Which is better wool and cashmere blended men’s sweater or a pure cashmere one? On the face of it, this is a straightforward question. To answer it correctly we just need to make two lists. List one is the advantages and disadvantages of a pure cashmere sweater, coat or scarf while list two is contains the pros and cons of cashmere garment made up of differing proportions of other wools. Compare the two lists, make a judgment and bingo we have the answer to our simple question.
Cashmere is wool of course. It is the very fine insulating wool underlay of a certain hardy breed of goat. These goats are bred in many parts of the World now since the discovery of their valuable coat. There aren’t too many of theses goats. The environment in which they live and which gives rise to the super insulation for survival reasons, cannot possible sustain an unlimited number of grazing goats. Because of this environmental constraint there is a limited supply of cashmere wool that has the duel effect of keeping the price of cashmere sweaters in the luxury range and making the blending of cashmere with other wools a sensible alternative.
Pure cashmere sweaters for both men and women are luxury items. They are incredibly soft to the touch and many people find it the only tolerable wool next to their naked skin. It is as good at insulating the wearer as it is at keeping the goat warm. Cashmere is processed, woven, dyed and manufactured into fashionable clothing of all kinds. In the process, the features of cashmere make the items stylish and highly desirable.
Diluting cashmere with other wools make the items soft but not ultra soft, insulating but not extra warming like the pure thing. To some people these could be seen as disadvantages but blending cashmere with other wools makes the resulting garments stronger, cashmere is very delicate, longer lasting and easier to care for. Machine washable is the key difference between men’s cashmere sweaters and men’s cashmere blend sweaters. As a man I must say that far from being a disadvantage I see this feature as a huge benefit.
I am not alone in refusing to buy a man’s cashmere sweater because of all that hand washing in cool water with non-regulation soap, rolling the thing in towels to take off the excess water then laying it flat so as to avoid lines and puckers from pegging. No way is pure cashmere better than a cashmere wool blend in this respect.
The real answer of course is that the question is ridiculous. Whether cashmere is better than cashmere wool blend is a matter of individual choice. If the garment meets your requirements it is quality. But we do need the information clear and simple so that we can make the judgment for ourselves.