We hear this question asked often, “Screen Print or Heat Transfer, which one is best? What should I choose?”
The short answer is…it depends. BUT here we outline each decoration process for you and which products or situations they may be best suited for. This will give you a better understanding of choosing Screen Printing or Heat Transfer!
Let's start by defining both decoration methods:
Screen Printing (or Silk-Screen Printing) is a printing technique that uses a woven mesh to support an ink-blocking stencil. The attached stencil forms open areas of mesh that transfer ink as a sharp-edged image onto a substrate. A roller or squeegee is moved across the screen stencil, forcing or pumping ink past the threads of the woven mesh in the open areas.
Heat Transfer is when an image is screened on a transfer substrate which is then laid directly on the material to be imprinted. The image is then transferred from the substrate to the material through the use of heat and pressure.
There are multiple factors that can go into deciding which printing method is best for your promotional item. This includes logo design, color, item and order size. Although both screen print and heat transfer may be able to “do the job,” the outcomes made with the two processes can have some significant differences. Here we'll outline those main differences, so you can make an informed choice for your order!
Although these are not hard and fast rules, here you can get a general idea of which method would be preferred for your artwork when printing on specific promotional products.
Still not sure about Screen Print and Heat Transfer?
When in doubt, give us a call at 800-338-7996! Our customer service team will be happy to walk through your order and provide our best recommendation depending on your artwork and promotional item!
We offer more decoration methods than just Screen Print and Heat Transfer, depending on the promotional product! Learn about all Decoration Methods in our Help Center, including Debossing, Dye Sublimation, Embroidery and Laser Engraving.