Sticker ABC’s: Kiss-Cut vs Die-Cut


Die Cut vs Kiss Cut

By: Naomi J. Myrick, Staff Writer

The Print industry is jam-packed with interesting — and confusing lingo — including the terms die-cut, kiss-cut, CMYK and many others. So, what are the differences between a kiss-cut sticker and a die-cut sticker? In this brief guide,  I’ll show you the differences between kiss-cut and die-cut stickers.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • How each cut is performed
  • A few benefits of custom kiss-cut stickers
  • A few benefits of custom die-cut stickers


Chapter One: What is Kiss-Cut?

Kiss-cut stickers

The kiss-cut process simply means that we cut through the vinyl adhesive part of your sticker, and we do not cut through the paper backing. This creates a super easy-to-peel sticker, thanks to the extra “border” material left behind.

As I mentioned, kiss-cut stickers also have a built in border around them. This works excellently to highlight graphics, logos, and promotions.


Chapter Two: What is Die-Cut?

Die-cut Sticker

Die-cutting is the cutting technique where we cut through the vinyl adhesive layer but we also cut through the paper backing. This makes printing unique shapes like sabertooth tigers and fireflies a breeze!

Die-cut stickers are the artist formerly known as “Contour Cut”. Each wording makes sense in its own right, but the technical process is called die-cutting, so most in the sticker biz wound up eventually choosing that wording.

Another print industry analogy people often use is that the die-cut method is like a “cookie cutter” process. This helps people visualize what actually occurs during cutting.


Chapter Three: The Benefits of Kiss-Cut vs. Die-Cut

Stickers on suitcase

Each person on Earth has unique skills and talents, and likewise each sticker cut can benefit certain goals and projects more than the other. Let’s break them down.


Kiss-Cut Benefits


Easy Peelability

Thanks to the extra material, these are effortlessly peelable. This makes large sticker projects go both smoothly and efficiently. Bonus: little to no hand cramping involved. 


Because they come on a backing with an extra material border, kiss-cut stickers will store better in a desk drawer or folder. Rarely will they get their corners torn or stuck together. 

Bulk Ordering

Hello, bulk discount! Save  some cash with bulk ordering! You also will have enough leftover stickers if a project comes up out of the wild blue.


Die-Cut Benefits


Unique Shapes Create Interest

Odd shapes get noticed first. The human eye is a pattern recognition machine, and it happened in a nano-second subconsciously. Custom die cut stickers are an effective way to gain attention in a bustling world.

Add Personality

Because they can be printed in custom shapes, these stickers can add personalized style to laptops, car windows and doors and any other solid, smooth object you’d like to decorate!

Professional Aesthetic

This cutting technique creates professional, clean-cut looking stickers. Use them at trade shows, job fairs or even in to-go bags. Promote sales and events easily and clearly using a die-cut sticker. 


All in all, either choice is going to be great for your next sticker project. Just keep the benefits and common uses as a guideline, and happy stickering!