T-Shirt Trends: Neon Inks with Your Heat Press
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Easily print popular eye-catching designs that pop with just neon ink screen printed transfers and your heat press.
Neon ink colors are part of the stock ink selection choices at no extra cost.
- Neon Blue
- Neon Green
- Neon Lime
- Neon Orange
- Neon Pink
- Neon Yellow
Neon colors are available in the screen printed transfer types of Goof Proof, Hot Split Retro, and Elasti Prints.
Put them on light or dark colors (with the exception of Neon Orange - you'll want to keep this one on light garments, or add a white outline so that it is all backed in white). Learn more on our blog.
Hey friends, Dave here with Transfer Express and today, we’re talking all about bright, vibrant colorful prints on your t-shirts using neon ink screen printed transfers!
Whether you’re a custom apparel decorator or running your own t-shirt business or brand, staying relevant with current trends helps your business succeed- and recently, one trend that’s growing in popularity are neon colors in designs.
So let’s dive in and cover some inspiration and examples, how you can order neon ink transfers, then we’ll print a shirt and cover some best practices for achieving those eye-catching prints every time.
Ready? Let’s get to it!
Neon inks are a great way to add a little something extra to your prints without going full shimmer and shine like with metallic finishes, glitter or foil decoration methods. These neon inks give that nice bold pop of color to a wide variety of uses: everything from brand tees, to family reunions, schools, events, festivals, beach wear, 5ks and everything in between.
The best part is, you can capture the screen printed neon look without the mess and hassle of screen printing yourself. This is where screen printed transfers come in!
It’s essentially screen printing with just your heat press.
Now, there’s three types of screen printed transfers here at Transfer Express we’ll be covering today: Goof Proof, Hot Split Retro, and Elasti Prints.
Goof Proof transfers are an industry favorite for apparel decorators for the quick press time, effortless hot peel and durable, long-lasting prints that look and feel just like regular screen printing. They apply to cotton, polyester and cotton/poly blend fabrics. Light or dark color garments, it doesn’t matter, inks are nice and opaque. But we’ll touch more on this in a minute.
Hot split screen printed transfers are essentially the same as Goof Proof, but without the added adhesive powder, trading off a little bit of that versatility and quick application for a lightweight print.
Elasti Prints is an athletic formula geared towards 100% polyester sports uniforms, performance wear and heat sensitive garments. It's formulated to stand up to the abuse on and off the field, along with the heavy-duty laundering that accompanies sports uniforms. As we talk about neon colors today, the neon yellow is perfect for matching the color of a softball!
With all of these screen printed transfer options, you have access to the 70 standard ink colors. Included in that are six popular neon inks available at no additional cost to you. Neon blue, green, lime, yellow, orange, and pink.
Here I have a Color Selector swatchbook. This little booklet has all of the standard ink colors actually printed on fabric so you can see what they look like in real life - available in the Marketing Kit, or standalone for $20. Since colors vary from screen, this handy guide for ink colors comes in SUPER handy when designing artwork for apparel. And you get all of the neons in here, too!
What’s great about these neon ink colors is that they can be standalone as a single color print or combined with any other ink color available, even if you need a specific pantone match, we’ll make it happen.
Ordering and selecting your ink colors is a breeze. At TransferExpress.com, you’ll find the Easy View online designer, where you can upload your artwork files, create artwork from scratch or utilize the gigantic catalog of over 10,000 pieces of clipart and fully customizable pre-made layouts, so regardless of your artistic skill level, you can create t-shirts that people will want to wear.
First, you’ll want to ensure you have a screen printed transfer selected. Here in the lower left corner you can see we have screen print selected under our print method, and we have our choice of Goof Proof, Hot Split Retro and Elasti Prints transfers, if we click.
Over here in the edit menu, you can easily edit ink colors for your designs. Just click the swatch, and you can navigate down to the neon section where you’ll find the 6 colors available.
Like we mentioned earlier, you can combine these with any other color of ink if needed. Just select the specific piece of artwork and recolor it.
One last benefit of screen printed transfers I wanted to mention is the ability to create gang sheets, or essentially groups of artwork all here on one page. With screen printed transfers the price is per sheet, so fit as much as you can. Great for left chest logos, sleeve prints, other projects or even inside tag prints.
Of course with screen printing, the more colors you add, the more expensive it gets. And the more quantity you add, you’ll see price breaks lower the cost. So when you’re adding that extra artwork, make sure its colored to the same inks on the page for that bonus printing.
Enough talk, let’s print!
Now, we mentioned our screen printed transfers apply to both light and dark colored garments with just a few exceptions: neon orange. Unlike the other ink colors, neon orange looks best on lighter colored garments, kind of like you can see here with all of these examples laid out. It’s just in the nature of the pigments in the ink. You can see in our white example, the orange is bright and the darker garment dulls it a little bit.
You can get around this by adding a white outline around all of your artwork so the neon color is backed by white, letting it be bright and vibrant on those darker fabrics.
If you’re using Hot Split Retro - since the inks are not quite as opaque as Goof Proof or Elasti Prints, you should only use neon colors on lighter garments, they may look dull on darker garments.
Of course, be sure to subscribe to the Transfer Express YouTube page and hit that like button to stay up to date on all of the helpful t-shirt printing tips, tricks, inspiration and education that we’re dropping every single week. Until next time, I’m Dave, happy pressing!