I've decided to print my flyers with a thickness of 250 gsm for a luxurious feel, but can't decide what type of paper to go with. I'm leaning towards gloss paper, both to increase the luxuriousness and make the colours on my flyer pop more, but information on the different types is conflicting and confusing.

This site seems to be saying they're all separate types, while this one says silk and matte are the same thing.

  1. Are silk and matte the same thing, or is silk a balance between the dullness of matte and the shine of gloss?

  2. Is it true, as per the first link, that the shine of glossy papers can make text on a flyer harder to read?

1 Answer 1


Its better if you just go to a local print shop and look at actual paper samples. Sometimes you can find these in art supplies shops or even regular stationery/office supplies shops. The difference can be explained, but it is nothing like touching the actual surface of these.

  • gloss can feel a bit like plastic when you touch it, because its got a shiny finish which reflects light. and yes in strong light, reflections can be harsh and may affect readability, but just moving the paper away from direct light can solve this. so i guess its a non-issue
  • silk and matte are generally different textures, however there are numerous variations and some may be closer to each other than others. silk paper texture is generally softer than matte
  • reflections are softer on a silk surface, and minimal on a matte surface
  • see this video https://youtu.be/VnXeTUVrHBE

And here's a more useful link where you can order a free sample pack with paper in different finishes: https://www.moo.com/us/sample-packs/all-products-sample-pack

  • 1
    Thanks especially for the link to the sample packs. I clicked through to the link and found that while it was entirely free for me, the delivery date was sometime at the end of the February. However I then did some creative Google searching and found that one of the printers I'm likely to choose - Solopress - actually send out their own sample packs with a delivery date of just next week, though they don't advertise it well; I hadn't seen the service at all after weeks of going through their website. Commented Feb 2, 2020 at 19:43
  • 1
    Yes actually some other online-based printers will send free sample packs, precisely because people want to see what the thing looks like before placing orders. Nowadays with alot of design happening in the digital space, not everybody is aware of some of these print-specific issues. I bet there's alot of designers out there who never sent anything to print :)
    – Lucian
    Commented Feb 2, 2020 at 19:55

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