Dye sublimation printing is an effective technique to transfer graphic images on products, such as t-shirts, coffee mugs, and so on.

From small and medium to established printing businesses, all types of businesses have achieved fantastic print results due to dye sublimation printing. The printing process offers a multitude of benefits over traditional printing processes.

Simply put, dye sublimation process creates stunning final products that have smooth finishing. In addition, the final prints do not crack, wear off or fade, even after repeated use.

Most importantly, dye sublimation helps businesses produce ensure large-scale production, while reducing overall operational costs.

Dye sublimation printing: How it works

Before we analyze the cost of sublimation process, it is important to understand how it works. Generally speaking, sublimation refers to a process during which solid particles change into a gaseous state, without becoming a liquid.

During dye sublimation printing, the solid particles of sublimation ink change into a gaseous state under controlled heat and pressure. Thereafter, the gaseous particles stick to the fibers of the substrate (a base material on which an image is transferred).

Once the substrate is removed from the heat source, it cools down. The dye particles are embedded into the substrate.


When it comes to the cost of dye sublimation printing, there is no one-size-fits-all answer for this. Based on the type of substrate, the overall printing costs vary from one business to another.

One of the most important things about dye sublimation is that you will use a polyester material as your substrate. Polyester can withstand the heat during the sublimation process.  Hard items, such as mugs require a polyester coating before they can be sublimated.


Here are some factors that will affect your total printing costs:

  • The printer you use:  You need an Inkjet printer for sublimation process.
  • Heat press: A heat press is used to convert the sublimation ink (on paper) to the substrate you want to decorate. To ensure high quality dye sublimation, it is imperative that you use a good quality heat press.
  • Dye sublimation paper: From normal to full sticky to fast dry, different papers have different prices.
  • Dye sublimation ink
  • Business costs: Other costs include packaging, labor, delivery and shipping.

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