It’s a very common misconception to think waterproof and water resistant are the same thing, and one that can lead to some pretty disastrous mistakes – especially when buying gear for industrial use.

To help you out, our team at Yarmo Group have put together an easy-to-follow explanation on the differences between waterproof and water resistant, so you can make the right choice every time.

Water Resistant

Anything that’s labelled water resistant, water repellant, or hydrophobic can be put into one category, and they’re all very similar in their function.

Essentially, these products will be created from synthetic fabrics that are dense with closely woven fibres, such as nylon and polyester. By having much smaller gaps in the fabric than, for example, silk – which has fibres that are woven far more loosely – water is less able to pass through, making it resistant.

It can also be made from fabrics that have been treated with a water repellant or resistant coating. Recently, there has been a lot of research into new methods of creating water resistant coatings that use short-chain polymers rather than those that are long-chain, which has led to better resistance and a reduction in cost.

The reason why water resistant fabric isn’t waterproof, however, is because of the seams of the product. These are the areas where there are plenty of gaps and water will find its way through.

Waterproof

Unlike water resistant clothing and gear, waterproof products will never allow any water in.

Of course, waterproof products do incorporate seams, but they’re treated to make the whole garment waterproof. These seams are described as ‘fully-taped’, and it’s when a waterproof tape or cover is applied to the material with glue or heat bonding, welding it firmly to the item. It can be a pretty expensive procedure, but if you want your clothing to be fully waterproof, this is what you’ll need.

Waterproof clothing can also incorporate a membrane lining. This lining is made up of lots of miniscule holes which helps to improve breathability whilst not allowing any water particles to enter. It can help regulate temperature and keep you comfortable whilst still fulfilling its function.

Waterproof Industrial Clothing

At Yarmo Group, we stock a variety of high-quality industrial clothing that’s completely waterproof, so you can get on with the jobs you need to do without any problems. From high-visibility jackets to complete overalls, all of our products are designed with your needs in mind. We only stock the best brands such as Helly Hansen and Dickies, so you can be sure they’ll last for years to come.