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Types of sublimation- A comprehensive guide 2024

The Complete Guide to Using Sublimation Paper: Practical Tips from Print Insider


Many beginners want to start sublimation printing but do not know the proper information about the paper. Because for starting this printing, you should know all the key information about it. Dear reader, do not worry! We are here to tell you everything you need about a sublimation paper and Types of sublimation. 

Yes, after using this paper, we must say this paper is the best for printing. You can use this paper to print designs for many products, such as mugs, shirts, phone cases, pillows, etc. It is straightforward to use and gives you a long-lasting life. 

Let’s explore their advantages, the easy steps to use them, and all the critical information about them.  Please keep on reading! 

What is a Sublimation Paper?

Sublimation paper is the unique kind of paper used in the sublimation printing technique. This paper transfers the design to multiple media, such as metals, ceramics, and textiles. 

When heated, the ink is released from the sublimation paper, permanently creating the design. You can also print the design on various items made of these materials, such as shirts, mugs, pillows, etc.

Why Use Sublimation Paper?

If you want to get a high-quality print in the sublimation printing process, the sublimation paper is the best for you. Using this paper helps you produce long-lasting prints, which means they cannot fade or crack to give the best life. 

Additionally, with the help of a sublimation paper, you can transfer the designs to different products. The main feature of this paper is that they also give you professional and eye-catching results. 

The Science Behind Sublimation

Sublimation printing is critical to getting the best and most professional result. When heat is applied to the sublimation ink, it becomes a gas and seeps into the material’s fibers, creating an irreversible bond. 

Types of sublimation

There are three types of sublimation. 

  1. Basic sublimation
  2. Full sublimation 
  3. Spot sublimation 

1. Basic Sublimation:

Basic sublimation is the best way to print designs on products like shirts. In this, you have to use special inks that turn into gas with heat and stick to the fabric. This helps to make the designs part of the shirt. This simply means the designs will not peel or fade easily. 

2. Full Sublimation:

Full sublimation is the process of a whole product, like shirts, getting covered with the design. The design runs from one edge to the other. It is a great choice for big, colorful designs covering the entire shirt. 

3. Spot Sublimation:

Spot sublimation puts the designs in specific places. You only place the design in one place on the shirt rather than covering the entire surface. Like; the back or front. So, for printing, the designs on smaller areas are called spot sublimation. 

What You’ll Need to use a sublimation paper

  • Sublimation paper
  • The Sublimation ink
  • Sublimation printer
  • Heat press machine
  • Items to print on (e.g., t-shirts, mugs)
  • Heat-resistant tape
  • Design software (optional for creating custom designs)

The Step-By-Step Guide to Using Sublimation Paper

Here are the easy and simple steps to use a sublimation paper!

1. Gather Your Materials

Firstly, you have to collect all the materials that we have explored and keep them in place where you are doing the sublimation printing process. 

2. Create Your Design

After that, you will create a beautiful design that you want to print on your product. You can see the design on the internet. Additionally, you may also create a design from a professional graphic designer. But keep in mind that it should be unique and fantastic. 

3. Print the Design

The chosen design must then be printed on the sublimation paper. Sublimation ink and a sublimation printer will help you print. Make sure that the designs should be printed correctly. 

4. Prepare the Item

In this step, you will place your product, like a mug, shirt, or pillow, on a flat surface. But do not forget your product should be clean and clear from dust and germs. Because it will give you the best result. 

5. Attach the Design

After that, you have to Place the sublimation paper with the printed side facing down onto the object. Secure it using an adhesive that can withstand heat to keep it from moving.

6. Heat Press the Design

The temperature should be correct. This means you have to set the temperature of your heat press machine. Then, press the product to transfer the design from the paper to the item. 

7. Remove the Paper

When the pressing time has been completed. You will carefully remove the the sublimation paper to see the design. After removing it, you should leave it to cool down. 

8. Enjoy Your Custom Item

Lastly, you will see that the design has been permanently transferred to your product. Now, you can use it for your personal or to give a gift! 

Maintenance of sublimation paper

You should have these things in your mind to maintain your sublimation paper.

  • You should save your paper in direct sunlight. 
  • Avoid it to get wet. 
  • You should Keep paper away from moisture.
  • Keep safe and secure from dust and germs. 
  • If you want to store it, keep it dry and cool. 
  • Use it before it expires because it can waste your money. 

Application of sublimation printing

You can print on many products. Here is the list of the most popular products!

  • Pillows
  • Phone cases
  • Mugs
  • Shirts
  • Flags 
  • Towels 
  • Keychains 
  • Hats 

Expert Tips for a Successful Sublimation Paper Experience

  • You should choose high-quality paper that is specially made for sublimation printing. 
  • You only have to use sublimation ink and a printer instead of others. 
  • The temperature of the heat press machine is suitable and according to the product. 
  • Cover your sublimation printer to keep it safe from dust and germs when you are not using it. 
  • The design that you wanna print should be unique, beautiful, and according to your product. 
  • The place where you are printing should be clean. 

Sublimation paper vs inkjet paper; Quick comparison

Sublimation paper Inkjet paper 
It can not fade or crack The inkjet printer can fade anytime 
Sublimation paper  can be used for many materials, fabric, metals etcIt can work mainly on paper 
Extremely vibrant and lively colorsGood colors and inhuman vibrant 

Key benefits of using sublimation paper 

Let’s show the benefits of sublimation paper, making it a favorable choice for everyone!

Simple to Use:

If you want to start your new printing business, Do not forget to use this paper. It is very easy and simple to use, and you do not need to worry about taking a class to use it. 


After sublimation printing on your product, you can use it for your personal use and give it to your loved one. This simply means the sublimation printing product is important in making a special in your friend’s heart. 

Versatile Use:

You have the freedom to use this paper for many different materials, such as metals, fabrics, ceramics, etc. So, yes, if you want to create a design on these materials, you can quickly and easily do so. 

Lasting Prints:

The prints are gaining popularity because of their long-lasting features.  Because it can not crack and fade. This means you can save your money instead of investing in other papers. 

Quick Process:

If you have a lot of projects to complete in one day, go for the sublimation process because it does not take you much time to complete. That means it starts quickly to finish all the work.

Bright Colors: h3

Do you love bright design? If so, sublimation paper is the perfect choice for you!  It can make your design bright and colorful and can easily leave the last impression in front of everyone.

Final words: Sublimation paper

Finally, sublimation paper is a special kind of paper. It is used during the process of sublimation printing. You can use this paper to print the design on many materials, like; fabrics, metals, ceramics, etc. 

Additionally, keep in mind that the sublimation paper requires some tips for its longevity. For example; keep it away from sunlight and use it before expires. Well, use this paper to make a beautiful and long design for your favorite product, making it attractive. 

FAQS: Sublimation paper

Q1: Can I sublimate on cotton?

A: No, you can not sublimate on cotton. 

Q2: How do you maintain your sublimation printer?

A: To maintain your sublimation printer, you should cover it to avoid dust and germs when you are not using it. 

Q3: Do I need special software for sublimation printing?

A: Yes, you need to use special software for sublimation printing. 

Q4: Is sublimation printing eco-friendly?

A: Yes, sublimation printing is very eco-friendly. 

Q5: How do I store sublimation paper?

A: You can store your sublimation paper in cool and dry places. 

Q6: Are there different types of sublimation paper?

A: Yes, sublimation paper is available with different types for different materials. 

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