Reactive dye printing is a method of printing a dye or wax by using mixes thereof to create colors. With a binder and a heat-activated printing additive, images can be permanently bonded to the substrate (typically textiles, but can include cellulose, fibers, polyester, and even proteins). These reactions are generally heat-activated.


The right combination of fabric and dye is the first step on the road to a beautiful and durable print. We have specialised in printing on polyester and polyester blends, and we always recommend using the transfer technique for these fabrics.

Heat transfer printing is a two-step printing technique, which involves a dye sublimation process. We work with disperse dye inks which are the only colorant with the ability to sublime.


The sublimation process

The ink printed on the transfer paper turns from a solid into a gas without becoming liquid at any time. The process takes place in the calender at high temperatures.

At the carefully set temperature, the molecules of the polyester fibres open. You may say that the fibres will soften and let the ink (turned into gas) come through.

When removing the polyester fibres from heat after the sublimation, the molecules of the polyester fibres will settle again and absorb the ink completely. This fusion between the fabric fibres and ink makes this technique incredibly reliable. The colour is absorbed in the fabric instead of sitting on the surface of the fabric like other textile printing techniques.

The colour fastness is intact and there is no need for further finishing or washing of your fabric subsequent to the sublimation process. Some specially treated textiles, i.e. Trevira CS, however, will become stiff in the calender and do need washing to obtain their original feel.

What are disperse dyes?

  • Disperse dyes are insoluble in water after print or have a very low solubility in water
  • Disperse dyes are used for dyeing of synthetic fibres, especially polyester
  • Disperse dyes have a good light fastness with an assessment of 4-7
  • The washing fastness is good with an assessment of 4/5-5
  • The colours undergo no chemical modification during printing

Ghosting – shades on the fabric after printing

Ghosting is the term used for describing a blurred pattern or unwanted shades on the fabric after printing. The most common cause of ghosting is the transfer paper quality. If the transfer paper is very thin, as the paper used for conventional textile printing, the ink risks penetrating the paper and causing trouble. The transfer paper in our digital printers is thicker and denser, and we do not have any problems of ghosting.

Hasty rolling may also cause ghosting on the fabric. It is also important to leave time for adequately cooling of the fabric before rolling. Our equipment and procedures carefully allow for space and time for cool-down and quality control subsequent to the sublimation process in the calender.

We have not had any incidents of ghosting in our digital print production.

Bleeding – colours “bleeding” on the fabric

Bleeding does not occur when printing on pure polyester.

In principle, bleeding may occur in all types of polyester blends, but we mostly encounter the challenge in some polyester blends with elastane (lycra).

We can easily print on a polyester fabric blended with elastane. We just need to take certain measures to ensure a satisfactory result. Most often, the elastane lies on one side of the fabric and in that case, we will of course make sure to print on the other side.

The elasticity of elastane (lycra) comes from softeners. During the print process, the grease of the softener may cause the colours to “bleed”. Normally, a thin protective polyester thread is spun around the fine lycra thread. However, it may be difficult to wash out the added grease between the threads and therefore, bleeding may occur.

We always test new fabric to learn how the ink reacts to the fabric in question.

These factories include several units of spinning, weaving, Dying, printing and finishing of a variety of cotton fabrics.
Developing the plant in a land of 270 thousand square meters and structure of 112 thousand square meters with a set of facilities, including modern machinery from leading European companies, technical know-how's, experiences as well as the efforts of over 1’000 employees and using the best raw materials now has made Yazdbaf Textile Factories as one of the biggest textile companies in the Middle East which produces variety of fabrics including indigo, denim Jeans, shirting, bed linen, curtain, black chador, scarves, shawls, clothing and blankets combined with cotton up holstery, synthetic fibers and mixed.


Pigments are mainly synthetic organic materials. Pigment printing is done to produce attractive design by applying pigment paste on the fabric surface. Pigments are found in particle state and the particle size range should be in the region of 0.1 – 3 microns.

Pigment printing is done with binder system. We know that pigment has no affinity to cotton fabric for this reason binder is required during printing. The binder is a film forming substance made up of long macromolecules which when applied to the textile materials together with the pigment, produce a 3-dimensional networked. The 3-dimensional links are formed during some suitable fixing process, which usually consist of dry heat and change in pH value (<5), bringing about self-cross linking or reaction with suitable cross-linking agent. This cross-linking improves the elasticity and adhesion of the film to the substrate.

Pigment printing has lots of advantages and disadvantages. Following is the advantages and disadvantages of pigment printing.

Advantages of Pigment Printing

  1. Pigment can be applied for natural as well as synthetic fibers.
  2. Pigment print is an easy task for the printer.
  3. Pigment printing is most economical printing process.
  4. Pigment printing allows maximum output of goods.
  5. Fastness properties are good to average.
  6. Well defined design can be produced by pigment printing.

Disadvantages of Pigment Printing

  1. Pigment printed textile wears are not comfortable to wear.
  2. Pigments are sensitible to crushing during roller printing.
  3. Rubbing fastness is medium.
  4. Pigments are completely fast to dry cleaning.

So, print your T-Shirt, Polo-shirt or other textile materials with pigment and get various attractive designs.