Nonwoven is a manufactured sheet web of directionally or randomly oriented fibers, bonded by friction, and/or cohesion and/or adhesion, excluding paper and products which are woven, knitted, stitch-bonded incorporating binding yarns or filaments. The fibers may be of natural or man-made origin. They may be staple or continuous filaments or be formed in situ.

The four main and most common type’s of-non-woven products are:

Spun bound/Spun lace

Air laid

Dry laid

Wet laid


It’s interesting to know that the first napkin was edible.

In those days, people ate everything by hand. That led to the common use of soft dough to clean off the fingers, a food object called apomagdalie. The Romans also introduced two kinds of cloth for napkin-related purposes—the sudarium, a “sweat cloth” of sorts for the face, and the mappa, a large cloth for eating while reclining.

Paper, which is said to originate from China, found one of its earliest uses as a napkin in the second century AD

As for paper napkins, those didn’t develop as an industry until the late 19th century, thanks to the help of the Japanese market.

Now, however since their value has become known, every picnic party must be well supplied with these little squares of Japanese art. Hotels and boarding-houses have begun to use them, greatly to the delight of their guests, and it will not be long before restaurants, steamboats and even private families will have them in use.

Dry tissues – Dry tissue paper or simply tissue is a lightweight paper or, light crêpe paper. Tissue can be made from recycled paper pulp. Key properties are absorbency, basis weight, thickness, bulk (specific volume), brightness, stretch, appearance and comfort. Tissues are also napkins.

Wet wipe – A wet wipe, also known as a wet towel or a moist towelette, or a baby wipe in specific circumstances, is a small moistened piece of plastic that often comes folded and individually wrapped for convenience. Wet wipes are used for cleaning purposes like personal hygiene and household cleaning.

Napkin – A square piece of cloth or paper used at a meal to wipe the fingers or lips and to protect garments.

Baby wipes – They don’t contain chemicals or artificial fragrances like most disposable wipes, they are gentle on the skin. Many green-minded parents, or those looking to save extra money, use washable baby wipes, typically small squares of material (cotton, bamboo or fleece) that can be pre-soaked ready to use, or wet as required. They are often reported to be more effective at removing solids from the skin because of their textured nature.

Cleansing pads – Cleansing pads are fiber sponges which have been previously soaked with water, alcohol and other active ingredients for a specific intended use. They are ready to use hygiene products and they are simple and convenient solutions to dispose of dirt or other undesirable elements.

Nail polish remover wipesNail polish remover is an organic solvent that may also include oils, scents, and coloring. Nail polish remover packages may include individual felt pads soaked in remover, a bottle of liquid remover used with a cotton ball or cotton pad, or a container filled with foam into which one inserts a finger and twists it until the polish comes off. The most common remover is acetone which is put up on the felt pad with fragrance.

Industrial wipes – Pre-impregnated industrial-strength cleaning wipes with powerful cleaning fluid that cuts through the dirt as the high performance fabric absorbs the residue Industrial wipes has the ability to clean a vast range of though substances from hands, tools and surfaces, including: grime, grease, oil- & water-based paints & coatings, adhesives, silicone & acrylic sealants, poly foam, epoxy, oil, tar and more. They are also used in automobiles industry.

Pain relief – There are pain relief pads sopping with alcohol and benzocaine. These pads are good for treating minor scrapes, burns, and insect bites. They disinfect the injury and also ease pain and itching.

Pet care – Today one can find wet wipes for pet care, for example eye, ear, or dental cleansing pads (with boric acid, potassium chloride, zinc sulfate, sodium borate) for dogs, cats, horses, and birds. The wipes are versatile, safe for the pet and easy to use. The wipes are made from sustainable and biodegradable bamboo.

Health care – Medical wet wipes are available for various applications. These include alcohol wet wipes, chlorhexidine wipes (for disinfection of surfaces and noninvasive medical devices) and sporicidal wipes. Medical wipes can be used to prevent the spread of pathogens such as the Norovirus and Clostridium Difficile.

Wrapping tissue – Wrapping tissue is a type of thin, translucent paper used for wrapping presents and cushioning fragile items.

