Pros & Cons of Plastic Melamine Dinnerware

Many people like plastic melamine dinnerware because it is virtually unbreakable dinnerware, or at least hard to break. It is more durable than most types of plastic dinnerware.

Melamine dinnerware was beyond popular in the 40s and 50s and it has regained consumer demand recently. It is made of hard plastic that is pretty resilient, but there are some health warnings that scare people away from it.

Let's review the pros and cons so that you can make an informed decision about whether you want to serve from itÂ…


Melamine dishes are pretty tough. They can sustain most drops without shattering and they can take on the bumps of a rambunctious family without chipping. This break resistance dinnerware can be perfect for a family with little kids (or teenagers, for that matter).

Many people prefer to use break resistance dishes for outdoor dinnerware. They are perfect for campers, backyard or patio parties and picnicking at the beach, a park or on the lake or river.

Originally people were attracted to these dinnerware sets because of the vivid colors that were used in producing this dinnerware. That tradition goes on today as most plastic dinnerware made of melamine has patterns that are lively and full of character.

Melamine is said to be dish-washer safe; however, hand washing the dishes with mild soap will prolong the life of the dishes.


Toxic chemicals are used in the production of melamine. Exposing the dishes to extreme heat can cause the release of these toxins. Since you don't want your family or guests to risk such exposure, it is important that you don't expose the dishes to high temperatures. They are not microwave safe or oven proof.

Melmac dinnerware, the American Cyanamid trademark of the melamine dishes that was so popular in the golden years, had the disadvantage of being easily scratched or stained. Modern production has improved this a bit; however, the dishes are still more susceptible to scratches and stains when compared to other types of dinnerware.

To prevent this problem, it is wise to avoid using sharp knives, clean the plates right away to prevent the need for scraping the dishes, and use a soft cloth and gentle soap to wash the dishes rather than using abrasive pads and cleaners.

Basically, plastic melamine dinnerware is suitable for daily use as long as you take care not to scratch or stain it and you keep it away from extreme temperatures.

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