Have you ever judged a book by its cover?
You’re not alone! First impressions are essential to how people judge a person, a product, or a business. And when you’re going for visual impact, research suggests visitors will form an impression in as little as 50 milliseconds!
Once you’ve invested all the hard work and planning into your print marketing materials, it is important to go the extra mile on quality.
Want a simple technique that beautifully enhances your impact and appeal? For a budget-friendly bonus, try adding a varnish!
Know Your Options
Just as varnish on a dresser or table protects the wood and gives it a nice finished look, the varnish used on printed pieces enhances their look and durability.
Adding a print varnish brings a transparent coating to your printed page. Varnish can add a unique, creative element to get that five-star appearance, so make sure you choose the one that best fits with the look and tone you’re trying to communicate.
Here are a few options to consider:
Also known as matte, this is very different from a varnish-like gloss.
A matte finish is best suited if your design contains a lot of text, as it will deflect light and glare. Using a dull varnish can be an excellent tool for improving readability on pages containing text. Although called dull, matte finishes scream sophistication. These varnish coatings are never overdone but carry a simple and stylish vibe.
As its name indicates, this varnish is the diva of the bunch and gives a glossy type of appearance.
Gloss varnish makes colors look more saturated, and your design elements look crisper and sharper. It is perfect for printed pages containing items like photographs and graphics, adding a glare or shine to bring extra attention to the areas where it is applied. An overall gloss varnish will protect areas with heavy coverage from rubbing off and will keep your piece from scuffing.
Looking to strike a compromise?
Satin varnish is created by mixing gloss and matte varnishes and offers a moderate amount of shine. This option is ideal if you have a lot of photo and text combination pieces.
Want to highlight a certain section of your piece, so it leaps off the page?
Spot varnishes are a great way to maximize the contrast between matte and gloss surfaces. This technique allows you to apply varnish to an individual image or graphic on your printed piece (such as a logo or photo) while leaving the rest of the piece unvarnished.
The most popular coating for printed material is aqueous coating.
Aqueous is a clear, water-based coating that is environmentally friendly. Since it is water-based, it is best used on papers with a text weight of 80# or heavier, so you do not end up with curling or wrinkles. Aqueous coating dries quicker than varnishes and makes it ideal for running inline on the press.
A UV varnish is applied off-line and is cured with ultraviolet light.
This process gives the surface an exceptional gloss and rub resistance. A great example of the glossiness of UV Coating is sports trading cards. These have a UV coating on the photo side but no coating on the stat side. This coating is cured by passing under an ultraviolet light that quickly dries and hardens the coating, creating a high-level sheen but the greatest possible protection. UV coated elements in your piece will take center stage.
Want to add excitement and durability to your next print product? Give us a call to talk about varnish options today!