Can You Use Sublimation Ink On Heat Transfer Paper?

Can you use sublimation ink on heat transfer paper is the question I get multiple times a day. So, I decided to come up here and write everything down. So the next time I get asked the same question, I will direct all of you towards this very page.

Can You Use Sublimation Ink On Heat Transfer Paper?

The simplest answer to this question is yes, you can definitely use sublimation ink on heat transfer paper. In fact, it is the most reliable ink for heat transfer paper. The print will not blotch and spoil on initial printing as well as when you put it in the heat press machine. The further details are as follows. So, if you are interested to know more, then keep on reading!

Can You Use Sublimation Ink On Heat Transfer Paper?

What Is Heat Transfer Paper?

A heat transfer paper is a special kind of paper coated with certain chemicals. It makes it more tolerant and receptive to high heat temperature. A little bit more compatible with sublimation inks as compared to regular paper. With a standard sublimation printer and correct sublimation inks, the risk of getting a blotched image on the sublimation heat transfer paper is minimal.

All you will have to do to get a perfectly sublimated t-shirt is select an image, adjust its size, and other details as per your liking. Once you are done, hit print. You can now heat press this image onto your desired t-shirt. However, you cannot do this without heat transfer paper. The sublimation inks will not stick to it, thus outputting a hazy blotched image. For more clarity we will more discuss on can you use sublimation Ink on Heat Transfer Paper?

Can You Use A Regular Printer To Print A Heat Transfer Paper?

For the purpose of getting a print on a heat transfer paper, you will have to use a sublimation printer. This will help you get the most perfect output you have ever imagined. However, while we are on this topic, I would like to further clarify that you can also use a regular printer to print a heat transfer paper. However, there are certain bold pointers you will have to bear in mind. First of all, it should be a laser printer. Secondly, it should be brand new. Thirdly, use sublimation inks. And finally, never try to use this printer for any purpose other than sublimation printing.

How Long Does Heat Transfer Fabric Last?

If you are wondering how long it will take to break the sublimation ink printing on your t-shirt? Then let me tell you that it takes about fifty washes to fade the colors away. It may take more or less depending upon the type of detergent and the way you handle your garments. But fifty washes are standard lifespan of a sublimated t-shirt.

Start-up Costs and Equipment Requirements

If you are thinking about getting a sublimation business started then you better start as early as possible. The start-up costs of this business are the lowest as compared to other businesses. You launch your business under a thousand dollars. All you need is a sublimation printer, a heat press machine, sublimation inks, and a bundle of heat transfer papers. The price may vary from brand to brand and product to product, but it shouldn’t be higher than a thousand bucks. So, what are you still waiting for? Gather all this equipment and start-up your constant stream of income right now!


If you are wondering whether you can use your extra sublimation inks for other printer purposes then let me warn you beforehand, it is a thoroughly risky step. You might end up wasting your time, sublimation ink, and the paper you use for that matter. The reason behind this is that sublimation inks are specifically produced for a material other than just a regular paper. Thus, it will have difficulty sticking to the regular paper and might spoil the paper. Moreover, the colors will also appear dull as well.

Printing on sublimation transfer paper is the same as printing on regular paper. The steps are the same, just the materials are different. For instance, you will need a sublimation printer and specific sublimation inks to go with the printer. Next, just feed the ink and the heat transfer paper into the appropriate places in the sublimation printer and adjust the settings as per your liking. Once you are done customizing the settings, hit print! Beware, that the colors of the print will appear dull on the paper but this is mainly due to incompatibility between the ink and the paper.

Heat transfer paper acts as a bridge between a sublimation printer and the material you want to sublimate the ink on. You cannot put the material directly into the sublimation printer. So, you get the desired image printed on the heat transfer paper using the appropriate sublimation inks and then heat press that paper onto the fabric. This will effectively transfer the ink onto the fabric.

Final Thoughts

Summing it all up, now you have got your answer of can you use sublimation Ink on heat transfer Paper? It is safe to conclude that yes, you can definitely use sublimation ink on heat transfer paper. In fact, heat transfer paper is the most suitable option to get a sublimation print on. The chemical coating on the heat transfer paper makes it more compatible with the sublimation inks. Thus giving out the most perfect results. If you don’t believe my words, then go ahead and try to use a regular paper for this purpose. But I won’t be held responsible for the results!

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