Which Paper Should You Choose?

First think about the intended use of your print material. Consider whether the project will be one-use only or is it for example, reference material and will need to stand up to repeated handling. Job performance varies greatly between paper varieties.

See and feel different samples in person, if possible. Talk to your printer about which papers hold ink better, fold better and dry faster. More expensive paper generally tends to run better.

If your project will be folded, the thickness of the paper will determine if it needs to be scored first to avoid cracking along the folds.

Ask your printer about their house stock. If all you want is standard paper for a standard job, house stock might be the best and most economical choice.

Stock samples are usually free, so ask your printer for a sample so you can experience the look and “feel” of the papers you are considering.

If you want your order printed on matte or dull finished paper, you might need to have each coated with a varnish or aqueous coating. Ask your printer about the paper’s durability with, and without, the coating.

Even if you want simple white paper, you will still need to determine which shade of white you want. Papers are classified according to the American Forest & paper Association by brightness. Least bright is class 5 and 1 is brightest. The brightest paper available is Superwhite, which is even brighter than class 1 white paper. Think about what colors you’ll be printing on the paper when you make your selection. Many experts recommend using a blue white or warmer neutral white paper because those colors are most likely to enhance what is being printed on them.

And lastly, check the availability of the paper of your choice. Paper lines change often, so have a second choice in mind in case this happens. If a paper must be ordered directly from the mill, your costs might climb considerably. If you decide to order specialty or mill items, there might be a minimum order stipulation, so plan your budget accordingly.


At East Ridge Printing, we are a well-rounded team of printing artisans backed by our ERP Promise. Learn more about our guarantee by clicking the following link or call us at 585.266.4911. ERP Promise Link:  http://eastridgeprint.com/guarantee/