Printing Techniques

Water-Based inks (水浆印花工艺)

these penetrate the fabric more than the plastisol inks and create a much softer feel. Ideal for printing darker inks onto lighter colored garments. Also useful for larger area prints where texture is important. Some inks require heat or an added catalyst to make the print permanent.


Plastisol (胶浆印花工艺)

Plastisol is the most common ink used in commercial garment decoration. Good color opacity onto dark garments and clear graphic detail with, as the name suggests, a more plasticized texture. This print can be made softer with special additives or heavier by adding extra layers of ink. Plastisol inks require heat (approx. 150 °C (300 °F) for many inks) to cure the print.

Plastisol (胶浆印花工艺)

Plastisol is the most common ink used in commercial garment decoration. Good color opacity onto dark garments and clear graphic detail with, as the name suggests, a more plasticized texture. This print can be made softer with special additives or heavier by adding extra layers of ink. Plastisol inks require heat (approx. 150 °C (300 °F) for many inks) to cure the print.

Caviar beads (植珠服装印花?)

A caviar bead is a glue that is printed in the shape of the design, to which small plastic beads are then applied – works well with solid block areas creating an interesting tactile surface.

Cracking ink (龟裂印花)

Cracking ink effect is when the ink produces an intentional cracked surface after drying.

Discharge inks (拔印)

Discharge ink is used to print lighter colors onto dark background fabrics, they work by removing the dye of the garment – this means they leave a much softer texture. The cons with this process is that they are less graphic in nature than plastisol inks, and exact colors are difficult to control. One of the pros of using this process is they are especially good for distressed prints and under-basing on dark garments that are to be printed with additional layers of plastisol. It adds variety to the design or gives it that natural soft feel.

Puff ink (发泡印花工艺)

Expanding ink, or puff, is an additive to plastisol inks which raises the print off the garment, creating a 3D feel and look to the design. Mostly used when printing on apparel.

Flocking (植绒印花工艺)

Flocking consists of a glue printed onto the fabric and then flock material is applied for a velvet touch.

Foil (烫金烫银工艺)

Foil is much like flock, but instead of a velvet touch and look it has a reflective/mirror look to it. Although foil is finished with a heat press process it needs the screen printing process in order to add the adhesive glue onto the material for the desired logo or design.

Glitter/Shimmer

Glitter or Shimmer ink is when metallic flakes become an additive in the ink base to create this sparkle effect. Usually available in gold or silver but can be mixed to make most colours.

Gloss (Clear Gel)

Gloss ink is when a clear base laid over previously printed inks to create a shiny finish.

Shimmer (金银粉印花)

Metallic ink is similar to glitter, but smaller particles suspended in the ink. A glue is printed onto the fabric, then nano-scale fibers applied on it. This is often purchased already made.

Suede Ink

Suede ink is a milky coloured additive that is added to plastisol. With suede additive you can make any color of plastisol have a suede feel. It is actually a puff blowing agent that does not bubble as much as regular puff ink. The directions vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but generally up to 50% suede can be added to normal plastisol.

High Build (厚板浆)

High Build is a process which uses a type of varnish against a lower mesh count with many coats of emulsion or a thicker grade of emulsion (e.g., Capillex®). After the varnish passes through to the substrate, an embossed-appearing, 'raised' area of varnish is created. When cured at the end of the process, the varnish yields a Braille effect, hence the term 'High Build'.

Glow-In-The-Dark (荧光印花)

Glow-in-the-Dark inks are great for many uses. They can enhance a design to make it stand out or can be used as a stand alone special effect on a shirt. This ink glows just like the hands on a watch would that has been placed in a bright light. This ink is great for Halloween shirts, rock designs, or any design that you want to glow in the dark! The image must be exposed to light to take effect. Then once the lights are turned off the image will glow with a light greenish color. The less light in a room the better the glow will be. It has been said that you can add a little fluorescent ink to the glow in the dark ink to change its hue to a blue, red, or yellow.

Color Changing (光敏变色印花)

These fun inks are practically invisible when indoors and come alive when you step into the sun. Ultra violet light brings out the pigment in the design. The brighter the UV rays, the brighter the pain becomes.

Reflective (反光印花)

Functional for safety and a cool effect for designers to play with. Garments printed with reflective ink provide enhanced visibility for joggers, cyclists, construction workers and others who work around traffic at night.

Silicone (硅胶印花)

Silicone Screen Printing is one of the most expensive printing technology. However, it is the most preferable choice of many famous brands in the world. The process of silicone screen printing is like normal printing technology. Silicone ink is highly elastic so the silicone printing can be stretched and then returns to its original shape. Moreover, a silicone printing garment has an excellent durability. It can stand all wash tests.

Hydrochromic Ink (水变印花)

The screened image is activated by water, not sunlight or heat. A white hydrochromic ink is screened or sprayed over an image. All you see is the white ink. When water is applied to the white ink, it disappears and the image behind it appears. When the water dries, the image goes back to white.