Transforming the quality of life for babies with nonwovens

Babies use disposable diapers that in turn use nonwovens. But what exactly are nonwovens?

Nonwovens are fine synthetic fibers that have been intertwined to form a fabric. The main synthetic fibers used in disposable diapers come from polypropylene. When you take a closer look, the fabrics used in nonwovens perform in unique ways that differentiate them from regular fabrics, paper, or films.

Nonwovens are used in disposable diapers because the nonwoven material is good at absorbing water, and because they are soft against the skin. When the baby urinates, the urine passes through the nonwoven and is absorbed by the absorbent material within. Urine passes through the nonwoven quickly, ensuring that the surfaces touching the baby’s skin always remain dry. This reduces stress for the baby and makes the material feel comfortable. The methods used to manufacture nonwovens also make it possible to create a smoother feel. Babies’ skin is roughly half as thick as an adult’s skin. It only takes the slightest disturbance to cause irritation. Nonwovens feel soft against the skin and help to reduce friction, making them the perfect fit for babies’ bottoms.

The development of stretchable nonwovens

The best diapers are those that enable babies to move around easily when they become more active. Ideally, diapers should be stretchable, easy to put on and take off, and allow babies to move around unhindered. In the past, diapers used materials such as elastic string or stretchable film. Some were too tight thus making diapers too difficult to put on. Some were too loose, causing them to slip or leak. Others weren’t breathable enough, leaving babies susceptible to rashes. With so many problems, they were all far from ideal.

The solution to these problems came in the form of stretchable nonwovens, successfully developed by Mitsui Chemicals ahead of any other company in the world.


Developing nonwovens with built-in elasticity enabled us to create stretchable diapers.. Disposable diapers made from Mitsui Chemicals stretchable nonwovens are easy to put on, wear, move around in, and take off. They wrap snugly around the baby’s bottom for a gentle yet perfect fit.

Thanks to our unique fiber technology, we have successfully incorporated elasticity into the nonwoven materials themselves. This is all down to Mitsui Chemicals’ long history of research into plastics, our in-depth knowledge, and our outstanding development capabilities.

Mitsui Chemicals stretchable nonwovens are used by renowned disposable diaper manufacturers all over the world, and are widely available in Japan and overseas. Here at Mitsui Chemicals, we are committed to taking good care of babies as they grow, now and in the future.

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