How to Print on a Mug

       Printed mugs make for wonderful gifts and mementos. If you want to print on a mug yourself, print out your image or text using a sublimation printer, place it on the mug, and then transfer the image using the heat of an iron. If you don’t have a sublimation printer or need to print a large number of mugs, hire a professional to print the image for you, or send your text or image to a printing company to transfer onto a mug. Enjoy using or gifting your unique mug!

Using a Sublimation Printer and Iron


1  Print out your text or image on a sublimation printer to the correct size.

      A sublimation printer prints out your image using ink that can be transferred using heat. This printer also prints the image back to front so that the image isn’t mirrored when it is transferred to the mug. Open the file that contains the text or image that you want to print. Press “File,” select “Print Settings,” tap “Custom Size,” and then enter the height and width that you would like the image.
  • Always use sublimation paper in a sublimation printer, as regular paper won’t allow the ink to transfer onto your mug.


2  Place the inked side of the print onto the mug. 

       Place the print face down onto the mug in your desired position. Check that print is the right way up, as the ink is almost impossible to remove once it has adhered to the mug.
  • Images or text can be placed on the bottom, side, or handle of your mug.
  • Mugs that have a smooth finish work best for this method, as bumpy finishes can make the print look uneven and patchy.


3  Secure the print in place with heat-proof tape.

       This ensures that the print looks sharp and clear on your mug. Place a strip of heat-proof tape on each of the edges of the print to hold it in place.
  • Try not to place the tape over the actual text or image. If possible, place the tape over the white space.
  • Purchase heat-proof tape from a hardware store.


4  Rub the iron over the back of the print until it goes slightly brown.

       Turn your iron onto a low-medium setting and wait for it to heat up. Once it is warm, gently rub it back and forth over the entire print until the paper has a light brown tinge and the image starts to show through the paper. Try to rub the iron over the print as evenly as possible. In order to do this, you will need to slowly swivel the mug around so that the iron touches the entire print.
  • If you want to print a large number of mugs commercially, consider purchasing an automatic mug press. This allows you to heat the sublimation print in the mug press, instead of using an iron.


5  Remove the tape and the print to reveal the new image on your mug.

       Carefully peel back the tape and then lift the printing paper away from your mug. Your freshly printed mug is ready to be used!
    • Avoid placing your printed mug in the dishwasher, as this can damage the print.



Post time: Feb-24-2021
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