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(800) 675-4656 or (605) 224-9999


Call Us Today!

(800) 675-4656 or (605) 224-9999

Printing & Mailing

Business Cards


Rack Cards

First Class Bulk Mailing



Livestock Catalogs



Presort Standard Mailing



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Print Coatings - Aqueous Coating, Spot Varnish and UV Coating

Make your print jobs STAND OUT from the crowd - give them a coating!

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Print Coatings

Make your print jobs STAND OUT from the crowd—give them a coating!

Purpose of print coating

Coatings are used on printed products primarily to protect them from scratching or smearing but also to achieve certain visual effects. Coatings can give protection from moisture and finger prints too. They can be used on one or both sides to create a glossy or dull finish or can be applied selectively to highlight a visual element.

Types of print coating

Aqueous coating is a clear, fast-drying water based coating that is used to protect printed pieces. It gives a high gloss or matte surface that deters dirt and fingerprints. It also improves the durability of pieces that go through the mail or business cards that live in people’s wallets. It looks beautiful on brochures, presentation folders or booklet covers. Aqueous coating provides a more substantial protection from scuffs than varnishes. Its typically applied to the entire piece, usually by the last unit on a printing press. Because it is water based, aqueous coating is more environmentally friendly than varnish or UV coatings.

Varnish is like a clear ink and can be gloss, satin or matte. A flood varnish covers the entire printed page for sheen or protection. A spot varnish can highlight a specific area of a page and adds shine and depth to specific elements such as a logo or image. Varnishes are also applied on-press, but they are heavier and can be applied (like inks) to only certain areas (like spot varnish). A plate has to be created to apply spot varnish so artwork is necessary.

UV Coating is cured by exposure to ultraviolet light to quickly dry and harden the coating. UV coatings give the highest gloss versus other coatings but might crack when scored or folded because of the thickness and hardness of the coating. UV coatings can cover the entire sheet (flooding) or as a spot coating. It can be applied on or off-press. UV compatible inks must be used on sheets that will be UV coated. UV coated sheets can’t be foil stamped and embossing should be done after the coating.

When to use a print coating depends on how the piece will be used. Use a coating if protecting and enhancing the piece is important. If you are mailing it a coating is a must for protection and durability. Paper that gets handled (like business cards or brochures, bookmarks, rack cards, catalogs or presentation folders) needs some sort of coating. Pryntcomm can help you decide what type of coating is right for your job.

When not to use a coating also depends on how the piece will be used. If you need to write on it, a coating makes it difficult. The same goes for the address side of postcards or other mailing panels unless your printer or mailing house assures you they can print addresses on coated paper.

Tips & Best Practices

One or two layers of White Toner may be applied, with the second layer providing additional opacity and/or brightness.

Clear Toner should be applied in a single layer only. Additional layers will not create a 3D effect, but may cause visible yellowing.