What’s the Difference Between Vinyl and Flex Printing?


If you’re looking to promote brand awareness or an event, then you must have considered using banners, branded t-shirts, and signages. However, the issue is that lots of people are not aware of the different types of printing used.

In printing, there are two major methods used – Flex and Vinyl printing. While Flex is best for branding clothing material, Vinyl is perfect for printing banners and signages.

Although these two types of printing are widely used, most people are unaware of the differences, hence the question “what is the difference between vinyl and flex printing?”

In this article, you’d find answers to your question, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of the two types of printing.

Continue reading to find out.

What is Flex Printing?

Flex printing is a more flexible and tempered form of printing than vinyl. Flex material can be printed on and recolored using specialized industrial printers.

These printers operate like any other inkjet mechanism and are designed to accept flex material.

At a glance, flex and vinyl printing can seem to be alike; however, they have different functions and the materials used appear slightly different on a close look.

Once flex material has been printed, it can be applied to t-shirts, sweaters, jackets, and flex boards. Flex material is usually attached to these products by applying heat with special tools or presses that ensure the material bonds to the surface.

Other places where flex printing is applied include;

  • Retail store signs
  • Business Flag banners
  • Real estate signs
  • Custom office signs
  • Trade show displays.

What is a Flex Board?

Flex board is a material that is designed to hold the flex material bonding. Using a flex board when printing is the safest and most durable way to apply your printed flex material to your end product such as a banner, or a sign, rather than clothing.

READ MORE: What is Digital Printing? How Does it Work?

What is Vinyl Printing?

Vinyl printing is the most common type of signage and banner printing used today. In Vinyl printing, you’d send your sign maker an outline or pattern with colors you’d like to use.

Afterward, the vinyl is loaded into a special machine and will be cut into the pattern you have selected.

Once your Vinyl has been cut, it must be applied to the appropriate surface. In Flex printing, the flex material is generally applied to a medium using heat. While in Vinyl printing, the vinyl needs to be stuck to your banner or sign using adhesive attached to the vinyl material.

This application works more like a band-aid, which needs to have the adhesive covers pulled off before being applied to a surface.

One of the major benefits of using Vinyl is that it allows you to make high-resolution prints, as high as 200 feet, and is more economical.

Vinyl can be used on different surfaces like glass, metals, plastic, etc. While they work well with smooth surfaces, some can adhere to textured surfaces like concrete using a special adhesive.

Although Vinyl printing is widely used today, it is more prone to wrinkling.

READ MORE: What Does Collate Mean When Printing?

What is a Vinyl Poster?

While Flex material is the most common type of printing used majorly for clothing, Vinyl on the other hand is being used majorly for banners, signs, and similar surfaces to which the adhesive really sticks.

Vinyl posters are made of flexible PVC, and the vinyl applied to them can stick to the poster for a long time without showing signs of wear.

Learn more about our printing services in Nigeria today!

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Bottom Line

In the end, the type of material and printing medium you use is entirely up to you. If you want to brand clothing material to help you create brand awareness, then you may want to go for Flex printing.

If you want to print on smooth surfaces and signs, then Vinyl printing is the best fit. You can use it to create big signage for your business location and invite more customers. However, you should bear in mind that Flex printing can be slightly more expensive when compared to Vinyl.

Regardless, whatever you end up choosing, ensure you use SLeekBlue Media Houz to create your banners and to request a free order when deciding which option to use.

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