6 Types of Laminating Film and Their Qualities

There are many different applications for lamination rolls. However, corresponding to those different applications are different types of laminating films and rolls as well. It’s incredibly important that those responsible for ordering laminating film rolls understand exactly what they are buying. For example, 1.5 millimeter film is equal to .0015 inches in thinness. This means that it is ideal for items that are printed on heavy cardstock. It is not ideal for items printed on thin paper, and in fact, can easily become damaged if it is used in such a manner.

With that being said, it’s important to understand exactly what your options are in terms of lamination rolls. Below is a quick guide to some of the different types of laminating roll films and the results that they yield.

1. Soft Touch Film

It’s important to note that while some types of laminating films are meant to be completely transparent, others are meant to create some kind of effect that sets the materials to which they are applied apart. Soft Touch films even affect the way a material feels when it is held. Creating a matte finish, these films have a kind of velvety feeling to the touch.

Soft Touch films can be found in clear forms, but can also be ordered in different colors as well as metallics. If they are printed over with a gloss spot varnish, they create a mirror-like reflection. Therefore, these films may not be used much in an office setting. But they can be utilized for special projects.

2. Solid Film

Solid lamination rolls are used to apply a full layer of color, glitter, or other finishes over materials. Metallics, glitters, holographic patterns, and even diffractions are available in sold film form. However, the underlying print can still be seen through these films. Although these special effects are rather noticeable, they are not meant to obstruct the readability of the materials to which they are applied.

3. Double-Sided Adhesive Film

There are a lot of different applications that are opened up through the use of lamination rolls that are made up of double-sided adhesive films. Printed materials, as well as other types of media that are not already self-adhesive, normally would be difficult to use in conjunction with laminating films. That is unless the films are double-sided adhesive films.

4. Recyclable Laminating Film

Some more environmentally conscious buyers may be interested in recyclable laminating film. This can be difficult to find, and therefore more expensive, as many types of laminating films are not naturally recyclable. When BOPP film is unused or wasted, it can be recycled easily. However, once it is laminated onto presentation products it becomes much more difficult to recycle. This is because the adhesive, the ink, and the underlying substrate all have to be recycled individually. PVS film can be quite difficult to recycle in any case, while PET film is more easily recycled but has to be recycled with the material it’s been attached to in mind.

5. PET Film

Let’s delve further into PET film and what exactly makes it different from other types of lamination film. Usually, there is a great oxygen barrier with this kind of film, which may be in part why it is more easily recyclable than other types of film. But its moisture barrier is only moderate, making it more susceptible to moisture damage.

6. BOPP Film

Those that are less concerned about recyclability may be drawn to BOPP film. However, this film isn’t as stiff as PET film and is generally regarded as visually inferior. Additionally, while BOPP has issues with regular moisture, it generally resists oil absorption as well as acidic products. PET film is more susceptible to these products.

There are so many different types of lamination products to consider. It’s easy to become overwhelmed with the different options available. But with the right amount of research ahead of time, it’s easy to become acquainted with the different products available and to make the right decision for your business.

I’m Allison Febrey, editor of Art Magazine Online. After a few years too long in the cut-throat, competitive world of the New York City publishing industry, I decided to follow my passion and create an online magazine for modern artists around the world. This is a community site, if you’re an artist or just an art admirer, feel free to join the discussion!

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