Choosing the Right Lamination Style for Your Printing Project

Choosing the Right Lamination Style for Your Printing Project

Lamination is an excellent way to enhance the professional appearance of your printing project. It involves enclosing a printed page between two plastic films. Lamination protects the printed page from damage from rain and spilled beverages, and it increases the strength and durability. Lamination also enhances the sheen of the page, and adds to the vibrancy of the colored ink.

Gloss Laminated Finishes

The film used for lamination is available in various degrees of sheen. The gloss style offers a high sheen finish that has reflective properties similar to glass. Most laminated projects use the gloss style. Gloss finishes are a great choice for promotional printed projects, as they make the ink exceptionally eye-catching. Gloss finishes are also commonly used for the following types of projects:

  • Restaurant menus
  • Badges
  • Bookmarks
  • Study materials
  • Presentation folders
  • Showroom displays
  • Training materials
  • Reports
  • Books
  • Educational materials

Matte Laminated Finishes

Matte laminated finishes are on the opposite end of the sheen scale. They absorb light instead of reflecting it. Matte finishes are often referred to as “cloudy,” but this description is somewhat misleading. The printed page is still clearly visible underneath a matte finish. And since it absorbs the light, a matte finish offers better visibility for printed items that will be positioned under harsh lighting.

Laminated Film Thicknesses

The thickness of the lamination film is another important consideration. It’s measured in mil thickness, which isn’t the same as a millimeter. One mil is the equivalent of 1/1,000ths of an inch. In other words, three mil is 0.003 inches thick. This thickness is commonly used for restaurant menus, as it is still thin enough to be easily folded. It’s also ideal for wall posters and maps. Five mil is sturdier, and won’t keep a fold easily. Ten mil is considered very thick. It’s rugged and durable, and won’t bend easily. It’s ideal for badges and ID cards.


You can put your trust in Reproductions, Inc. for all of your mounting and lamination needs. We offer gloss and matte finishes, as well as multiple lamination thicknesses to choose from. Call our office in Tucson, Arizona at (520) 622-7747 if you have any questions.