News A complete rundown about Silicone & Tyvek Wristbands

August 26th, 2021

What Is The History Of Silicone Wristbands?

The history of silicone wristbands is long and varied, with some interesting facts that might surprise you. Perhaps the most famous use of silicone wristbands was in 2004 with the rice of the iconic LiveStrong campaign. From there, they’ve spread like wildfire as an accessory to promote everything, including fundraisers, clubs, companies, schools and more!

Silicone wristbands have long been used as a fashion accessory, but they are also commonly adopted to make a political or social statement. We hope this article has been helpful for history buffs or anyone looking to learn more about the history of these simple silicone loops.


Silicone wristbands were first popularised in the 80s and 90s by pop stars like Madonna. These were often made of plain black or bright coloured silicone rubber, and wearers would typically fill their forearms with these small plastic bracelets. They could also be twisted around each other to create a different style.

This trend died down throughout the 90s and resurfaced in the 00s, with a new generation of pop stars taking the lead. However, it wasn’t until the 2000s that wristbands became a useful tool for promotion.

Branded silicone wristbands were made popular by public figures and celebrities such as Lance Armstrong, who used them to raise money for his cancer charity. Since then, these types of bands have been adopted by several other causes and companies.

When was silicone invented?

Silicone rubber is a type of elastomer, and it was invented in 1930 by a chemist called J.F. Hyde. This was the beginning of commercial silicone, and it can now be found everywhere, from baby’s bottles to plane window seals. It is a very versatile and durable material that can be made sticky or smooth. It’s also resistant to bacteria, which makes it suitable for medical settings.

When was silicone invented?

Silicone is perfect for wristbands as it can be stretched over the wrist and does not pose a hazard to the wearer. While they can snap off under extreme force, they are strong enough to withstand everyday use.

How did silicone wristbands start?

Lance Armstrong created the first silicone wristband campaign that gained widespread popularity. The Livestrong Foundation sold over 80 million wristbands and raised over $500 million. These bright yellow wristbands debossed with the Livestrong logo were seen everywhere throughout 2004.

How did silicone wristbands start?

While the Livestrong brand would eventually distance itself from Lance Armstrong, the popularity of the little yellow bands did not go unnoticed. As a result, many non-profits were quick to start creating silicone wristbands to raise awareness and money.

Wristbands and charities

Wristbands are popular fundraising items as they are cheap to produce in huge quantities, but they also look high quality. This means they can command healthy donations, which means more money for charity.

In 2004, blue wristbands became synonymous with the Beat Bullying campaign. Unfortunately, this campaign backfired and led to those wearing the band becoming targets for bullies. This led many schools to ban all awareness silicone wristbands.

Wristbands and charities

In 2005, Nike headed the Stand Up Speak Up anti-racism campaign to tackle racism in football. The campaign featured a black and white wristband which sold around 5 million throughout Europe.

Later in 2005, the Make Poverty History campaign gathered momentum with its wristband. Over 8 million people wore this white band with black text print.

Wristbands and music

Wristbands are not only popular with non-profits; they are also a firm favourite in the music industry. In 2015, Taylor Swift’s sold out 1989 tour offered fans a special surprise. Every fan received a silicone LED wristband as they entered the show. 

Wristbands and music

These wristbands were fitted with Radio-Frequency Identification chips that could pick up a signal from nearby transmitters. This allowed the flashing lights to sync to the music in the show, creating an incredible live experience.

Wristbands are also commonly sold at the band merchandise stand at the end of concerts. They are incredibly popular thanks to their low cost and fashionable appeal. 

A quick search online reveals that most popular groups have their own branded wristband available. Wristbands also make a very popular free giveaway at festivals. In addition, they are commonly given away at events such as Pride.

Wristbands and companies

These low-cost accessories are the perfect addition to any marketing campaign, and big companies know this. Companies such as Nike and Under Armour have silicone wristbands available at events and in stores.

Silicone wristbands are also a popular item to giveaway at events such as conferences. When security isn’t a problem, a silicone wristband makes an excellent alternative to a fixed festival wristband. They can be easily put on and removed without breaking the wristband.

What does the future hold for silicone wristbands?

We expect the demand for these stylish and practical branding tools to continue growing. As a result, we could see more popular campaigns using wristbands. We could also see the use of smart technology to make silicone wristbands intelligent. This would have applications in schools, companies and at events such as concerts.

What Is The History Of Tyvek Wristbands?

