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Laminating Media for Wide-Format Graphics

Media range from hot to cold, to sprays, liquids, and films.




You've purchased a laminator and advertised your new laminating service to customers. Now, of course, you need laminating media to
begin protecting your large-format graphics. Start with your laminator manufacturer”?the laminator OEM may sell laminating supplies.
This media should also be matched to the machine you've purchased.
But if you want another source or wish to try different types of laminating media, The Big Picture has compiled a sampling of film manufacturers
and third-party private-labeled wide-format laminating media suppliers. This list includes all types of wide-format laminates”?from liquids
and sprays to pouches and films (cold-laminating pressure-sensitive and heat-activated and low-temp thermal films).

Advanced Greig Laminators (AGL)

Features a wide range of thermal and pressure-
sensitive laminating films. Low-temp
films include matte, gloss, luster/satin,
hard coat, texturized, and economy;
translucent, white light-blocking, and black
opaque backing films are also offered.

Advantage Distribution


Offers Advan-Tac Economy Laminating
Films, which include LusterLam-UV, High
Gloss PolyLam, Velvet Polycarb, Clear Rigid
Vinyl backer, Clear Dry-Erase, and Crystal
Texturized laminates.

Advantage Sign Supply

Features Optima low-melt 3- and 5-mil
polyester laminating film and 1- to 5-mil
pressure-sensitive (gloss, satin, matte,
crystal, frosted) laminates.

All Graphics Supplies &
Signmaking Supplies


Sells rolls of thermal and pressure-sensitive
laminate media (up to 55 in. wide and
in gloss, luster, matte, and clear finishes),
as well as liquid and spray laminates.


Offers several overlaminate films, including
its latest: Series 3320 Ultra PVF, a 1-mil
semigloss Tedlar polyvinyl fluoride film.
Also features crystal, matte, and satin



Offers a variety of self-adhesive laminating
films, including PP, PVC, polyester antigraffiti,
and floor-graphics films, in a variety
of finishes.

Avery Dennison

Features a range of pressure-sensitive DOL
overlaminates with glossy, matte, or luster
finishes. In addition, it also offers Perforated
Window Film, Embossed Floor Graphics
overlaminates, and Gloss Teflon Graffiti-
Resistant Overlaminates.

CalComp Graphic Solutions

This company's Artisan laminates come as
pressure-sensitive and thermal laminates,
in gloss, satin, matte, or clear, and in thicknesses
from 1 to 15 mil.

ClearStar Coatings

Manufactures liquid laminates: Clear-
Shield for solvent-based inks, and ClearJet
for dye-based (water-soluble) inks. Both also work on
e-stat, thermal-transfer prints, and vinyl
graphics/lettering. ClearShield comes in
gloss, semigloss, matte, and satin finishes,
along with an anti-graffiti clear.
ClearJet is available with a gloss or semigloss
finish. ClearJet Fine Art offers gloss,
semigloss, and low-gloss options.


Offers a variety of laminating films, including
ThermaPro low-melt film (gloss, satin,
or backing film, 3 to 10 mil thick), and
pressure-sensitive Cold-Mount Overlaminates
(glossy, luster, or matte rolls; canvas,
parchment, or stipple sheets).

Continental Milano Imaging Products

Features a variety of thermal laminates
and pressure-sensitive films. Thermal laminates
include Crystal Guard Velvet Textured;
DI gloss, satin, and matte; Light
Blocker; Low Lustre; and Textured Imaging.
Pressure-sensitive choices include UV
matte, luster, and gloss; Hard Vinyl; Poly-
Gloss; Dry Erase; and PolyCarb. Also offers
ProTect lamination spray.

D&K Group

Expressions thermal laminating films,
designed for wide-format images, come in
a variety of thicknesses (1.7 to 10 mil) and
finishes (including gloss, semigloss, and
matte). Offers Expressions thermal lowtemperature
3- or 5-mil laminates in gloss,
luster, and matte finishes. Also offers
pressure-sensitive overlaminates in UV
gloss, luster, and matte, as well as Polycarbonate,
a UV Vinyl Textured, and UV Hardcoat


Sells Rollaguard gloss and satin waterbased
coating for its EZGlide laminators.

DCP Systems

Its Giclee Varnish is a nonyellowing, waterbased
protective clearcoat that can be
applied with a brush and can mimic the
artist's original brushstrokes. In gloss,
satin, and matte finishes.

Dr. Graphix Imaging

WeatherSeal vinyl laminating films come as
gloss and matte pressure-sensitive films.


Offers a variety of overlaminate films,
including Interlam (pressure-sensitive
indoor), Protac UV (pressure-sensitive),
WeatherShield UV (outdoor), MediaShield
(thermal), and MHL (low-temp thermal).
MediaShield Canvastex UV overlaminating
film adds canvas-like look to paper. Its
ArtShield UV line of HeatSet laminating
films are pre-perforated and include gloss,
satin, and matte surfaces, as well as special
textured films in canvas, pebble, and linen.

