Repelling Red Wine and Coffee From a White Cotton Dress Shirt

Please note that this article is sponsored by J. Harvest & Frost – v/GEPARD ApS.

Stains on a white button-up shirt can be a pain that is sometimes hard to avoid. With the Black Bow shirt from J. Harvest & Frost, this, however, is no longer an issue. Using nanotechnology from Nanotex© the high-quality cotton shirt can resist spills that would otherwise give it an unwanted stain.


–          How the technology works

–          About J. Harvest & Frost

–          Want to win a Black Bow Shirt?

How the technology works

The main effect that makes the shirt stain repellent is its hydrophobic surface, which literally means ‘fear of water’. Research has shown that combining a rough surface with low surface energy gives higher hydrophobicity [i]. The Black Bow shirt obtains this by attaching small nanoscale ‘whiskers’ of a hydrocarbon polymer to individual fibers in the fabric. The water thus gets slightly elevated from the surface, making it roll off the shirt as seen in the figure to the left. [ii]

Normally, cotton is hydrophilic (water-loving). This means it is attracted to water and is therefore prone to getting stains. It can be seen in how water has a lower contact angle (θ) with the surface and spreads out as shown in the figure to the right.

Additionally, the type of hydrophobic surface used by Nanotex© and J. Harvest & Frost is far more environmentally friendly compared to other solutions that exist. Other hydrophobic materials sometimes use fluorocarbons and PFOAs, which can have a negative impact on the environment and human health [iii],[iv]. Nanotex© avoids this by having found a processing technique that allows the attachment of the hydrocarbon to form the right structure.

About J. Harvest & Frost

J. Harvest & Frost[v],[vi] focus on making fine workwear of high quality using excellent craftsmanship, and the best materials. Their catalog includes shirts, blazers, and jackets for men and women.

The company was established in 2014 from a collaboration between James Harvest Sportswear and Frost and has multiple partners internationally. We are doing a collaboration with their Danish trade partner since much of our audience is based in Denmark.

Want to win a Black Bow shirt?

Please note that this campaign has ended.

By signing up for our newsletter before Nov. 30, 2020, you had a chance to win the Black Bow shirt from J. Harvest & Frost. The winner has been contacted and is shipped a shirt free of charge. By signing up you are supporting a student initiative and receive updates on nanotechnology and its applications in a short format through peer-reviewed articles. Please stay tuned for upcoming posts.


[i] B. W. Chieng, Functionalization of Graphene Oxide via Gamma-Ray Irradiation for Hydrophobic Materials, 2019, accessed at

[ii] Nanotex, Aquapel, accessed Nov. 2020 at

[iii] National Center for Biotechnology Information, Compound Summary – Perfluorooctanoic Acid, accessed at

[iv] Archie McCulloch, Fluorocarbons in the Global Environment: A Review of the Important Interactions with Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 2013, accessed at

[v] J. Harvest & Frost – v/GEPARD ApS, 2020, accessed at

[vi] About J. Harvest & Frost, accessed at

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