Open or Closed Cell Foams?

Whether you choose open cell or closed cell foam depends on the product as different foam types provide different characteristics and performance.

Open cell foam is a foam whereby all the air pockets are not wholly enclosed and have a cobweb structure-like appearance. This makes the foam a softer, more flexible material and used in bed mattresses, seat cushions and certain parts of shoes and medical bandages (wound care). Open cell foams are not water resistant and water flows through and between the air-pockets (e.g. kitchen sponge).

Closed cell foam is foam whereby the air pockets are wholly encapsulated like a bunch of grapes where each cell is a sealed sphere. Closed cell foams are very buoyant and are water resistant used in wetsuits, jet-ski vests, and certain action sport footwear products.

While there is no one right foam for every application it becomes a series of tradeoffs based on the product’s design intent and performance characteristics. Open cell foams are generally softer and more flexible than their closed cell counterparts and allow water much easier than closed.

Open Cell FoamOpen Cell Foam
Open Cell Foam (YULEX® OC) Closed Cell Foam (YULEX® CC)
Cell Structure Open, similar to a cobweb where each cell is connected to each other with varying sized cells Closed, similar to a bunch of grapes, where each cell is closed-off to the other. Cell size is similar.
Raw Ingredient Material Yulex natural rubber emulsion Yulex natural rubber solid
Cell Structure Formed By Entrained air bubbles Heat sensitive chemical blowing agent
Typical Applications Mattresses, pillows, mattress toppers, furniture and seating, carpet backing, footwear, medical bandages and woundcare Wetsuits, footwear, medical and sport braces, fashion and accessories, and technical products and accessories
Typical Produced Color Bright white to off-white Dark charcoal to deep black (due to the use of carbon black additives)
Yulex Branded Products YULEX® OC open cell foams YULEX® CC closed cell foams

Let’s discuss your product applications for Lexcell plant-based foam rubber

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