All You Need to Know About Neoprene

All You Need to Know About Neoprene

Neoprene is a synthetic rubber, which is used to create a wide range of commercial products that we often see every single day. It was first manufactured in 1930, and its original intent was to be used as a substitute to natural rubber because of its oil-resistant characteristics. Nowadays, neoprene is utilized for all kinds of items including car tires, furniture, and shoe soles. 

The main reason that neoprene is so popular is because of its ability to create strong, long-lasting products. When it comes to the world of sports, neoprene is a very popular material that can be used in wet suits, gloves, swimwear, and sports braces.

If you’re considering purchasing or creating a product that is made of neoprene, it is important to consider a number of factors before you do so. The following information includes all you need to know about neoprene.

Can Tolerate High Temperatures

The chemicals that make up neoprene allow it to be exceptionally tolerant to extreme temperatures, especially when exposed to high heat. Neoprene can tolerate up to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and even then, it will remain durable and strong.  

This trait makes neoprene ideal for product that is exposed to high temperatures, or that are often used outdoors during the warmer seasons. Car tires are often made of neoprene because of its ability to maintain its shape and performance even on hot pavement and speeding down highways.

Strong Adhesive

Neoprene is one of the world’s most sought-after materials when it comes to the adhesives market. Neoprene has extremely strong adhesive components, and it is resistant to solvents which make it the ideal synthetic for all kinds of products.

Some of the most popular items made with neoprene-based adhesives include automotive trims, laminates, cabinets, and furniture. One of the most popular products made with neoprene adhesive are shoe soles, and the United States currently stands as the largest consumer of neoprene adhesives.

Ideal for Padding and Protection

Leg brace

Although neoprene is extremely durable, it is also a fairly soft rubber that makes it ideal for padding. This quality makes the material an exceptional option when it comes to items that need to protect and support, such as casts and neoprene sports braces.

The soft, cushion-like traits of neoprene are also part of the reason why this synthetic is so popular as a shoe sole and as an orthotic. Neoprene allows the foot to remain flexible and to have full motion, while also offering comfortable padding and compression that aids the specific needs of each wearer. 

Weather-Resistant

If you’re looking for a material that will maintain its shape and performance outdoors, then you might also consider neoprene as an option. As mentioned, the material can perform in high temperatures, but it is also capable of maintaining its elasticity and durability in colder temperatures as well.

For those who are considering sports braces made from neoprene, it can be very helpful to have a brace made with this material if you do a lot of your training or practices outdoors. Keep in mind however, that neoprene does not breathe very well, so a lot of the heat and perspiration that your body creates will not be able to escape until the brace is removed.

Allergies  

According to the American Latex Allergy Association, there are approximately 3 million people in the United States who are allergic to latex. Luckily neoprene is synthetic in nature, which means it does not include any traces of latex. Because it is latex-free, neoprene can be used in products such as gloves, casts, braces, and bandages.

There are however, some people who are allergic to neoprene and who experience discomfort when they come into contact with it. For those who have allergies to neoprene, there are other alternatives to consider, including neoprene-free sports braces.

Non-Renewable

Carbon footprint eco message cut out of green leaf

It is important to note that while there are so many great qualities about neoprene when it comes to long-lasting durability, this rubber is a non-renewable resource. To manufacture neoprene takes a very aggressive system, and it has been the topic of conversation to find ways to replace neoprene with more environmentally-friendly materials.

For businesses and individuals who want to create products that are less harmful for the environment, it is a good idea to consider materials other than neoprene to reduce the carbon footprint of your business.

Conclusion

There are pros and cons to everything, and neoprene is no different. If you’re considering incorporating neoprene into your business or you’re thinking about making a purchase that is made from neoprene, be sure to consider the information provided to make a more educated decision.