All about print paper and gsm – which one suits you best?

When we talk about paper grammage or gsm, we are referring to the paper density, eg. the thickness of the paper sheets. To make sure you choose the right kind of paper for your printed product, We will give you a run-down of the various kinds of paper: coated / art paper, liquid foil card stock, woodfree paper (copier/printer paper), and etc. We’ll be taking a closer look at each kind and the differences between them, as well as at our printed products and the papers on offer for them.

Different paper gsm

In talking about different kinds of paper, it’s probably best to mention the “surface feel”, which is how paper professionals describe the texture of the paper to the touch; the surface feel can tell you a lot about the paper, e.g. size, contours, surface texture, weight, and stability.

Woodfree paper

Also known as copier or printer paper, woodfree paper is frequently used for letters and notebooks because it can be written and printed on over and over again; this makes it suitable for copiers, ink-jet, and laser printers.
Offset has high brightness and a “rough” surface, which allows it to take on colour better. It can be written or printed on at will because no water-based coating is applied. A thicker density paper version of woodfree will be ivory card stock.

Samples of 230gsm Ivory Artcard:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BQInRKdAG-Z/

Art card paper

Art card paper is made of chemical pulp which often has a high non-wood percentage. The matt or glossy lamination finish can be applied. The dispersion coating seals the colour and gives the paper increased stability, which leads to excellent printed images with sharp contrasts. Art card paper is the perfect illustration printing sheet, just right for namecards, vouchers, flyers, brochures, and similar visual products.

Samples of 260gsm Artcard with Matt Lamination:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BOMKtcAg3ox/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BoI9dTTh409/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BqRdqSWBpoK/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BQhCeNKAy9G/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BOMKP-uAk9Y/

Samples of 310gsm Artcard with Matt Lamination:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BQ-tJ5bDBqJ/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BKVC94OBFgk/

Synthetic Card Plastic

With a gsm of 500gsm thickness, Our Synthetic Plastic is made out of 90% Plastic and 10% Paper elements. The basic starting material for synthetic plastics is ethene (ethylene), H2C=CH2. Ethene is itself a monomer which on heating (100-400oC) under high pressure (1000 atm) gives polyethylene.

Polyethylene is the polymer manufactured in largest tonnage is polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Polyvinyl chloride is the polymer of chloroethene or vinyl chloride, H2C=CHCl. Chloroethene is produced by dehydrochlorination of ethylene dichloride made from ethene or by chlorination of ethyne.

It is as much durable than PVC, lightweight and flexible in shape and won’t crack as easily as PVC cards. The thickness of our Synthetic card is 500gsm, can also be space savvy when it comes to limited wallet space for your clients. 

Here are some photo & video samples of Synthetic material cards:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BqMiIsEBNI2/https://www.instagram.com/p/BJaMDAZBrRR/?taken-by=printmystuffsg
https://www.instagram.com/p/BLtZObAhGUS/?taken-by=printmystuffsg
https://www.instagram.com/p/BLtanz5Bnch/?taken-by=printmystuffsg

Liquid foil Artcard

Liquid Foil name cards are processed through a uniquely processed foil system, applying silver foil with a vast assortment of CMYK colours to create multi-coloured foils choices for our customer with their preferred design in full foil colours. Liquid foil works a lot better with lighter colours since the colour gradient and subtle sheen will be more obvious on your final print out.

Full-colour foil name cards give name card design a luxurious high-end type of impression. Potential clients can be led into believing that your corporation is highly reputed with just this subtle finishing option alone.

Samples of 260gsm Foil cards, Silver Foil:

Silver Foil with Gloss White: https://www.instagram.com/p/BhJz_qmFCz1/

Turquoise Foil with Gloss Colour: https://www.instagram.com/p/BW1Q5mtFHUZ/

Rose Gold Foil with Gloss White: https://www.instagram.com/p/BW0RrwllHaA/

Rose Gold and Silver Foil: https://www.instagram.com/p/BW0Q_FSFzrA/

Multiple Coloured Foil with Gloss White: https://www.instagram.com/p/BoI_wI1hi3x/

Graphic Art Foil: https://www.instagram.com/p/BfrnHvplcbi/

Photo Art Foil: https://www.instagram.com/p/BW0Q3FQlwUv/

Paper grammage for printed products

You might find this overview useful when choosing the right paper for your product:

Business cards (one and two sided)

> Business cards tend to be in heavy use, so the paper should be stable.

-> The paper should also be stable, but with folds not too thick.
-> If you are setting a fold in colour, we recommend creasing from a grammage of 250gsm onwards so that the colour does not split at the fold.

230gsm ivory card, 260 gsm art card, 260gsm liquid foil card, 260gsm uv varnish (gloss) card, 310gsm art card, 500gsm synthetic plastic card
Business cards (four sided)

The paper should also be stable, but with folds not too thick.
If you are setting a fold in colour, we recommend creasing from a grammage of 260gsm onwards so that the colour does not split at the fold.


230gsm ivory card, 260 gsm art card, 260gsm uv varnish (gloss) card, 310gsm art card
Letterheads (one or two sided)

-> In view of postage costs, lighter paper can bring real savings.

80gsm woodfree paper
Brochures with/without cover
with Staple binding, Perfect binding, Loop binding or Spiral binding

The paper can be thicker if you have a low number of pages or if it’s a corporate image brochure.
If you have a large number of pages, you should have a maximum grammage of 157 gsm.
If you are setting a fold in colour, we recommend scoring from a grammage of 157 gsm onwards so that the colour does not split at the fold.
According to the type of brochure and the kind of binding used, you can choose from the paper grammages set out here.

80gsm woodfree paper, 128gsm art paper, 157gsm art paper
Poster (one or two sided)

A0 to A3 posters with small print runs are generally best printed on photo papers like these.

157gsm art paper, 230gsm Ivory paper, 260gsm Artcard
Flyers (one and two sided)

80–128 gsm is good for budget flyers in brochures, etc.
157–260 gsm is best for classic flyers.
260–310 gsm is almost like cardboard.

Postcards

310gsm Artcard is the classic choice for advertising postcards.


230gsm ivory card, 260 gsm art card, 260gsm uv varnish (gloss) card, 310gsm art card

After all the descriptions and explanations here, you might want to get a feel for the range of papers available yourself, in which case you are welcome to order a print sample free of charge. If you have any other questions, We’ll be happy to answer them: Whatsapp +65 8753 0413 to ask us any questions you may have.

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