Cricut Infusible Ink takes your heat press projects to a whole new level. The result gives a more professional look and feel.
If you have been using HTV or Iron-On but want your designs to have a seamless finish and not be “layered” onto your material of choice, then you should consider using Cricut Infusible Ink.
Sounds pretty cool and just what you need! But Cricut Infusible Ink is pretty pricey, so is it worth the money?
In our review of Cricut Infusible Ink, we will look at this product in detail and let you know the good and the bad to help you decide if you want to invest money in Cricut Infusible Ink products.
What Is Infusible Ink?
The best place to start would be to understand what Cricut Infusible Ink is.
Cricut Infusible Ink is ink that is activated with heat. The ink is then transferred to your chosen material and infused with the fibers, or it dyes the special coating applied to ceramics or other materials.
You can use Cricut Infusible Ink on fabric items like canvas bags, shopping bags, canvas shoes, hats, caps, or ceramic items like sublimation mugs, coasters, and so much more.
Read this post if you want to know more about what is Cricut Infusible Ink.
Infusible Ink vs Sublimation vs HTV – What's The Difference?
All these products use heat when transferring to your item, but the biggest difference is in the end product result and how they adhere to your material.
|INFUSIBLE INK||SUBLIMATION||HTV (IRON-ON)|
|Lightweight when applied to the base material as colors infuse with the material.||Lightweight when applied to the base material as colors infuse with the material.||The end result will be slightly heavier even when using lightweight HTV.|
|Image/design stretches with the fabric.||Image/design stretches with the fabric.||Most iron-on vinyl does not stretch.|
|Has a smooth seamless finish.||Has a smooth seamless finish.||Available in different textures such as smooth, flock, or glitter and has a raised feel.|
|Ink infuses into the fabric.||Ink infuses into the fabric.||Vinyl adheres on top of the fabric.|
|Never flakes, peels, cracks, or wrinkles.||Never flakes, peels, cracks, or wrinkles.||Can crack, peel, flake, and wrinkle over time.|
|Sold in pre-printed transfer sheets with solid and patterns.||You can create your own patterns, color palettes, and designs,||Available in solids, patterns, glitter, holographic, flock, and many more.|
|Works best with a heat press or EasyPress.||Works best with a heat press or EasyPress.||Can use an iron, heat press, or EasyPress.|
|The heat press plate needs to be larger than the design.||The heat press plate needs to be larger than the design.||The design or image can be larger than the heat press plate.|
|Only work with compatible blanks.||Only work with compatible blanks.||Works with most surfaces.|
|Works on light or white materials.||Works on light or white materials.||Can be used on any color material.|
|Apply to 100% polyester fabrics.||Apply to 100% polyester fabrics.||Can be applied to almost all fabric types.|
|Limited to the number of layers that can be applied if using different Infusible Ink sheets or colors.||You can create a design with multiple colors/layers so that you can press your design in one go.||Can layer multiple layers of vinyl without issues.|
|Requires Cricut machine to cut designs.||Requires a dedicated sublimation printer to print out designs.||Requires Cricut machine to cut designs.|
Sublimation Ink is very similar to Infusible Ink. However, the main difference is that Cricut Infusible Ink sheets come on a clear liner and the design is cut and weeded away.
Sublimation uses a sublimation ink printer and paper that is self-weeding. Only the printed areas will be transferred to the item when pressing the design.
What Material Types Can You Use Cricut Infusible Ink On?
From the table above, the products that differ the most are Iron-On (HTV) and Infusible Ink (Sublimation), not only in how it adheres to the material but also in what you can use Infusible Ink on.
To get the best result when using Cricut Infusible Ink transfer sheets, make sure to use Cricut Infusible Ink blanks. These items have the Infusible Ink compatibility badge on the packaging.
If you wish to use non-Cricut brand products, look for blanks that can be used for sublimation as they have a special coating applied to allow the ink to fuse with the item.
When applying Infusible Ink to fabric items, they must be as close to 100% polyester.
If you want to get some ideas for projects be sure to check out these Cricut Infusible Ink projects.
Review of the Infusible Ink Products
All products have their pros and cons. Below you will find our Cricut Infusible Ink review; focusing on the pros and cons of this product together with information on who this product would be perfect for.
- When the Infusible Ink is heated and transferred, the colors on the end project are super vibrant.
- Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets are easy to work with once you have used them and learned the tips and tricks to working with Infusible Ink Sheets.
- You can use Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets with compatible blanks (usually cheaper than Cricut blanks).
- There are a variety of beautiful patterns and designs to choose from, so you can create interesting designs and projects.
- There are also a large variety of solid colors that you can choose from.
- Infusible Ink lasts long and does not flake, peel, or crack like HTV.
- The Infusible Ink infuses or dyes the fibers so that it becomes one with the fabric and has a smooth and seamless finish.
- The end product is lightweight as the ink infuses with the existing material.
- The end product can be stretched without breaking or cracking the design.
- Cricut Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets are expensive.
- Cricut brand Infusible Ink blanks are expensive.
- The Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets do not last long once you open the box. If the sheets are left out for many months, they wrinkle, and it can be hard to get the wrinkles out of the sheet to use them.
- It is hard to know exactly how bright the designs will come out (we used the pens on a picture once, and the colors on the result were too bright for my liking).
- If you move the press, you can get a ghosting effect.
- To achieve the best results, you need a press (while using an iron, it can be tricky to get a solid design without ghosting).
- Your press needs to be larger than the Infusible Ink Design (if you have to press more than once, you will most likely get pretty visible lines in the design).
- You need a cutting machine to cut the transfer sheets.
- Limited to the number of layers you press if you want to use different colors.
- Only works on light or white backgrounds.
So back to the original question – is Cricut Infusible Ink worth it?
While Cricut Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets are pricey compared to Iron-On and HTV, the result you achieve (once you get the hang of using this product) is, without a doubt, a professional look and feel.
We love that this product can also be used on a range of compatible sublimation items like bags, t-shirts, caps, mugs, plates, coasters, puzzles, keychains, and so much more!
Not only saves you money, as non-Cricut brand blanks are cheaper, but you also get a larger choice of blanks to use.
Are Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets better value than sublimation prints? The short answer is YES!
If you are looking into Cricut Infusible Ink, you already own a Cricut cutting machine or another brand of cutting machine. Hence, the only product you will need to invest in is Cricut Infusible Ink Sheets and a press (if you do not already have one).
If you want to head down the sublimation route, you will need to purchase a dedicated printer and sublimation ink, and a press (if you do not have one already).
Having to purchase all of these items is pretty costly, so Infusible Ink transfer sheets are less of an investment, and if you do not enjoy using them, you have not spent too much money!
We love this product and the professional finish you can achieve. We know you will love it too.