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Carding of wool can either be done "in the grease" or not, depending on the type of machine and on the spinner's preference. "In the grease" means that the lanolin that naturally comes with the wool has not been washed out, leaving the wool with a slightly greasy feel. A major benefit of working with the lanolin still in the wool is that it leaves you with soft hands.
Carding is the processing of brushing raw or washed fibers to prepare them as textiles. A large variety of fibers can be carded, anything from dog hair, to llama, to soy fiber to polyester. Cotton and wool are probably the most common fibers to be carded. Not all fibers are carded; Flax and bast, for example, are retted then threshed. Carding is used to take unordered fibers and prepare them for spinning or to produce webs of fiber to go into non-woven products such as needle felting. Carding can also be used to create blends of different fibers or different colors. The process of carding mixes up the different fibers, thus creating a homogeneous mix of the various types of fibers, at the same time as it orders them and gets rid of the tangles. In addition to spinning, weaving and felt making, carded fibers can be used in a variety of other projects. Many rug makers use unprocessed yarn and slivers of rovings look great when couched into embroidery designs or added to sewing projects as needle felted embellishments