types of craft vinyl

If you are just jumping into the world of vinyl crafts, it can seem overwhelming with all the different craft supplies, articles, tutorials, etc. that are out there. The #1 question that we see pop up A LOT is, “What are all the types of vinyl out there?”.

The simplest answer is there are 2 types of craft vinyl: Adhesive Vinyl & Heat Transfer Vinyl. Additionally, within each of those 2 main categories, you will see there are different types/textures of vinyl. 

Let’s dive in & break it down!

adhesive Vinyl

Adhesive Vinyl is found in 2 adhesive strengths: Removable Adhesive Vinyl & Permanent Adhesive Vinyl.

The main difference between Removable vs. Permanent is permanence and strength of the material’s adhesive; or simply stated their durability.


  • Great for Indoor Projects
  • Estimated to last around a year
  • Can be applied & peeled off with ease and won’t leave adhesive residue or damage to walls/paint.
  • Best used on smooth surfaces such as walls, glass, ceramics, etc.
Due to its adhesive strength & durability in weather conditions, it is not recommended for outdoor use. This doesn’t mean you can’t use it outdoors, but just be aware that it will have a shorter life before it fades & peels.

Common Brands/types of
removable Vinyl

  • Oracle 631
    •  Mainly available in solid colors
  • Cricut Removeable Vinyl
    • Available in solid colors
    • Available in some patterns & holographic textures 
  • Siser
    • Available in solid colors
    • Available in some patterns & holographic textures 



  • The most common type of Adhesive Vinyl! The majority of projects you see out there are using some type of Permanent Adhesive Vinyl.
  • Great for Indoor & Outdoor Projects
  • Estimated to last between 3 – 8 years (depending on vinyl brand & project use).
  • Great to use for window decals, car decals, signs, cups, tumblers, keychains, etc.
  • Due to its adhesive strength, if/when removed it may leave adhesive residue behind and also has the possibility of damaging walls/paint.
Let’s be honest, nothing lasts FOREVER! 
Permanent Adhesive Vinyl will come off eventually after long-term use. The main idea to keep in mind is that Permanent Adhesive Vinyl lasts longer than Removable Vinyl.

Common brands/types of
permanent vinyl

Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV)

Heat Transfer Vinyl is also known as Iron-On Vinyl

It is a vinyl that utilizes both heat & pressure to adhere to fabric & wood.

Just like the different types of fabrics available, there are many different types of HTV to decorate them. And how you apply each type of HTV depends on the fabric & application guidelines.

Common Brands/types of
removable Vinyl

The biggest takeaway is depending on the project you are wanting to make points you in the direction of which vinyl that you would use!

To help guide you, ask yourself: 

  1. Is the project for indoor or outdoor use? 
  2. Is the goal for the project to be temporary or permanent? 
  3. What type of surface is it? 

After that, there are no limits to your creative projects! And if all else fails, google is always there to assist with hundreds of articles & tutorials!

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