The AFIRM RSL is used by many of our clients as the basis for establishing their own, brand-specific requirements. Among many uses, the AFIRM RSL provides those in the footwear and apparel supply chain with “a single set of information for maximum and in-depth implementation,” helping its brand members “determine and communicate to their vendors their testing requirements and acceptance of test reports.”* Our first task in onboarding new brands into Link Services is to migrate their test program specifications, which are nearly always managed in spreadsheets. Despite the limitations of spreadsheets (low security, version control issues, broken links, collaboration challenges – the list goes on), they’re a good starting point for organizing and communicating brand-specific limits for the substances most likely to be found in their products. We start by reorganizing their spreadsheets into a format like the one in this document, with materials segregated into individual files. The files are then uploaded into Link and the client’s RSL configuration is complete.

Material Category



Natural Fibers

Cotton, Wool, Silk, Hemp, Cashmere, Linen, Fur, Rayon (Semisynthetic), Lyocell (Semisynthetic)


Blended Fibers

Cotton-Polyester, Wool-Nylon, Ramie-Polyester

Synthetic Fibers

Polyester, Acrylic, Nylon, Polyamide (PA)

Artificial Leather

Polyurethane (PU), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

Natural Leather


Coatings and Prints

Heat transfers printing, Dye sublimation printing, Screen printing, Direct-to-garment printing, Discharge printing, Plastisol transfers printing, Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) coating, Polyurethane (PU) coating

Natural Materials

Horn, Bone, Cork, Wood, Paper, Straw, Stone

Polymers, Plastics, Foams and Rubber

Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), Polystyrene (PS), Polyethylene (PE), Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), Neoprene, Polypropylene (PP), Polycarbonate (PC), Polyamide (PA), Polyurethane (PU), Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU)
Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE), Styrene ethylene butylene styrene (SEBS)


Stainless steel, Brass, Copper, Gold, Silver, Aluminum

Feathers and Down

Feathers, Down


Hot melt adhesive, Powdered adhesive, Flock adhesive, Contact adhesive, Latex glue, Polyurethane glue, Neoprene cement

*Apparel and Footwear International RSL Management Group (2009). Restricted Substances List, Version 04. Available at
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