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What is the wash durability of T-shirt Transfer Paper?

Published on June 25th, 2021


This is a common question that can be difficult to answer. Many manufacturers shy away from publishing data because of "outside variables" that factor into a decorated garment's overall image durability. However, here are some general guidelines to follow in order to achieve the best possible wash durability for YOUR decorated garment:
 
* Use a quality transfer paper from an established manufacturer
* Use a color printer with a quality ink/toner formulation
* Apply your transfers with a commercial heat press (no hand iron)
* Use a cotton/polyester blend garment that meets customer approval
* Communicate wash instructions to your customers
 
These are factors you can control. Now, here is what is left to chance:
 
* Water quality in your area
* Detergents or additives (bleach, fabric softener, etc.)
* Drying method
 
I stressed YOUR earlier because you should always perform your own wash test for any decorated garment! If you use quality equipment and supplies, as well as develop a  consistent application process, your transfer decorated garments should last as long as any other established "surface decoration" process. At Condé, our benchmark test for transfer paper "wash durability" is printing to a 100% cotton garment and performing 25 "hot wash/hot dry" cycles. We feel this test represents a real-world expectation of printed image durability. While there may be some loss of color or image cracking within fine details of the graphic, it should not break down any faster than traditional screen printing or direct-to-garment (DTG) printing.
The upcoming webinar from Neenah Coldenhove, entitled "Every Choice Counts", will cover recommended transfer papers, printers, fabric content and wash instructions from a panel of industry experts. Here is a link for more information: https://www.coldenhove.com/whats-new/events/washability-webinar.html
 
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