All About Varnishes

A varnish is a finishing technique applied when your job is printed.  It can be applied at the same time the inks are laid down or as an additional pass through the press.

A varnish is similar to ink, though it has no pigment and it’s purpose is to protect the inks once printed.  Some colors like reflex blue, PMS colors that contain Reflex Blue and some metallic colors, can take several weeks or months to dry. If varnish is applied on the top of these colors, it seals the color between the varnish and the paper.

Varnish comes in gloss, dull, and matte.  The varnish can be applied to the entire sheet or to particular items, called a spot varnish.  Gloss and dull varnishes can also be used in tandem to gloss up one item, while dulling down another item in order to enhance certain areas.

Another possible technique is to tint the varnish by applying a pigment.

Keep in mind that varnishes are only applied to coated stocks where the ink sits on top of the paper.  On an uncoated stock the ink and the varnish would absorb into the paper.

If you are interested in learning more about how varnishes can improve your print project, contact us today.  We have printed samples on hand that highlight the different techniques available and would be happy to go over them with you.  Call, email or come by today. We service the San Fernando Valley, Valencia, Santa Clarita, Los Angeles and parts of Ventura County.

818-709-1220 or info@clearprint.com

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