Grow Your Knowledge

Is Hemp Clothing Comfortable?

My opinion? Hell yeah it is

You probably think hemp is scratchy, right?

It’s a common misconception that isn’t silly to think – after all, hemp was scratchy – but it’s not any more.

Modern hemp is actually seriously comfy to wear. This makes it perfect for both clothes and bed linens. Here, I’ll run you through why it’ll feel so utterly luxurious against your skin:

Hemp is buttery-soft

Since hemp has such a scratchy image, you’re probably suspicious of this. I’ll explain.

Hemp processing has come a long way since its hay day, and fibres are now typically run through a “cottonising” process that makes them as soft as cotton. Cottonisation involves breaking down the hard bark of the plant’s stem, extracting the fibres and softening them so that they can be spun. This can be done mechanically, with enzymes or with chemicals, with differing environmental impacts.

Hemp gets softer with wear

Just like linen, hemp gets softer and softer with wear. The more you wash it, the better it drapes and the more lustrous it gets.

Hemp is often blended with cotton

Still suspish? It’s actually pretty hard to find clothing made from 100% hemp. Hemp is usually blended with cotton which guarantees it to be super-soft.

Hemp is breathable

We all know that natural fibres such as cotton are beautifully breathable and perfect for summer. This is because natural fibres cannot be twisted as tightly together into threads as synthetic fibres can, due to a naturally textured surface (on a microscopic level). This allows warm air to escape, rather than remain trapped against the wearer.

Hemp wicks moisture

On a cellular level, natural fibres are hollow. This allows warm moisture (aka sweat) to enter the cells and wick away from your body.

Hemp adapts to your body temperature

Another great benefit of hemp’s hollow fibres is that they allow for the optimum amount of airflow, keeping you warm in winter and cool in summer.

Hemp will protect you from the sun

Miraculously, hemp has a high resistance to ultraviolet (UV) light, which makes hemp the perfect buddy for the beach. It also means that your hemp clothes will last for many years as they won’t be as susceptible to sun damage.

Hemp doesn’t smell

Does this count as a comfort factor?

Hemp is naturally antimicrobial, which means it stops the growth of microorganisms that make your clothes smell. This is thought to be due to the unique cannabinoids found in cannabis plants, as well as its high lignin content (a founding polymer in all plants) compared to other commonly used fibres.

Thought to be a side effect of its growing conditions, hemp fibres are also quite resistant to mildew, rot, mold and salt water. Historically, this is just one of the reasons why hemp was used for sails and ropes in the navy.

Hemp is kind to your skin

The fact that hemp eliminates bacteria makes it perfect for people with sensitivities such as allergies and dermatitis.


Hemp clothing can be expensive, and if you’ve never worn it before, it’s normal to have reservations.

Before you splurge, why not read more? If this hasn’t convinced you, maybe the fact that hemp is good for the environment will. When you finally make the commitment, know that you’ll be spending your money on something that has not harmed the environment, will last you a lifetime, and become one of your all-time favourite items of clothing.


Kelly is passionate about supporting the growing hemp textile industry and sustainable fashion at large. She holds a Bachelor of Fashion (Merchandise Management) from RMIT University and is a digital marketer within the Australian fashion industry. Her work and studies have given her an appreciation of the complexities behind-the-scenes, and a unique standpoint from which she critiques and advocates.