Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?

With the rise of smartphones, there came a need for a product that can protect the screen. Then came the rise of mobile phone screen protectors, which is a must thing today to protect our smartphones. Since smartphones have a large screen and support touch, protecting screens is an essential concern for the users. Over the years, people can’t live a day without mobile phones now because it’s a must thing in the life of a human being. Applying screen protector film is the first thing that a user does right after purchasing a new smartphone.

Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing liquid-skin-screen-protector Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
Liquid skin screen protector

Earlier, we had talked about what a 2.5D or 3D tempered glass screen protector is and the hardness of tempered glass. Most of the mobile phone screen protectors out there are not so expensive, but there are so many types of mobile phone screen protector films available in the market. There are currently two different types of screen protectors available on the market based on material, i.e., the tempered glass film and plastic screen protector. Even in plastic screen protectors, there are different types. Most consumers don’t know the difference between these films. And often, they will be in confusion to choose which type of mobile phone film for their smartphones.

When mobile phone films were introduced, the first product to be launched was a plastic screen protector, it has a long history. The raw materials of these plastic screen protectors have evolved from various materials like PP, PVC to PET, TPU. In the early years, PP and PVC were the materials used to produce films, the PVC is relatively thick compared to others, the light transmission is not that great, the life of these screen protectors is short compared to others. Also, it’s worth noting that the PVC screen protector is not environmentally friendly. Since it has these many downsides, the PVC screen protector has vanished from the market. Currently, these two types of films are popular in the mobile phone film industry, i.e., PET screen protectors and TPU screen protectors.

What is a liquid skin screen protector?

The liquid skin screen protector is actually made of TPU material, in general say, it is a kind of plastic screen protector. TPU is thermoplastic polyurethane elastomer, it is also known as thermoplastic polyurethane rubber. TPU is a type of elastomer that can be plasticized by heating and can be dissolved in solvents. TPU comes with excellent properties like high tension, high tensile strength, high abrasion resistance, transparency, oil and grease resistance, toughness, and much more. Because of these properties, we can see that the word elastic screen protector has been written on many packaging boxes of liquid skin screen protectors. In contrast, the TPU does have a significant advantage when it comes to environmental protection. TPU has been widely used in various subjects like medical and health, electronic appliances, industry, and sports in today’s age. One thing you all might have heard of is that of mobile phone protective cases. That is, those cases are made of TPU.

A common way to install a liquid skin screen protector

In simple words, TPU screen protectors are not glass material films like the usual tempered glass film. It is a hybrid between the materials like rubber and plastic. These materials are hydrophobic and oil resistant. And it has characteristics like good elasticity, abrasion resistance, and also has good air permeability. When compared to others, the application of the TPU screen protector can be found quite extensive. To provide you few examples, earlier, it was used as a keyboard protective film. And today, it is mainly used in protecting mobile phone screens, computer screens, and in other various areas. What we meant by this article is that we will be talking about the different applications of TPU protective films on mobile phones.

We all know that most of us will avoid sticking to regular mobile phone films and shift to tempered glass film in today’s age. The reason behind this is when compared to TPU protective film, the tempered glass film has the advantage of the shatter-resistant, hydrophobic, and oil-proof (anti-fingerprint coating), and better touch experience. The TPU film just can’t offer these things. Even though the TPU film is not great, many businesses still prefer acquiring TPU protective film factories, why? Everything has its own advantages and disadvantages. We will be discussing the same here.

Pros of liquid skin screen protector

The primary material that liquid skin screen protector is made of is TPU. it can be seen as the main advantage of liquid skin screen protectors. TPU is soft, it also has very good flexibility. The same can provide excellent protection when it comes to scratch resistance once it is applied to a mobile phone screen. In addition to this, a liquid skin screen protector has a good fit compared to others. Also, it is relatively easy to install compared to other films. Since it has vital flexibility, the TPU films in most scenarios will not produce bubbles, and it also comes with good light transmittance. Surprisingly, the thickness of the film seems to be very slim, all liquid skin screen protectors can support fingerprint sensors perfectly especially Samsung’s in-display fingerprint, also, it is worth noting that liquid skin screen protector is usually cost-effective, it is the first choice in all plastic screen protectors.

Youtube channel HighTechCheck’s video shows that liquid skin screen protector has good recovery features after the stylus writing on

Cons of liquid skin screen protector

Now let us discuss the Cons of liquid skin screen protector films.

