Crayon Pigment Dyes
Date: Fall 2009
What are the best pigments to use for making crayons that
are in bright colors, not earth tones? Are organic pigments suitable
or is another kind of pigment or dye? It is very hard to find out
which kind of pigments to use. Can you help?
Though it may not appear so, crayons are a highly formulated product. Just
mixing a pigment and wax does not make a crayon. 1. The pigments are dusty
powder, usually, so you need a air handling system to keep you and the
whole room from being covered with pigment dust. 2. The pigment needs to be
"ground", that is, mixed with the molten wax under a high shear. This
requires specialized equipment -- extruder, two roll mill... 3. The
selection of pigment must be considered. The pigment must have the shade.
This may require several pigments to be "ground" into the crayon to get the
"right" color. The pigment must be non-toxic (no lead, cadmium, or other
"heavy metal" pigments. And these are just the short list of requirements.
Making crayons is not a project to be undertaken by the amateur. As I
said, they are complex formulated products.
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Update: June 2012