How exactly does Iridescent paint work?

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How exactly does Iridescent paint work?

In: Chemistry

here are paints called iridescent and others called flamboyant. Iridescent is generally another name for metallic (not metal flake which is entirely different) and flamboyant is another term for candy.

The metallic paint has small metal flakes in it, sometimes various colors, to give it a deep, shimering effect. This is mixed directly into the paint. To get maximum effect there is a single color base-coat, usually white or black, then the metallic, then clear coats.

A candy color is far more difficult, and is what I think TVR uses (though I can’t tell from a photo). Once the body is prepared to perfection, a highly reflective silver or gold base coat is applied, itself a very good looking finish. Then, multiple coats of transparent color are applied to get the proper tint, then multiple clear coats are applied.

Another finish, pearl, can be applied similarly to metallic (without the flake) but before the clear is applied, coats of pearl are applied. Depending on the color the pearl can either be made from *actual pearl* or vanishingly fine metal powder or plastic powder.

By the way, metal FLAKE finishes are those gaudy paint jobs often seen on fiberglas boats or show cars.