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PVC clothing, commonly known as vinyl clothing, is shiny clothing made of the plastic polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The PVC plastic is also called vinyl. For this reason, this type of clothing is also called vinyl clothing. PVC is sometimes confused with the similarly shiny patent leather.
The terms "PVC", "vinyl" and "PU" tend to be used interchangeably by retailers for clothing made from shiny plastic-coated fabrics. These fabrics usually consist of a backing woven from polyester fibers with a surface coating of shiny plastic. The plastic layer itself is typically a blend of PVC and polyurethane (PU), with 100% PVC producing a stiff fabric with a glossy shine and 100% PU producing a stretchy fabric with a silky shine. A manufacturer's label may say, for example, 67% polyester, 33% polyurethane for a fabric that contains no PVC; or 80% polyvinyl chloride, 20% polyurethane with mention of the polyester backing omitted. To add to the confusion, the plastic layer is often textured to look like leather ("leatherlook", "pleather"), as opposed to smooth ("wetlook", "patent").
The PVC can also be produced in bright colours (black, red, white, blue, orange, pink, silver, striped, etc.), adding further visual stimulus to the physical sensations produced by the material. The more frequently found colors are black and red. The PVC clothes are very associated with retro-futuristic look, Goth, Punk, alternative fashions and clothing fetish. A common stereotype is the image of a dominatrix wearing a skin-tight PVC catsuit, usually jet-black. In some cities it is more common to see people wearing PVC clothes, especially in large cities such as Berlin, London, New York City, Montreal, San Francisco, etc.
The plastics were used in clothing since its invention, particularly in raincoats. But PVC clothing became more noted in the 1960s and early 1970s fashion trend. The fashion designers of that era saw the PVC plastic as the ideal material to design futuristic clothes. During that era, boots, raincoats, dresses and other PVC garments were made in many colours and even transparent and worn in public areas to some degrees. At that time it was also common to see PVC clothes on films and TV series such as The Avengers, for example. And since then these shiny plastic clothes became a fetish object.
In mid 1990s, clothes made of PVC have been prevalent in young people's fashions, particularly in jackets, skirts and trousers, also appearing in the media. During the mid-1990s it was common to see presenters, models, actresses, actors, singers and other celebrities wearing PVC clothes on TV and magazines. As fashions come round and round again, it would seem that PVC are appearing again in mainstream street fashions as well as continuing to be central to the fetish scene.
Fashion designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Yves Saint Laurent, Pierre Cardin and André Courrèges have used PVC in their collections. Since 2010, the PVC has been the target of fashion not only for the female public but also to the male public.
PVC CLOTHING ON THE MEDIA
CARING FOR PVC CLOTHING
PVC clothing requires some care to make it last longer and maintain its appearance. It is known that PVC clothes are made with a fabric covered with a plastic layer. For this reason, the PVC clothes should not be over-stretched, to avoid damage to the plastic layer. When excessively stretching the clothing, the plastic layer can lose its smooth texture and stay striated, losing also part of the original shine, and may even tear.
As long as the PVC clothing isn't soiled many people will just freshen the polyester inside up with a fabric refresher product and wipe the plastic outside with a damp sponge. If there is need, PVC clothes should be washed by hand with warm water and a small amount of liquid detergent. Washing powder should not be used because the flakes can remain on clothing after washing, and also can stick to the plastic layer.
To remove the detergent one should use cold water and after turning the garment inside out it should be left to dry under the shade. After drying the inside (polyester fabric), then it must be turned in the right direction to dry outside (plastic layer).
PVC clothing should never be ironed. This type of clothing is made of heat sensitive plastics and which may melt under the iron. Also high temperatures should be avoided from any source, such as flames, dryers, and cigarettes. The fumes from burning or smoking PVC plastic are dangerous.
Different coloured PVC garments, especially white, should be stored separately from each other, otherwise staining may occur. PVC clothing is best stored hanging in a garment bag away from other clothing.
The fabric used for PVC clothes is typically plastic-coated polyester. This PVC fabric is more resistant to wear and tear than rubber, and PVC clothing does not require the use of any shining products. However one can polish PVC clothing if desired with liquid silicone spray which is available from car accessory shops.
To read more about PVC clothing, please click on the following link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PVC_clothing