Do I Need Transfer Tape for Adhesive Vinyl?

Chances are, you are familiar with adhesive vinyl or have seen a graphic or sign using it. Made differently from cylinder cast vinyl, adhesive vinyl is a widely known and versatile material commonly used to create signs, decals, and graphics. It is so versatile that it can be applied to many different surfaces, including walls, doors, windows, and cars. 

What Is Transfer Tape? 

Before we get too fancy and start discussing double-sided adhesive tape or point you in the direction of the best vinyl supplies, let’s cover the basics of transfer tape. For starters, what is it? 


Transfer tape, also commonly known as ‚Äėapplication tape‚Äô or ‚Äėpre-mask tape,‚Äô is a thin and clear material that allows you to transfer adhesive vinyl from a backing paper to your desired final surface. The composition of transfer tape is fairly straightforward. It has a low-tack adhesive on one side, and on the opposite, a medium or high-tack adhesive, depending on the surface you want to stick it to. The low-tack is the side that picks up vinyl, and the medium or high-tack side sticks to your final desired surface and sticks the vinyl to it.¬†


In simpler terms, you stick the low-tack side to the vinyl on the backing paper. After you take the backing paper off, you stick the medium or high-tack side, now with the vinyl, onto the final surface, peel it off slowly, and you’re done.

Do I Need Transfer Tape? 

To put it simply, using transfer tape when working with adhesive vinyl would probably serve you best. Is it a must? Not necessarily, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea. 

Simplicity and Ease

Using transfer tape makes the application process a whole lot easier. Transfer tape allows you to stick the vinyl onto the tape, and then onto the final surface with ease and precision. If you opt to not use transfer tape, you will need to carefully align the vinyl to your desired final surface, and press down as firmly as you can to ensure that it transfers over. 


When working with larger graphics or bigger projects, you can imagine the ease and simplicity that using transfer tape would bring. 

There’s More to It

If you are familiar with adhesive tape, you know that one wrong move on the backing paper, and your vinyl is left stretched or distorted or wrinkled. No one wants that. Transfer tape is known for its ability to keep vinyl in place. By providing that layer of protection, you can rest assured that your vinyl is safe from any unforeseen and accidental damage.

Get Complex With It 

What is the saying, work smarter, not harder? Well, when it comes to complex multi-colored graphics composed of multiple vinyl layers, transfer tape is your best friend. 


Transfer tape allows you to perfectly layer each individual vinyl on your desired surface in whatever way you wish. There’s no need to manually align each and every one. Considering that, and the fact that the transparency of transfer tape helps you with alignment, it is no surprise why transfer tape makes the application process so much better.