DuroTech Adhesive Products

Produces pressure-sensitive overlaminate
films such as DuroGloss, DuroMatt, Duro-
Luster, DuroScuff RV, DuroSheen, and
DuroMark for dry-erase applications.


Offers a wide range of self-adhesive laminating
films in widths from 39 to 60 in. and
with ultra gloss, gloss, matte, satin, satin
matte, textured, laser-effect, polycarbonate,
and white finishes.

Elmer Products
(formerly Hunt Corporation)

This company's Bienfang products include
Finish Guard UV Laminating Films. These
thermal films are available in gloss, luster,
satin matte, ultra matte, canvas, and linen
finishes. The films are available prepierced
(to allow release of trapped air) and nonpierced,
in 25 to 41-in. rolls, and are
designed to be applied with a mounting
press or roll laminator.

Epic Products

Features a variety of thermal laminates
(1.3 to 5 mil), heavy-duty thermal laminates
(5 to 10 mil), and pressure-sensitive
laminates (2 to 5 mil) in gloss, matte, luster,
and texturized finishes.


Features FLEXstat (for electrostat
images), and BUSart (for transit advertising),
as well as a variety of Classic Plus
Select, FLEXmark, and JetBond overlaminates.
The latest addition is JetBond 41218,
a 1-mil, UV-blocking, pressure-sensitive,
polyester overlaminate.


Makes many laminates, including Accu-
Shield thermal films, SecurFilm (a printable
laminating film), Arctic pressure-sensitive
films, and Octiva thermal films. Its latest
offerings include Octiva Lo-Melt Canvas Textured
film, Arctic Floor Mat, Arctic UV Sand,
Arctic Textured Satin, and Arctic Light Barrier.

General Formulations

Concept Laminating products are General
Formulations' pressure-sensitive, adhesive-
coated films that provide protection
from UV exposure, moisture, and handling.
Concept features products that offer highgloss,
luster, matte, and texturized finishes
and are 1 to 5 mil thick.

Graphic Laminating

It offers Durafilm thermal and pressuresensitive
laminating films. The Low-Melt
Durafilms come in glossy, satin, and
matte. Graphics-arts grade Durafilm is
available as glossy, satin, matte, and low
curl. Photo-Grade Durafilms are glossy,
matte, or satin.


Lumijet ImageShield spray laminate is transparent,
fast-drying, and nonyellowing.


Clear, thermal lamination films available in
rolls up to 27 in. wide.


For its laminator line, it produces ColorMaster
polyester-based, low-temp thermal
films, and Image Guard vinyl films with a
pressure-sensitive acrylic adhesive.

Ilford Imaging

Ilfoguard thermal and pressure-sensitive
laminating films in gloss, luster, matte, and
scruff-resistant finishes. Pressure-sensitive
laminates include Coldlam UV, Coldlam
UV Extreme (outdoor), and Coldlam Universal;
and Hotlam laminates are heat-activated.
Also offers Encap encapsulating and
backing films.

Impaco Digital Imaging Products

Offers pressure-sensitive vinyl and polycarbonate
films in matte, luster, gloss, and
scratch-resistant finishes.


Magic Fluorex Transfer Protection (DMFTP)
is an ultra-thin, 4-micron transferable fluoropolymer
designed for inkjet imaging
which provides a protective finish. Application
is similar to an electrographic drytransfer

Also PrintLam is a printable polyester
laminate with a dual-purpose adhesive/
image-receptive coating. For use with both
indoor and outdoor graphics, PrintLam is a
4-mil thermal-activated laminate that is
available in rolls from 36 to 54 in. wide.

Kapco Graphic Products

Offers pressure-sensitive (vinyl, polyester,
Tedlar, and polycarbonate) and thermal
(low-melt and heat-assist) laminates in a
variety of thicknesses and finishes.


Offers thermal (1.7 to 10-mil) and pressure-
sensitive (1 to 4-mil) laminates.

LexJet Direct

Features a number of pressure-sensitive laminates including GraphicsGuard,
PreLume DisplayFlex, ExhibitGuard, and ArmorGuard; and
low-melt thermal laminates such as DisplayGuard and CrystalEmboss.
New products include: PreLume T-Flex, an 8-mil textured,
copolymer overlaminate film.


Offers Lyson Print Guard spray lacquer laminate in satin or gloss,
slow or fast dry.

MacDermid ColorSpan

Offers cast and calendered vinyl pressure-sensitive laminates in
gloss, matte, and satin finishes.


