Skin Feel Texture

The skin-feel sensation is primarily generated by objects with special structures and properties. Features include surface morphology, surface friction, elasticity, flexibility, etc., which, when in contact with the skin, create a soft, full, warm, and comfortable sensation. This technique was first developed and applied in furniture panels by Italy, known for producing top-tier luxury brands, hence the “blue-blooded aristocrats in flooring” nickname for skin-feel flooring.

Experimenting and simulating the texture effects of different materials, GUOLIAN’s product designers dedicatedly researched the “skin-feel surface layer” for delicate skin. They eventually integrated the highly acclaimed skin technology into flooring, providing the public with products that lead the international trend.

The skin-feel coating gives the wood a skin-friendly texture, gentle light sensitivity, rich details, maintaining the visual characteristics of the original wood grain while radiating the vitality of natural wood. The texture and color layers of each floor vividly restore the charm of the natural ecosystem.

How is skin-feel coating made?

The innovation of skin-feel flooring can be divided into two parts: ultra-matte coatings and process equipment. In order to achieve the effect of ultra-matte finish and a surface with micro-textures resembling the skin texture, optimal experiments were conducted on the top-layer coatings and process parameters, ultimately achieving the tactile sensation effect that reproduces the feeling of skin.

  • Skin-feel Lacquer

The tradition floor UV lacquers are composed of polyurethane acrylic resin, monomers, UV Initiating agent, functional agents, and other components. The coating, with a certain viscosity, is applied to the floor surface with a certain amount using a rubber roller. When exposed to UV light, the resin undergoes cross-linking under the action of the light initiator, curing to form a polymeric film. The surface roughness and glossiness of the film are influenced by the coating components and curing process.

On the basis of the conventional matting mechanism, it is necessary to impart a certain roughness to the surface, which can be achieved by reducing the resin cross-linking density, altering some cross-linking structures, or increasing matting agents to induce light scattering and matting. Currently, matte coatings on the market often have poor transparency and tactile sensation due to the high amount of matting agents, resulting in less soft and visual effects.

GUOLIAN’s factory, in the selection of UV resin for ultra-matte coatings, opts for a resin with good elasticity, moderate cross-linking density, and excellent surface curing. This resin provides a soft skeleton, and with the help of special quasi-molecular curing equipment, the film develops wrinkled textures on the surface after curing under quasi-molecular lamps, achieving an ultra-matte effect. By minimizing the addition of matting agents, the tactile sensation of the film is significantly improved, and the coating exhibits outstanding leveling properties.

  • Curing Principle

Excimer laser is a spontaneous radiation light source that transforms inert gas, halogen, or inert gas halide filled in the lamp tube into excited dimers R2*, X2*, or RX*. It then emits non-coherent ultraviolet (UV, wavelength between 200nm and 400nm) and vacuum ultraviolet (VUV, wavelength between 100nm and 200nm) spectra. The photon energy of vacuum ultraviolet radiation is above 6 eV, surpassing the bond energy of most chemical bonds, enabling it to initiate chemical reactions, alter material surface structure, and enhance performance at room temperature.

The skin-feel coating, based on excimer laser technology, involves applying paint to the primer layer and then, in an oxygen-free environment, irradiating the paint surface with excimer lamps. At this point, the acrylate double bonds in the UV coating formula absorb the 172nm ultraviolet light generated by vacuum ultraviolet. This absorption leads to the generation of free radicals without the need for a photosensitizer. Under the influence of this intense ultraviolet light, the liquid adhesive components can crosslink into a solid dry layer within a fraction of a second.

Since the penetration depth of 172nm ultraviolet light is only 100 to 500nm, only a very thin surface layer of the coating is cured, forming an uneven surface that floats on the uncured underlying liquid. This results in surface contraction and the formation of uniform wrinkles on the paint surface. This paint surface with uniform wrinkles is then cured. When light is projected onto the paint surface with uniform wrinkles, it undergoes uniform diffuse reflection, creating a super-matte surface for the paint.

  • Facilities and Process

The primer layer coating for ultra-matte skin-feel flooring follows the conventional UV roller coating process, while the top layer utilizes the UV ultra-matte skin-feel surface coating process. Specifically, a special lasered roller device is used to apply the UV ultra-matte skin-feel top layer coating onto the primer. In the curing process, a segmented curing approach is employed, requiring quasi-molecular lamps or other pre-curing methods. This results in the generation of elastic wrinkled textures and an ultra-matte gloss, creating a smooth and delicate tactile sensation similar to touching the skin.

Properties of Skin-feel Coating

The skin-feel sensation is primarily based on the special structure and properties of the finishing surface, such as surface morphology, surface friction, elasticity, flexibility, compressibility, density, and thermal properties. When in contact with the skin, these characteristics create a soft, full, warm, and comfortable sensation. Based on these features, in addition to the conventional coating film evaluation criteria, surface touch (roughness, flatness), fingerprint resistance, and glossiness are considered as key evaluation indicators for the surface quality of ultra-matte skin-feel flooring.

Based on the coating properties test results, the abrasion resistance of the skin-feel coating is excellent, with a hardness no less than 2H, meeting the requirements of engineered flooring standards. Additionally, the adhesion of the coating film is also qualified, and the glossiness ranges from 1.5° to 2.5°, providing an ultra-matte visual effect.

To test the surface touch, gently touching and rubbing the floor surface with the hand results in a very delicate and smooth sensation, without a gritty feeling. Applying pressure to the floor surface with the fingers and then removing them quickly leads to the rapid disappearance of fingerprints, demonstrating excellent fingerprint resistance of the flooring.

Summary

Skin-feel coating design is gradually making its way into the homes of high-end individuals, becoming one of the ways people establish an emotional connection with their living spaces. GUOLIAN’s ultra-matte skin-feel engineered flooring empowers a beautiful home life!

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