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What Are Pearlescent Pigments? 

What Are Pearlescent Pigments? 

May 18, 2023

Pearlescent pigments are partly translucent powders formed by depositing titanium dioxide and/or iron salts onto mica, layered with metal oxides.¹ They provide fascinating visual effects and color to a range of coatings, plastics, and printing ink. These shiny pigments are translucent and easily reflect light because of their smooth surface. The luster of light reflected off the platelets changes depending on the size of the piece. Smaller particles typically have a satin sheen, while bigger ones tend to have glitter or in some cases sparkles.

Substrate-free pigments and layered pigments are the two most common types of pearlescent pigments. Pigments in the first instance are made up of only one optically homogeneous substance, whereas pigments in the second case are made up of at least two optically distinct materials. The two-layered style of pigments is represented by natural mica with thin layers of various metal oxides. The mica-based pearlescent pigment was originally created in the 1970s, and its development was accelerated up to the 1990s when multilayer mica systems were effectively achieved.²

As a pearlescent pigment supplier, our products are of the highest quality using solid manufacturing practice, and their features and benefits are outlined below, including a background to pearlescent pigments, how they work, and certain restrictions you should be aware of.

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