Features Thermacolor thermal films (3 to 10 mil, high-gloss, satin,
matte, and textured) and PermaFlex/PermaGuard pressure-sensitive
overlaminating films (1.2 to 15 mil, high-gloss, gloss, semigloss,
luster, semi-matte, matte, textured).

Filmolux pressure-sensitive, self-adhesive laminates are available in
a wide variety of finishes for many applications. New products
include Filmolux White Backer and Filmolux Hard Coat. Accu-cure UV
lacquer liquid laminate (for use on inkjet, electrostatic, photographic,
dye-sub) was designed to meet the demands of outdoor and transit
graphics, and is available at


Offers clear, heat-activated 3- and 5-mil laminates; 6.5- and 10-mil pressure-
sensitive laminates; and 3-mil satin heat-activated laminates.

Optima International

New products include Giclee Elixir liquid
laminate, Optima Fusion XE liquid for protection
of dye-sub images (with a 15-year
guarantee) and the second generation of
Aqua Max liquid laminate, which offers a
35-year guarantee.


Features Oraguard laminating media.
Includes PVC film, Polyester, Polyvinyl Fluoride,
Premium PVC Cast film, and Optically
Clear PVC Cast film. Thicknesses vary from
2.5 to 6.5 mil and finishes include gloss,
semigloss, matte, transparent, high-gloss,
and textured.

Protect All

Manufactures thin to heavy-gauge polyester,
polypropylene, and nylon thermal
laminating films for one- and two-sided
applications, with clear, matte, or satin finishes.
Also texturized films such as Taffeta
(with a heavy linen texture) and Deep Silk
(with a fine, sandy appearance). New
color-tinted Pazzazz films.

Quality Mounting &
Laminating Systems (QMLS)

Offers Instashield and Exhibit Shield pressure-
sensitive laminating film, Hard Guard
and Digi Guard thermal laminating film,
and Duraguard heat-set laminating films.
Also features ClearShield, water-based,
semigloss clear liquid laminate.

R Tape

Eclypse Overlaminating Films are polyester
or PVC pressure-sensitive films, in
gloss, matte, satin, and luster finishes, and
in thicknesses from 1 to 15 mil. It recently
broadened the Eclypse line to include
PET1-G (1-mil), PET2-G (2-mil), and Mar-
Resistant PVC films.

Remington Laminations

Offers a variety of pressure-sensitive and
thermal laminates. Features the RemiCrystal
family of embossed pressure-sensitive
film laminates that are sold in 3 to 15-mil
thicknesses and have a permanent solventacrylic
adhesive. The heat-activated films
range from 1.5 to 10 mil thick and come in
gloss, satin, matte, and luster finishes.

Repro Technology

Coverlam CL is a glossy thermal copolymer film with an aggressive
adhesive, low-melt temperature, and is available in 1.8 to 10-
mil thicknesses.

Roland DGA

Offers Performance Guaranteed Media overlaminates in cast, calendered,
and Teflon with gloss or semigloss finishes.

Royal Sovereign International

Offers a variety of thermal and pressure-sensitive laminating
media in widths up to 57 in. and in gloss, matte, and clear finishes.

Seal Graphics

Offers a variety of laminating options including: heat-activated films
(Jet Guard, ThermaShield), heat-set films (Print Guard), pressuresensitive
films (Print Shield, Seal Write), clearcoats (AquaSeal), and
laminating pouches (Pouch Boards, Laminating Pouches). All products
come in a variety of finishes. Seal Jet Guard is a family of lowtemperature,
heat-activated laminating films for inkjet, photographic,
and e-stat media that provide UV protection, are linerless, and work
well in both overlaminating and encapsulation applications.
AquaSeal clearcoats, in Anti-Graffiti, Fleet, Anti-Glare, Sign &
Banner, and Economy Sign & Banner, are compatible with most
solvent-based inkjet and e-stat graphics.
Laminating Pouch Boards allow users to laminate and mount
in one process to produce signs, displays, and presentations.

3M Commercial Graphics

Offers a variety of laminates for printed graphics: liquid clearcoats,
pressure-sensitive, and heat-activated. 3M Piezo Ink Jet Protective
Clear 8530 is a high-luster gloss liquid laminate for use on
fleet graphics, banners, and interior and exterior signage. 3M
Scotchcal High Gloss Graffiti-Resistant Overlaminate is a pressuresensitive
film for electrostatic prints. Scotchcal Hot Transfer Flexible
Overlaminate is a high-gloss, heat-activated film for banners,
awnings, signs, and curtain-sided vehicle material.


Features a variety of laminates in widths up to 76 in. and in satin,
matte, gloss, display luster, display white opaque, and hard-coat luster
finishes. Its latest offering includes low-melting-point TransKote
DigiKote laminating films and a satin, pressure-sensitive overlaminate
for its WalkerTalker floor decals.

