by Cassandra Merkling
(last updated July 18, 2016)
A lot of cleaning cloths and mops are made from a substance called microfiber. Many people swear microfiber cleans better than any cloth or yarn. So what, you may ask, is this microfiber stuff? Well, simply put, it's a kind of cloth with tiny, tiny threads in it that love to grab up just about any small amount of debris they can. Each microfiber measures at less than one denier (one tenth of a denier, which is about the size of a microfiber, is equal to one twentieth of the diameter of a strand of silk). Most microfiber is made of a polyester and nylon blend these days, which can be broken down by extrusion and chemicals.
So what does this mean when applied to your daily cleaning habits? Basically, because microfiber cleaning cloths, etc. have more surface area caused by all the crevices in each fiber, they tend to be able to come in contact with and collect much more dirt, dust, and even bacteria than an ordinary cloth would. You will also find that the tiny microfibers can get into crevices into which you wouldn't otherwise be able to get. That's not even mentioning the static the fibers generate among themselves that attract dust to them.
Cleaning with microfiber is fairly straightforward. Sometimes you can use it without a cleaning solution. Sometimes you'll need water. Some surfaces respond really well to microfiber, especially smooth surfaces like glass. However, it is inadvisable to use a microfiber cleaning pad on really harsh surfaces, such as a cement floor.
There are many kinds of microfiber cloths. Some are for polishing, some are for dusting, while still others are for miscellaneous cleaning duties. If you wear glasses, you may wish to invest in a microfiber cleaning cloth for them, as it will not scratch the lens. You can also use microfiber on some kinds of jewelry. Also, there are microfiber cleaning pads and mops in addition to the microfiber cloth.
Although there is much more surface area to this extremely absorbent material, the average user will find that the microfiber mop can weigh as much as seventy percent less than it's yarn counterpart.
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