Plastic Trends 2018

Plastics are undergoing dramatic changes this year.

High Tech gets all the hype, but science and engineering are still driving major trends in the plastic industry—some trends and some fads, some frivolous and others critical to the planet.

We summarize the major trends here.

Plastic is in fashion this spring. Over the years plastic fashion has been introduced in various ways. Naturally many fabrics we take for granted today are resin-based polymers, but we are speaking of materials that are PVC based: “plastic looking” hats, boots, garments, and accessories.

A relatively large trend, that includes major designers, has rolled out designs for Spring. UL (Underwriters Laboratories) Prospector reported that “Designers like Chanel, Jimmy Choo, Phillip Lim, and Calvin Klein are using plastic polymers such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC) in their designs, as reported by Harper’s Bazaar, W Magazine, Allure, Vogue, and Pinterest. Spring/summer 2018 collections include plastic items such as hats, thigh-high boots, jewelry, and handbags.”[1][2][3][4]

Few in the plastic industry will get excited about what is sure to be a fad (again), but it will raise the consumer consciousness of the diversity of the material.


The use of plastic injection molding and extrusion in automobiles continues to serve the performance optimization of fuel and functionality. Innovative design continues to drive plastic use in new areas under the hood, the interior, new smart surfaces, computer parts, and driving sensors.[5]  Unlike fashion, Microdyne Plastics has been involved in the automotive industry for decades.

Medical Plastics

Plastic medical equipmentPlastics are contributing to medical technology advances and will continue to be the medium that brings technology, physical tools, and health products together. From micro injection molded bioabsorbable products like stents, staples, and polymer drug dispensing implants[6], to mesh scaffolds for the regrowth of new tissue, plastics are the foundation material for many completely new technologies.[7] The drive for better health delivery at lower prices will continue as health insurance costs continue to increase much faster than the economy as a whole. This trend will not play out anytime soon. Microdyne is deeply involved in medical injection and blow molding and is proud to continue to participate in this growing segment.


The market and practical understanding of plastics within the environment is driving unprecedented development towards various new non-oil alternatives for raw polymer building chemistry. Many different approaches are well underway this year, from CO2 replacement manufacturing to bio compostable and ultimately degradable polymers.

The plastic sustainability movement will gain speed this year but promises to stay relevant for decades as the industry sorts out the best approaches and materials development. Microdyne Plastic is committed to assist clients as they begin the transition to these new resin materials that will ultimately contribute to sustainability and recycling.


2018 will prove to be an exciting year with increasing business and many, many new innovations in molding, materials, and green initiatives. We will enjoy watching the plastic wearable fads, but it will be a fun distraction to the serious business of providing wonderful products that solve problems, increase our standard of living, and contribute to planet sustainability. Microdyne Plastics has rolled up its sleeves to assist customers in all these areas. . . well except maybe plastic boots and hats!



[1] UL Prospector, Top 5 Plastics Materials Trends for 2018,

[2] The Guardian: From pastels to plastic: 18 trends for 2018

[3] Harper’s Bazaar: Chanel has designed next season’s It-boots, but would you wear them?

[4] WWD: Spring 2018 Accessories Trend: Fantastic Plastic

[5] UL Prospector, Top 5 Plastics Materials Trends for 2018,

[6] These are called drug-eluting implants. They have a poymer coating over the mesh that emits a drug over time to help prevent a blockage again. Mayo Clinic,

[7] MTD Micro Molding


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