What Type of Vinyl Should I Use For My Sign?

Vinyl decals have become very popular in recent years. From decorations to custom signs, decals can be used on just about any flat surface for a variety of reasons. Many have even began creating their own decals with at home vinyl cutters such as Silhouette or Cricut, but with all these decals around, it’s important to know what kind of vinyl is right for your project. To help you figure it out, we’ve come up with a list of the most popular types of vinyl and transfer paper so you can have a better understanding of what product you should use!

Adhesive Vinyl

Chances are you’ll hear a lot of names for adhesive vinyls. Indoor adhesive vinyl is the same thing as removable vinyl and you may even hear it being called 631. This matte finish type of vinyl is most commonly used for vinyl wall decals or signs which won’t be exposed to too much sunlight or harsh elements.

On the other hand you have outdoor vinyl. This is typically considered to be permanent vinyl and also goes by 651. Often used for outdoor signs, this glossy vinyl can be used on any project indoors or out when in need of a more durable material.

Both of these options are available in a variety of colors and sizes making them great for any project. While there are other adhesive vinyl options besides 631 and 651, those are the most common and easiest to use if you ask us!

Heat Transfer Vinyl

Heat transfer vinyl, also known as HTV, is the material used to create custom clothing and (go figure) is applied with heat, mainly via an iron or heat press. This material does not have an adhesive backing like indoor/outdoor vinyl, and will only stick to material if applied with heat.

Transfer Material

While we’re covering the different types of vinyl, it’s probably best to mention a few of the transfer material options available. Transfer tape is a clear, non-gridded material that you place on top of the decal so you can easily install it on the wall or any other surface before removing the transfer tape.

Similar to transfer tape, there is also transfer paper. This is a slightly stickier option and comes with a grid on it to help with alignment in the install process. While the grid can be helpful, it is often difficult to line it up perfectly when applying the transfer paper to the decal.

One other option some people use is contact paper. This is probably the most cost effective option and may be best for those just starting out in the vinyl decal department.

Now that you have a better understanding of what materials to use, be sure to pick the best option for your project. Keep in mind that if you don’t have access to a vinyl cutter, you can always go to your l ocal print shop and they’ll be sure to know what products are right for your decal needs!