Best Fabrics for Travel Clothing: Pack with Purpose

If you’re trying to travel carry-on only, certain fabrics are better than others as far as the space they take up. So what are the best fabrics for travel clothing?

Merino wool is ideal for travel. Before you cringe at the thought of grandma’s wool sweaters from when you were a child, know that the merino wool fiber is much finer, and therefore more flexible and soft, than other types of wool.

Merino wool

Besides bamboo’s silky, luxurious feel, it has several properties that make the fabric beneficial to travel. Like merino, bamboo is temperature regulating, so you’ll stay cooler in hot weather and warmer in cold weather.

Bamboo viscose

Many people shy away from these fabrics, but nylon and polyester work well for travel clothing. In fact, much of the fancy purpose-built travel clothing on the market consists of these fabrics.

Nylon and Polyester

Rayon feels smooth on your skin. It dries quickly and is another great wrinkle-resistant fabric. Unfortunately it doesn’t wick moisture as well as the fabrics above, so it’s not the best option for warmer climates where you might sweat a lot.


You probably have a lot of cotton in your normal wardrobe – I know I do! It’s comfortable, breathable, and easy to care for.


Linen and silk are both comfortable, lightweight, breathable fabrics that won’t take up a lot of space in your suitcase.

Linen and Silk

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