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Matte vs Glossy Business Cards: Which Is Better?

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What’s the difference between matte and glossy business cards? If you plan to design and print a professional card, you should ask questions like this. There are dozens of small, essential choices when creating and printing cards. They include card color, font, paper type, icon type, etc.

Business cards printing remains a critical branding and marketing asset at your disposal. Unfortunately, lousy card design decisions will only leave you with a card that looks unprofessional, misaligns with your company’s values, and is ineffective. Today, we’d focus exclusively on two common finish types, matte and glossy. What finish type wins between matte vs glossy business cards?

By the end of this post, you’d not only know their differences; you’d understand what choice suits you between glossy or matte business cards. If you’re excited, read on.

Things to Consider When Choosing Between Matte vs Glossy Business Cards

  1. Manufacturing
    • Characteristically, matte business cards are soft to touch, feel smooth, and don’t reflect light.
    • The glossy paper finish is highly reflective and feels ultra-smooth to touch.
  2. Durability
    • Glossy cards are more durable due to the extra layer of chemical coating. They retain their shape for longer and are resistant to dust and moisture.
    • Matte-coated cards are more durable than standard uncoated business cards but not as durable as glossy cards. They can bend on the edges when mishandled and are susceptible to damage from moisture.
  3. Color
    • Glossy paper is best for crisp-looking, high-quality images and logos. It can retain a broad spectrum of colors, and the contrast on glossy cards makes the colors pop.
    • Matte cards are best for more subtle designs. They are suitable for embossing or foil stamping and are more eco-friendly and recyclable.
  4. Readability
    • Matte cards offer better readability due to the absence of glare. They also allow you to scribble brief notes on the white spaces.
    • Glossy cards are more challenging to read, especially under sunlight, and it’s practically impossible to write on them.
  5. Aesthetics
    • Matte prints are aesthetically pleasing due to their lack of glare and fingerprint resistance.
    • Glossy cards are attention-grabbing and effective at grabbing attention.
  6. Cost
    • Matte and glossy business cards are roughly the same price for equivalent thickness and weight. Glossy cards may be slightly more expensive due to the extra surface preparation required.

Which is more Professional, Matte or Glossy Business Cards?

The choice between matte and glossy business cards depends on personal preference and the specific needs of your industry. There is no definitive “best business card finish,” as professionals from different fields may have different preferences. Both finishes have their unique attributes and advantages.

Which is the Best Finish for Business Cards?

Instead of asking whether matte or glossy business cards are better, consider your specific design requirements and goals. If you want a radiant, attention-grabbing card that displays high-quality images and logos, go for the glossy finish. However, if you prefer a more subtle design that accommodates embossing or foil stamping and is eco-friendly, choose the matte finish.

There may not be a “best business card finish,” but that’s hardly a disadvantage. Both matte and glossy finishes have their place and can meet the needs of various businesses.

How to Order

At Ink & Main, we offer printing services for business cards, as well as other related documents and products such as letterheads and branded envelopes. If you don’t have design experience, take advantage of our selection of free professional templates. Here’s how to order:

  1. Decide on the products you want to order, whether it’s glossy or matte business cards.
  2. Choose the customizations, size, and quantity for your needs.
  3. Upload your artwork in any standard file format.
  4. Place your order.

You’ll receive an email confirming that we’ve received your order. Our experts will review your artwork for free, and once approved, you’ll receive a free online proof. Printing commences once you’re satisfied. With a turnaround time of just 0-5 days, your order will be on its way!


Q: Can I write on matte business cards?
A: Yes, matte business cards allow you to write on them, making it convenient to add personal notes or contact information.

Q: Are glossy business cards more expensive than matte business cards?
A: Both matte and glossy business cards are generally priced similarly. Glossy cards may have a slightly higher cost due to the extra surface preparation required.

Q: Which finish is better for high-quality images?
A: Glossy finish is better for displaying high-quality images and logos due to its ability to retain a broad spectrum of colors and provide crisp contrast.

Q: Can matte business cards be recycled?
A: Yes, matte business cards are more eco-friendly and 100% recyclable, making them a suitable choice for those prioritizing sustainability.

Q: Are glossy business cards more durable?
A: Yes, glossy business cards are more durable as they have an extra layer of chemical coating that makes them resistant to dust, moisture, and bending.

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