In 1955, Jim White was a researcher at a DuPont experimental lab. One day, he noticed fine fibres emerging from a pipe. He instantly recognised the significance of this discovery and set about creating the first batches of Tyvek, which would soon be available for commercial purposes. The original Tyvek material was developed as a packaging material for the constriction sector, but other industries soon recognised its potential.

This densely woven fabric might have many of the properties of paper, but it’s a high-performance thermoplastic. It is made from spun bound olefin fibres that are around ten times smaller than the width of a human hair. They are spun together and bound using heat and pressure. This results in a material that looks like paper but is as strong as plastic.

The result is a waterproof, breathable fabric that allows vapours to pass through but not liquids. This makes it suitable for use in clothing. However, while some HAZMAT suits are made using Tyvek, it is not ideal for all types of protective clothing as it is still vapour-permeable.

What Is The History Of Tyvek Wristbands?

Tyvek is also perfect for medical settings such as hospitals, operating rooms and emergency care centres. But perhaps the most common use we see today is in event management. Companies looking for something lightweight yet durable enough to use for their outdoor events like concerts or sporting events often turn to Tyvek wristbands as a low-cost and highly functional solution.

How is Tyvek made?

The polymer product is created using a process called ‘spinning’ where fine fibres are forced through a small hole and then allowed to exit onto rolls of material. These materials are solid in nature but spinnable.

Layers of this heat and pressure treated fabric can be pressed together with a layer of adhesives to make thicker and more robust materials. While Tyvek is very strong and resists tearing, it can be cut and folded. Tyvek is also suitable for printing and can also be written on using a pen.

How is Tyvek used?

Tyvek was initially intended to be used as a coating for new houses. Tyvek Housewrap is applied to new homes before they are fully watertight. This protects the home from dampness and water while still allowing the materials to breathe.

Tyvek is used in many industries, including clothing and fabric. For example, it is used in the manufacture of overalls, lab coats and other workwear. In 1976, fashion brand Fiorucci made an entire line of clothing with Tyvek.

How is Tyvek used?

Since it is breathable and waterproof, it is also perfect for use in hospitals as its properties make it ideal for packaging medical devices. In addition, the material can keep the contents sterile for many years and does not break down if it gets wet. Some countries use Tyvek for their currency, including Costa Rica, the Isle of Man and Haiti.

When were Tyvek wristbands first used?

The public first saw Tyvek wristbands in the early 1980s when they were used as event markers for special events. Major events like music festivals or concerts use Tyvek wristbands to designate different areas and for attendees to understand which areas they are allowed to access.

A security strip ensures that the wristband cannot be easily taken off and given to someone else. This ensures that only ticket holders can access events. Tyek is also tear-resistant and water-resistant, so wearers are unlikely to damage their wristband, even during a week-long event.

Even sporting events such as marathons or swimming events can rely on this unique fabric. Since it is vapour-permeable, it won’t make the wearer sweat like many alternatives. This means it can be worn very tight without restricting movement. In addition, it won’t break down if it gets wet from rain or sweat, so there’s no risk of participants losing their wristbands.

Tyvek is also ideal for printing, so it’s easy for organisations to order branded wristbands to help with event organisation. For agile event planning, plain wristbands can easily be written on using a marker pen or similar. This allows event organisers to mark attendees as they arrive and avoid printing wristbands in advance.

The future of Tyvek wristbands

Tyvek wristbands remain a favourite with event organisers and attendees. They are ideal for concerts, festivals or sporting events where a quick and easy way of guaranteeing entry is required.

Tyvek wristbands are both waterproof and tear-resistant, so they offer the perfect solution to ensure ticket holders get into an event at all times. In addition, they are cheaper than fabric wristbands and can be ordered in bulk with ease.

We don’t expect another type of wristband to unseat Tyvek as the material of choice any time soon. So the next time you’re at an event and are handed a little strip of papery material to wear around your wrist, now you know the rich history of this unique product and how it came to be an industry staple.

What’s the Difference? Rubber Vs Silicone Vs Tyvek Vs Environmentally-Friendly Wristbands

In the world of wristbands, there are many different materials to choose from.  Nevertheless, some may be better suited for your needs than others. This article will explore the pros and cons of each type to decide which is best for you. Here’s a quick list: silicone, rubber, Tyvek and environmentally-friendly wristbands.

For example, silicone bands are popular because they’re waterproof and flexible enough to fit most wrists (no more cutting or sizing). They also come in many colours and styles like woven or striped patterns, including glittery finishes, marbling, or even branded with a team logo! The downside? Silicone wristbands can easily be taken off, which means they aren’t ideal for security.

