I guess you are here because you just bought yourself a brand new Cricut Explore Air 2 (YAY!) or maybe you are still doing some research (read our Cricut Explore Air 2 review here).
Whatever your reason is for arriving on this page, I'm glad you are here.
I bet now that you have a new machine, you are wondering what the heck else you should be buying.
There are so many additional goodies available that it can get pretty overwhelming! So I wanted to share a list with you of what I believe to be the must-have Cricut Explore Air 2 accessories, tools & supplies.
But I don't want you to waste your money, so before you do anything else, have a bit of a think about which type of projects you wish to work with.
That way you will buy the Cricut tools and accessories that suit your interests. I've tried to make it very clear when tools are only required for a very specific type of project – such as working with vinyl, etc.
Before enough with the talking, let's get to it, shall we?
What Comes with the Cricut Explore Air 2
So before we talk about the Cricut Explore Air 2 Must-Haves, let's look first at what you will get in your box:
- Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine
- Cricut Fine Point Blade
- Cricut StandardGrip Mat
- Black Pen
- Samples – Cardstock
Now, let's have a look at which tools I would highly recommend you purchase to be able to enjoy a variety of project crafts.
PS. If you haven't set up your machine yet, we have a fabulous FREE getting started guide on how to set up your Cricut Explore Air 2 here.
Must-Have Cricut Explore Air 2 Tools
Below you will find a list of the tools that you should purchase with your Cricut Explore Air 2. I will discuss what each tool will be used for.
Obviously, think about which type of crafts you would like to make – so that you can only purchase the tools that will support your crafting type.
* BONUS: Use this code: CRICUTLOVE at checkout to receive 10% off your order of $50+ and receive FREE shipping too!
1. Additional Cricut Blades
You will receive the Fine Point Blade in your box. The Fine Point blade is used to cut most ‘normal' materials that most people cut, such as paper, cardstock, and vinyl. It is the one you will use most of the time.
Now, if you want to work with thick material, you will need to purchase the Cricut Deep Point Blade.
This blade has a steeper blade angle (60 degrees vs 45) and a harder, more durable steel blade.
It is perfect for cutting materials such as Magnets, Chipboard, Thick cardstock, Stiffened felt & Cardboard.
And lastly, there is also the Cricut Bonded Fabric Blade which is used to cut bonded fabric.
2. Cricut Mats
You will receive the StandardGrip mat in your box.
If you wish to work with the Deep point blade to cut thicker material, you will need to purchase the StrongGrip Cricut Mat (which has a stronger adhesive to keep the materials in place).
I also highly recommend that you purchase the LightGrip mat, which you will use to cut thin material such as copy paper, light patterned paper, vinyl, etc. I can't live without this mat, you will use it for sure!!
3. Scoring Stylus
Scoring is brilliant if you love creating things that need to be folded, such as cards, envelopes, boxes, and other 3D paper crafts.
The Scoring Stylus is a tool that you use by hand with a ruler to create your own gold lines, and the Scoring Wheels are like ‘blades' that you pop into your machine and the machine creates the lines for you.
4. Cricut Pens
Cricut pens are used to draw shapes and embellish projects with beautiful text. You can also create coloring pages with pens as well, or use them to create beautiful cards.
These pens are acid-free, non-toxic, and permanent after 24 hours of drying time.
You will get the black pen with the box, so you might prefer to see if you use it before investing in more pens, but I do find that they are valuable to have in my stash, even though I don't use them for every project.
Cricut makes a great range of pens for the Cricut Explore Machines that include:
- Glitter Gel Pens in Opaque, Neon, and Rainbow
- Watercolor Marker & Brush (for making watercolor effect designs)
- Metallic Pens
- Extra Fine Ink Pens
- Washable Fabric Pens
- Infusible Ink Pens
5. 12 x 24″ Mat
The standard Cricut mat size is 12 x 12″, but this can be very limited to work with.
I LOVE the longer 12 x 24″ Cricut Mat, so that I can create larger vinyl decals and cut larger sewing panels for my projects.
Must-Have Cricut Explore Air 2 Accessories
Now that we have had a look at the best tools to buy for the Cricut Explore Air 2 machine, let's look at some of the best Cricut Explore Air 2 accessories.
1. Cricut Trimmer
A Cricut Trimmer is really handy if you are a scrapbooker or cardmaker. You can quickly and professionally trim down your paper or cardstock on this fabulous trimmer.
