Why Is Merino Wool So Expensive? All consider merino wool to be premium wool. It’s soft, warm, light, and fashionable; everything a person wants from their clothing.
However, if you come across a merino wool garment, you will first notice the near-outrageous price tag.
Well, everything beneficial comes with a high price. So, if you are wondering why merino wool is so expensive, read further. You will find that every dime you spend on this wool is worth your money.
Is Merino Wool Expensive?
It always appears like merino wool is expensive when you purchase it. However, after years of using that clothing, you will testify that the benefits outweigh the cost.
A piece of merino knitted sweater, which costs $200 at purchase, may seem high. If you check that piece of clothing after five years, you will notice it is still intact and hasn’t lost its luxe.
The merino wool’s durability is the reason for the sweater’s longevity. Hence, you will realize that the cost per wear of your sweater is relatively less than the actual quality of the wool.
Why is Merino Wool So Expensive?
(wool yarn made of threads)
There are a lot of factors that contribute to why merino is so expensive. The most crucial factor is the fineness of its fibers. The higher the quality of merino wool, the higher the demand and cost of it.
Also, due to its small size, manufacturers require more labor, time, and money before starting production. In this section, you will learn why merino wool is so expensive.
Wool Growing Takes Time
Just like every natural thing, it takes time for merino sheep to grow fur. Merino wool is not always available to meet the high demand for it. Therefore, the scarcity of wool leads to a hike in its price.
Taking Care Of Sheep Costs Money
A sheepherder must treat their sheep with extra care for their hide to develop correctly. They require good food, shelter, water, and environmental conditions to produce quality coats.
The care put into taking care of sheep requires money and time.
You Need Lots Of Merino For A Single Shirt
Merino sheep are smaller than other types of sheep. It takes a lot of merino fur to form a single ball of wool. The fibers of merino wool are soft and smooth.
Therefore, manufacturers need to add more raw materials to create a piece of clothing.
Since not all manufacturers have woolgrowers to rear the merino fur, they must purchase them at auction. Hence, they usually consider these costs in production, adding them to the wool’s overall price.
It Involves Tons of Labor
(man shearing wool of merino sheep)
The shearing and manufacturing process of merino wool is laborious and expensive. Merino wool must undergo synthetic processes to reduce its coarseness and enhance softness and quality.
These processes include felting, dyeing, spinning, transportation, and more, all requiring money.
(colorful merino wool for felting)
Merino wools are of different forms; some are thin and soft, whereas others are thicker and coarser. Sheepherders must train merino sheep under the right conditions to get high-quality wool.
A malnourished merino sheep will not produce high-quality wool. Harsh climates, drought, and dirt can also affect the quality of fur that grows on the sheep.
Many manufacturers and brands spend more money to ensure they get the best merino wool to maintain their reputation.
Most people view a merino wool garment as a luxurious item. Many brands can raise their prices to maintain their reputation.
Taxes And Import/Export Regulations
Manufacturers amass additional costs from regulations, tariffs, and taxes. They transfer these costs to customers by increasing merino wool prices.
Drought And Bushfires Impact The Cost Of Merino
(bushfire fuelled by wind and heat)
Drought and bushfires are some of the challenges farmers face. Farmers lose much money to keep their sheep well-fed and watered during a famine. Sometimes, they may lose their sheep to drought or bushfires resulting from climate change. Such crises lead to an increase in the cost of sheep wool as they try to make up for these losses.
How Do I Avoid Overspending on Merino Wool?
Some major brands offer high-quality merino wear at a more affordable price. These slashed prices are usually for special sales like Black Friday and Winter.
Prices can go as low as 50 percent of the actual price. Follow such brands on social media and subscribe to their email list to keep up with new sales updates.
The Disadvantages Of Merino Wool
As with everything, there are some disadvantages of merino wool. They are as follows;
Durability. Ultralight merino wool is less durable and tends to form holes due to overuse. For longevity, use simple detergents as fabric softeners can weaken your material’s durability.
Softness. Some merino fibers are thick and coarse, meaning they are not as soft as you want. Make sure you always check the thickness of your merino clothing before purchasing.
Look out for wool thickness below 18 microns, which will be super soft for your skin.
Skin Irritation. Merino wool can sometimes be itchy. Again, this depends on the thickness and coarseness of the particular Merino wool.
Water Absorbent. Merino wool is highly breathable and is good at wicking away excess moisture from your body when you sweat. However, it absorbs 30 percent of that sweat and retains it. When you wash Merino wool, it tends not to dry as fast as other wool materials due to the percentage of water it absorbs.
Merino wool is expensive, but considering the manufacturing process and its features, you will agree it’s worth it. When you spend your money on Merino clothing, you get something quality that lasts for years.