Let's Talk: Soft Touch


Posted by APC Packaging

The tactile feel of what’s referred to as “soft touch” is becoming increasingly desirable in the prestige product segment as more and more customers view it as representative of a high-quality and expensive product.  But how is the effect achieved?

Co-Extrusion
Two different layers, a standard interior and layer and an exterior soft touch layer, are combined during the blow molding process. This can provide a flat or matte aesthetic and tactile feel straight out of the mold, with the added benefit of being able to add pigments to achieve and all-over soft touch look in your desired color.

Spray Coating
The flat/matte and tactile look and feel of soft touch can also be achieved with a spray coating. This is a very flexible method, since almost any component can be sprayed with the effect, including most sizes of bottles and jars, as well as caps and closures. If you’re looking for additional color options, the spray coating can also be tinted to achieve your color requirements. The spray coating method is a more expensive process but can be used on a wider range of products and components.

In-Mold Matte
A soft touch effect can also be achieved in-mold using a process that creates a matte and subtle tactile feel, but this method is not as rubbery and soft as co-extrusion or spray coating. The downside of this process is that, once applied, the tool is no longer able to produce a polished component. This means that it will typically only be available with custom tooling.

The Right Method
Choosing a method really depends on you, your product, and what you’re looking to achieve. Co-extrusion has a high-quality effect but is only available for blow-molded components. Spray coating is extremely flexible but can be scuffed or dirtied more easily. The in-mold wears much better over time, since there’s nothing that can be scratched or worn away but is only available if you want to order custom tooling.

Your best bet is to reach out to our packaging experts to see what is right for you.

 

Topics: Soft Touch, Finishes

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