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Guide to Buying Vinyl: Adhesive vs. Heat Transfer

Guide to Buying Vinyl: Adhesive vs. Heat Transfer


Crafting with vinyl has become quite popular across the art, accessory, and design worlds. Although people make interesting plans to develop their own unique decorations or products, some confusion still exists between the different types of vinyl available on the market today. When you understand the differences between adhesive options like Oracal 651 and 631 and heat transfer ones like Siser HTV, you can make a more informed decision about the best material for your project.


Differences Between Adhesive and Heat Transfer Materials


The primary difference between the two types of craft vinyl is in their application. Adhesive vinyl is similar to a sticker that can temporarily or permanently affects to everything from a water bottle to a signpost to the side of a car. Heat transfer vinyl (HTV) is ironed or pressed on to fabric items like T-shirts, pillowcases, tote bags, and more.


Within these two varieties, you can also find multiple specific vinyl finishes, thicknesses, sizes, and colors. The most popular product options are described more fully below.


Oracal 651 or 631 – Adhesive Vinyl


Adhesive vinyl offers a durable design option for creating many different types of commercial or consumer products. You can a fix a company logo or cute image onto a water bottle, mailbox, or a shop sign directly. Oracle 651 vinyl provides up to six years of brilliant color and design for many different applications. It has an attractive glossy finish.


Oracle 631 offers an array of colors suitable for use in more temporary applications and has a matte finish with a removable adhesive making it great for indoors. The less permanent adhesive makes it a great choice for wall decals or temporary decorations like holiday window clings and more.

 Oracal 631 Vinyl

Siser HTV – Heat Transfer Vinyl

 Heat Transfer Vinyl

Iron-on transfers have been available in a variety of styles for many years. Today's heat transfer vinyl materials offer a much more durable solution. EasyWeed  from Siser HTV gives you the opportunity to create intricate and unique designs and messages that can be affixed permanently to T-shirts, tote bags, and more with a commercial iron or professional heat press.


Thin, flexible, and available in a wide variety of colors, Siser HTV lets you start your own fashion line or make T-shirts and other gear for a team, volunteer organization, or business.


With the increasing popularity in vinyl crafts and printed T-shirts, knowing the difference between adhesive and heat transfer vinyl is essential for your design success. Explore the possibilities and get creative.