Regulations and Standards
There are no specific standards available from the International Standardisation Organisation or the American ASTM focussing wholly on stain resistance, this is because the property is closely interlinked with hydrophobicity and oleophobicity. ISO 23232, water/alcohol resistance test can provide information but is not intended to measure penetration and stain resistance. ISO 6530, test method for resistance of materials to penetration of liquids, can be used to measure penetration, absorption and repellence. ISO 14419 oil repellency can provide a rough index of oil stain resistance but only generally, informing of the penetration levels.
Other standards of relevance are;
The ASTM DM4265 standard for evaluating stain removal in home laundering.
AATCC Test Method 130-2010
Soil Release: Oily Stain Release Method
AATCC Test Method 175-2008 Stain Resistance: Pile Floor Coverings
AATCC Test Method 193-2007Aqueous Liquid Repellency: Water/Alcohol Solution Resistance Test
AATCC Test Method 42-2007
Water Resistance: Impact Penetration Test
When marketing or labelling products in relation to their stain resistance properties it is important to adhere to the consumer claims directive EC 2005/29.
As stain resistant finishes utilise nano scale materials, the health and safety issues surrounding the applications of nanomaterials is of growing importance. There are currently no regulations which stipulate that nano materials must be stated on textile consumer products, however the fibre content of garments and textiles must be stated, and current developments in fibre technology involve the use of nanoparticles. The European commission are currently holding a public consultation towards developing a strategic action plan on nano technology. (Click here to engage)