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Press Releases

Nikwax Hydrophobic Down – Raising the Bar for PFC-free Down Insulation

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Seattle, Wash. (January 19, 2015) Nikwax Hydrophobic Down, which is being built into sleeping bags and garments and taken up by leading brands worldwide, is raising its minimum standards for water resistance for 2015 production.

Nikwax Hydrophobic Down is much more resistant to wet conditions than untreated down. Untreated down quickly loses its fill power and insulating properties in damp conditions, whereas Nikwax Hydrophobic Down can maintain its loft, and fill power, even when the outer fabric is saturated.

Previously Nikwax was able to claim that Nikwax Hydrophobic Down (NHD) would perform up to 10 times better than untreated washed down. Now Nikwax has raised its minimum absorbency standard to 15 times, and has also set a minimum standard of 150 minutes on the hydrophobic shake test.


Nick Brown, CEO and founder of Nikwax said, “We have worked hard this year to establish how to continually improve the performance and reliability of Nikwax Hydrophobic Down. As we increase our production we can raise our minimum standards. So whilst we have set our NHD minimum at 150 minutes on the industry shake test, for now, you can expect that to raise to 200 and then 300 in the near future. At this level a Nikwax Hydrophobic Down jacket will resist several hours of rainfall.”

Nikwax has pioneered the move away from polluting PFC water-repellents and has demonstrated that high performance waterproofing can be achieved with minimum environmental effect.

For North American inquires on industrial supply please contact Chad Altbaier, VP Sales and Business Development, Downlite at

About Nikwax

Nikwax® was founded in 1977 by Nick Brown, a keen mountain walker and traveller, who designed his own product, a waterproofing wax, to keep his leather mountain boots dry. Subsequently Nikwax has become the global leader in environmentally safe aftercare and waterproofing solutions that extend the life and performance of technical footwear, clothing and equipment. Nikwax care products are distributed to 50 countries. Nikwax® is the only major aftercare company to have never used aerosols or fluorocarbons. Nikwax products are all fluorochemical-free, use advanced elastomer technology, are not tested on animals, and are non-persistent in the environment. Nikwax has received numerous awards including the prestigious Queen’s Award (4x), Sunday Times Best Green Award (3x), and the Green Apple Award, and is ISO 9001 and 14001 certified. In 2014 Nikwax won the Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development, one of only 13 UK companies to receive this pinnacle award for sustainable business, and the only Outdoor company to have ever received the award. The recent global awareness of serious environmental problems with PFC based products has stimulated Nikwax to refocus on the development of a “PFC Treatment Free” industrial standard for Outdoor brands.

About Downlite

Downlite is America’s premiere manufacturer of down and feather, and synthetic bedding products. Its products – comforters, pillows, mattress pads, and feather and fiber beds – are sold under private label in leading department stores, specialty stores, and catalogs, as well as under major national brand names. Downlite also supplies high-quality bulk fills to furniture, outerwear and sleeping bag manufacturers around the globe. Downlite is a bluesign® system partner and a proud member of the American Down & Feather Council (ADFC).

For further press information, please contact:

Julie Evans at Verde Brand Communications 970.946.0856 or