In this study, the surface characteristics of polyester and polyamide fabrics were changed by plasma polymerization technique utilizing acrylic acid as precursor. This monomer was used to produce hydrophilic materials with extended absorbency. The hydrophilicity, total wrinkle recovery angle (WRA degrees) and breaking strength of the fabrics were determined prior and after plasma polymerization treatment. The modification of surfaces was carried out at low pressure (< 100 Pa) and low temperature (< 50 degrees C) plasma conditions. The effects of exposure time and discharge power parameters were optimized by comparing properties of the fabrics before and after plasma polymerization treatments. It was shown that two sides of polyester fabric samples were treated equally and homogeneously in plasma reactor. For polyester fabrics, the minimum wetting time, 0.5 s, was observed at two plasma processing parameters of 10 W-45 min and 10 W-20 min, where untreated fabric has a wetting time of 6 s. For polyester fabrics, the maximum value was obtained at 60 W-5 min with the wrinkle recovery angle of 306 degrees where the untreated fabric has 290 degrees. The optimum plasma conditions for polyamide fabrics were determined as 30 W-45 min where 2 s wetting time was observed. Wrinkle recovery angle of untreated polyamide fabric was 264 degrees. In this study, after plasma polymerization of acrylic acid, wrinkle recovery angle values were increased by 13%. No significant change was observed in breaking strength of both fabrics after plasma treatment. (c) 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.