• Barry McCann

It's no accident. Hydrochromic ink color changes when wet.

Updated: Sep 2


Most parents have done it but probably don’t want to talk about it – that quick finger swoop inside a baby’s diaper to see if it’s wet and needs changing.

Let’s be honest ….

It’s a little gross – and inconvenient – if you don’t have a bottle of hand sanitizer around.

The innovators at CTI have introduced another “solutions powered by chemistry” breakthrough to address this problem and improve on present diaper market technology.

The company introduced Hydrochromic Wetness Indicator Ink and has been working with pioneer customers to commercialize the technology.

It’s brilliant but straightforward: When dry, the ink appears yellow. When wet, the ink turns blue.

This unique chemistry detects moisture and changes color for substrates that need to be monitored for wetness, such as baby and adult diapers. It’s highly sensitive to ambient humidity, so during the printing and converting production process; the Hydrochromic prints must be protected from water, liquid or vapor.

That sound daunting, but in the case of diaper manufacturing, it’s not. First, the thin air permeable and semi-transparent plastic layer with the Hydrochromic ink can be reversed printed so that when it’s combined with the other diaper layers, it’s physically against the moisture absorbent material. This way, it truly takes a lot of wetness to change the color.

Commercially, there’s no need for a separate offline process like the application of a wax stripe. CTI’s Hydrochromic solvent ink prints like any other ink, so the design possibilities are endless. For instance, a diaper brand could print flowers that change from yellow to blue or a sun that change color so that it’s obvious that the diaper needs a change.


Check out this yellow to blue demonstration video, and contact CTI for more information or call us 719.592.1557.

CTI is the world’s largest producer of thermochromic ink and manufactures other environmentally reactive technology, such as photochromic, pressure activated, fluorescing and glow-in-the-dark. CTI is an innovation company that supports the world’s biggest brands and packaging printers. www.ctiinks.com


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