Aqueous coating printing is an excellent alternative to today’s traditional flat and glossy varnish printing. They offer matte and gloss coatings that rival varnish but with stronger abrasion, friction resistance, and greater longevity.
What is aqueous coating printing?
An aqueous coating (AQ) is a clear, water-based coating applied during printing. It is commonly utilized as the default coating method in the printing and packaging industry due to its rapid drying time, fingerprint resistance, eco-friendliness, and ability to enhance packaging designs.
AQ coating, which is known for being environmentally benign, is utilized in packaging applications for:
- Products for the home
- Quick-moving consumer goods
AQ Coating Types
- Gloss aqueous coating: If you want a less flashy, more muted gloss finish, AQ coating is the way to go. UV coating or film laminates are preferable solutions for high gloss.
- Matte aqueous coating: Matte coatings have a low level of sheen and depth but a high level of color intensity.
- Soft-touch aqueous coating: this is a type of coating that creates a velvety texture with a mellow appearance.
How should you apply an AQ coating?
Because of their qualities, AQ coatings are perfect for use on any printed product that needs to survive an extended period, such as aqueous coating business cards or magazines. The coating is essential for all printing processes, especially UV printing.
Applying a UV-curable coating to your print jobs preserves and strengthens them, allowing them to withstand abrasion and continuous use. They are also highly reflective, gloss finish giving them a very high gloss look when applied correctly.
How do I know if my product needs an AQ coating?
If you want to apply a coating to printed products, whether offset printing or printed pieces, you will need an AQ coat covering the entire printed piece.
If your printed product will be stored at extreme temperatures, has a porous surface (such as cardboard), or will be subjected to abrasive wear and tear, an AQ coating is recommended. Otherwise, coatings may only be necessary for relatively smooth-surfaced products (such as stickers) with high abrasion risk factors.
Advantages of AQ Coating
- Non-toxic and eco-friendly: The treated paper is easily recyclable and produces no hazardous by-products. After applying the AQ coating, there is very little solid waste, and the cleaning process does not require harmful cleaning agents.
- Adaptable: It’s a no-hassle alternative when additional print finishing is required and works with various printing methods. The coating also makes it simple to write and print on top of it for extra finish options.
- Cost-effective: This water-based coating is typically applied during printing, saving money.
- Suitable for long-term use: The coating preserves the authenticity of metallic inks by protecting them against air exposure. AQ coating is also less likely to be yellow than varnish, making it a superior option.
Is aqueous coating waterproof?
The AQ coating is not waterproof.
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