Can Fabric be Both Waterproof and Breathable?

22nd March, 2024


If you have ever ventured into the great outdoors, you know the importance of staying dry and comfortable, no matter the weather, especially if you live in the UK.

Our customers frequently inquire about the possibility of these fabrics being both waterproof and breathable, which is more than understandable because it seems contradictory. How can something keep water out while still allowing air to flow through?

In this blog post, we will delve into the intriguing world of waterproof and breathable fabrics and how these keep us keep us dry, comfortable and cool at the same time.


What are Waterproof Fabrics?


Waterproof fabrics are textiles that have the incredible ability to repel water and keep you dry, no matter the weather. They are specially designed to protect you and your belongings from moisture in various situations.

Do you want to know more about Waterproof Fabrics? Read our blog post “What Is Waterproof Fabric?


Understanding Waterproof Fabric Construction


1-Layer Laminate

Consist of a single layer of fabric with some resistance to water.

2-Layer Laminate

Consists of a layer of fabric and membrane.

2.5-Layer Laminate

Consists of a layer of fabric and membrane, but with an added print on the membrane side for extra protection.

3-Layer Laminate

Consists of a layer of fabric, membrane and backing fabric.


The Science Behind Waterproofness


Waterproof Membrane

  • Acts as a barrier against the elements, such as rain and wind.
  • Constructed using materials like polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) or polyurethane (PU).
  • Designed to prevent water penetration while allowing moisture to escape through micropores.


Durable Water Repellent (DWR)

  • Applied to the fabric’s surface to prevent water saturation.
  • Prevents the exterior of the garment from becoming waterlogged.
  • Works in conjunction with the waterproof membrane to maintain breathability.



Can Fabric be Both Waterproof and Breathable?


Yes, absolutely!

Fabric can indeed be both waterproof and breathable, keeping you dry and providing the right protection you need while ensuring comfort and ventilation during your outdoor activities.


Our Waterproof & Breathable Best Sellers





Visit us at
UK Fabrics Online.

If you have any questions, please email us or leave a comment here.

Hope you enjoy this one.

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