Econyl® case study

What is ECONYL® yarn?

ECONYL® regenerated nylon on cones

First developed in 2011, ECONYL® yarn is the brainchild of Italian company Aquafil’s president and CEO Giulio Bonazzi. The company proudly boasts over a decade of endless possibilities but what is ECONYL®yarn? What are its eco credentials and why do we use it in Socko socks?

What is ECONYL® yarn?

ECONYL® regenerated nylon

Recognising, as many of us have, that the world’s resources are finite but our appetite for consumption seems to have no bounds, Aquafil transforms waste into ECONYL® regenerated nylon. It is a wonder product of the circular economy; feeding waste into the production stream and regenerating it into a material that is good as new.

What is ECONYL® yarn made from?

fabric scraps

ECONYL® regenerated nylon is made by recovering nylon waste that would otherwise pollute the Earth, like fishing nets, fabric scraps, carpet flooring, and industrial plastic. This waste is turned into virgin quality nylon yarn for the fashion and interior industries.

Is ECONYL® yarn 100% recycled?

ECONYL® factory

Yes! Our determination to use ECONYL® yarn in our socks is because not only is it a premium fibre with amazing tried and tested properties but it is an important step in our ambition to one day create a durable, comfortable, 100% recycled sock here in the UK.

Rescuing waste

ECONYL® carpet waste

Fishing nets, fabric scraps and carpets that would otherwise be polluting the world are gathered, sorted and cleaned to recover all the nylon possible.


ECONYL® polymer in purple blue and grey

Through a radical regeneration and purification process, the nylon waste is recycled right back to its original purity. That means ECONYL® regenerated nylon is exactly the same as fossil-based nylon! For fellow fibre enthusiasts this is very exciting and certainly the way of the future.


Can ECONYL® yarn be recycled?

 ECONYL® process

This limitless fibre is not only fully recycled but can be recycled again whilst still maintaining its premium quality, the same as virgin nylon. Because the nylon is not blended into the other materials, it can be extracted at the end of its useful life to go back into the system and be regenerated all over again. Infinitely!

The numbers

Healthy Seas Infographics Report 2022 Results

For every 10k tonnes of ECONYL® yarn's raw material, Aquafil save 70k barrels of crude oil and avoid 65,100 tonnes of CO2 eq. emissions. It also reduces the global warming impact of nylon by up to 90% compared with the material from oil.

Sustainable socks

ECONYL® yarn

But why use a man-made fibre at all? All commercially made socks, whatever their base (wool/cotton/bamboo/hemp…) have a nylon component. This gives them extra strength and added elasticity so you don’t end up with a saggy sock.

As it's a necessity, we want to make the least negatively impactful choice we can.

How do we use ECONYL® yarn in our socks?

Reels of ECONYL® regenerated nylon

The ECONYL® yarn is knit into each and every stitch of Socko socks, giving support to the reclaimed or recycled cotton or wool. Combining these innovative fibres with traditional manufacturing techniques right here in the UK is what sets our socks apart.

 Socko J. Alex Swift nylon

It means that not only are we proud to boast the first UK made recycled socks but ours continue to have the highest recycled content of any UK-made sock.

We are so proud to be working with ECONYL® regenerated nylon yarn and are grateful to Aquafil for taking a chance on a small business with a vision.

See Socko on the ECONYL® website here.

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