Texture Analysis Professionals Blog

How to measure and analyse the texture of food, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and adhesives.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Texture Analysis in the Nailcare Industry: 3: Mechanical properties of dry polish

A manicure is subject to a lot of abuse as the wearer goes about their daily life (opening jars, cooking, typing on a keyboard). 

For repeat purchase of a nail polish, it must be able to stand up to this type of use. As well as the adhesion properties mentioned above, the stiffness and toughness of a polish are all extremely important. 

An overly stiff, brittle polish would be undesirable as it would break when a nail is bent when opening a soda can, for example. The low stiffness is important for the polish to follow the nail as it bends. A high strain to failure is also crucial, or the polish film would break under the slightest deformation.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Texture Analysis in the Nailcare Industry: 
2: Nail polish drying time

Nail polish has been developed to have a faster drying time with brands claiming “dry in 60 seconds” or “quickdry”. 

However, smudging a manicure is still a common complaint. There are also difficulties accelerating the drying time of more natural polishes containing fewer volatile solvents. New products must be tested for this in a consistent way.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Texture Analysis in the Nailcare Industry: 1: 


The way we look and feel is more important than ever in the age of constant selfie-taking and the abundance of cameras at every social gathering.

This is not to mention the impossible beauty standards set by photoshopped billboards and magazine shoots that ordinary people feel they have to live up to. 

It is no surprise that cosmetics are more popular than ever, with the global cosmetic market estimated to reach US$675 billion by 2020. 

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Application advice - comparing cutting/shearing accessories

We are often asked why there are so many different blade fixture options available from Stable Micro Systems.  

Our range of blades vary considerably in size, material, thickness and sharpness. In general they are used to measure the Bite/Cutting Force of products which in some instances can relate to their ‘Toughness’. The following guidelines may help in clarifying the potential use of each.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Substituting your Meat at mealtimes: Part 8: Sliced meat and Quorn – texture comparison

Film Support Rig - sliced meat
Sliced meat: how does it hold together?
How a sliced meat or meat substitute holds together is an important textural expectation of the consumer. The binding characteristics of the sliced product can be greatly affected by its formulation and processing thus affecting its tensile strength.

Whilst tensile grips or pneumatic grips are the traditional choice for tensile testing there are alternatives for a soft and thin product such as sliced meat. A Film Support Rig (shown in Figure 16) is designed to hold small amounts of thin or film-like material in a drum configuration in order to measure the biextensional properties of the films using a puncture test. 

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Substituting your Meat at mealtimes: Part 7: Meatballs and nuggets – texture comparison

Multiple puncture probe - meatball testDespite the simplicity of penetration tests when faced with a non-homogeneous product, penetration is highly compromised as a smaller surface area for measurement is also more sensitive to variations in sample structure and low reproducibility and misleading data is obtained. 

Results may show a wide variance between maximum and minimum forces depending on whether the probe meets with, for example, internal structure variation such as is usually present in meat products.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Substituting your Meat at mealtimes: Part 6: Paté and pastes – texture comparison

Cylinder probe - pate testPaté & Pastes: Measuring Paté Firmness
More and more often paté is being eaten as a snack spread onto toast, bread or crackers. It is usually made by pre-cooking liver and other meats, mixing them with other ingredients, seasoning and then filling into moulds or casings. 

There are many variations as a result of using different ingredients and nowadays low fat paté is also an option. There are of course vegetarian alternatives which, more often than not, contain vegetables rather than a meat substitute.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Substituting your Meat at mealtimes: Part 5: Chicken tenderness – texture comparison

Kramer Shear Cell test - chicken piecesChicken Tenderness: Multiple Shearing

Empirical methods of assessing texture are often challenged by lack of homogeneity or uniformity in samples. 

Heterogeneous systems, such as unprocessed meat products can have structural elements that can vary considerably for the same overall chemical composition. Sometimes the sample to be analysed may be of variable configuration or structure from piece to piece such as for chicken strips.