What is Kapok Fiber? Properties & Application

Md Mahedi Hasan

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What is Kapok Fiber?

Kapok Fiber is known as silk cotton. It is a natural fiber derived from the seed pods of the kapok tree (Ceiba pentandra). The Kapok tree is native to the tropical regions of the Americas, Africa, and Asia. With a rich history dating back centuries, kapok fiber has garnered attention for its unique properties and versatile applications. Natural cellulosic fiber. Obtained from the seed of the kapok plant. Most Producing countries: China, Brazil, Africa, Philippines. 

Kapok Fiber


Kapok fiber is renowned for its exceptional properties. It is a sought-after material in various industries. First and foremost, it is incredibly lightweight and buoyant, making it ideal for use in life jackets and buoyancy aids.

Additionally, its softness and hypoallergenic nature make it a popular choice for bedding and upholstery. Kapok fiber exhibits excellent water resistance, making it suitable for outdoor applications such as cushions and outdoor furniture.

The key Properties of Kapok are follows:

  1. Yellowish-brown in color. 
  2. Has lustre
  3. Light-weight
  4. Biodegradable
  5. Comfortable


  1. Lightweight 
  2. Comfortable
  3. Thermal insulator
  4. Bio-degradable
  5. Hydrophobic


  1. Fragile and break easily
  2. Highly inflammable
  3. Not suitable for weaving or spinning
  4. Irritant to lungs
Kapok Fiber


The application of kapok fiber are diverse from traditional and cultural applications to modern industrial uses. In many tropical countries, kapok fiber has been used for centuries to fill pillows, mattresses, and traditional clothing.

In modern times, it is used as insulation materials, acoustic panels, and even oil spill cleanup products. Its eco-friendly properties make it an attractive alternative to synthetic materials in various industries.

The applications of kapok are as follows:

  1. Mattress
  2. Clothing
  3. Lifesaving equipment
  4. Sound-proof wall
  5. Sound-proof cover
  6. Substitute of cotton in surgery

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