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What is the best vinyl to use with a Cricut?
I even made a free vinyl guide chart that will help you keep everything straight. It’s a one page printable you can grab from my resource library. -More details at the bottom of the post.
Even Better – The Crafting with Vinyl Guide gives you step-by-step picture instructions for working with vinyl. It includes over 15 tips plus all the vinyl lingo so you’ll never be lost again. Buy the Guide HERE
Let’s get to it:
Does any Vinyl Work with Cricut?
Pretty much yes. Cricut can cut a large variety of materials, so it will cut whatever type or brand of vinyl you decide to use.
Some vinyl is better than others though, and different types of vinyl are used for different materials. Lets looks at the different vinyl types next.
Best Vinyl for Cricut
There are two basic categories for vinyl – Adhesive vinyl that you would stick on things like mugs, windows or cars. And then there is HTV or Heat Transfer Vinyl (also known as Iron-on Vinyl) that you use to heat press onto clothing or tote bags, or anything fabric.
Let’s look at adhesive vinyl first.
Best Permanent Adhesive Vinyl
The industry-standard for adhesive vinyl is Oracle Brand Vinyl. Oracle uses numbers to differentiate their vinyl types. Let’s take a look at those now.
Oracle 651 or Permanent Adhesive Vinyl
So Oracle is the brand name and 651 is the type. In this case, it’s a permanent vinyl. Since Oracle is one of the most preferred vinyl brands to use, you see their numbers mentioned everywhere.
Where can you use 651 vinyl?
Almost anywhere you want vinyl to stay permanently. It is waterproof and has an outdoor durability of 6+ years.
What can you use 651 on?
It’s great for car decals, wood signs, dishes, and water bottles (hand wash recommended, it won’t last long in a dishwasher). You can also apply it to plastic, glass, metal, tile, just about everything you can imagine sticking it to.
But you’ll want to be careful sticking it on walls, it may cause damage when you are ready to remove it.
Oracle 651 comes in a variety of colors, in a glossy or matte finish. You can also find it in glitter, metallics, and many patterns.
What about 751, 851, and 951 vinyl? They are a part of the 51 series and they are all permanent vinyl. They use the same adhesive, but the quality of the vinyl is better with each number you go up. So 751 vinyl is good for 7+ years, 851 for 8+ years…. see the pattern here?
There are several other brands of permanent adhesive vinyl including Cricut Brand. The best place to get Cricut brand vinyl online is from Amazon.
Other brands including Oracle I like to order from Expressions Vinyl. I like to order from Expressions Vinyl. They have the best combo of selection, prices, shipping and service.
Best Removable Adhesive Vinyl
Oracle 631 or Removable Vinyl
Oracle 631 is the removable or indoor vinyl. It can be easily removed and re-positioned. 631 is great for those wall decals, scrapbooking and making stencils. It comes in a variety of colors usually with matte finish.
Oracle Oramask 813
Oramask 813 is also known as stencil vinyl. It’s made to stick to smooth or rigid surfaces and is removable.
So should you use 631 or 813 to make stencils?
That really comes down to a matter of preference. I like using 813, but many crafters swear by 631. It’s best to try them both and see what works for you.
Best HTV or Iron-On Vinyl
HTV or Heat Transfer Vinyl HTV or Heat Transfer Vinyl is also known as iron-on vinyl. You can use an iron or a heat press to apply it to a variety of fabrics.
With HTV or iron-on vinyl you can apply it to make custom
- kitchen towels
- bath towels
- plus more
Beginning with your household iron is fine, but if you want to sell your creations it’s best to invest in a heat press.
HTV comes in a variety of colors including glitter, metallics, patterns plus more. It is the only vinyl you will NOT need transfer tape for. HTV comes with it’s own carrier sheet.
The best HTV or Iron-on vinyl is Siser Easy Weed.
As the name suggests Siser brand is easy to weed.
According to Siser, their vinyl is thinner than other heat transfer vinyl on the market. Crafters love it because it’s easy to work with and it lasts a long time.
It transfers at a lower heat setting and you can remove the carrier sheet while it’s still hot or wait until it cools off. (Most HTV is one or the other and removing the carrier at the wrong time can ruin your project)
Best Transfer Tape
You will use transfer tape to transfer adhesive vinyl to your projects.
