Hydro-Dipping: What Is It?

Hydro dipping may be a unique process that permits you to use patterns to almost any 3D object. This process is in use for years in many fields. Hydro dipping gained its popularity through the auto industry. It all started from dipping alloy wheels, interior accessories, etc., and imprinting the desired design on them. A few years later, hydro dipping moved into various fields. This included shoes, clothes, hardcovers on electronics(after disassembling). Hydro dipping is a really satisfying process to look at. Many individuals nowadays are also doing full-time hydro dipping. There are numerous hydro dipping channels on Youtube that show us all-satisfying kinds of hydro dipping.

How is Hydro Dipping done?

Also, hydro dipping is widely known as water transfer printing. It is a simple-looking yet complex process. People try the process since it looks easy. Instead, they end up ruining the product as well as their expectations at the end. So in this particular article, we are going to talk about the process of hydro dipping for you all.

1. Prep Work

After you select the item to dip and the design you will likely use, it’s time to prep it for dipping. Really, the prep process is not different than just getting the item painted. You continue to sand/scuff up the project item, prime it, apply a base coat and a transparent coat to guard it.

2. Base Coat

The bottom coat is the layer of paint that provides the film something to stick to and provides the backing color or secondary color to the hydro film design. Most films are designed to match with a white or light tan base coat.

3. Film

Designs are printed with a special quiet ink on a PVA (Polyvinyl Alcohol) film, usually with a rotary printer and a few small batches on wide format printers using special inks. This film is water-soluble and soaks up moisture, allowing the film and ink to melt and become more pliable.

4. Activator

The activator might be a chemical utilized in the dipping process that creates it altogether possible. The chemical is then applied to the film after it is done hydrating. When the activator starts working, the film dissolves and liquefies the ink.

5. Dipping

After the film is done hydrating and the activator is applied, the item with the graphics used is slowly dipped into the film water. The physical phenomenon of the water presses the design to all or any angles and surfaces of the item being dipped.

6. Rinsing and Clear Coat

After rinsing, you will see a slimy subdue on the product. Just gently rinse it with water and dry it. The final step includes applying a clear coat to the product to give the finished look.

Where Can You Find Films?

There are various hydro dipping patterns available on the Internet. You can choose the desired one and place the order along with the entire kit required. The ordering is not difficult, but the process is. So make sure you do a few test runs before doing it on the final product.


Indeed, the hydro dipping process is complex and a little expensive as well. But the durability and the finish make it worth it. You can find hydro-dipping films on the Internet. But Alibaba has the widest variety of designs.

Talking about Alibaba, the company has its own Alibaba Blog. It has a wide variety of interesting and insightful articles. Make sure you check that page out as well.

Amit Kumar

Amit Kumar is a Digital Marketing Strategist in a leading organisation. A creative marketing strategist with over 8 years of experience developing digital marketing strategies and guiding business development