Table napkin or face towel – Table napkin, or face towel is a rectangle of cloth used at the table for wiping the mouth and fingers while eating. In certain places, serviettes are those made of paper whereas napkins are made of cloth. Rolls of toilet paper have been available since the end of the 19th century. Today, more than 20 billion rolls of toilet tissue are used each year in Western Europe.

Paper towels – Paper towels are the second largest application for tissue paper in the consumer sector. Normally such paper towels are two-ply. This kind of tissue can be made from 100% chemical pulp to 100% recycled fiber or a combination of the two. Normally, some long fiber chemical pulp is included to improve strength.

Paper napkins in restaurant

Who can forget that cool look of the dinner table in the restaurant where paper napkins are arranged in an attractive manner? Several restaurants and hotels prefer paper tissue napkins over cotton napkins. These napkins can be used in various ways such as dinner napkin made of paper, napkin pads made of paper and beverage napkin made of paper.

Microencapsulation of fragrance in tissues and napkins

The microencapsulation of fragrances and its application is used to obtain added-value products. Interfacial polymerization is used to produce polyurethane/urea (PUU) microcapsules with a perfume for industrial application on textile substrates. The extent of reaction of PUU microcapsules formation is followed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. Impregnation on textile substrates is tested both at laboratory level and at industrial scale. The fragrance release from textile substrates is measured with headspace chromatography. The content of microcapsules is released with light abrasion to simulate day-to-day wear, and fabrics impregnated at laboratory scale survive to 9000 abrasion cycles. Microcapsules continue to release aroma up to five dry cleaning washing cycles.

Anti microbial finish

In the present day world most of us are very conscious about our hygiene and cleanliness. Clothing and textile materials are not only the carriers of microorganisms such as pathogenic bacteria, odour generating bacteria and mould fungi, but also good media for the growth of the microorganisms.

Though the use of antimicrobials have been known for the decades, it is only in the recent couple of years several attempts have been made on finishing textiles with antimicrobial compounds. Anti microbial finish is a recent innovation in finishes. The consumers are now increasingly aware of the hygienic life style and there is a necessity and expectation for a wide range of textile products finished with antimicrobial properties. This finish prevents the growth of bacteria and products finished in it have been proved environment friendly and health protecting, preventing diseases. It also prevents garments from unpleasant odour.

Why are tissue paper napkins preferred?

Now, you know various uses of tissue paper napkins. You might be thinking also that why those napkins are this much popular. They are highly preferred for their soft texture, light weight and easy storage. They are inexpensive and well-functioning napkins for people of every age group. Like, cotton napkins, you don’t need to clean them again after use. They are disposable so that you can have plenty of them in your bag which will be useful for cleaning your sunglasses, cell phone’s screen, face, hands and car window whenever required. Keeping a stack of paper made of tissues becomes more important when you are going out with small children.

Tissues in Indian industry

Tissues are a sub-segment of the paper industry; tissue paper is available at small-scale as well as large-scale industry. It is used in the Food & Beverage industry as well as in hygiene-related areas. Highly recyclable and biodegradable product, increase in demand, this industry is definitely growing leaps and bounds due to increasing information, knowledge and awareness related to hygiene as well as environmental issues.

Potential buyers of tissues include

  • Hospitals
  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Institutions
  • Households

Different types of tissues that are sold and bought include – paper towels, napkins, toilet paper and facial tissues.


Consumers want many things from nonwovens, including low prices, high performances, aesthetics and convenience – but more and more, they also want sustainability. Paper napkins have a major difference between comparable cloth ones—they’re disposable. The industry has attempted to define “flush ability”. They encourage voluntary testing of flush ability by producers, clear marking of non-flushable products as “No Flush” (rather than fine print on the bottom of products) including creating a “No Flush” logo.


Preference to tissues and napkins is more in today’s world were sanitization and hygiene is important. Only care should be taken that the products are disposed properly without causing harm to the environment.

REFERENCES (2019). Nonwoven fabric. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Aug. 2019].

Atlas Obscura. (2019). A Brief History of Napkins, From Soft Dough to Paper. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Aug. 2019].

Barnhardt Purified Cotton. (2019). Know Your Fibers: Wovens vs Nonwovens & Knit Fabrics | Barnhart Cotton. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Aug. 2019]. (2019). Handbook of Nonwovens – 1st Edition. [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Aug. 2019].