The Chemical Principles of Safety Matches

The common black match is the original design of the safety match, originated from Sweden. Since the match head is still black after it is lit, in order to make a difference, later some dyes were added to make the head of safety matches, which led to the current red-head match and green-head match. Therefore, matches with the redhead, green head, or blackhead all belong to the safety match.


The components of safety matches are as follows: The match head is mainly composed of oxidant (KClO3), inflammable substances (such as sulfur, etc.), and adhesive. The side of the matchbox is mainly composed of red phosphorus, antimony trisulfide, and adhesive. When we strike a match, the match head and the side of the matchbox generate heat by friction. The heat released to contribute to the decomposition of KClO3, producing a small amount of oxygen, setting the red phosphorus on fire, and causing the inflammable substances (such as sulfur) on the match head on fire, so that the match is lit. That is the process of setting the match on fire: friction → heat →KClO3 decomposition → ignition of red phosphorus → ignition of inflammable substances (such as sulfur) on the match head.


The advantage of the safety match lies in the separation of red phosphorus and oxidant, which makes it safer. What's more, the chemical substances used on the match are non-toxic. Therefore, it earns its name.


Fangzhou Matches Factory is one of the leading manufacturers of safety matches. In order to ensure that our finished products can be safely delivered to you in the final stage, we have gone through many quality checks throughout the production process. We are your reliable partners, welcome to buy our products.