Best Shirts for Sublimation: A Guide for Print on Demand Business Owners

by | Apr 29, 2023 | Printing Techniques

As we all know, dye-sublimation printing is a common method of transferring images to fabrics, and selecting the appropriate type of shirt is critical to getting high-quality results. In this tutorial, we’ll look at the best shirts for dye sublimation printing and provide you with all of the information you need to make an educated decision.

What is sublimation printing?

Dye sublimation printing is a method of transferring dye to materials such as polyester, cotton polyester blends, and other synthetic fabrics by using heat and pressure. The dye is first printed on transfer paper before being applied to the cloth. When heat and pressure are given to the dye, it sublimates, or transforms into a gas, and then fuses with the substrate, resulting in a permanent and brilliant image.

Two people are holding transfer paper for sublimation printing

Why choose sublimation printing?

Sublimation printing enables for the printing of a wide spectrum of colors and sophisticated designs onto cloth, including designs with colored spots. This is due to the dye being absorbed directly into the fabric’s fibers rather than sitting on it as in typical screen printing.

Sublimation printing creates vibrant, high-quality pictures that can endure numerous washes without fading or flaking.

Choose dye sublimation printing for pattern-printed garments because it produces high-quality, vibrant prints.

Related blog: What is sublimation printing

The 5 best shirts for sublimation printing

When it comes to sublimation printing, a material that is at least 65% polyester is required. The greater the percentage of polyester, the better the effect. We chose several polyester shirts that are suited for sublimation printing for this purpose.

1. Handmade AOP men t-shirt

JetPrint Handmade AOP Men T-shirt

For a perfect fit and all-day comfort, this classic fit tee is made of superior polyester spandex fabric. This tee’s breathable polyester fabric makes it ideal for any season, keeping you cool and comfortable even in hot temperatures.

Furthermore, the quarter-turn design eliminates the center crease for a sleek, seamless appearance. This tee’s double needle sleeves and hem give an extra layer of durability and quality.

2. Handmade AOP men polo shirt

JetPrint Handmade AOP Men Polo Shirt

This 100% polyester polo shirt has an all-over print that will lend a fashionable touch to your look. The print on this shirt will look fantastic if you print it with sublimation.

At the same time, Polo shirts are one of the most commonly worn shirts in the workplace. If your printing impact is excellent, you will have no trouble finding customers. Wear it to work, to a party, or on a casual day to show off your own style.

3. Gildan 18000 heavy blend™ crewneck sweatshirt

Gildan 18000 Heavy Blend Crewneck Sweatshirt

The Gildan 18000 Heavy Blend™ Crewneck Sweatshirt is the ideal combination of style and comfort. This sweatshirt has a relaxed fit and is constructed of 50% cotton and 50% polyester, making it lightweight, breathable, and comfy.

The sweatshirt’s medium-heavy fabric (8.0 oz/yd2 (271.25 g/m2) keeps you warm and snug in cold weather. It has a traditional fit tubular body that makes it perfect for any occasion.

The gray pearlized tear away label adds an added degree of comfort by preventing scratchy tags from irritating your skin. The spun yarn fabric softens the sweatshirt and resists pilling, guaranteeing that it retains its quality even after many washes.

The fact that the sweatshirt isn’t 65% polyester doesn’t detract from its overall performance.

4. Bella+ Canvas 3650 unisex ploy-cotton short sleeve tee

Bella+ Canvas 3650 Unisex Poly-Cotton Short Sleeve Tee

The ideal balance of comfort and style. This marble tee has a crew neck and is constructed of 91% polyester and 9% airlume combed ring spun cotton for a wonderful fit. The material is soft against your skin.

This tee’s side seams and retail fit ensure that it flatters every body shape, and the unisex sizing makes it a versatile alternative for anyone. It comes in a range of sizes and colors, making it simple to choose the ideal style for you or your customers.

5. Next Level 6200 unisex festival t-shirt

Next Level 6200 Unisex Festival T-Shirt

The Next Level 6200 unisex festival t-shirt is every printer’s fantasy. Dye sublimation printing is popular on this t-shirt. This t-shirt comes in a range of colors and sizes; if you want the print to appear on this t-shirt, select a light-colored t-shirt.This tee is not only utilitarian, but also quite comfy and adaptable. The lightweight fabric is comfortable to the touch while being lightweight, making it ideal for festivals, outdoor events, and everyday use. It’s a wardrobe essential you’ll find yourself reaching for again and again.


To summarize, if you are a business owner seeking for the best shirts for dye-sublimation printing and are utilizing a print-on-demand service, consider light-colored shirts that are high in polyester and have a specific coating. You’ll be able to create high-quality, long-lasting photographs for your clientele if you use these recommended t-shirts.


Is it possible to put sublimation prints on dark shirts?

Yes, although I wouldn’t advocate using this design on dark shirts; dye sublimation prints work best on white or light colored shirts.

Is special equipment required for sublimation printing?

Yes, a heat press machine, sublimation ink, and transfer paper are required.

Can I create custom designs with sublimation printing?

Yes, dye sublimation printing is a great way to print custom designs on demand. Simultaneously, you can use JetPrint’s free design tool to help you create shirts.

Will the color of sublimation ink fade over time?

No, the sublimation ink interacts with the polyester fibers in the fabric to produce a vibrant, long-lasting print.

Can I print on cotton shirts with sublimation?

No, sublimation printing is only suitable for surfaces made of 65% polyester or higher.

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