I've heard it all before. Fabrics ideal for summer so as to survive the heat are cotton, linen, poplin, seersucker and some lightweight wool. What I've never heard mentioned is polyviscose. In my humble opinion, it is a front runner in the summer beaters category. Mind you, my experience with this fabric thus far has been unintentional and unwitting. I never knew when I purchased the above pictured trousers that they were in a polyviscose blend. All I knew was that they fit very well, draped accordingly and incredibly breathable.
Polyviscose is a rayon fabric made from cellulose ester (obtained by treating cellulose with caustic soda). Viscose fabrics have a silky to matte luster with a elegant flowing drape. The natural effect of the colours gives them an attractive look. Viscose is supple and has a softness that is comfortable to wear. As they can absorb perspiration quite quickly, it makes them very skin friendly, but with poor thermal properties.
Because polyester has a reputation as a cantankerous fabric; not friendly on the skin, heavy and slippery as well (something I can attest to), I find that when blended with other fabrics, polyester has ameliorated. Even the feel and look has improved.
I've come to enjoy and respect this fabric, because of its functional qualities and the fact that it doesn't wrinkle. In the absence of linen, poplin, seersucker and the ilk, polyviscose has filled the void functionally and aesthetically.
PG: Man to man, generation to generation.