Triangle Coatings

Produces several liquid laminates. LiquiLam
is a glossy, solvent-based, clear acrylic polymer
designed to protect inkjet prints on
watercolor paper or other highly absorbent
paper. ClearFlex is a clear urethane coating to
protect digital artwork on vinyl and wallpaper,
available in gloss or matte. Fleet ClearFlex is
for fleet/vehicle graphics and Bulldog Ultra
protects digital fine art; both are available in
gloss, semigloss, and matte.

Ultimate Imaging Supplies

Offers Ultimate Laminates, including vinyls,
and polycarbonates, pressure-sensitive,
and low-melt thermal laminates.


Features pouches (up to 25 x 37 in.), and
pouch boards (ProMount and UltraMount,
up to 41 x 61 in.), in gloss, satin, and luster
finishes. Thermal and pressure-sensitive
roll laminating films include Opti-Clear, and
DigiSeal (low-temp).


800-662-2350 or [email protected]

It produces Aquaguard liquid laminate,
designed for use with inkjet and e-stat
prints, interior and exterior usage, and on a
variety of substrates, including paper,
vinyl, canvas, and self-adhesive vinyl. The
100 series (which comes in gloss, luster,
and matte finishes) is for indoor and outdoor
graphic usage without heavy abrasion;
the 500 series (in gloss and matte
finishes) is for use with heavy abrasion.

Varitronic Systems

ProFinish line offers cold-laminating ProFinish
and ProFinish XL Dual-Sided Laminate
media, as well as one-side laminate/oneside
mounting adhesive product.


Offers one- and two-sided laminate films
up to 44 in. wide, for use with its Xyron
4400 cold laminator.

Laminate Basics

If you've just bought your first laminator,
you might not be familiar with laminating
terminology. Here are some terms to help
you get used to the “lingo.”

As noted in Jake Widman's article, “Protecting
the Value of Your Output” (Sept.
2004, p. 60), the type of laminator purchased
will dictate the type of media used.
However, manufacturers often use different
terms for the same type of media.

Thermal laminating is the same as hot
lamination, and typically involves temperatures
more than 212″?; thermal media is typically
lower in cost than pressure-sensitive
or self-adhesive materials.

Low-temp (or low-melt or heat-activated)
all mean the laminates are activated by a
lower temperature than high-temp laminating
media, typically less than 212″?.

Pressure-sensitive (also referred to as
cold lamination) means that no heat is necessary
for lamination. These “tacky” films
rely on roller pressure to achieve good
adhesion; most PS media are higher in cost
than thermal laminates.

Laminate pouches are simply envelopelike
pouches into which the graphics are
placed; the pouches may work with either a
hot or cold laminator. Pouches are used
with typically smaller-sized machines and
are useful when companies only need
infrequent lamination of smaller items.

Spray laminates are just applied by
hand; the spray can is typically expensive,
but good for infrequent lamination needs.

Finally, liquid laminates or clearcoats
cost the least of all laminating choices, but
a print provider must have a large clean
area where the print can dry. Clearcoats
can be applied by hand or machine, but not
all are compatible with all inks.

Laminate Substrates

The laminate media can be made out of
many different substrates, including these
common ones:

Polycarbonate”?very tough, clear film,
typically sold in heavier gauges for floor
graphics (excellent slip resistance), instore
images (velvet texture eliminates
glare from lights), and trade-show graphics;
very expensive.

Polyester (PET)”?rigid, strong, outdoordurable,
and relatively inexpensive; this is
the base for most thermal films.

Polypropylene (OPP or PP)”?good durability,
clarity, chemical-resistance, can be
used outdoor but scratches easily; moderate
temperature resistance.

Polyvinyl chloride (vinyl or PVC)”?more
flexible than polyester, but also less dimensionally
stable; base for most low-temp and
cold laminates; many finishes available;
suited for top-coating vinyl media.

Polyvinyl fluoride (PVF)”?tough film that
can be used outdoor and cleaned with solvents
used to remove spray paint (graffiti);
very expensive.

Film Finishes

Each manufacturer may use its own terminology,
but here are the most common finish
terms with their most common definitions:

Gloss/Clear”?clear finish that is shiny
and reflective, but brings out color on the

Matte”?non-reflective, glare-free,
slightly frosted finish that has a slightly
granular look, but may make image colors
more vivid.

Satin”?offers reduced glare and a soft

Luster”?has a reduced glare but a
sparkling sheen (between glossy and
matte); minimizes reflections without the
loss of image sharpness.

Texturized”?a finish that appears to be a
certain type of texture, such as canvas,
sand, etc.



Printvinyl Scored Print Media

New Printvinyl Scored wide-format print media features an easy-to-remove scored liner for creating decals, product stickers, packaging labels, and more. The precision-scored liner, with a 1.25” spacing on a 60” roll, guarantees a seamless and hassle-free removal process.

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