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Can you use vinyl on sublimation blanks?

When it comes to decorating sublimation blanks, there are many options available. Sublimation allows you to transfer high-quality, full-color designs onto a wide range of substrates, such as mugs, phone cases, t-shirts, and more. However, some people may wonder if they can use vinyl on sublimation blanks instead of sublimation ink.

So, can you use vinyl on sublimation blanks? The short answer is yes, you can. In fact, using vinyl is a popular alternative to sublimation ink, and it offers some unique advantages. In this blog post, we will explore the benefits and limitations of using vinyl on sublimation blanks, as well as provide some tips for getting the best results.

The Benefits of Using Vinyl

One of the main advantages of using vinyl on sublimation blanks is that it allows you to create multi-colored designs without the need for multiple sublimation transfers. Vinyl comes in a wide variety of colors and finishes, such as glitter, matte, holographic, and more, so you can really get creative with your designs. Vinyl is also relatively easy to work with, even for beginners, and can be applied with a heat press or a standard iron.

Another benefit of using vinyl is that it can be more cost-effective than sublimation ink, especially if you only need to make a few items or don’t have the resources to invest in sublimation equipment. Vinyl is widely available in craft stores and online, and you can produce high-quality, long-lasting designs with just a few basic supplies.

The Limitations of Using Vinyl

While vinyl is a great option for some projects, it does have some limitations that you should be aware of. First, vinyl is not as durable or long-lasting as sublimation ink, especially when exposed to heat or sunlight. Over time, vinyl designs may begin to crack, peel, or fade, which can be disappointing if you’re looking for a more permanent solution. For this reason, vinyl is best suited for items that won’t be exposed to harsh conditions, such as indoor decorations or phone cases.

Another limitation of using vinyl is that it may not adhere well to some sublimation blanks, especially if they have a textured or porous surface. Vinyl is designed to stick to smooth, non-porous surfaces, so if you’re working with a mug or t-shirt that has a textured finish, you may not get the best results. In this case, it’s best to use sublimation ink or find a different type of substrate that works better with vinyl.

Tips for Using Vinyl on Sublimation Blanks

If you’re interested in using vinyl on sublimation blanks, there are a few tips and tricks you can follow to get the best results.

First, make sure to choose a high-quality vinyl that is specifically designed for use with a heat press. Not all vinyl is created equal, and some may not hold up well under high temperatures. Look for vinyl that is rated for use with a heat press or iron, and choose a color and finish that complements your design.

Second, always test a small sample of vinyl on your chosen sublimation blank before applying a full design. This will help you determine if the vinyl will adhere properly and provide the look and feel you’re going for.

Third, be mindful of the temperature and pressure settings you use when applying vinyl. Too much heat or pressure can cause the vinyl to melt or warp, while too little may not provide a secure bond. Follow the instructions provided with your vinyl, and adjust the settings as needed for your particular substrate.


In summary, using vinyl on sublimation blanks is a viable option for creating multi-colored designs on a variety of substrates. While it may not be as durable or long-lasting as sublimation ink, vinyl can be more cost-effective and is relatively easy to work with. Just be mindful of the limitations and follow the tips provided in this post to get the best results. Happy crafting!


What vinyl to use for sublimation mugs?

Sublimation mugs are a great way to create personalized and custom gifts for your friends and family. But in order to create a professional and long-lasting design, you need to use the right kind of vinyl. When it comes to selecting a vinyl for your sublimation mug project, it’s important to consider durability, quality, and longevity.

One of the most popular types of vinyl used for sublimation mugs is the permanent vinyl. This type of vinyl is designed to last for a long time because it is made from high-quality materials that are resistant to moisture, heat, and fading. The permanent vinyl is also easy to work with since it adheres well to smooth surfaces and can be easily cut with a cutting machine.

When shopping for permanent vinyl, there are many brands and types to choose from. However, it’s important to look for vinyl that is specifically rated for outdoor or permanent use. The Premium Permanent Vinyl from Cricut is a great option for sublimation mugs as it has been proven to be highly durable, easy to weed, and transfer smoothly onto the mug.

Another popular option for sublimation mugs is the heat transfer vinyl (HTV). HTV is ideal for creating custom designs on fabrics but can also be used on mugs as an alternative to permanent vinyl. However, when using HTV, it’s important to note that the design will not be permanent and may not last as long as a permanent vinyl design.

The type of vinyl you use for your sublimation mug project will depend on your preferences and the durability you desire. In order to ensure a long-lasting and professional-looking design, it’s important to choose a vinyl that is specifically designed for permanent use and is resistant to heat, moisture, and fading. With the right vinyl, you can create beautiful and personalized sublimation mugs that will last for years to come.

What is the best vinyl to sublimate on?

When it comes to sublimation on vinyl, there are a few options to consider. The best vinyl to use for sublimation depends on the specific project you’re working on, as well as your personal preference and experience with different types of vinyl.

One popular option for sublimation on vinyl is glitter heat transfer vinyl (HTV). While white glitter HTV is the most popular choice for sublimating on, you can use other light colors as well. Keep in mind that the color of the vinyl will show through in the design, so it’s important to choose a color that will complement your design and not clash with it.

Another option for sublimating on vinyl is printable heat transfer vinyl. This type of vinyl is designed specifically for use with sublimation printing, and allows you to create custom designs that can be applied to a variety of surfaces. Printable HTV comes in both matte and glossy finishes, and can be used on a variety of materials including fabric, metal, and plastic.

When choosing a vinyl to use for sublimation, it’s important to consider factors like durability, opacity, and ease of use. For example, if you’re working on a project that will be exposed to sunlight or weathering, you’ll want to choose a vinyl that is durable and resistant to fading or cracking. Similarly, if you’re working with a detailed design, you’ll want to choose a vinyl that offers good opacity and color vibrancy to ensure that your design looks sharp and crisp.

The best vinyl to use for sublimation will depend on your specific needs and preferences. By experimenting with different types of vinyl and techniques, you can find the perfect combination to achieve your desired results.

Is sublimation or vinyl better for shirts?

When it comes to printing designs onto shirts or other apparel, two of the most popular methods are sublimation and vinyl printing. Both of these methods have their own advantages and disadvantages, and the decision of which one is better primarily depends on your specific needs and preferences.

Sublimation printing is a process that involves printing a design onto a special paper using a sublimation printer. The paper is then placed onto the apparel and subjected to high heat and pressure, which causes the ink to turn into a gas and permeate the fibers of the apparel. This results in a long-lasting, high-quality print that is resistant to fading, peeling, and cracking. Sublimation works best on polyester or polyester-blend fabrics, as the ink can only bond with polyester fibers.

On the other hand, vinyl printing involves cutting a design from a sheet of vinyl using a vinyl cutter and then heat-pressing the vinyl onto the shirt. This is a more affordable option compared to sublimation, but it is less durable and may crack, fade, or peel over time. Vinyl is a good option if you have a smaller budget or if you need to make a custom design quickly. While vinyl can be applied to any type of fabric, it works best on cotton or cotton-blend materials.

The choice between sublimation and vinyl depends on your specific needs and preferences. If you want a high-quality, long-lasting print that is resistant to common wear and tear, sublimation is the better option. However, if you have a smaller budget or are not as concerned with durability, vinyl can be a great alternative. Keep in mind that the type of fabric you choose to print on will also play a role in determining which method is best for your needs.