Some dealers offer certain additions to customize your tallit. The most common are a tallit lining, sidebands and middle band.
Made of cotton, a tallit lining adds a bit of weight and bulk to the tallit, for those who want a more substantial, weighty feel on their shoulders. Some people find it also helps the tallit stay in place, because it weights it down in a key spot.
However, if you choose a tallit with a “nonslip” fabric, adding a tallit lining could detract from the slip-resistant properties, because essentially you are adding a smooth fabric.
The tallit lining is also a helpful “first line of defense” for those who have oily hair or oil skin that discolors the tallit.
Tallit sidebands are typically made of a synthetic fabric, that looks like a long thin version of the atara. They are especially useful for tallit wearers who have a habit of tugging at the sides of the tallit. Sometimes they may be made of smooth cotton or even the same fabric as the tallit itself.
Tallit sidebands and lining are standard on the Kmo Turkish Tallit and the Belz Tallit. The Chabad Tallit comes with a silk lining. Sometimes customers ask to have it switched for a cotton lining, which of course is not as slick. All of these can be seen on this page.
Tallit Middle Band
A tallit middle band is not as common as the above additions. It is made of the exact same synthetic material used for the sidebands, and goes all the way across the tallit, horizontally, right across the middle.
All three can add to the tallit’s longevity, especially since the most common tear points are in the very center and along the sides. Why tears sometimes form at the very center of the tallit is a mystery that has piqued my curiosity for years. One theory is that some people start folding their tallit by grasping it right at that point. According to another line of thinking, it is a stress point, that fatigues the fabric from slight tugging in various directions.
Some of the talleisim we sell, e.g. the Chatanim, have lining, sideband and middle band options right on the product page. For tallits that don’t, use these product pages: