ColorZen is an innovative new technology that pretreats cotton fiber, making the dyeing process significantly more efficient and sustainable, transforming the way cotton is dyed. With ColorZen, enormous amounts of water and energy can be saved during dyeing, and cotton no longer has to be treated with harsh chemicals such as salts to force it to accept color.
In many cases, ColorZen® cotton can deliver better colorfastness than conventional cotton. This is due to the natural attraction of dyes to ColorZen’s treatment.
As well, cotton treated with ColorZen can be dyed in as little as 1/3 the time of conventional cotton. In other words, manufacturers using this technology can often triple their production capacity without any capital investment.
While spinners (or fabric mills if they are vertical) are the ones placing purchase orders with ColorZen, brands and retailers are critical to the process to “pull” the demand through their supply chain.
The good news is that ColorZen is a win for every part of the supply chain. Manufacturers get to use less natural resources, have clean wastewater, and save money; brands and retailers can meet their sustainability goals and bring beautiful product to market even faster; and consumers finally have the opportunity to make a purchasing decision that’s right for the environment.
Organic cotton generally refers to the way cotton is grown, dealing with the likes of insecticides, synthetic fertilizers, and water use. The fact that specific cotton is organically grown does not necessarily provide for a more sustainable or economical dyeing process. Our technology doesn’t change the way cotton is grown, but rather the way it is dyed. Therefore, not only do we not compete with organic cotton, but organic cotton can be treated with ColorZen® technology to contribute toward a fully sustainable dyed cotton product.
ColorZen technology works by altering the molecular structure of the cotton fiber. Think of conventional cotton and dye like magnets that are both negatively charged, repelling each other with identical polarities. When ColorZen’s treatment is applied to the surface of raw cotton, the technology reverses the charge of the cotton, allowing the dye to quickly and easily bond with it. That’s what allows ColorZen to eliminate the need for the toxic chemicals that otherwise are required in modern dyebaths.
ColorZen technology was developed by a core group of scientists, engineers, chemists, and dye-masters over the course of several years. Tens of millions of dollars have been invested in research and development to create a technology with the highest quality, consistency, and ability to scale.
Our technology is proven to have significantly more savings than other solutions on the market today. Additionally, unlike many other technologies, ColorZen® cotton requires no capital investment on the part of dyehouse, allowing for a low barrier to entry. In fact, ColorZen cotton can be dyed with the exact same equipment and dyes, just using a far simpler and more efficient procedure. As a result, ColorZen® technology allows for vast cost savings and up to a 300% increase in productivity, making ColorZen economically viable as well.
As of now, considering how much impact we can have in that market, we are focused on treating cotton fiber. However, any cellulosic fiber such as linen, rayon, hemp, or jute, will likely work well with ColorZen’s platform. We are actively exploring these applications as part of our ongoing R&D efforts.
Yes, there are chemicals used in our process—that is how we change the charge of the cotton to readily accept the dye.
ColorZen has achieved the well-known Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certification, issued by the widely respected expert Hohenstein Textile Testing Institute. This recognizes that our treated fiber is safe for use in garments and other products, and is even safe for babies. Additionally, ColorZen’s manufacturing partner, Jabil, adheres to a very strict environmental, health and safety (EHS) protocol.
When referring to heathers, we mean two colors blended together to form a multicolored effect. For example, a heather can be a dyed purple fiber blended with an undyed fiber, creating a two-tone effect. Today, the only way the industry is able to produce these heather-colored garments is to spin two different color fibers into a single yarn and and use that to create heather garments.
ColorZen® heather yarns work very differently. Because ColorZen® fiber requires a much simpler dye procedure without additive chemicals or high temperatures, a heather can now be dyed in fabric or garment form, where only the ColorZen portion of the fabric absorbs color. As this dyeing happens much later in the supply chain and closer to retail, it provides more relevant colors to shoppers, and creates a valuable speed-to-market competitive advantage
Cationic chemistry has been around the textile industry for many years and is well known, but has never been widely adopted by the market, primarily because of quality, cost, and scalability. While ColorZen can certainly be classified as a cationic technology, the ColorZen® process is very different than anything the industry has seen to date. It yields exceptional color and uniform dyeing results while achieving unprecedented environmental and cost benefits. As a result, this is the first time in the history of cotton dyeing that such a technology is being widely adopted on a global scale.
ColorZen has entered into a long-term manufacturing partnership with Jabil, a $20 billion public company (NYSE: JBL). Jabil is known for producing many of the world’s most advanced products, and will help ColorZen deliver its technology with an unparalleled level of quality and speed.
Yes. Because of the unique properties of ColorZen technology, interesting patterns and colors can be developed by mixing ColorZen cotton with conventional cotton into a single yarn. In these blends, fabric dyeing, or even garment dyeing will cause the ColorZen cotton to absorb color while leaving the conventional cotton undyed, thus allowing for endless creative designs in heathers, stripes, and other novelty patterns.
Our savings figures were developed through years of R&D, as well as hundreds of internal and external trials and customer full-production dyeings. We have also partnered with industry leading organizations such as Cotton Incorporated and Fashion for Good to model and test the savings obtained from ColorZen in countless permutations of color, geography, and dyeing equipment.
Yes. Depending on a wide range of factors, the savings numbers will vary. Those include the cost of water and energy, the type of dye machine being used, and the specific color being dyed. If you are a manufacturer interested in using this technology, ColorZen’s team can help you understand the potential savings that can be achieved, tailored to your specific circumstances.