Napkins: 3-Ply and Airlaid Explained

3-Ply Napkins

3-ply napkins are composed of three layers of tissue which are layered on top of one another to create the 3-ply structure. The sheets are held together through a process known as embossing which means the layers are pressed together to create a pattern along the edge of the napkin.

These are the most common type of napkin typically found in coffee shops, pubs, and take-away food outlets.

The photo below shows the pattern created by the embossing (left) and the three individual layers (right).

A 3-ply napkin

Airlaid Napkins

Airlaid napkins are made using a unique process that involves using air to disperse fibres onto a conveyor belt where they form a web that is then bonded together into a single layer using heat, pressure, and adhesive (see photo below).

Airlaid napkins have several benefits over 3-ply but primarily they are softer and textile-like, making them feel more like traditional linen napkins than paper - they also tend to be more absorbent and much stronger, even when wet, due to the density of the fibre.

An airlaid napkin

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