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The term Color fastness refers to

Clothing is colourfast if its colours and dyes do not bleed or run from the clothing. Clothing
should be tested for colourfastness before using any type of bleach or bleaching solution, or
strong cleaning product. Colourfastness is very important factor for buyer. Colourfastness
properties of textiles are an important measure of quality of a product.

To test for colourfastness, find a hidden seam of the garment or a hidden spot. Apply the
cleaner to the garment and then dab the area with a clean cotton cloth.

If the colour removes itself from the garment onto the cloth, you should not use the cleaning
product on the clothing.
Importance of colour fastness:
Textile fabric has many properties. Colourfastness property is one of the most important
properties of them. It is a property of a colorant which allows it to retain its different
characteristics despite degradation conditions such as exposure to light and dry cleaning.
Product performance and evaluation to determine if the fabric is suitable for the intended end
use. It is an identity for fabric. If colourfastness is good, then fabric quality high and if poor
fastness property then fabric quality is bad. So, colourfastness is the important factor for the
buyer to justify which fabric is bad and which is better.

Colour fastness is usually assessed separately with respect to:

1 changes in the colour of the specimen being tested, that is colour fading;
2 staining of undyed material which is in contact with the specimen during the test, that is
bleeding of colour.

In order to give a more objective result a numerical assessment of each of these effects is
made by comparing the changes with two sets of standard grey scales, one for colour
change and the other for staining.

1. Colour Change Grey Scales

These scales consist of five pairs of grey coloured material numbered from 1 to 5.
Number 5 has two identical greys, number 1 grey scale shows the greatest contrast,
and numbers 2, 3 and 4 have intermediate contrasts. After appropriate treatment the
specimen is compared with the original untreated material and any loss in colour is
graded with reference to the grey scale. When there is no change in the colour of a
test specimen it would be classified as '5'; if there is a change it is then classified with
the number of the scale that shows the same contrast as that between the treated and
untreated specimens.
Fig: Grey Scale
Different Types of Colour Fastness
There are various types of colour fastness test for fabric. Important colour fastness
tests are given below:
1. Colour Fastness to Washing
2. Colour Fastness to light
3. Colour Fastness to perspiration
4. Colour Fastness to Water
5. Colour Fastness to Rubbing
6. Crocking
7. Frosting
8. Pressing
9. Gases in the atmosphere
10. Colour fastness to water
11. Colour fastness to chlorinated water
Types of Colour Fastness
Colour Fastness to Washing
The resistance of a material to change in any of its color characteristics, when subjected to
washing is called color fasntess to washing.
Color Fastness to light
The purpose of Color fastness to light test is to determine how much the color will fade
when exposed to a known light source. It is an off line quality assurance system. Generally
man wears the fabric and goes outside of the home for doing their job. In day; sun light fall
on the fabric surface. So it needs to know how much protection ability have a fabric to sun
light. It is determined by an experiment called color fastness to light. To measure the color
fastness a blue scale is used. After completing the test, sample is compared with the blue
Color Fastness to Perspiration
The garments a\which come into contact with the body where perspiration is heavy may
suffer serious local discoloration. This test is intended to determine the resistance of color of
dyed textile to the action of acidic and alkaline perspiration.
This kind of test is specially applied for the sports wear and heavy dresses which is used
specially. Normal cloths is also tested by perspiration test.

Color Fastness to Rubbing

This test is designed to determine the degree of color which may be transferred
from the surface of a colored fabric to a specify test cloth for rubbing (which
could be dry and Wet). In wet rubbing we wet the rubbing cloth according to
test method and give rating by comparing the Staining with the gray scale.
Similarly for dry rubbing we check the rubbing with dry rubbing cloth and
compare the staining With gray scale for ratings.Color Fastness to rubbing is a
main test which is always required for every colored fabric either it is Printed or

Color Fastness to Pressing:

Pressing fastness test of dyed and printed textile products is performed to determine of
resistance of textiles to ironing and to processing on cylinders. This method is used for
determining the resistance of the colour of textile of all kinds and in all forms to ironing and
processing on hot cylinders. Tests are given for hot pressing when the textiles are wet, when
it is damp, and when it is dry.
Color Fastness to Water
Color fastness to water is designed to measure the resistance to water of dyed, printed, or
otherwise colored textile yarns and fabrics.The test method by which this test is carried out is
AATCC 107-1991 or ISO 105 E01. This method is to assess the degree of cross staining
which may occur when garments are left in contact when damp. The test measures the
resistance to water of any colored textiles.
Color fastness to chlorinated water
The test method by which this test is carried out is ISO 105 E03. Chlorinated Pool water
fastness is getting more importance in Terry Towel industry for swimwear and also for yarn
dyeing. This method is designed to evaluate the resistance to Chlorinated Pool Water of any
colored textile substrate. Here, the test specimen is treated in diluted Chlorine solution under
specified conditions of available chlorine content, time and pH condition.