Pigments are a classification of colorant which differs fundamentally from dyes in that pigments are typically water and oil insoluble. PIgments are used to add color to various materials ranging from plastics and cosmetic products to industrial equipment and paints. Pigments can be permanent or fugitive (fade over time). Natural pigments can be dated to prehistoric times, while the first use of synthetic pigments can be dated back to the industrial revolution.
Pigments are differentiated and categorized into two types—organic pigments and inorganic pigments. Organic pigments are made up of carbon chains and are obtained naturally. Some examples include, natural indigo pigment which is obtained from the woad plant, and chlorophyll which imparts a green color and is often derived from alfalfa and similar plants. The use of organic pigments can be dated back pre-historic times. Today, organic pigments can be found in food, drugs, and cosmetics, paints, coatings, and stains, and much more.
During the 1930s, synthetic inorganic pigments were developed to cut down the expense and effort that went into finding natural and organic pigments. Inorganic pigments are chemical compounds that are usually derived from metallic salts. One such inorganic pigment that has been used for decades is Ultramarine Blue. This extremely robust colorant has been made in laboratories and factories for decades. In addition, a wide array of synthetic iron oxides are widely available. These pigments can be used in automotive products, cleaning products, paints, cosmetics, cement applications, and various other products.
After thorough testing analysis, we at Pylam strive to provide the most compatible and effective colorants for your product. If you’re interested in dyes and how they compare to pigments, please read more on the topic on our difference between dyes and pigments page. Whether you are looking for an inorganic pigment or an organic pigment, or if the chemical composition of your product requires another type of colorant, we have every possible colorant solution for your product. Contact us and let us help you find the right colorant for your product.