These are Not Santa’s Socks! Celliant Textile’s Pain-Reducing Fabric

December 18, 2013 Updated: April 24, 2016

These are Not Santa’s Socks! Celliant Textile’s Pain-Reducing Fabric

Back in the day my elementary school teacher took trips to the Grand Canyon and the deserts of Utah and Nevada. There she collected rocks split in two revealing crystals of amazing shapes and colors. Each fall she shared her crystal rock collection with the class. We got an education in minerals and geology, but the future held something more.

Rocks like that have another purpose. They are more than a mere conversation piece or occupying shelf space. Today, their minerals are ending up, of all places, in our clothes, linens, and fabrics. They are giving value where it matters most—as a form of pain relief, with thermal and proven therapeutic properties.

Some of the elements in those rocks come from the exotic section of the Periodic Table of Elements. They include titanium dioxide, “selected for its photocatalyst (light absorbing) properties”; silicon dioxide, “for its energy reflection and absorption properties”; and aluminum oxide “for its ability to increase reflectivity.”

And those are just three out of 13 exotics used as, “safe, naturally occurring, thermally responsive minerals,” in a new type of clothing.

Companies like Uniqlo, the Japanese “heat tech” clothier, have changed the way clothes are made, expanding basic utility beyond fit, comfort, and climate. Sure cotton and wool are still around, but minerals embedded in the threads appear to be the next evolutionary step in mashing clothes with technology.                                                                               

Celliant Textiles was formed to fill that gap.

Two Worlds Meet

“It started with my mother,” said David Horinek in an interview at a downtown Manhattan office. “She had Type II diabetes and I figured there had to be a better way for her to live pain free, or at least with less pain.” 

Horinek is the founder and Chief Innovation Officer at Hologenix, LLC, which is the R&D arm and producer of the fibers and yarns for Celliant Textiles.  

Socks were first on his list to explore. Then a shoulder injury he suffered in a car accident became the next hot item. How could something as a passive as clothing reduce pain and inflammation? How could he build a better mousetrap? Or in David Horinek’s case a better pair of socks? What other elements could be woven into materials, fibers, and threads that would alleviate pain?

John Phillips, who is CEO of Celliant Energy Textiles, LLC, became an accidental tourist one day about a decade ago. He visited a store with Celliant® Mattress Protectors. At that time Phillips owned a bedding store. Learning about the fabric’s properties, its ability to improve circulation of blood flow and heal with passive use, he researched the product. That led him to David Horinek and Hologenix, LLC, a California-based company.

For John Phillips it was a discovery of a fabric technology that converts the body’s own energy to help heal itself. For the personable, energetic, and passionate David Horinek it was an opportunity to grow the business and get his technology innovation into more areas and channels of the market.

At the same interview, Trent Horinek, who is the Manager of Business Development at Hologenix and is the son of David, ran a live experiment on my wrist.

Infrared Scan of the Skin

David Horinek took an in infrared gun and scanned the epidermis of my left hand and fingers. The image showed a pale blue, room temperature skin. Trent then fitted a wristband over my hand as I conducted the interview. Fifteen minutes later, David scanned my hand again; the screen showed red marks, splotches and surface areas—or what he said was enhanced circulation.

It made sense. If the fabric induced better circulation that meant more oxygen was moving around with the blood cells under my skin. Cool, I thought.

Although my hand didn’t feel any different, the infrared scan did prove its point. Since then, I have worn samples of Celliant socks around the house. My tired feet at the end of the day do feel better—so I am convinced of its enhancing properties.

But really, who can argue with mom, a diabetic with swollen, sore, inflamed feet with poor circulation?

The bigger test came when Phillips made a deal with Hologenix and formed Celliant Energy Textiles, LLC. But studies would be needed beyond mom’s word on the health properties in the fibers and fabrics. They needed empirical evidence, evidence to prove that Celliant’s Holofiber technology worked as advertised. That phase began with a clinical, double blind study.

Dr. Ian L. Gordon, MD, PhD, at the University of California Irvine Medical Center carried out that study from April 15, 2008, to April 22, 2009, titled: Effect of Optically Modified Polyethylene Terephthalate Fiber Socks on Chronic Foot Pain Study.

The objective was to “evaluate whether socks made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET), incorporating optically active particles (CelliantTM) ameliorate—make better—chronic foot pain resulting from diabetic neuropathy and other disorders.”

The global findings were a reduction in patient pain on 6 of 9 pain-rated questions, and that was after eliminating the outliers from the study.

The study’s conclusion: “Socks with optically modified PET (CelliantTM) have a beneficial impact on chronic foot pain. The mechanism could be related to the effects seen with illumination of tissues with visible and infrared light.”

Minerals Embedded in the Threads

With “thirteen exotic minerals embedded into each thread,” the Celliant product line offers the gamut on passive healing products, from headbands and memory foam neck-pillows, to orthopedic wraps and bedding linens.

They also sell their fibers, yarns, and fabrics to major sporting retailors, such as Puma, New Balance and Ironman, and Sealy and Head, among others.

Growing up as a very active teenager, I would like to have had that clothing line available, from jogging and playing sports to hiking and mountain climbing. What’s great about the product line, it serves the athlete all the way down to this not-as-physically-active author, as well as seniors, who have sedentary lifestyles, where inflammation and discomfort come with the real estate of getting old.

My personal favorite is the enhanced REM sleep when getting a good night’s slumber on Celliant pillowcases and bed sheets—or linens that make one dream’s more and sleep better. Who new?  It’s not science fiction. It’s closer to Celliant’s mantra: “Enhance Your Life.”

Why not?

I haven’t tried the beddings yet, but I just might purchase a set for Christmas.