Polymer gel also referred as hydrogel, features three-dimensional cross-linked polymer networks with interstitial spaces, which can encounter extreme deformation. This is made possible as these gels are soft and are filled with a solvent into their inner gaps such as water or some other liquid solvents that possess impairment characteristics. These polymer gels are micro-sized gel fibers and can expand and shrink up to 1000 times in volume depending upon the thick layer of the polymer. To alter the property of the material and optimize it for various applications, the degree of cross-linking must be regulated. Applying this criterion, a wide range of application scope can be chased with the same polymer gel.
Several end-use sectors such as pharmaceutical & biotechnology, healthcare, paints, coatings & adhesives, robotics, food industry and personal care etc. are exploiting the beneficial characteristics of the polymer gel in relative purpose. Some of the best examples of polymer gels include polyacrylonitrile, polyvinyl alcohol, polyacrylates, polyacrylamide, polyacrylic acid, and silicone.
Factors affecting market growth
Extensive applications of polymer gels in biotechnology for performing various experiments and in pharmaceutical for drug formulations serve the major part of the work driving the growth of the market. In coming years, the demand for polymer gels is expected to record promising growth in light of swiftly growing personal care industry, especially into sanitary and diaper products. Amendment in customer inclinations and rising awareness regarding personal hygiene has added to the demand for such products.
Furthermore, recent usage of polymer gel in drug delivery system, growing trend of colored contact lens and silicon-based routine wear disposable contact lens has resulted into the significant inclination of the product in the healthcare sector. Other emerging applications of the product into paints & coatings and food materials are predicted to account for a moderate share of the market.
However, unstable properties, side effects upon administration using polymer gel and slow drug release rate of these formulations are some of the factors that might constrain their growth in the market. As the polymer gel absorbs water, it can be applied to the fields where it will bind to fertilizer to the root and hence, lowers the leaching of fertilizers. It is highly advantageous in water-scarce regions as it supports crop to retain water for a sustainable period of time. This provides lucrative opportunities across the regions that encounter unpredictable rains or draughts.
Considering the global scenario of the polymer gel market, regionally the market is segmented into Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America and Latin America, the Middle East & Africa (LAMEA). Supporting factors in the region of North America include high penetration; advertisement of personal care products using various digital mediums leverages the living standards of consumers. Besides, easy accessibility of personal care items to thousands of ordinary customers, altered priorities, and improved lifestyles are the other aspects anticipated to propel the polymer gel market in North America.
Rapidly advancing healthcare and medical industry in the European countries boost the market growth. Factors contributing to the expansion of the market in Asia-Pacific are increased disposable income, rising awareness & consciousness pertaining to skin care and aging population. In addition, growing trend of anti-pollution, halal cosmetics, carbonated skin care and TMC-based products is expected to fuel the personal care industry.
Polymer gel market is largely fragmented in nature owing to the presence of large number companies and local player and still has huge scope to flourish in the future. In order to sustain their position in the market, several companies are blending their knowledge of polymer gel properties to widen the scope of applications.
Global Polymer Gel Market Segmentation
• By Application
o Personal Care Products
o Waste Treatment
• By Geography
o North America
- Rest of Europe
- South Korea
- Rest of Asia-Pacific
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- Rest of LAMEA
Market Key Players
o Saudi Arabian Amiantit Company
o Polygel Industries Pvt. Ltd
o SILIPOS HOLDING LLC
o Sumitomo Seika Chemicals Co., Ltd
o Dow Chemicals and Chemxtex Speciality Limited
o Enduro Composites, Inc.
o BASF Corporation
o Ma’s Group Inc.