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Clever clothes

Clothes have just got clever. Nano-sized treatments are giving fabrics novel and useful properties. Synthetic materials draw moisture away from the wearer's skin, just like cotton. Spills don't soak in, they just roll away. Stubborn stains wash out easily. And smells never get stuck in.

But while the technology might be new, and the products cutting-edge, the scientists who created them looked to nature for inspiration.

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Water beads up - even on cotton.
Water beads up - even on cotton.
Image: Science Museum

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