Have you found yourself perplexed when trying to decide which white ink to use? We know how difficult it can be to navigate all the options. There are a handful of different types of white plastisol inks out there, so how do you know which to use? And to make it even more complicated, companies don’t give the products straightforward names. Instead, you’ll see things like Meteor White, Legacy White, or Lava Perfect White. Don’t worry if you’re new to screen printing and are confused about the different whites, even experienced screen printers wouldn’t know how to differentiate those inks. Today we break down different white inks and the scenarios in which you would use them.
Since ink names can be confusing, we decided to name our inks plain and simply. We have four plastisol white inks with the most basic names, to help you find the right product.
- Rapidcure® Underbase White Plastisol Ink
- Rapidcure® White Plastisol Ink
- Rapidcure® Polyester White Plastisol Ink
- Ecotex® Plant Based White Ink
Let's dive into each product.
Rapidcure® Underbase White Plastisol Ink – This is exactly as it sounds – an under-base ink. If you are printing on a dark garment and need an under-base, this is the ink to use. The viscosity and opacity of this ink is less than a normal white ink so that it lays nice and smooth under the other color of your choice. This ink is not ideal as a stand-alone white it is not opaque enough and will not give solid bold color when printed alone. This is a low temperature cure ink that cures at 270 degrees.
Rapidcure® White Plastisol Ink – Rapid Cure is a standard white ink with a low cure temperature cure. Rapidcure® White ink will be your new go to white ink for all prints that require white. The low bleed properties of this ink make it great for printing on all cotton and polyester blends. The low cure temperature also helps to prevent burning and scorching fabrics. Rapidcure® is very creamy and easy to stir, the short body texture makes cleaning a breeze. Rapidcure® cures at 270 degrees but can also be cured at 320 alongside other plastisol inks.
Rapidcure® Polyester White Plastisol Ink - This is the alpha of all poly inks. Rapidcure® Polyester White ink is a NO Bleed ink, not to be confused with low bleed. If you are working with polyester garments this is the gold standard. Say goodbye to dye migration forever with Rapidcure® Polyester. This ink shares the same properties as Rapidcure® White ink and cures at 270 degrees.
Ecotex® Plastisol Ink Polyester White – The Polyester White is a good, low-bleed ink formulated for blends and poly fabrics to keep dye migration from ruining your day. This ink cures at 320.
Ecotex® White Plant Based Plastisol Ink – This ink can be used in place of Rapidcure® White Plastisol ink if you are looking for an eco-friendly printing option. Ecotex® Plant Based Plastisol Ink by Screen Print Direct® is made from plant-based plasticizer. Unlike most plastisol inks, Ecotex® Plant Based Ink is free of PVC and all phthalates. Our ink is also more readily biodegradable than conventional plastisol inks. Produce bold and vibrant prints with our clean vegan formula. Made with you and the environment in mind, ecofriendly printing is now possible. Create without compromise.
Something we would like to note about white ink is the texture. White ink is thicker ink by nature, this is due to the amount of pigment needed in the ink to make it opaque. The increased pigment also increases the weight of the ink. For example, one gallon of black ink weighs 10 pounds, while one gallon of white ink weighs 15 pounds.
Many people think something is wrong with the ink because at first glance it looks like a solid mass. The ink just needs to be warmed up by giving it a good stir!
You may have a harder time printing the ink due to the thickness, if this is the case, we recommend checking that you are using the correct squeegee and durometer, this will reduce fibrillation*. We recommend an industry standard 70 durometer screen printing squeegee. The mesh count will vary dependent on your artwork. You can find more information on fibrillation and how to avoid it in our blog post on Plastisol Ink.
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* Fibrillation: when the fibers of the garment show through a print, or ink deposit, giving the fabric a faded or hairy-like look