Slips: Sliding through your friction problems

We have all seen the cartoons where an oblivious character steps on a banana peel, and he/she slides across the floor before crashing into something. Banana peels are a great metaphor to keep in mind as slip additives make a surface feel and act more “slip”-pery! Putting aside the pain and embarrassment a cartoon character would feel, sometimes in the plastics world, slippery (low coefficient of friction or COF) surfaces are very useful and often preferred! Many Polyolefins are naturally quite sticky and tacky. This can lead to numerous friction problems in all stages of a product’s lifetime. The two primary focuses for using slip additives would be:

• Processing and conversion: plastics without slip may adhere to metal surfaces such as nip rollers. This leads to slower processing speeds and difficulty during conversion to a finished good.

• Performance of the finished article: slippery surfaces are often desired for the consumer. The primary solution to these friction problems is slip additives. A good example is injection-molded screw on caps. Without a slip, they are much more difficult to open to access the contents of a bottle or jar.

How slips work:

Colortech offers various types of slip additives. These additives will migrate to the surface of the final part in most applications and decrease the coefficient of friction (COF) of the surface.


• Slip additives can quickly relieve your COF-related headaches after extrusion, ensuring the easiest conversion possible, regardless of when a conversion occurs after your processing.

• As modeled by the slippery playground slide, the exterior layer allows for easy motion across the surface which is needed for various final articles. A good example would be in heavy and stacked film bags (such as mulch), where the bags need to slide over each other for ease of handling.

Different types of slips:

Colortech utilizes various types of slips to fit your needs! We can offer different additives with faster migration speeds, slower migration speeds, and controlled COF. The right slip additive depends on numerous things, such as a conversion timeline after processing, desired COF on consumer plastic articles, as well as printing and labeling specifications.

Contact a Colortech Sales Representative to get a quote for a slip additive that can help you. We are also proud to offer slip/antiblock (SLAB) combo products. Our technical services team would love to help pair you with the most suitable product for your needs!


Joseph Swann

Technical Services Representative