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Blanket Talk


Denier doesn’t mean what I thought it did.   I cringe to think that in all the years of owning horses, I had never actually researched what the term “denier” actually meant.  All I knew through the years, from experience, was that for our young, rambunctious, race bred quarter horses, anything less that a 1200D was not going to stand the test of time.  And that my old standoffish mare, who wouldn’t let anyone else near her, was ok in a 600D.  I also learned that a 1200D blanket did not last a night on the stallion or my gelding who had a wicked sense of humor; both clearly relished in the sound of material ripping. 

I always thought, the higher the number, the stronger the fabric…. Well, turns out, the answer is yes and no. 


The actual definition of the word denier, compliments of,  is :

Noun: a unit of weight by which the fineness of silk, rayon or nylon yarn is measured, equal to the weight in grams of 9000 meters of the yarn and often used to describe the thickness of hosiery.

In essence, the denier is the thickness and weight of one thread. 

For reference, a 9000 meter length of silk would equal 1 gram.  Making it 1 denier.  The greater the thickness, generally, the greater the weight.  The thicker the threads, the stronger the fabric. 

In a 600D blanket, 9000M of one individual thread used to make the material equals 600 grams.  In a 1200D blanket, 9000M of one individual thread used to make the material equals 1200 g.  So the material on the 1200D blanket is heavier, stronger and more durable than the 600D blanket.

Sounds simple, right?  The higher the denier, the tougher the blanket…………… well, again, yes and no.


In the Horseware Ireland line there are 3 distinct kinds of threads used to make their blankets.

1.       Polyester  - strong

2.       Polypropylene –  stronger

3.       Ballistic Nylon – strongest

Polyester is the most widely used ingredient in the textiles industry and is made up of synthetic yarns or fibers. 

Polypropylene is any textile derived from the thermoplastic polymer polypropylene.  Polypropylene is a robust and durable material for turnouts, and is a stronger alternative to polyester.

Ballistic Nylon is a super tough, highly abrasion resistant fabric and the strongest fabric in

the Horseware Ireland line.  How tough is Ballistic Nylon?  According to Wikipedia, Ballistic Nylon was developed by the Dupont Corporation as a material for flak jackets to be worn by WWII airmen.  The term ballistic nylon originates in the fabrics intended function – protecting its wearers from flying debris and shrapnel. That's tough!

You can only compare deniers WITHIN EACH LINE.  So yes, the fabric in a 1200D polyester blankets is stronger than that of a 900D polyester blanket.  The material in a 900D polyester blanket is stronger than that of a 600D polyester blanket.

BUT, the material in a 1000D Polypropylene blanket is reportedly 30% stronger than 1200D Polyester.   And 1000D Ballistic Nylon is stronger again than 1000D Polypropylene.

So while denier gives you an idea of the strength of the fabric, the actual fabric being used has a much greater bearing than the denier.


Hopefully I haven’t gotten you more confused at this point than you were at the beginning.  So here is the Coles notes version as pertains to Horseware Ireland blankets:

1.       AMIGO – Polyester – The higher the denier of the Amigo you choose, the stronger the fabric, within the AMIGO line.  The Amigo Bravo 12 with 1200D Polyester is Horseware's  most popular turnout.

2.       RHINO – Polypropylene – 1000D – 30% stronger than 1200D Polyester, even though its only 1000D.  Polypropylene also has hydrophobic properties, which means that it does not absorb water as readily as polyester – making it water resistant in and of itself, but not waterproof.  Rhino’s feature the barrier system, which places the waterproof membrane layer below the outer polypropylene layer.


3.       RAMBO – Ballistic Nylon – As strong as it gets – with different levels of denier across the line,1680D Ballistic Nylon is one of the strongest fabrics in the textile industry. Ballistic Nylon was developed for shrapnel; enough said. Not only is it strong but it also has slippery properties that make it difficult for mouthy horses to be able to grab a hold of it.


I hope this helps you understand a little more about the materials and the deniers that make up the Horseware Ireland line.  And as always, if you have any questions about any of the Horseware blankets that I offer, I am only a text, email, or message away 😊





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