“Specific knowledge about the individual parameters influencing the comfort factor helps nonwovens professionals to experiment with certain haptic traits, identify why one product is preferred over another, and ultimately develop consumer-pleasing new products,” Alexander Gruner, Emtec global marketing and business development manager, said in a press release by the company.
In the tissue paper industry (including handkerchiefs, kitchen roll, and toilet paper), the same test device—known in the field as the TSA Tissue Softness Analyzer—has already become an established standard for haptic measurement worldwide and has been featured in a TAPPI Technical Information Paper (TIP 0808-07 (2021)).
Whether the product is needle-punched garments, protective clothing, sanitary pads, or baby diapers—many nonwoven materials must achieve certain haptic standards to meet customer demands. Especially when the product is meant for personal use, research shows that consumers prefer materials that are pleasing to the touch.
Depending on the product, this could mean softer, smoother, more cushioned, or having good draping qualities. Yet parameters influencing comfort are notoriously difficult to measure objectively. The human tactile sensation is a complex and highly individual phenomenon, influenced by many factors, including personal sensitivity and preference, culture, and even one’s current mood.
Traditionally, the haptic of nonwovens is measured via hand-panel testing, in which one or more ‘touch experts’ rank the overall haptic impression by physical touching, crumpling, and stretching the samples. Typical drawbacks to this method include the time needed for the organisation and repeat testing, as well as the often subjective results, which are not always reproducible across various locations, added the release.
On April 19 at 4pm, Gruner will give a lecture to further explain the measuring principles and practical application examples of the TSA device for nonwovens and textiles. Visitors to the Index can stop by the Emtec booth number 2301 and speak with experts Alexander Gruner, Stefan Rubesam, and Eric Haagen to find out more about the device.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (NB)