Coated Paper VS. Uncoated Paper
Not to be confused with product finishing, our website refers to paper coating as the treating of paper before the printing process. Coated and uncoated stock are each suitable for different types of products.
Coated stock has pigment applied onto the surface which reduces paper absorbency and improves paper brightness. Printing on coated paper usually results in sharper images and a smoother texture. On our product pages, you will find details about whether the product stock is coated on one side (C1S) or coated on two sides (C2S). Coated stock is suitable for colorful, image-heavy designs on products such as flyers and presentation folders.
Uncoated stock on the other hand, is paper that does not have any pigment or compound added to it. Since the paper fibres are quite visible, the paper has a natural, smooth texture. Uncoated stock is more absorbent; while it is not ideal for printing images, the paper texture provides an excellent surface for writing.
Consider printing the following products on uncoated stock:
• notepads • letterheads • envelopes
The topic of paper weight is a little more complicated than coated vs. uncoated paper. The thickness and weight of paper is measured by several units, so you may have seen the measurements of grams per square meter (gsm), pounds (lbs) and points (pt). Most of our paper is measured in pounds and points.
Pounds (lbs) refers to the weight of paper before it is cut down. The uncut paper is weighed in its base ream, which is usually 500 sheets. If your client requests a thicker stock, then you know to look for a heavier weight. Card stock, for example, weighs up to 140 lbs.
Points (pt) specify the thickness of a sheet of paper as measured by calipers. Since an individual sheet of paper is quite thin, one point actually represents 1/1000th of an inch. Choose higher points for clients looking for thicker stock. Postcards, for instance, are usually 12 to 16 pt.
Cover Paper VS. Text Paper
Cover paper is a thicker stock often used as the cover pages of a print product. Since this stock is more durable, it protects the pages that are bound between it. Cover paper is also excellent for products such as postcards and posters. Text paper, on the other hand, is similar to premium printer paper. It is a thinner, flexible stock suitable for the inner pages. Booklets and calendars, for example, consist of bound text paper bookended by cover paper.
A term you have probably seen on packages of printer paper, brightness refers to the amount of blue light that reflects off the paper. Brightness is measured from 0 to 100, with 100 being the brightest. Keep in mind that brighter paper usually creates sharper print results.
Specialty Paper Stock Types
Linen paper has a cross-hatched pattern that looks similar to linen fabric. The linen paper texture is elegant and unique. For clients with sophisticated brands, you can recommend using linen paper to print:
• business cards • brochures and menus • bookmarks
All of our environmental stock at Kansept Media are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Made from 100% recycled paper, our enviro stock is produced from responsibly-managed forests that meet strict environmental standards. Since the stock has a similar quality to other offset paper, you can be environmentally-friendly with the same great print results. Our enviro stock is available for many products, including:
• flyers • tear cards • greeting cards • door hangers
From coated paper to linen paper texture, the many qualities of stock can be confusing, but this master post can be a good starting point. Let us know in the comments what else you would like to know about paper!