certain things in your backpack during hot seasons, like small electronics or perishable foods, they can easily get ruined by the excess heat.

2. Easily destroyed by bleach.

Bleach can ruin Nylon, so be careful not to expose it to bleach. Nylon is also not as resilient to the reaction of acid, which can destroy the fragile fibres. So, please don’t wash your nylon backpack with any bleaching agent because it can quickly damage the material. Even organic bleaches such as oxygen bleach aren’t safe to use.

3.High affinity to dyes

Nylon can pick up other colours when washed together with other fabrics. However, it can also develop some greyness if washed with other fabrics. Furthermore, the fabric usually retains stains permanently, which means they can’t easily be washed away with regular soap. White nylon materials are commonly referred to as “colour scavengers” because of their high propensity for staining; they should therefore be washed separately from other clothes. They also easily pick up colour and dirt when washed in water.

Are You in Hurry? Here is Quick Nylon Backpack Recommendation 

Osprey Farpoint 40

Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Backpack (they come available in various sizes) are both excellent choices for long-term and adventurous backpacking.

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Reason to buy 

  • Large space
  • comfortable to carry
  • lockable U-zip duffel-style access to the main compartment
  • Access to padded laptop & tablet sleeve
  • Fit up to 15 inches laptop
  • mesh water bottle pocket
  • Separate pocket for sunglasses or devices

Read a detailed review of Osprey Farpoint 40

Nylon vs Polyester Backpacks: Why choose Polyester?

Let’s start by covering the basics: What is Polyester?

Polyester is a synthetic compound chemically known as polyethylene terephthalate (PET). It’s often used today to create textile products for backpack straps because of its robust and rugged nature.

One of the most important things to consider when choosing between nylon and polyester backpacks is whether you want your backpack to be flexible or rigid. Of course, Polyester has pros and cons, so there’s no right choice for everyone.

polyester fabric

Pros and Cons of Polyester

Polyester Pros

1. Polyester is thermoplastic   

Polyester is heat-sensitive by nature; this means you can cut decorative shapes, patterns, or pleats into Polyester permanently for aesthetic purposes. Moreover, it’s a naturally bright and attractive fibre that can be modified for different backpack purposes.

2. Durability

Polyester can last for up to 15 years without wearing out if you take good care of it. Furthermore, it won’t spring back again and cause inconvenience as other types of materials often do once mated down. Besides being long-lasting, Polyester is also recyclables and thus safe for the environment. Even after use, it can be recycled into the fabric and used to create new materials for another backpack, rather than thrown onto a landfill.

3.Water and stain-resistant

Travel backpacks made from Polyester are ideal for places with high humidity and frequent rainfall because they offer a quicker drying time than cotton. Don’t wait too long before continuing your journey. Dry the bag quickly. It is also resistant against mildew that often grows on other materials if stored in one place for an extended time. Unlike other fabrics such as Nylon or Polyester, cotton is highly resistant to stains. It’s, therefore, safe to use in almost any environment, including those that typically experience a high level of wind and dust. Washing is effortless, and you need to dry clean the material with a piece of cloth.

4.Water and stain-resistant

Travel backpacks made from Polyester are ideal for places with high humidity and frequent rainfall because they offer a quicker drying time than cotton. Don’t wait too long before continuing your journey. Dry the bag quickly. It is also resistant against mildew that often grows on other materials if stored in one place for an extended time. Unlike other fabrics such as Nylon or Polyester, cotton is highly resistant to stains. It’s, therefore, safe to use in almost any environment, including those that typically experience a high level of wind and dust. Washing is effortless, and you need to dry clean the material with a piece of cloth.

5.Soft on the hands

Polyester is also soft and comfortable to the touch. It feels like velvet and makes your backpack look luxurious wherever you use it. It’s also less likely to generate uncomfortable static electricity in arctic environments.

6.Retains original shape even after machine washing

Polyester doesn’t react with dye from other fabrics, so you can wash it with other clothes without worrying about ruining them. But the best part is that it retains its original shape even after a thorough machine wash, unlike other fibres. Moreover, it doesn’t fade quickly or loses colour even after prolonged usage.

Polyester Cons    

1.The production process is energy-extensive

Compared to Nylon, making Polyester requires a lot more energy and usually results in emissions into the atmosphere of harmful greenhouse gases and chemical compounds. In addition, manufacturing this material requires vast amounts of water for the cooling process. Lubricants used during production can pollute nearby water sources.

2.Less breathable

A significant problem with synthetic fabrics like Polyester is that they are not porous, which means that in warm and humid conditions, your polyester backpack may feel clammy because of heat and moisture buildup inside.

