What is Pigments

What is Pigments?

Pigments are such colorants which composed of particles that are insoluble in the application medium. They have no substantivity for the material since the particles are too large to penetrate into the substrate. They are generally present on the surface of the substrate. That’s why pigments are made fixed with an adhesive to the surface so that they are not being removed easily.

What is pigments

Pigment Dyed Fabric

A pigment is a material that changes the color of reflected or transmitted light as the result of wavelength-selective absorption. This physical process differs from fluorescence, phosphorescence, and other forms of luminescence, in which a material emits light.

Required Properties of pigments

  1. Pigments should be opaque in such a way that they may have good covering power.
  2. Pigments should be chemically insert so that after use remain stable and get long life.
  3. They should have the properly to freely mix.

General Classification of Pigments

Natural or mineral pigments:

These are pigments such as

  • Iron
  • Ores
  • Clays
  • Chalk etc.

Chemical or synthetic pigments:

These mainly include

  • Zinc oxide
  • White lead
  • Titanium dioxide
  • Larger number of inorganic and organic colors

Reactive pigments:

Some pigments on account of their chemical character react with oil, fatty acid and soaps, e.g

  • Zinc oxide
  • Red lead

Inert pigment: As for example titanium dioxide

 Classification of Pigments as textile use

Pigments are used in textile may be broadly classify as

  1. Azoic pigments
  2. Vat pigments
  3. Miscellaneous pigments

Of all the Azoic pigments are occurring major places in pigments.

 Advantages of pigment dyeing and printing

  • No wet treatment so it is so simple to do dry and curing
  • It is applicable to all fibres
  • Extensive color range with high light fastness

 Disadvantages of pigment dyeing and printing

  • It has adverse effect due to binders
  • Chemical and physical properties of binders influence in dyeing and printing
  • Using of solvent like kerosene, Spirit etc. produce problem of flammability, pollution etc.
  • It covers high cost.


Engineer Sheikh Nurja

B.Sc engineer of textile

Merchandiser at buying house

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Classification of Dyes

Before discussing about the classification of dyes lets have some idea of dyes and what can be the basic characteristics of dyes.


A dye is a such type of colorant substance which is capable of imparting it’s color to a given substance, by being soluble in the application medium (usually water) at some points during the coloration process.

classification of dyes

Direct Dyes

In most textile dyeing process, the process initially involves transfer of the colored chemical from the aqueous solution onto the fiber surface which called adsorption process. From there the dye slowly diffuses into the fibre. Depending on internal structure of the fibre, this occurs down pores, or between fibre polymer molecules. The overall process of adsorption and penetration of the dye into the fibre is called absorption. Absorption is a reversible process. The dye can therefore return to the aqueous medium from the dyed material during washing which is called desorption.

Major characteristics of dyes

  • Intense color.
  • Solubility in water at some point during the dyeing cycle.
  • Some substantivity for the fibre being dyed.
  • Reasonable fastness properties of the dyeing produced.
dyed finished fabric

Dyed Finished Fabric

Classification of dyes (according to textile usage)

  • Acid dyes
  • Azoic dyes
  • Basic dyes
  • Direct dyes
  • Disperse dyes
  • Mordant dyes
  • Pigments
  • Reactive dyes
  • Sulpher dyes
  • Vat dyes


Engineer Sheikh Nurja

B.Sc engineer of textile

Merchandiser at buying house

If you like this article please do not forget to share on facebook and put your valuable comments.