Posted by Jason Kaplan on

Ask your father to ask his father about Polartec. Though neither may be familiar with the name—it’s almost guaranteed they’ve worn Polartec fabrics. Formally known as Malden Mills, Polartec has been revolutionizing textile technologies for 109 years (that’s since 1906 for the mathematically challenged). Their innovations have outfitted our soldiers through two world wars, and best of all—they’ve never left the good ol’ United States of America. (That’s a major win in our book.)

So who cares? You might think—why is this a big deal? To answer that question, we have a challenge. Next time it rains, go outside. Really stand there. Soak it all in (literally). Chances are you’ll be sopping wet, and probably a bit cold too.

Polartec fixed that. About 50 years ago. How’s that for American Innovation!

Beyond the fabric, Polartec (or Malden Mills) has always carried the reputation of doing things their own way—the American way. For example, in December 1995, a fire destroyed three buildings, which put 3,000 employees out of work. Former CEO, Aaron Feuerstein, continued to pay every employee while the factory was rebuilt.

Today, you can find Polartec fabrics and technologies in hundreds of international brands. These include Patagonia, The North Face, Marmot, Mountain Equipment CO-OP, Mountain Hardwear, Cabela's, Lands End, LL Bean, Jack Wolfskin, and, if you can believe it, all branches of the United States Military.

Most excitingly, Polartec is currently revolutionizing post consumer recycling fabrics. A technology that promises to reduce our waste in a way that benefits all.

See, wear and feel Polartec at all four American Field events this year. They’ve even promised to bring 5 heretofore unnamed brands to each city.

Until next time—we’ll see you in the field. 

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