Liquid skin screen protectors are not dropping protection. Many consumers who use these films have reported that the screen gets damaged when the phone is dropped to the ground, but the film is still intact. Adding to this, the scratch resistance of liquid skin screen protectors is not that great. After writing with the stylus, many scratches appear on the film (anyway, it will probably recover later due to its strong flexibility/elasticity, I don’t know if this is a con or pro for liquid skin film, here is a good example to show us how scratches or bubbles disappear by the video published by youtube channel HighTechCheck). The touch experience of liquid skin screen protectors is not great due to the quality of the oleophobic coating. The merchants of liquid skin screen protectors usually advertise that it also comes with an oleophobic coating, but the same experience is not good as we experience it on tempered glass films. Adding to this, the oleophobic coating will be easier to wear off than a tempered glass screen protector, so it might be not a good choice for a heavy user who plays games on mobile phones.

Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing liquid-skin-film-after-installation Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
Bubbles, scratches on the liquid skin screen protector after installation
Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing liquid-skin-film-after-48-hours-of-installation Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
All bubbles, scratches are disappeared after 48 hours

PET screen protectors for smartphone

PET is a commonly used material in our lives. Academically, PET is a kind of poly terephthalic acid plastic. Due to its highly symmetrical molecular structure, PET material has many excellent properties, such as excellent optical and mechanical properties. PET has the best strength and toughness among all thermoplastics, and its tensile strength and impact strength are better than other plastic, it has been widely used in many fields.

Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing PET-plastic-screen-protector Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
PET film

Pros and Cons of PET screen protectors

PET screen protector is much harder than a TPU screen protector. The PET screen protectors are the most common type of plastic screen protector, and it is also one the cheapest mobile phone screen protector out there. In earlier days, when mobile phone tempered glass films were not introduced in the market, PET films were the mainstream screen protectors that were available in the market. The PET screen protector is a kind of polyester fiber film that comes with scratch-resistant frosted coating on one side and silicone adhesive on the other side. The high-quality PET film also has a high light transmittance, it has good ability in scratch resistance, but it cannot protect against huge impact; that is, PET screen protectors are not shatterproof. As expected, the scratch resistance of PET films is surely no better than the Corning Gorilla Glass, please do note that it is only resistant to scratches that occurred due to nails, coins, and keys.

A common way to install a PET screen protector

PET screen protector is a cheap solution compared to other films. The color of PET films might be gradually changed under sunlight. The in-hand feel of PET film is usually between tempered glass film and liquid skin screen protector. Usually, PET film possesses a good touch effect, but unfortunately, the oleophobic coating wears off after some time. As a result, the touch experience deteriorates. Adding to this, the PET film can also easily be stained with oil.

TPU liquid skin screen protector VS PET screen protector, Which is better?

As you can see from the above explanations, both liquid skin screen protectors and PET films have their own advantages and disadvantages. The liquid skin screen protector is softer which is not that great as the PET screen protector when it comes to the anti-scratch aspect. The installation and fit are better with liquid skin screen protectors because of the soft TPU materials. The TPU liquid skin film can also be used for curved display and will have a great fit on curved display although the PET films are also available in hot-bending curved 3D screen protectors. In terms of impact resistance, both of these films are similar. Even though the TPU liquid screen protector is relatively soft, the toughness is enough. Also, TPU films have a feature of “self-repairing” ability to a certain extent. It can absorb non-extreme impacts. That is, to sum it up, it can maintain all or most of its original structure with daily usages and with minor scratches. Say, for example, minor scratches that happen in a small pit will slowly return to normal.

Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing scratches-bubbles-on-PET-film_1 Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
Scratches & bubbles on PET screen protectors, the oleophobic coating wears off easily

If you want to stick a film on an old or cheap mobile phone and only want to provide the device with the most basic protection capabilities, you can go with PET films because it gives reasonable protection. The brand of PET films is not that important when buying this kind of film. Although, the big brands’ products (PET films) can still provide a better fit and are less likely to warp or peel off in due course.

Some liquid screen protector films out there are advertised themselves as “military-grade.” Say, for example, some brands will claim that the material used to produce this TPU film is used to “protect fighter jets.” Although this statement is true to some extent, the Polyurethane protective tape can be used to protect aircraft and windmills. But it does not mean that the TPU protective films and mobile phone screen film are made of precisely the same material. In contrast, it’s worth noting that our mobile phones are not fighter jets to be protected by those materials.

Your Product Sourcing Dept. in China | The7 Sourcing pen-marks-on-liquid-skin-screen-protector Plastic Screen Protector for Smart Phone: Liquid Skin (TPU) or PET Film?
Pen marks left on liquid skin screen protector after using a stylus, this is a test from Youtube channel HighTechCheck

To conclude, if you are willing to spend a little more money, liquid skin screen protector films are a better choice when compared to PET films. The reason is that the TPU films can provide better scratch protection, installation is easier, it has a great fit. Also, it is worth adding to this the point that the TPU films have a much better touch response. Although, do note the fact that it still does not achieve the same smoothness that tempered glass film can offer. And if you need to use a handwritten pen on your phone, we don’t recommend you to apply a liquid skin screen protector as pen marks will be left on liquid skin screen protector.