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Blog | Hair & Fibres - Which to use?

Hair & Fibres - Which to use?

Hair & Fibres - Which to use?

It's always difficult deciding what to add to your mortar to get the best result, so we've tried to make your life that little bit easier with this helpful article.

Why fibres & hair?

The traditional purpose of hair or fibres in mortar is reinforcement, as a means of improving strength and reducing shrinkage cracking. Hair is introduced to the mix by teasing it into the mortar prior to use, making it a lengthy process as unteased ‘clumps’ of hair will fail to mix successfully.

Using hair in renders is advised on walls with lath background, and should only be added to the first two coats leaving the final setting coat.

Hair V Fibre

Fibres are a cost effective, easy to mix alternative to horse hair. Rather than teasing in (as with hair) the fibres are simply sprinkled into the mix. This only requires a few minutes of mixing to distribute everything evenly.

Hair used in mortar can be that of any animal, but is mostly obtained from goats, cows and horses (body hair, not mane or tail). Other types of reinforcement include hemp and jute fibres, but most commonly used for this role is horse hair. Horse hair is ‘the’ obvious choice when working traditionally, but fibre is popular for swiftly modernising this centuries old practice.

We supply (and mix) a range of fibres & hair and are more than happy to advise on the best option for you. Contact us or pop in for details!

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