When planning an event, you have a lot of choices to consider. Event wristbands might seem like a minor decision, but they can be a significant factor for some attendees. It can also have an impact on things like security and event costs. Read on to learn the main differences between silicone, rubber, Tyvek and environmentally-friendly wristbands.

Rubber Wristbands

Rubber wristbands are sometimes known as vinyl or plastic wristbands. These have a self-locking mechanism with a hole and stud fastener. They are often used for multi-day events to help identify ticketholders or participants. They are perfect for nightclubs, festivals, sporting events and conferences. They are available in lots of different colours and can be customised with printing.

Rubber Wristbands


  • They are waterproof, which makes them suitable for wear over multiple days. So even if the wearer has a shower or goes for a swim, the wristband won’t fall off or break.
  • They can be customised with team logos or other designs to match an event.
  • They will adjust to fit any wrist size.
  • They cannot be easily removed and given to someone else, which helps to support event security.


  • They can only be cut off to remove them, so they cannot be kept as a memento of the event.
  • Some people find the sturdy plastic irritating to wear.
  • They cannot be recycled, which can make them unpopular with some event attendees.

Silicone Wristbands

Silicone wristbands are made from soft and flexible silicone. They are perhaps best known as the Livestrong wristband. They are more likely to be used as promotional giveaways than for event security.


  • They are waterproof and very durable. They can be worn for years after an event, and many people wear them to make a statement about political or social issues.
  • They can be made in different colours with printing, embossing or debossing.
  • They make excellent fundraising tools for charities as individuals love to spread awareness and donate if they get something in return.
  • They are also excellent giveaway items that can help to promote your company.
  • They can be taken off with ease, so they make an ideal keepsake from an event.


  • They are not adjustable in size, so all event attendees would have to wear the same size wristband.
  • They are not suitable for security as they can easily be slipped off and handed to someone else.
  • They aren’t suitable for sporting events as they could get in the way or injure a participant.
  • They are most expensive than other options.

Tyvek Wristbands

Tyvek is a durable material that looks like paper but is strong and waterproof like plastic. It can be cut and folded, but it won’t tear. And while it is vapour-permeable, it is waterproof, which makes it ideal for weekend events where attendees need to shower without losing their wristband.

Tyvek Wristbands


  • It’s a hard-wearing yet soft material. It feels soft against the skin, so there is less chance of irritation.
  • The wristband features a security tamper-proof feature, which cannot be easily removed and given to another person.
  • The wristband can be printed, but it’s also possible to write on the wristband if required.
  • This type of wristband is low cost and can be ordered in plain colours making it very cost-effective.


  • The wristband can only be cut off, which means it cannot be kept as a souvenir.
  • The material cannot be recycled.
  • They are not scratch resistant, so while the material might be strong, the printing can fade over time.

Environmentally-Friendly Wristbands

Environmentally-friendly wristbands include a range of different materials. This can include bamboo fabric wristbands or recycled PET wristbands. These are ideal for events where environmental standards need to be upheld. They are just as durable as other wristband choices and can be woven with intricate designs.

Environmentally-Friendly Wristbands


  • This type of wristband is best for the environment. There is no plastic involved with bamboo wristbands, and the PET wristbands are made using recycled materials. This means they are sustainable and don’t harm the environment.
  • They can be made with different textures to add some extra fun for event attendees.
  • They are just as secure as other fabric wristbands as they are held in place with a tamper-free self-closing clip. For a reusable but less secure option, you can choose a bamboo clip.
  • They are very soft and comfortable to wear.
  • They can be used for fundraising and as a keepsake item by choosing a reusable clasp.
  • They can be designed with full-colour options.
  • They can look more sophisticated than Tyvek or vinyl wristbands.


  • These types of wristbands are usually more expensive than other options.
  • Since they look like other wristbands, it might not be evident to wearers that they are made from recycled materials or bamboo.

How to choose the right wristband for your event?

It’s important to choose the right wristband that works best for your event. The type of wristband you choose will depend on your needs and how much you have to spend. It might be a good idea to try out a couple of different types to see what works best.

For example, while Tyvek is ideal for long weekend festivals, they are not suitable as event keepsakes. The only way to remove this wristband is to tear it, so it cannot be worn again. For a reusable wristband option, choose silicone or bamboo.

