Role of Hair Coverage and Sweating for Textile Friction on the Forearm

Friction of textiles on the human forearm is an important factor in comfort sensations of garments. We built an experiment to measure friction for textiles sliding on the forearm under loading conditions which are characteristic for wearing shirts or jackets. The hair coverage of the participants’ forearm was quantified by image analysis of photographs of the arm in the region of contact. Friction results for five standard textiles suggest to treat hair coverage in two classes. Sweating after physical activity leads to an increase of friction by factors of 2 to 5 for participants with less hairy forearms, while an increase by a factor of 1 to 1.7 only was found for participants with more hairy forearms. We introduce a method of wetting the forearm of study participants in a controlled way with water, which results in similar friction as for the sweating forearm after physical activity. The method allows for efficient studies of the role of skin moisture for friction including varying hair coverage of the skin.