Detection of Formaldehyde in Bedding Products

Formaldehyde is a widely used chemical in many industries and household products. It is a known carcinogen, and exposure to formaldehyde can produce a variety of short-term symptoms such as headaches, itchy, burning eyes and nose, asthma, respiratory difficulties, nausea and vomiting, etc., which may also cause leukemia and cancers of the nose, throat, and sinuses in serious situations.

Bedding articles are the products that we have direct skin contact every day, which is directly related to our sleep quality and health. Therefore, it is important to choose safe bedding products without formaldehyde or with restricted value of formaldehyde as specified in relevant regulations.

As textile dyeing and finishing auxiliaries are used during the processing of bedding products, free formaldehyde would be released after pyrolysis reaction, such as glue used for coating finishing, and urea resin used for stiffening. Formaldehyde can be used as a reactant to improve the durability of auxiliaries in textiles with low cost. Some manufacturers may use cheep auxiliaries with high formaldehyde content to reduce the cost. Resin processing agents can be used to enhance the wrinkle resistance, shrinkage resistance and color fastness, which are commonly used in cotton products. However, free formaldehyde would be released to harm the health of human body by using resin processing agents.


Relevant regulation on formaldehyde in textile products:

“GB 18401-2010 National General Safety Technical Code for Textile Products” is the most influential mandatory standard regarding textile products in China. Formaldehyde content is strictly restricted in GB 18401 as below:

GB 18401-2010 National General Safety Technical Code for Textile Products


The definitions of Type A, B and C are standardized as below:

Formaldehyde content is strictly restricted in GB 18401.


Suggestions for consumers:

Consumers are suggested to choose the bedding products without peculiar smell as formaldehyde is pungent when it is released. The printed fabric that is stiff is not suggested to be selected, as adhesives may be used in pigment printing which may contain formaldehyde. As formaldehyde is soluble in water and volatile, it is better to use any textiles after washing and drying.

In addition, it is important to assure adequate ventilation and open windows and doors regularly to bring in outdoor air, and maintain low humidity and temperatures indoor as more formaldehyde is released when it is hot and damp.

HQTS-QAI is capable of testing the formaldehyde content in bedding products according to international and domestic standards, including AATCC112, ISO14184-1/2, GB/T 2912-1/2, etc. to ensure product safety and protect the health of consumers.