After you cut and weed your vinyl, you will place the transfer tape over your design. Smooth it down with a credit card or squeegee. Next, you remove the backing from the vinyl.
Your design is now stuck to the transfer paper. Lay it over your project and smooth it down with a squeegee again, rubbing a bit harder over your design area. Peel back the transfer tape and your vinyl will be stuck to your project.
Read this to see how to use Transfer Tape to Transfer Vinyl. There are pictures and a video for you.
Many seasoned crafters prefer to use clear contact paper. It’s cheaper and not as sticky as some transfer tape brands.
The stickier brands could leave a glue film on your finished project that can be a pain to remove. The exception to this is glittery vinyl. Glitter vinyl needs a strong adhesive transfer paper.
Window Cling Vinyl
Window cling vinyl is just as it sounds, it’s a static cling vinyl for windows and mirrors. Since it does not have adhesive it’s for temporary indoor use. This is great for making holiday window clings. It comes in many colors including etched glass.
Best Place to Buy Vinyl for Cricut
Vinyl comes in 12″ sheets, or you can buy it by the roll in different lengths. The best place to buy vinyl is online as most big-box retailers don’t carry the best stuff, although Michaels is starting to get more variety.
If you need your vinyl quick, ordering off of Amazon is the way to go. However, they don’t always have the best vinyl. Most of the vinyl I order off of Amazon is harder to work with. I’m not sure if they roll the rolls to tight, or what the deal is.
That’s why I find it better to order from a company that only deals in vinyl. The quality can be better and you can sign up to get notified of sales.
Whenever possible you’ll want to order your vinyl in rolls to save the most money. Of course, there are some that only come in sheets like certain patterns.
As I mentioned above, you won’t a big selection of Siser or Oracle in stores like Hobby Lobby or Michaels. (Though Michaels has started carrying some Siser) They carry the Cricut brand or their own brand vinyl. They do have good sales too, you’ll almost always pay more for vinyl in these places.
Frequently Asked Vinyl Questions
What Is The Best Vinyl for Tumblers?
The best vinyl for tumblers is Oracal 651 permanent vinyl found here. This vinyl will last a long time on your tumblers. It does not need to be sealed unless of course, you are doing an epoxy tumbler, then putting epoxy over it is fine.
I have several tumblers with just vinyl though and it’s held up wonderfully.
What is the best vinyl for Cricut Shirts?
The best vinyl for Cricut Shirts is Siser Easyweed Heat Transfer Vinyl found here. As the name states, Siser is easy to weed, plus in my experience, it lasts a long time.
Can you use any brand vinyl with Cricut?
Yes you can. Cricut machines can cut a wide variety of materials including different types of vinyl
What is the difference between 651 and 631 vinyl?
651 and 631 vinyl is both made by Oracle. The difference is 651 is permanent adhesive vinyl and 631 is removable adhesive vinyl.
So Which Vinyl Should I Use?
The vinyl you use will depend on the project you’re doing.
As mentioned above HTV is to iron-on vinyl to fabrics (Siser is the best) and adhesive vinyl will stick to most hard surfaces. (Oracle is the best)
Does Cricut Vinyl Stick to Glass?
Yes, Cricut brand vinyl will stick to glass. If you want it to last make sure you purchase Cricut PERMANENT Adhesive vinyl found here.
Can Cricut Vinyl go in the Dishwasher?
All of the vinyl makers recommend hand wash only for their vinyl. However, I have put permanent vinyl from several brands on the top rack of the dishwasher and it’s always been fine.
If you want to try it yourself, just know that it’s not recommended and if it’s not permanent vinyl, it will come off the first wash.
How Much Does Cricut Vinyl Cost?
The cost of Cricut vinyl is usually slightly higher than other companies like Oracle. But like everything in life prices vary depending on sales and supply and demand.
You can check the current prices of Cricut Vinyl Here.
What is the Best Vinyl for Cricut?
While Cricut will but any brand of vinyl, there are some manufacturers that outshine the rest.
The best adhesive vinyl is Oracle Brand found here. Remember 651 is permanent and 631 is removable.
The best Iron-On Vinyl is Siser Easy Weed found here.
Grab The Vinyl Guide Cheat Sheet
Still struggling with the different types of vinyl? My vinyl guide helps you keep it all straight with a simple one-page printable chart.
It’s in my resource library where I keep my collection of free plans and printables. To get exclusive access and print your vinyl guide, simply fill out the form below for the link and password.