And while bamboo might be a popular choice for eco-conscious attendees, it might be more difficult to achieve if you are working with a tight budget.

choose the right wristband for your event

When choosing wristbands for your event, think about the following:

  • How long will attendees have to wear their wristbands? If they have to wear it overnight, consider bamboo or silicone so it will be more comfortable.
  • Will the wristband get wet? Tyvek is the cheapest option for a durable and waterproof wristband, while vinyl wristbands are the most durable. However, bamboo and PET wristbands can be unpleasant to wear if they get wet.
  • Will your wristbands help with event security? If so, you need a self-locking mechanism to ensure wearers can’t transfer their pass to another person. In this case, choose vinyl, Tyvek or an environmentally friendly choice with a self-locking clip.
  • Do attendees want to keep their wristbands? If so, choose something they can easily take off and save, like a silicone wristband.
  • Are you raising awareness? If so, you should choose a wristband that can be worn time and time again. For example, pick a bamboo wristband with a bamboo closure or a silicone wristband.
  • Are you asking for a donation for the wristband? If so, you should offer something premium like a silicone or environmentally-friendly wristband.
  • Is the event a premium or luxury event? If so, you should provide silicone wristbands as they have a more premium appeal.
  • Are you concerned about the environmental impact of your event? If so, choose an environmentally-friendly choice such as bamboo or recycled PET. This can be a popular selling point for your event.
  • What is your budget? Plain Tyvek wristbands are the cheapest option, while a bamboo wristband will be the most expensive.
  • What design do you have in mind? For simple printing, vinyl, Tyvek, and silicone wristbands offer a cost-effective and straightforward solution. For more complex designs, choose an environmentally-friendly festival wristband.
  • Do you need to be able to write on the wristbands? If so, your best option is Tyvek, as you can write on them as required.
  • How many do you need? We have a minimum order amount of 100 for all wristbands. Choosing plain wristbands is one of the easiest ways to ensure your stock can be used for different events. Or simply brand them with your logo to make them more versatile.
  • Do you need a range of sizes? Tyvek wristbands are the easiest to adjust to any size, even children. There will be a lot of excess material with a bamboo or PET wristband once the wristband has been adjusted to size. With a Tyvek wristband, the extra material sits under the wristband out of the way.

Uses For Silicone or Tyvek Wristbands

This section will explore why silicone or Tyvek wristbands are the perfect items to help with everything from branding to event security. They not only make an excellent promotional item for your next event, but they’re also suitable for helping to organise teams of workers and volunteers.

They come in a variety of colours and styles and are very affordable. You can choose from simple bands to ones that have custom printing on them, making it easy to personalise with your company logo or slogan. They’re also great for fundraisers, giveaways, sporting events and much more! By choosing a plain wristband or customising them with a simple logo, you could use your wristbands for many different occasions.

What is a Tyvek wristband?

Tyvek wristbands are like silicone wristbands that are made from paper. They’re durable, waterproof and don’t tear easily, making them perfect for all sorts of events! But, don’t be fooled by the word “paper”; these things are tough as nails! One of the best features of Tyvek wristbands is that you can order them with printed designs or plain. Plain wristbands can easily be written on, which makes them ideal for last-minute planning.

What is a silicone wristband?

Silicone wristbands are an inexpensive and convenient way to organise your team. They’re comfortable, soft and stretchy but also very strong. This means individuals can wear them for a long time without worrying about the band calling apart. You can choose between plain or printed wristbands, and you can get them in various colours, including glitter or marbled effects.

