Cold foil vs hot foil probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when strategizing about your next piece of print collateral.
Which is exactly why you need to read on…
Maybe because we offer cold foil printing right here in house, we like our foil cold. But more on that in just a minute.
Both cold foil and hot foil do one thing in common very well, and that’s attract attention.
It catches the eye and gets noticed. And isn’t that the goal of your printed piece?
We think so.
Humans are naturally attracted to things that shine and sparkle. It draws us in and makes us take a closer look.
Foil also adds an aesthetic of higher value to your brand which could ultimately lead to a more positive brand experience. And this is why designers absolutely love foil!
What is cold foil printing?
Cold foil printing, also known as cold foil stamping, is a printing method that lays down foil on a sheet. It’s all done inline, in one pass and on press.
And the best part? You can overprint it which will turn the foil into any color you want. And that’s not all!
What are the benefits of cold foil printing?
- Cold foil has very tight registration. Think finer artwork areas and smaller type sizes than hot foil.
- Cold foil can cover large areas of your printed piece.
- Cold foil can be overprinted to create a full gamut of colors using either CMYK, a special ink mix or a combination including extended gamut inks. You won’t be tied to a foil swatch book with this process.
- Metallic gradients. How cool is that?
- Cold foil allows you to enhance photos by either spot foiling behind images in certain areas or behind an entire image. Image pop like no other!
- Multiple foil colors can be printed at the same time which would be price prohibitive if hot foil stamped.
- Cold foil is done inline in one pass which will allow the product to get to market faster and in most cases less expensive than hot foil stamping. No custom foiling dies are needed!
- Cold foil is cost-effective on high quantity jobs.
How does cold foil printing work?
Cold foil is a metallic film with a removable polyester liner that is applied to the press sheet inline on press.
The cold foil unit is attached above the second printing unit on the press. The roll of foil runs from an unwind roller, through the printing unit between the blanket and impression cylinder and back out the press to a take-up roller.
An adhesive is printed in the first unit using the traditional litho method, much like a varnish. The adhesive pulls the metallic foil off the polyester liner in the second unit adhering it to the press sheet.
The foil can be overprinted in the subsequent printing units to achieve a full spectrum of metallic colors. The end result is astonishing, impressive and we do it all right here at DVC.
How does hot foil work?
Unlike cold foil, hot foil requires a custom metal die to be created and is done offline. The die is created based on the area of the design that will be foiled. The die is then mounted on a foiling machine and is heated. And when pressure is applied, the die comes into contact with the foil and transfers the foil onto the paper. Because of the pressure, the foil has a subtle dimensionality.
We love foil!
Don’t get us wrong, we love foil stamping and the results you get from it. We help our customers with hot foil all the time. After all, adding foil to your printed piece whether it be cold or hot will do one thing for sure, and that is shine and get attention.
At DVC, we continue to see the trend of foil in print design grow, and we know what it takes to consistently deliver the most creative printed products that dazzle the most demanding designers. Let’s work together and produce award-winning projects.