Though its modern version is very similar to toyo in that it is a high grade paper straw, Shantung originally was referred to as a "Washi" paper straw derived from the manila hemp plant from the Philippines. It's very comfortable to wear if you find yourself sensitive to the texture of natural straws, which is why we tend to recommend it to customers who usually can't get behind straw hats because they feel "itchy and irritating." Be advised that it does soften with humidity and moisture, however, so you'll want to take care with storage if you want it to keep a more rigid state, though you may be saved the hassle if it is heavily shellacked. Our Belfry Arnold keeps the best of both worlds remaining fairly pliable but also toting a protective Teflon coating.
Want to know more about all the different straw options? Read all about our Sagacious Selection of Straws.