Top uses for silicone or Tyvek wristbands

Top 15 uses for silicone or Tyvek wristbands

  • Event Promotion. Promotional items like silicone or Tyvek wristbands help you market your business by spreading awareness about what you do. It’s essential to wear an eye-catching item, so people will notice when your company fans wear them.
  • Giveaways. If you’re looking for a cheap giveaway that helps spread the word about your business, this is the way to go. It’s also an incentive item for your customers because everyone will know who you are if they wear these wristbands around town.
  • Event Security. If you need to keep track of who has been admitted to an event, Tyvek wristbands are ideal. They’re lightweight and waterproof, so they can be worn all day or during inclement weather.
  • Sports Events. Whether you’re organising a school team for an event, participating in an athletic competition or sponsoring non-profit organisations, Tyvek wristbands are the perfect way to keep track of your team members. They come in various colours and can be customised with team logos to help identify different players.
  • Fundraisers. Selling silicone wristbands is one of the best ways to raise money for your cause. They are inexpensive to buy, but they can be sold at a good mark up, which means more money for your charity of choice.
  • Team Spirit. Silicone or Tyvek wristbands are a fun and inexpensive way to show support for your team. They can also be sold as fundraising items to help raise money for your grassroots team. If your team wants to attend a tournament or upgrade their kit, they can sell silicone wristbands to help pay for the things they need.
  • Promotional Campaigns. Another way to use silicone wristbands for fundraising is by distributing them at promotional events. A silicone wristband with a fun design will always be a welcome addition to an event goodie bag. Include a hashtag on the wristband to encourage individuals to snap a picture and share it.
  • Community Events or Festivals. If you’re involved in a local community centre or small festival, using Tyvek wristbands is an excellent way to organise volunteers. Choose different colours to help individuals on other teams identify one another. These are also excellent for helping members of the public to identify volunteers and staff if they need help.
  • Personalised Fundraising. Give your kids a fundraising project that’s fun and encourages them to be creative with their fundraising ideas. For example, you could create custom silicone wristbands for each of your children so they can sell them at school or around the neighbourhood to raise money. This will teach them about the value of giving back and will give them a confidence boost.
  • Nightclub security. A stamp on the hand can easily be washed off, particularly if individuals wash their hands with a hand sanitiser. A better option for busy nightclubs to help identify who is supposed to be there would be Tyvek wristbands. These are incredibly durable and will last all night, no matter how much the wearer works up a sweat.
  • School and university security. Giving school and university students wristbands is a great way to increase security on school grounds or campus. This simple identification tool makes it easy for staff to identify who should have access. Students are more likely to forget to bring an ID card, but a silicone wristband is easier to remember.
  • Birthday parties. Whether your child has their friends over for a birthday party, silicone wristbands are the ideal way to help keep track of people who have arrived. A silicone wristband is also a fun keepsake for guests. If you’re having a party in a public place, you can include the contact details so that a child can be reunited with the group. Choose plain Tyvek wristbands and then write the phone number on them with a permanent marker.
  • Company Picnics. Silicone wristbands make it easy to organise company picnics. If you have an annual event, staff will love keeping their silicone wristband as a keepsake. By using different colours for different departments, it will also be easier for staff to introduce themselves.
  • Athletic events. Track and game officials can easily distinguish between individual players with Tyvek or silicone wristbands. They’re also helpful when you need to keep track of which team members have participated in games, so no one gets left out.
  • Medical alert bracelets. If you’re sending your child on a school trip and want the teachers to remember their dietary preferences, a simple Tyvek wristband can help remind them. It can also be useful to wear a silicone wristband printed with any allergies. If you need any specific medication, you can also include this information on a silicone wristband. They are also helpful for family members with dementia as you can include your contact details on the wristband.

How to choose between silicone and Tyvek wristbands

Choosing between silicone and Tyvek wristbands can be difficult. The first thing you need to consider is the purpose of the wristband. If it’s for an event, choose a silicone wristband. The bright colours are easy to find in a pile of other items, and they’re also waterproof, which is ideal if someone will be sweating while wearing them.

Tyvek wristbands are great for events that require extra security. They cannot be taken off and given to another person, so you know that anyone wearing a wristband is supposed to be there.

Tyvek wristbands are also useful for tracking game or event participants. For example, you can write their race number or team name on the wristband to keep track of who has played or where they finished in a race.

A silicone wristband would be better if you want to give event attendees something they can keep forever. It’s also a great keepsake for guests at any type of party.

Tyvek wristbands are cheaper than silicone wristbands, but since they aren’t reusable, you might need to think about the long-term cost. If you plan to reuse your wristbands, choose silicone, but remember that some will go missing as they are easily slipped in a pocket and taken home. The cooler your design, the more likely they are to go missing – but try to think of this as free promotion.

How to distribute wristbands to attendees

If you’re organising an event, distributing wristbands is incredibly easy. If you are using silicone wristbands, you can hand them out as people arrive. If you are using Tyvek wristbands, attendees may need some help putting them on.

The tamper-proof sticker can be difficult to put on without some assistance, so make sure you provide help where needed. By securing the Tyvek wristband in place when the attendee arrives, you avoid the risk that they can wear it so loose it can easily be slipped off and passed to another person.

If you need to collect the silicone wristbands at the end, make sure this is clear to attendees, so they don’t leave wearing their wristbands. You can leave a sign and a bucket at the door, so they remember to leave it behind.

Ready to order your wristbands? Get in touch with our team today, and we’ll help you design your ideal wristband. We can provide next day delivery on plain wristbands; perfect if you’re in a hurry or if another provider has let you down. And finally, we offer a free design service, so you don’t have to worry about getting the artwork right. Order today!

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