The Benefits of Using Ink Additives

For those new to screen printing, ink additives are something that may seem superfluous in the grand scheme of things.

Naturally, while ink additives aren’t an essential tool in the screen printing process, they can be enormously beneficial and give your garments that much needed flair. 

After all, there is only a certain amount of t-shirts you can make with the same flat design. Ink additives offer a chance to do something more unique. 

Without further ado, here are the top benefits of using ink additives in your screen printing process. 

What Are Ink Additives?

First, before discussing the benefits of ink additives, it’s integral to know what they are and what they’re used for in screen printing.

Essentially, ink additives provide texture to printed design, adding another dimension to an otherwise flat design. 

For many, the typical plastisol has too much shine or simply doesn’t reflect the brand they want to carry across to their consumers.

This is why so many use additives as it allow them to make more blended designs that more accurately show off what your company is all about. 

For example, if you want your logo to sparkle on your garment, we sell a glitter adhesive which allows you to do just that. 

Of course, there are other varying factors which make up the additive you have to take into account, such as its curing temperature and how long it takes to dry on a garment. 

Typically, they come in similar sized tubs as other inks and are compatible with both plastisol and water-based inks.

How Do They Work? 

The clue’s in the name, but an ink additive is meant to be added to your chosen ink and mixed in to produce the desired effect. 

Usually, you want to add 15 to 20% of the additive to the plastisol. For example, if you have around 100ml, about 15 or 20ml of the ink additive should be added.

Once put in, mix the additive with the ink so that it is thoroughly blended together. Now you can use the plastisol ink with the additive to print your design like you normally would. 

If you’re mixing different inks on the same garment, it’s best to use separate screens for this so as not to ruin the printed design. 

In case you’re unfamiliar with how we print designs, be sure to check out Step 5 of our tutorial series where I show you how it’s done. 

Once this is complete, all you need to do is dry and cure your print and you will feel the effect of the additive almost immediately.

Why Use Them?

As we’ve mentioned, there’s nothing essential about using ink additives. Indeed, you can print awesome designs without them. 
However, ink additives give your designs that little extra bit of life that would make your design stand out among others.

Say you want to have a suede texture to your design, ink additives make this possible. In fact, that is the most common additive and gives your garment a next texture without appearing too glossy.

If you want to be really creative, you can blend textures together. For example, if you want your logo to be made with purely flat colours but give it a glittery border, additives can help achieve this effect. 

In short, it opens up a whole number of possibilities not just in the combination of colours but in texture, too. 

It also adds an extra reason as to why screen printing is a great alternative to digital printing. Not only is it more hands-on, but screen printing lets you see the results of this process very quickly and easily. 

Ink Additives at Art2Silkscreen

At Art2Silkscreen, our ink additives are very popular. If you want to decrease or increase the flow of your ink, we have an additive for that. If, however, you want to add a foil sheen to your design, you can invest in that also. 

We recognise that the vast majority of screen printers want to truly express themselves in their designs. Our range of ink additives gives room for this. 

View our entire range today and see for yourself what sort of results you could produce using our printing inks.

Have you watched our silkscreen tutorial series? View the first stage in our step-by-step guide to silkscreen printing!

Watch Full Video Below

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