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Dye transfer inhibitors > for laundry detergents

BTC’s product portfolio covers a wide range of dye transfer inhibitors (DTI) used in laundry detergents formulations. When fabrics of different shades are washed together, there exists the danger that the dye of the coloured fabric is washed out into the washing water. Thus fabrics might be recoloured accidentially. Polyvinylpyrrolidon (PVP) homopolymers or PVP-copolymers inhibit the transfer of dye to the fabric.

BTC’s Sokalan® HP types belong chemically to the class of water soluble polymers. They are either homopolymers or copolymers of polyvinylpyrrolidon.


Sokalan® HP grades

Properties of dye transfer inhibitors for laundry detergents

BTC’s Sokalan® HP types are

  • dye transfer inhibition polymers with a medium to high molecular weight.
  • They provide an amphiphilic character with polar groups, providing hydrophilic properties and unpolar groups providing hydrophobic properties.

Sokalan® HP polyvinylpyrrolidon (PVP) homopolymers are available as liquid grades as well as solid grades (granules). 

The new generation of Sokalan® HP dye transfer inhibitors are copolymers of polyvinylpyrrolidon and vinylimidazole. They are

  • liquid or solid polymers,
  • easy to formulate into a laundry formulation,
  • compatible with anionic surfactants.

The Sokalan® HP range covers also polycarboxylates, which prevent the redeposition of soil and inhibit the dye transfer.

Applications of dye transfer inhibitors for laundry detergents

Fading of dyes is more likely for new, not yet washed or rarely washed fabrics. Fabrics with considerable lower colour fastness to washing may continue to bleed during further washes. Thus a release of dye or colourant into the liquor phase is present with the danger to be transferred onto other fabrics. Dye transfer is triggered by higher water temperature, longer cycle time and much higher surfactant concentration in the wash cycle. To avoid a kind of re-deposition of dyes or colourants, dye transfer inhibitor (DTI) are incorporated into the laundry formulation.

Solid or liquid laundry formulations designed for colour care are mostly formulated with dye transfer inhibition polymers. The new generation of liquid laundry detergents which are capsules or pouches with less water and high concentration of ingredients (surfactants) often contain dye transfer inhibitors.

Further products for laundry detergents

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About BTC

BTC Europe is BASF's European sales organization for small and medium-sized customers focused on specialty chemicals. Our solutions for laundry detergents cover surfactants, polymers and performance polymers, complexing agents, and colourants.