Polystyrene Foam

The most common type of styrofoam is expanded polystyrene foam (EPS). This white plastic can be found in disposable cups, plates and other food-service ware. Styrene leaches from this plastic and affects the central nervous system, so children are particularly vulnerable to it.

EPS is made using hydrochlorofluorocarbons, which deplete the ozone layer. Choose alternatives like glass, paper and bamboo products or reusable utensils.


Polystyrene foam is a natural insulator and is used in insulation projects. It helps to regulate the temperature of a building and protects against noise. The lightweight material is easy to install and offers a low cost solution to a variety of different needs.

EPS insulation is manufactured from pre-expanded beads that are heated, aged, inserted into block-shaped molds and then cooled. This process produces a rigid foam plastic that has many advantageous properties, including being resistant to mold and mildew, fungus and insect infestation. It is also moisture resistant and has a high R-Value.

Plymouth Foam’s XPS extruded polystyrene (EPS) board insulation starts out as solid granule plastic resin, and is melted with critical additives in an extruder under controlled heat, expansion and steam quality conditions. It is a closed-cell product with a higher R-Value than open-cell products, and has favorable environmental impact scores in the LEED certification program. Unlike other common insulating materials, it has no odor and is inert, making it an ideal choice for a variety of different applications.


Polystyrene foam is hard, odorless and non-toxic. It’s used in many medical devices like test tubes and petri dishes as well as day-to-day items such as the housing on smoke detectors, CD cases and those red solo cups you drink from at a tailgate or lose in a game of beer-pong.

It can be molded to keep medicine and perishable foods cold and is also an important part of packaging that keeps products safe, intact and costs less than other materials. Foodservice packaging, shipping boxes and even the loose fill packing peanuts you find in your cereal box are all made from polystyrene foam.

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) or Styrofoam is a closed-cell, durable plastic that contains 98% trapped air. EPS is white and typically has the appearance of ice cream. Extruded polystyrene – XPS – has the same chemical composition as EPS but is made using a different process, and has smaller air pockets making it more uniform and often pink, blue or green.


Plastic materials are a vital component of many medical procedures and devices. They are lightweight, durable, and sterilizable. They also have a wide range of color options to meet specific medical requirements. Closed cell foams like styrofoam and polyethylene roll have a range of densities that affect their firmness, size of cells, flexibility, and durability. They can be cut with a sharp blade such as a craft knife, utility knife, or scissors.

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam, commonly called styrofoam, is a non-biodegradable material that lasts for a long time in the environment and can be found as outdoor litter. Children are more susceptible to harmful chemicals and pollutants as they tend to crawl around, put things in their mouths, or play with discarded products. This is why it’s important to minimize the use of EPS or styrofoam around children. Exposure to styrene can affect their central nervous system. Styrene molecules leach from styrofoam and are easily ingested. Chronic exposure can cause styrene poisoning.

Consumer Products

Polystyrene is used in numerous consumer products. You may find it as insulation in appliances, electronics, car parts, gardening tools and equipment, and even in food containers or to-go bags from your favorite restaurants. It is also used in medical products such as tissue culture trays and Petri dishes because of its clarity and ease of sterilization. The material is resistant to moisture, mildew and fungus and is food safe.

You are likely familiar with the foam form of styrene, referred to as expanded polystyrene or EPS. This is typically white or light green and can be found in packaging for electronic products or as the styrofoam packing “peanuts” that cushion fragile items being shipped.

It is also used in co-polymerization processes to produce better plastics with unique properties and in injection molding. Xometry is ready to help you explore the possibilities of this durable and versatile production material. Contact us today to begin a quote.