While there is no such thing as a ‘forever print’, competent manufacturers are dedicated to improving the life of their prints with the right machines, inks, papers and processes. Put it in light or exposed it to other natural elements, a fabric printed on with diligence will still last for decades.
The subject of print longevity has become more complex with new digital printer technologies and inks, as every other supplier claims to be supplying the ‘best’ inks and dyes in the market. To help you in your hunt for the perfect colors to add to your fabrics, we have simplified the essentials of digital print life span into these three factors:
When choosing an ink for a digital print, you either go for a dye-based formula or pigment-based one. While dye-based inks may be cheaper and have larger color palettes, they may be less chemical-stable as well as less lightfast. Traditional dye-based inks fade quickly, though most new iterations a better fade resistance.
Textile Pigment inks for digital textile printing have immense robustness and fade resistance, and the designs can last for years in their original vibrancy.
When considering print life span, you need to think of the materials on which the inks will go. Factors such as coating and absorbency of the media have a crucial role to play in the longevity of inks. This means that the most sophisticated ink in the market may fail to give you the right print quality if the fabric isn’t compatible.
You also need to invest in the right printers and papers. Brands such as Epson, Canon and Hewlett-Packard use certified rating systems in their digital textile printers.
Once the ink is finalized and fabric is printed using the right printers and tools, the longevity of the prints comes down to how the material is dealt with. Light exposure, moisture levels, and oxidation—these environmental factors will continually play their part in affecting the print. Protective measures such as using protection paper during printing, and employing lacquer-based sprays or UV filtered plexi-glass for finishing touches can help prevent early print deterioration.
To make your digital prints more archival, start off with high-quality textile inks and dyes. As leading suppliers and manufacturers of textile pigment ink and dye sublimation ink for digital textile printing, InkJD not only ensures lasting prints for your end-products, but also provides customer support and guidance.
Check out our blog for tips and techniques to achieve optimal prints, and reach out to us to shop for premium inks!