Dycem is a non-slip rubber-like material that helps prevent slipping and makes it easier to grip objects. It is used and recommended by occupational therapists and physiotherapists for use both at work and at home. Dycem products include jar openers, mats, coasters, bottle openers, non-slip netting, self-adhesive rolls and reels of material that can be cut to size.
The material can withstand temperatures up to 50 C but it looses its non-slip properties when wet and is not recommended for use in bathrooms.
Non-slip mats and reels
Dycem manufacturers circular and rectangular mats for trays, desks, kitchen countertops and tables as well as floor mats. The mats are great for specific tasks, like a circular mat to keep a round circular mixing bowl in place, but I love the freedom a reel provides to custom make my own mats. I used a standard office guillotine to cut straight squares and rectangles.
Dycem does two things very well. It prevents items from sliding around and it improves grip. My personal favourite applications are drawer liners in larger drawers, particularly in the kitchen, where items always slide into a pile in the back, on coat hangers to prevent clothes from slipping off, kitchen cupboard liner for glasses and breakable items as a non-slip surface makes it harder to knock an item over. I have also used it on a bedside table to reduce the chance of knocking over a glass of water on to my phone.
It works well to keep mouse mats in place, as furniture feet on hard floors to prevent sliding and in vehicle shelves where items always seem to hit my knees as they fall out. I also use it to prevent a portable Foldi lamp from being knocked over. I prefer using Dycem in larger sizes as the smaller sizes, like coasters, tend not to stick as well. On my desk I have a large rectangle for drinks and small items.
The self-adhesive range wraps around cutlery, pens, gardening and DIY tools, equipment (rollators, walkers, crutches) and anything with a circular handle. It’s generally recommended for those with reduced grip.
Dycem bottle and jar openers
We had mixed results with the bottle and jar openers. It did not work well for hypermobility and joint instability, I still could not manage to open either even with the extra help, but it worked well with a tremor and just as a standard opener for those difficult to open jars.
Dycem is slightly sticky and picks up dirt quickly and in abundance. It is vital to wash it after each use, but getting it clean is easy with warm soapy water. It can with stand temperatures of up to 50C, so depending on the setting and placement, may be dishwasher safe for some.
The manufacturer’s recommendation:
“If your Dycem product gets dirty and dusty, simply restore the non-slip properties by washing in warm soapy water and allowing to dry. Alternatively use Dycem alcohol based non-slip wipes to leave all non-slip products instantly dry and ready to re-use.”
Dycem is available in black, blue, green, lime, pink, red, grey and yellow. The high visibility colours can help those with a visual impairment, particularly when used as floor mats to help reduce falls.
Dycem is a soundless product. There is no squeaking or rustling when using it and it actually reduces sound when items are placed on it instead of a hard surface. It is accessible to deaf users as well as anyone with a hearing impairment, tinnitus or hyperacusis (sound sensitivity).
Input and Touch
Dycem products improve grip and can help anyone with fine motor control issues or general clumsiness. It is much harder to knock anything over that sits on a grippy surface. It also prevents sliding, making it possible to do things like mixing with one hand. It stabilises items on desks, including keyboards, mice and other peripherals.
Some dexterity is required when using the rolls to cut it into custom sizes, but this is a one time use requirement and can be carried out by someone else. The texture is smooth and sticky, which may be pleasant to touch for some or off-putting. I would recommend that anyone with tactical sensory issues order a small free sample first to test it.
Ease of Use
It is easy to use and clean. Do not use when wet and do not heat above 50C.
Dycem is a versatile non-slip material and I was particularly impressed when I used it on the surface of a tray and even with the tray tilted up to 45 degrees, items remained fixed in position. I loved using it in drawers and on coat hangers, however it picked up dirt so quickly and in doing so gradually lost its gripping properties, that I stopped using it in those scenarios quickly as I just could not keep up with unpacking drawers to clean the mats at least once or twice a week.
I would highly recommend it for specific uses, like tray and table mats as well as using it in the kitchen to make chopping and mixing easier.
Dycem kindly provided us with a selection of their products and a roll of Dycem for this review.