Safety, efficacy and confidence are crucial to consumers in the disposable hygiene sector. Quality assurance and performance testing ensures that products in everyday use are strong, flexible and reliable.


From facial tissues and napkins, to nappies and sanitary products, disposable hygiene products are ubiquitous. These everyday items rely on their quality, safety and reputation to win and perhaps most importantly, to retain consumer loyalty. Disposable hygiene products impact everyday life, some are more intimate than others and a bad experience with a product will lose you a customer.

Most tissue and hygiene products are single use and/or disposable, but this does not mean they should be any less reliable, functional, safe or environmentally sensitive than any other consumer product.

Consumer expectations are high. Shoppers are looking for special properties, such as strength, effectiveness, reliability and absorbency, amongst many others. In everyday use they expect:

  • Children’s nappies to keep them dry (their skin and their clothes) through the night
  • Incontinence and feminine hygiene products to be absorbent, comfortable and not ruin clothing
  • Bandages and plasters to stick to skin effectively
  • Makeup removal pads to not lose fibres or fall apart during use
  • Kitchen roll to be absorbent and strong

With a wide variety of products and applications in the tissue and hygiene sector, the industry is heavily reliant on self-regulation to ensure that products meet all relevant safety and quality regulations. Directly or indirectly, all tissue and hygiene products are subject to national and international standards, institutional guidelines and/or industry standards.


In a crowded and competitive sector, raw materials suppliers and product manufacturers of disposable hygiene products, as well as retailers, have to constantly innovate.

Partnering and working with an independent laboratory that has expertise and services to confirm the testing and validate marketing/advertising claims (e.g. absorbency, comfort, security), ensures your products meet the guidelines for your chosen destination market(s) and enhances your customers’ satisfaction.


Building on our existing tissue and hygiene business, in July 2014 SGS acquired Courtray Consulting SARL, a leading provider of performance testing, validation and consultancy services in the global disposable personal hygiene market. Founded in 1988, and privately owned, Courtray Consulting is based in Douai (North of France) and employs 10 people.

This acquisition brings with it an ISO 17025 (Cofrac*) approved laboratory and the capabilities to conduct up to date performance tests on several product categories including baby care, adult incontinence, feminine hygiene, paper hygiene and other products such as bandages, plasters.


Tests done at SGS Courtray can show clearly how effectively your products or raw material will perform in use and where improvements can be made.

Performance Testing on Baby Diapers/ Pants or Incontinence Products:

  • ABL (Absorption Before Leakage) - to measure the capacity of products to absorb the requested quantity of fluid before leaking
  • ASH (Skin Hydratation) – to measure the capacity of products to keep moisture away from the skin
  • Breathability - to allow a sufficient air flow between the inside/outside of a product to avoid liquid confinement
  • Pad integrity
  • Etc.

Performance Testing on Feminine Hygiene Products:

  • Multiple Acquisition Time - Leakage – run-off tests on napkins with synthetic menstrual fluid – to measure the capacity of the products to absorb and retain body fluids without any risk of leakage
  • Adhesivity on napkins or panty shields – to assure a product will stay in place without damaging fragile new textiles
  • Absorbency tests/tampons – syngina test
  • Mechanical resistance of materials, adhesive or tampon cord
  • Fibre loss
  • Etc.

Expertise Tests:

Multiple Acquisition Time and Rewet under Controlled pressure and with adjusted Water Column Level (Courtray Patent). These tests allow understanding of the potential deviations in performance of baby diapers/pants or incontinence products.

Substitution Tests:

Analysis of the influence on a new/modified raw material on the final performance of a finish product.


These lab results can help you to place your products in terms of performances level (classes A, B, C...) and/or to confirm your product claims with scientific evidence.

Specifically, highly skilled experts at SGS Courtray can partner with clients to develop test methods and associated testing devices such as static / moving dummies (adult, baby, feminine) with fluid diffusion monitored with a computer, defibration efficiency tester, etc.


In addition to performance testing, we can perform physical, chemical (heavy metals, formaldehyde, allergens, preservatives, etc), microbiological and ecotoxicological/biodegradability testing to ensure the delivery of safe products.

Depending on the product categories (baby/incontinence/feminine/paper hygiene/others), we can also offer mini panels, consumer panels or expert panels. This service offers you insight into consumer opinion, product positioning against and comparison with competitors, as well as consumer reaction to a product’s organoleptic claims (touch, smell, visual, etc.).

For further details contact your local sales representative or the global team:

Vincent Bernus
CPCH Business Manager
SGS CTS France
t: +33 4 42 97 72 26

* (scope available at www.cofrac.fr)