Main Story. 06. 21.

Polartec® Produces Innovation Timeline

A look back at 40 years of textile innovation highlighting partners, products, and people along the way

(Andover, Mass.) - June 21, 2021 - Polartec®, the premium creator of innovative and sustainable textile solutions, announces the launch of its innovation timeline as part of Polartec’s Peaking Since ‘91 campaign. The timeline begins with the 1981 invention of PolarFleece, highlights the 1991 founding of the Polartec brand, and continues through to present day.  

Hosted on and available for publications to embed, the timeline illustrates the creation of the broadest range of performance fabric technologies, collaboration with the world’s leading brands, and the resulting products which have empowered outdoor participants for generations, coinciding with the growth of the modern outdoor industry. 

For the last 30 years, leading brands have consistently turned to Polartec to evolve fleece beyond insulation, to redefine weather protection, or develop the next lightweight, next-to-skin technologies. In that leadership role, Polartec has established itself as the world's foremost innovator of a wide range of performance fabrics engineered for all conditions, to keep you warm, dry, cool, and safe. 

“The modern history of Polartec is one of transformation, from a traditional mill into a performance textile innovator,” said Steve Layton, Polartec President. “We’re excited to have this timeline illustrate the stories of how collaboration with our business partners resulted in iconic fabrics and garments that literally changed what we wear when we go outside.”

The timeline highlights not only those iconic fabric innovations and products, but also the cultural milestones and Polartec-sponsored expeditions along the way. Readers can view vintage Polartec ads and explore some of the past Polartec Challenge Grant winners. 

The Peaking Since ‘91 campaign additionally features advertising, social media, and promotional outreach to core outdoor media, enthusiast groups and clubs. The campaign engages partner brands and consumers, and will culminate with new innovations and collaborations, planned for the back half of the year.

Please click here to view the timeline

About Polartec®

Polartec®, a Milliken brand, is the premium provider of innovative and sustainable textile solutions. Since inventing the original PolarFleece in 1981, Polartec® engineers continue to advance the science of fabric by creating problem solving technologies that improve the user experience. Polartec® fabrics offer a wide range of functionality, including lightweight wicking and cooling, warmth and insulation, breathable weather protection, fire resistance, and enhanced durability. Polartec® products are used by performance, lifestyle, and workwear brands from around the world, the U.S. Military and allied militaries, and contract upholstery markets. For more information, please visit and follow Polartec on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.