Selecting the Right Paper for Your Project

February 13, 2024

Choosing the right paper helps improve the outcomes of your print project. Some print shop paper qualities include weight, thickness, finish, color, and opacity. At Bestype Printing, we offer several types of printing paper to customize your next project. Here are some tips for selecting the right paper: 

Understand Paper Weight and Thickness

The weight and thickness of paper play a role in determining its quality and suitability for different print shop projects. Paper weight is measured in pounds or grams per square meter. The higher the weight, the sturdier and more substantial the paper may feel. The type of project you are doing will help you determine the appropriate paper weight. For business cards and brochures, a medium-weight paper is often suitable. For more luxurious projects like wedding invitations, a heavier cardstock will add a touch of elegance.

Choose the Right Paper Finish

The finish of the paper contributes to its texture and appearance. Standard finishes include matte, glossy, and satin. Matte finishes provide a non-reflective surface, enhancing the readability of added text. Glossy finishes offer a shiny surface that boosts the appearance of vibrant colors and sharp images. Use a glossy finish for promotional materials to help your brand stand out.

The visual impact you want to achieve with your project will help you select a paper finish. A glossy finish makes the colors and details of printed photographs stand out. A matte finish is preferable for text-heavy documents or a more subtle appearance. Satin finishes offer a combination of glossy and matte with a slight shine that doesn’t create a glare.

Evaluate Color and Opacity

The color of the paper can influence the final appearance of your printed project. A print shop can help you choose your preferred color and opacity. White is a standard color choice for most printing projects. It provides a clean, neutral background that allows printed colors to pop. Branded projects may benefit from colored or textured paper that increases visual impact.

Higher opacity paper is a good choice for printing double-sided documents. The higher opacity confirms that the content on one side of the paper doesn’t show through to the other. Choosing opaque paper can complement your overall design and enhance the specific aesthetic of your project.

Assess Durability and Handling

Paper’s durability and handling characteristics are key for projects that must withstand regular handling and transportation. If your printing project involves materials that will be touched frequently, like menus, business cards, and postcards, choose paper with a coating or lamination. This protective layer enhances durability and prevents fingerprints, stains, and wear. This helps confirm that your printed materials maintain a clean appearance over time.

Choose flexible paper for projects like brochures or invitations that may be folded. A more flexible paper prevents cracking along the creases. A print shop will assess these aspects of your project to recommend a durable, flexible paper type. This keeps your printed materials looking good throughout their lifespan, enhancing their ability to make a positive impression on the audience.

Test Before Committing

Before committing to a large print run, we suggest testing a small batch with your chosen paper. This allows you to assess the color, text clarity, and overall appearance of the final product. Testing also allows you and the printing professionals to make adjustments to the project before completing a larger order. This process confirms that the final result meets your expectations for the project.

Visit Bestype Printing for Print Shop Services

At Bestype Printing, we will help you choose the right paper for your printing project. You can browse our online print shop to see what projects we can assist you with. Discuss the details of your project with one of our team members to determine the type of paper and application that suits your needs. Contact us today to learn more about our printing services.