Which Paper Type is Right for Your Book?

Select the best type of paper for your book during paper scarcity and longer lead times.

The type of paper stock you choose for your book is commonly overlooked, but it plays an essential role in the design and manufacturing process. While paper production and availability are slowly returning to normal, a few paper grades are still challenging to order in large quantities. To ensure your production times remain on schedule, we’ve put together some factors to consider when choosing your paper stock.

Coated Paper vs. Uncoated Paper

Coated paper has a surface coating that produces a smooth finish. The coating allows different textures and finishes, such as dull, gloss, or eggshell. The coated paper usually has a less porous, waxier surface than uncoated paper. Uncoated paper is a popular choice for softcover books, such as novels and textbooks, and offers a more traditional look and feel.

White vs. Natural Paper

CHG offers both white and natural uncoated paper options. To create ‘white’ paper, the wood pulp undergoes bleaching, giving the paper brightness. Natural paper is minimally bleached and appears cream in color.

Paper Weight

Paper weight and bulk, or thickness, become an important factor for a book’s spine width, the durability of pages, and functionality. For book printing, paper is offered in various weights. Uncoated paper weights typically range from 50lb to 80lb. Coated paperweights will typically range from 70lb to 110lb. Lower-weight papers are usually used for textbooks and manuals. Heavy-weighted papers are better suited for image-heavy books with low page counts.

Each paper type has its merits for different applications and ranges in cost. When planning your next print project, we suggest contacting your Project Manager to speak about paper types, the current availability, and the best options for your project. We are still advising customers to plan their print projects well in advance.

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