Thanks for stopping by, and happy crafting!
Now that you have vinyl, you’ll need some great fonts to work with! Check out this post on the best places to find free fonts for Cricut and how to download them.
Chris Butler has helped thousands of crafters learn how to use their Cricut machine without feeling overwhelmed. She is a best selling author and an up and coming designer. For fun Chris enjoys designing SVG Files, hanging out with her family (preferably at the lake), traveling, and volunteering at her church. She is a wife and mom of two crazy fun kids.
Hi! Thanks for this informative post! I can’t wait to learn more! I’m new to this – I had a Cricut, but sold it and bought a Cameo 3. I was having trouble and just muddling through with my Cricut. Many of my crafter freinds have said that the Silhouette is much easier. I just ordered Oracle 651 vinyl off of Amazon. I noticed that you said Amazon vinyls are harder to work with, but Oracle is a poplular brand. Should I be worried about ordering this off Amazon? I spent all yesterday evening using Cricut Vinyl on my Cameo 3. It was kind of a disaster, so I decided to just go with what everyone else is recommending.
Oracle is the best in my opinion. But for whatever reason when I order it off of Amazon it’s harder to transfer and weed. I’m not sure if it’s warehouse dust or they wind the rolls to tight or what the deal is. It still works out and adheres well, just know it might be harder to work with is all.
Hi. I just found you and have bookmarked several of your posts.
I just used duck laminate as stencil material. I cut it last night and was going to weed it and transfer it today; but when I began to remove it from the cutting mat, the white backing was stuck on like glue! (I had NOT separated the laminate and put it on sticky side down. LOL). Two questions:
1. Do you know why this happened? Have you ever heard of it before?
2. How do I get the backing off my mats??
Chris Butler says
So you left it on the mat overnight? I would remove it from the mat right away. To remove things from the cat mat flip the mat over so you are peeling the mat off of the vinyl. New mats are a bit super sticky for the first couple of projects.
If it’s just the backing stuck to your mat try using the scraper tool to scrape it off.
Thanks. Guess I’d better get to work scraping!
Can I use Cricut permanent vinyl for canvas instead of Oracle 651?
Chris Butler says
Yes you can!
haley allen says
hello i’m new to the cricut world. i have not branched out to use other brands other than cricut for my vinyl. I am excited to try your recommendations for stencil designs and what to use. for the first time i tried to attempt my first wood sign using the cricut stencil vinyl and cricut transfer tape. After i smoothed both the stencil and transfer tape to the wood, i began to pull my transfer tape off the stencil. but the stencil kept pull up off the wood as i was pulling off the transfer tape. I smoothed it down with my tool and made sure all air bubbles were out. then i started to notice the transfer tape was hard to pull off and i had to pull a little harder and it was causing the stencil to pull and rip. i was so crushed that i gave up!!! do you have any advice for me??? i am trying to make the perfect sign for my husband for our new home. thank you so much. i hate giving up so easily. im finding cricut projects can leave the head spinning and confused
Chris Butler says
Hi Haley! I find Cricut transfer tape is a little too sticky like you describe. You can still get use out of it though, try sticking it to your shirt or maybe a sheet so it looses some of it’s stickiness. And in the future buy clear contact paper (found with self liner in stores like walmart) . it’s cheaper and it’s just the right amount of sticky in most cases!
Thanks! The only exception of HTV that needs transfer material is the patterned one 🙂
Izzy Arterton says
Loved reading your page – so informative for a beginner just starting out. I’m looking to purchase a Circut maker this week for online business but i’m unsure what size I need to use? The one’s I keep finding on Amazon etc say it’s for the Circuit Joy – Can I still use this?
Thanks so much.
Izzy Arterton says
Sorry, what size vinyl I need to use
You can buy Siser vinyl at Michael’s.
Teri C Horton says
yes I need schooling I just recent bought the circut explore air 2 haven’t mess with it because I don’t want to mess up I need help to learn the basics?
Hilda Ezcurra says
Hi Chris. I’m Hilda. I want to thank you again for all your info. This particular one on vinyls is really good because when you go to the store, you get crazy with sooo many differents types if vinyls. I have learned so much from you. I still afraid to use the cricut, although I have done a few projects that came out very good. I’ll get there and will let you know. I always follow all your projects and have some in mind.
Regards and God bless you!