May 032011

When you set out to buy a tallit katan the first decision to make is the type of fabric you want to wear: wool, cotton or a cotton/synthetic blend.

Wool Tzitzit – No Sweat

Although many tzitzit wearers work up a sweat just hearing the word “wool,” consider the following list of assets:

  • Wool is a good insulator in the winter.
  • Wool wicks moisture away from the skin, keeping the wearer dryer when sweating and cooler when hot.
  • Wool is durable and flexible. It can be bent 20,000 times without breaking, while cotton breaks after 3,000 bends.
  • Wool garments do not soil easily and resist grease and oils.

Wool Tallit KatanThe Shulchan Aruch states that only a wool garment is required to have tzitzits according to Torah law, while other fabrics must have tzitzits based on a Rabbinical decree. Most Sephardic Jews follow this opinion and the Mishnah Brurah recommends it for Ashkenazim as well.

Wool Tallit Katan Offers Value

Although a wool tallit katan costs more than a cotton tallit katan, all of these reasons may make it very worth the money. It will last longer, tear less and can be worn throughout the year.

And most important of all, unless you happen to follow the opinion of the Chazon Ish or the Vilna Gaon, wool is the fabric of choice according to halacha.

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