When making your own printable stickers using Royal Elements printable vinyl, protecting your beautiful design should be on the top of your list. Although all of our printable vinyl is waterproof,
adding an extra layer of protection could make your stickers last longer, retain
their vibrant color longer, protect from UV sunrays, and even allow the
stickers to be completely dishwasher safe!
There are three main ways to protect your stickers from the elements. The first is to be mindful of the type of ink your printer is using. You could upgrade to UV resistant ink if the sticker will be out in the sun for extended periods of time (i.e. for a bumper sticker). UV Inks are harder to rub off, scratch and smudge. UV inks also allow for the printing on unconventional surfaces such as plastics.
Second is to use an aerosol sealant spray. Krylon and Mod Podge offer sealants that seal the sticker and prevent the ink from running by providing a layer of clear shellac. Be sure to allow the ink to dry for approximately 24 hours before spraying to avoid discoloring the ink with the spray. These sprays provide a permanent protective gloss coating, prevent smudging, and lock out moisture.
The final and easiest method is to simply place a clear laminating sheet over top of the sticker once it is printed and placed on the desired surface. They are applied just like a sticker, simply cut out the laminating sheet slightly larger than the sticker you are protecting, then peel off and place on! Placing a laminating sheet over top of your decal will make it completely dishwasher safe! Royal Elements clear laminating sheets are offered on Amazon and are extremely durable and crystal clear- perfect for sticker applications.