Pigment Inks vs Dye Inks – Which One To Choose

Posted December 29, 2022 Pigment Ink vs Dye Ink

So, you are looking for an excellent ink option to get the best prints for your labeling and packaging? If yes, this article can help you by informing you about the top inks you can use for these purposes. You can read details about better pigment or dye inks and what ink is made of.

Also, you can read about how they make your work more accessible as a vendor or a company. You can read about the benefits of pigment and dye inks and why they are used for certain jobs.

Dye Inks vs Pigment Inks

When it comes to the difference between big pigment inks and dye inks, there are certain things to remember.

Dye Inks

When we analyze the inks, they come from soluble dyes which are dissolved in a liquid carrier. Also:

  • This type of thing is a perfect choice if you’re looking to print intense hues and vibrant colors.
  • On the other hand, they are more prone to fading to light and other environmental factors.
  • At the same time, they have more chances of causing smudges on your products.
  • They also perform well on plain surfaces due to being prone to bleeding issues.

Pigment Inks

  • These eggs are made from tiny solid particles of colors that are suspended in a liquid carrier.
  • They also have the ability to resist fading and UV light.
  • These inks produce less vibrant results.
  • At the same time, you have more resistance against water if it comes in contact with it.

What Ink is Made of?

Some essential ingredients of inks are solvents, additives, lubricants, colorants, resins, varnishes, drying agents, and waxes. But why does this technical information matter to you? You can not use the correct ink if you do not know the different aspects of ink ingredients. So, it is a Solvent-based ink option you can try for printing.

So, the top ingredients that matter for a company when it comes to finding the right ink are:

Pigment Inks Ingredients

As we mentioned, different ingredients matter heavily for inks, and there are specific proportions that you should know about. For instance, you can have:


  • 10 to 20 grams of driers may work for a kilogram of ink.
  • Such an amount of driers may speed up the drying process by 40 to 50 percent.
  • You should be looking for the ones that do not affect the ink color.
  • If you print a food packaging product, ensure that this ingredient does not have any lead.
  • Some of these may not work for rubber-based inks that do not contain drying oil, so watch out for that.


Another essential part of this kind of ink is solvents, which make the ink fade-proof. So, if you are looking for pigment ink, you should ensure it has the right amount of this ingredient. This ingredient helps your print be more resistant to outdoor conditions.

Also, you should ensure that the solvent in your ink has a reasonable evaporation rate. Quick drying can help you with the printing process that matters for your production.

These are some of the top ingredients you should know as a printing company when you want to know what ink is made of.

Dye Inks and Their Ingredients

Dye inks have important ingredients in making a better printing process for your print jobs. One of their important ingredients is water-soluble dyes. These can be plant-based and work super well to help with print vividness.

So, if you want to choose a dye ink, you can use the ones with the right amount of water-based dyes. Also, you should know how good their surface tension properties are to ensure the paper surface can easily absorb them.

At the same time, they are sensitive to ozone, light, and humidity. So, ensure you get the ink least sensitive to these environmental factors to improve your end product. Owing to this and other reasons, dye inks are cheaper and may be used for less professional printing.

These factors can help determine if you need pigment or dye ink. So, these are the benefits you should know when looking for inks and what ink Is made of.

Pigment Inks vs Dye Inks

Comparing these two is really helpful when choosing something that works for your type of job. So, we will compare the two to help you decide the ink type that will work for your kind of printing.

Jobs and Uses of Pigment Inks

When choosing one of them, you should know the plus points of using them. So, if you think you need to use a pigment ink type, you can have the following benefits that you must consider before choosing between pigment inks vs dye inks:

  • Pigment ink is a type we know as a long-lasting investment that makes the color more stable.
  • You can also rely on this one if you want something more resistant to stains, like smudges.
  • Another benefit of its use is it can help you with water resistance.
  • Also, you can rely on such ink if your product has to deal with sunlight. So, it can help your product be safe against exposure to sunlight.
  • Plus, black pigment ink can help you with better image quality. However, they may provide better image quality for printing.
  • You can use pigment inks for multiple media and works for finishes like gloss, matte, fine arts, and luster. So, there is a wide range that you can use it for.

Now that we know some of the benefits of pigment inks, you can consider them for the type of printing and labeling they may help with.

You can do a better job when you know what ink is made of.

So, use it for more professional work with durability and resistance to light. These packaging inks matter greatly for your choice, so ensure you have the right amount.


  • You can use it as a photographer if you need a monochrome shade range.
  • If you want to laminate your product, it can further enhance its life.
  • Remember that you should try these inks for printers as they would clog inside them if made for dye inks.
  • You can try them when you do not want to do any post-treatment.
  • These are famous for being rich and thick with opacity.
  • They are known for being helpful for long-lasting jobs and are also acid-free.

Some disadvantages of pigment inks

  • Pigment inks are quite expensive when we compare them to dye-based inks.
  • At the same time, black pigment inks may appear to be charcoal shades. So, you may not get the right results if you want to use black color for jet black shades.
  • It is believed that using pigment inks on washable stuff may not help with durability, although the results depend on several factors.
  • This type of ink may not be available in colors other than black.
  • You may not like them for being slow when it comes to drying, so you may not like them for quicker jobs.
  • Pigment inks may not be that good when it comes to color vibrancy.

So, these benefits and drawbacks should be enough to let you make a final decision, and we will talk about dye inks in the next portion.

Dye Inks Benefits

Now that you know dye inks may work well for some aspects of a print job, there are other benefits you should know. So, we have some top benefits that you should look to have with this kind of ink, like

  • Dye inks are famous for having more vibrant colors in the print job.
  • You can depend on their water and oil resistance if you use them with gloss paper.
  • Also, they are quick to dry, which may be a variable factor. Still, they will work better in the dying process than pigment inks, so they are great for you.
  • Dye-based black inks are also famous for better print quality for your jobs, so they are a great benefit that you can have.

If you are looking for better options, you can try using UV inks that can be super helpful to give resistance against UV light.

Some features of dye inks are

  • They are smooth and crisp and quite vibrant for your print job.
  • Also, it helps with dying the paper and absorbing it into the paper.
  • You can rely on them if you are looking for something with fewer chances of smudging and smearing.
  • It works well on rubber and clear stamps, which you can use for card-making.
  • Moreover, they have less bleeding than pigment inks, which makes them better for many jobs.
  • Also, you can use dye inks if you want fade resistance in your print.

Drawbacks of Dye Inks

You should be clear about some drawbacks before you go on and use them.

You may not like them if you want the ink to dry into the paper quickly. Also, it may not be resistant to water in normal conditions, which can be a significant drawback for your print. Moreover, you can not use it for water-based mediums and with watercolors.

Final Thoughts

So, this is the most essential information you should have about these two types of pigment and dye inks. You can read about what ingredients play a significant role in their features. At the same time, you can read about how dye inks may work for certain jobs and not for others. Plus, what ink is made of?

Using pigment inks can be beneficial if you want to use them for water-resistant and good-quality jobs. At the same time, you can use dye inks if you are looking for a certain type of job. Just make sure you know which will work best for your type of job and how to choose them based on their ingredients. If you are unsure, then consult with the packaging designing experts team.

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Steve Harsh
Steve Harsh, a packaging and printing expert who has been working in the field for over a decade. It has been my privilege to write on this topic, which I have been doing for years to help people learn about this essential field that helps millions achieve their business goals.

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