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The Gloss Coating – secretly awesome  

Glossy print is generally consigned to cheap, throwaway flyers these days. But we’re now seeing a revival with a modern twist.

Gloss paper in itself is mostly (and yes, I’m stereotyping here!) seen to give a cheap and cheerful image. Gloss lamination is similar. But halfway between these two is the little-known yet stunning gloss coating.

Without going into the nitty gritty right here and now, gloss coating is just like a varnish; applied to the printed surface of the paper to protect and enhance the finished product.

We’ll admit, gloss coating printing doesn’t offer the protection that a laminate would (after all, lamination even protects from splashes and is tear-proof). But if it’s just the visual effect you’re after, gloss coating does just as good a job.


How can you make gloss coating work for you?

  • Brochure and catalogue covers
  • Try using with a matt foil block to turn the traditional spot-gloss-on-matt effect on its head
  • Use instead of gloss laminate for an eco-friendly twist
  • Use it all through a brochure or catalogue for the WOW effect

Our creatives with a bit of advice on gloss coating:

“Gloss coating is one of those humble finishes that’s having a bit of a revival. It’s always been a bit of a hidden diamond, but not for any other reason than for the simple fact that printers don’t seem to be any good at promoting what they do. Well, we’ve been changing all of that – and this is one example of a really impressive solution that will save you money, save the earth and also look insane.”


Machine coating is similar in essence to a varnish – it’s applied inline (IE on the litho printing press) after the ink is laid on the paper. This is the reason it’s far less costly than lamination, because it doesn’t involve a secondary process. It’s a wax oil that coats the entire surface of the paper to protect the ink from scuffing or transferring. This is why it’s much more friendly to both the environment and the wallet.

If you want to see gloss coating for yourself and compare some of the different finishes, take a look at our 2016 calendar. If you don’t have one to hand, just ask and we’ll post one to you right away.

You’re reading an article from the Newton Print Marketer Pro Hub. We’re trying to do our bit to help marketers’ lives easier. It’s been confirmed that marketing and design departments are the most overworked of all so it’s time that was recognised. We use our experience to help you transform mediocre marketing with an injection of creativity and 30 years of know-how.

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Embossing and gloss coating printing


Embossing can have your customers pausing and reaching out to handle your printing again.

Foiling and gloss coating printing


Foil blocking instantly lifts the simplest designs with a metallic splash of foil.

die cutting and gloss coating printing


Create marketing material and packaging that is a bit unique with die cutting.

Simon Besley

Author Simon Besley

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