3.Highly flammable

Polyester should never be used next to any sources of fire because it can easily catch on fire, even if exposed to the slightest amount of heat. However, it would help to properly care when wearing a polyester travel pack in fire-prone areas, such as aridity, where bushfires are common.

4.Susceptible to oil stains

Polyester is resistant to most other types of stains, but oil-based stains such as grease, petrol, and frying oils are tough to remove. They may need professional cleaning to remove them.

Are You in Hurry? Here is a Quick Recommendation of Polyester Backpack

Matein Travel Backpack

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Reason to buy Matein travel backpack

  • Lots of storage and compartments
  • Comfortable and robust
  • Built-in USB charger outside and inside charger cable
  • You can charge your phone while walking
  • Hidden anti-theft pocket on the back
  • Multifunctional uses such as laptop backpack, business travel backpack, weekend travel backpack or everyday use

Head-to-Head Comparison: Nylon vs Polyester

Polyester backpacks are more robust, but nylon backpacks may be cheaper than polyester backpacks. So if you’re concerned about the longevity of a backpack, invest in a nylon one.

Weather Durability: Nylon Backpacks

Polyester backpacks tend to wear out quickly when exposed to the sun, wind, rain, and snow, so if they’re going to be used outdoors, we wouldn’t recommend them. On the other hand, Nylon doesn’t deteriorate aesthetically when exposed to the environment.

Washing & Water Conditions: Polyester Backpacks

Polyester backpacks won’t stretch or shrink, even if they’re wet. Nylon doesn’t necessarily get wrinkly; however, it may shrink slightly if washed frequently. Nylon backpacks are best for rainy weather. Nylon is more absorbent than Polyester.

Colder Climates vs Warmer Climates: Nylon or Polyester

Nylon is warmer than cotton, so it is better for cold weather. However, Nylon can be slightly uncomfortable in hot climates because it gets sweaty. It tends to stick to your skin on hot and humid days, especially when you’re sweating. However, Polyester doesn’t have this problem. Both materials are equally comfortable. However, there may be some minor differences between them. If you live in a place where it gets warm during the summer, I will get a polyester backpack instead of Nylon.

Eco-Friendly: Polyester Backpacks

They’re both synthetic fibres, and so they aren’t green in any strict sense either. However, Nylon is usually made from byproducts that can’t be avoided. It would help if you always appropriately used such byproducts. Producing either of these materials has a negligible effect on the environment. Nylon is somewhat biodegradable, so it’s better than Polyester. However, Polyester isn’t widely recycled, and it doesn’t have to be biodegradable if you’re buying a wholly recycled polyethene backpack.

Appearance: Nylon Backpacks

Both Nylon and Polyester are readily available in various colours. Nylon is shinier than Polyester. Manufacturers tend to use Nylon because it looks better and has a more stylish appearance.

Final Verdict on Nylon vs Polyester Backpacks

Nylon vs polyester backpack 2022

As you compare Nylon vs polyester backpack fabrics, it’s important to remember that each material has its unique properties, making it an ideal travel backpack for certain people.

For example, Nylon is naturally more robust when compared to Polyester when measured on an equal weight-for-weight basis. However, because Polyester is a more delicate fibre than cotton, it can easily be seen at a higher thread count for an equivalent level of strength.

Furthermore, Nylon is much more stretchy than Polyester because it has a lower absorption rate for moisture during use, whereas Polyester doesn’t absorb any liquid.

However, this slight water absorption means that Nylon doesn’t retain its colour well. As a result, it can fade if exposed to the sun too often. On the other side, Polyester has stronger dye bonds than cotton, which doesn’t fade as quickly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is better, nylon or polyester?

Nylon and polyester are both excellent choices for strength and durability. But when we compare nylon to polyester, nylon is stronger and more elastic, meaning garments made from it should last longer. Polyester is more durable and stronger than nylon, so it’s a common material for ropes.

What is the most durable backpack material?

Nylon is typically thought of as the most durable backpack material, but others are. It’s water-resistant and can withstand rugged terrains without damage. For this reason, nylons are an excellent material for outdoor uses, especially when it comes to camping and hiking.

Which is cheaper, nylon or polyester?

Both nylon and polyester are synthetic fabrics, but nylon is more expensive than polyester, which means consumers pay more for nylon products. Both fabrics are flame-resistant, but nylon is more robust than polyester.

Does polyester smell more than nylon?

There was no difference in smell intensity between nylon and polyesters. Differences in the way people wear the fabric may be due to the individual wearing it. Polyester absorbs fewer odorants than nylon, which indicates that polyester absorbs fewer odorants.

Read More: Is anti-theft bag worth it?

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