2. Cricut Brayer
The Cricut Brayer is essential to smooth out your material over your mat. Especially handy for thin and flimsy materials.
The tweezers are great to help you lift off thin material from your mat.
You can grab the Brayer and Tweezer Set here.
3. Cricut Basic Tool Set
The Cricut Basic Tool Set is a must-have. You will definitely use these tools.
The Scraper & Spatula are used to aid you in lifting projects off your Cricut mats, which helps to preserve the adhesive on your mat. They are definitely a necessity.
The weeder and tweezers are great for your vinyl projects. And we all know what scissors are used for.
You can grab the essentials tool set here.
4. XL Scraper
I love my XL Cricut Scraper. Whilst you can use it to clean up your mats, I love using mine when I'm applying adhesive vinyl.
It just helps to ensure that the adhesive sticks really well to my product.
5. EasyPress 2
Planning on working with iron-on transfers or HTV (heat transfer vinyl)? An iron can be very unreliable because you have to guess how hot it is, as well as guess how long you are applying it for.
Take the guesswork out and get an EasyPress 2 instead. You can set the temperature and set the timer electronically. I love my EasyPress.
Not sure which size to get? Here is a helpful post about which Cricut Easypress 3 size to buy.
6. EasyPress Mat
Whilst a heat mat is not essential (you can use a folded towel as well), it really does help to simplify your heat press process.
The heat mat helps to eliminate moisture and also directs heat to the iron-on design. It also shields your work surface from damaging heat and moisture.
The Cricut mat is available in three sizes, pick one that is larger than your press.
7. Cricut Brightpad
The Cricut BrightPad is a fabulous tool for those who plan on working with vinyl on a regular basis.
Pop your vinyl on a light surface and it will make your cut lines show up so much clearer, which means that you can weed and remove vinyl pieces so much quicker.
Must-Have Cricut Supplies for the Explore Air 2
Now, you might have just purchased all the Cricut Explore Air 2 tools and accessories that you will need, but what about the actual supplies that you will need to purchase?
Here is a list of some of my favorite crafting supplies:
1. Adhesive Vinyl
Cricut Premium Adhesive Vinyl is a fabulous product to have on hand. You will use this vinyl for things such as sign-making, decorating glassware, home decor projects and so much more.
The Cricut adhesive vinyl comes in a large variety of colors, as well as specialty types.
I find their vinyl is easy to weed and apply.
If you want to create some cool wall decals that light up at night then make sure to look at Cricut's Glow-In-the-Dark removable vinyl.
2. Transfer Tape
If you are working with adhesive vinyl, you will also need some special transfer tape for vinyl decals.
Transfer tape is ideal for transferring your adhesive vinyl from the mat to the surface that you wish to apply the vinyl decal to.
3. Heat Transfer Vinyl or Cricut Iron-On
Cricut Iron-On is my favorite product, you can apply this to fabric such as t-shirts, tote bags, aprons, etc. You can also apply it to wood and metal as well.
Again, you can find it in a variety of colors and specialty types. I really love the glitter range, but you can get foil, patterned, holographic, and more.
Cricut also has a great Glow-In-the-Dark Iron On vinyl – perfect for creating great effects when the lights are off!
Felt is ideal for kids' crafts, stuffed animal toys, textured baby decor, and more. You can easily cut felt (that has a backing on it – so stiffened felt) with the Deep Point Blade.
If you want to try out the Cricut Deep Point Blade, you might want to grab some Chipboard.
You can use chipboard to create some puzzles, photo frames, or to design some 3D models.
6. Paper and Cardstocks
Lastly, is the essentials. Grab some Cricut Paper, cardstock, and specialty papers here.
There are so many more things you could purchase to compliment your Cricut Explore Air 2, but these are the ones that I pick up most often and that I have found to be valuable for my crafting process.
7. Cricut Infusible Ink Sheets & Markers
The great thing about Infusible Ink Sheets is that you can also use them on any other sublimation blank because the sheets are essentially pre-printed sublimation sheets.
>>> Read our Ultimate Beginners Guide to Cricut Infusible Ink to learn more about Infusible Ink!
If you love a great deal like us, you will be pleased to know that you can get this great material in an Infusible Ink Set so that you will have everything you need to get crafting with Infusible Ink.
If you have any tools that you love, please leave us a comment below.