If you work in the printing industry, you’ve probably heard the phrase “DTF powder” and wondered what it is. Well, wonder no more! By the end of this article, you’ll have a firm grasp of what is DTF powder, how it works, and its applications. Now let’s start!

DTF powder, also known as “Direct to Film” powder, is a printing material. It is becoming more and more well-liked in the apparel printing market. A printable adhesive powder called DTF powder is used to transfer graphics onto materials including cotton, polyester, and even leather. A specific release paper is printed with the powder, which is then applied to the garment using a heat press. The ultimate result is a vivid and durable print that can endure several washings without fading or flaking. DTF printing is a more affordable and time-efficient printing technique. It doesn’t need to be pre-treated as other printing techniques do.

What is DTF powder

What is DTF powder made of?

The usual ingredients used to create DTF (Direct to Film) powder include polyester resin, colours, and other additions. The primary ingredient is polyester resin. It serves as a binding agent to aid in the powder’s adhesion to the cloth during printing.

It could also include other components including plasticizers, stabilisers, and release agents in addition to the polyester resin. The flexibility, toughness, and usability of the DTF powder are all improved by these additions.

The colour for the printed design is provided by the pigments in the powder. It comes in a variety of hues to accommodate various printing requirements. The use of fluorescent or glow-in-the-dark pigments in certain DTF powders allows for the creation of striking and original artwork.

How it works

In order to transfer a printed design from a specific film onto cloth using a heat press, DTF (Direct to Film) powder first prints the pattern on the film.

There are numerous processes involved in utilising DTF powder:

  • Design creation: A high-resolution printer is used to print the design onto a specific film once it has been developed using specialist software.
  • Using a powder shaker or vacuum chamber, the powder is applied to the printed pattern. The powder forms a solid coating on top of the pattern after being drawn to the ink on the film.
  • Transfer to Fabric: The fabric is put on top of the film, which has the DTF powder on it, and a heat press is used to fuse the two. The film and fabric are subjected to heat and pressure by the heat press. It causes the powder to melt and cling to the fibres of the cloth.
  • Curing: To ensure that the powder adheres correctly and creates a lasting print, the cloth is heated-cured once the transfer is finished.

It creates a durable and long-lasting pattern by melting and fusing with the fibres of the cloth. As a binding agent, the polyester resin in the DTF powder aids in the powder’s adhesion to the cloth. Doing so produces a flexible and resilient print that can endure several washings and uses.

Yamation DTF Powder Adhesive White 500g

Yamation DTF Powder Adhesive White 500g

  • Strong Adhesion and Reliable Fastness
  • Uniform Particle and Soft Feel
  • Bright Colors and Vivid Pattern
  • Widely Application and Easy Storage
CenDale DTF Powder, 500g

CenDale DTF Powder, 500g

  • Wide Compatibility DTF Powder
  • Bright Colors & High Quality
  • Waterproof & High Durability
  • Reliable After-sales Support and 100% Money Back
Welcar DTF Powder Adhesive 500g

Welcar DTF Powder Adhesive 500g

  • Super Adhesion
  • Vivid Color
  • Suitable for all DTF Printer and All sublimation Printer
  • Easy to storage & Long Lasting
Jecqbor DTF Powder 400g

Jecqbor DTF Powder 400g

  • Print On All Fabrics
  • No Clogging
  • Durable & Brightly Colored
  • 60 days risk-free warranty
LNKCOS DTF Powder 500G

LNKCOS DTF Powder 500G

  • Wide Compatibility
  • Print on All Fabric All Color
  • Waterproof and washable, durable
  • Softening, Brightening
Gucvblict DTF Powder 400g

Gucvblict DTF Powder 400g

  • Bright Color & Clear
  • Double Side & Jam Free
  • No Fade & Washable
  • Wide Application

Advantages and disadvantages

Versatility: can be used on many fabrics.Limited color range (CMYK only).
Cost-effective: no pre-treatment needed.Specialized equipment required.
Long-lasting prints.Environmental concerns.
High-quality prints.
Easy to use.

Types of DTF powder

1. TPU

The most often used DTF powder is thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU). It is known worldwide for its adaptability, extensibility, and capacity to create vivid, durable prints. For printing on clothing that requires a high amount of elasticity, such as sportswear and activewear, TPU DTF powder is perfect.

Moreover, industries use it to print on a variety of different materials, such as cotton, polyester, and even leather. We can modify the feel and texture of the print due to the variety of thicknesses of TPU DTF powder. The thickness of the TPU layer also impacts the amount of opacity and stretchability of the print.

2. PES

Polyester (PES) DTF powder is famous for its ability to generate high-quality, bright prints. We use it for printing on light-colored materials such as white or pastel-colored clothes. Prints made using PES powder have a delicate texture and intense colour saturation.

It is a fantastic option for printing artwork with minute details or elaborate patterns. PES DTF powder is less stretchable than TPU powder, making it unsuitable for printing on materials that call for a high degree of elasticity.

3. PA

Polyamide (PA) DTF powder is a relatively new kind of DTF powder that is gaining popularity because to its ability to make prints with high degrees of opacity. On fabrics with a dark colour, it is frequently used for printing.

The opacity and durability of the prints produced by PA DTF powder are comparable to those of screen printing. It is not as flexible or stretchy as TPU DTF powder, which makes it less suited for printing on materials that need a high degree of elasticity.

Each kind of DTF powder has its own qualities and is ideal for particular sorts of materials and printing applications. The fabric being printed on, the desired degree of stretchability, opacity, and colour saturation of the print, as well as the printing apparatus being used, should all be taken into consideration when selecting a DTF powder.

How to use DTF powder?

Equipment required

You will need specific tools such as a DTF printer, a heat press, a vinyl cutter (optional), and DTF powder in order to utilise it. The design is printed using a DTF printer on a special release paper, and it is then transferred to fabric using a heat press. We use the vinyl cutter to cut the design into the release paper manually.

Steps to follow

  • Using a graphic design programme, create the picture.
  • Print the design onto a special release paper using a DTF printer.
  • While the design is still on the release paper, sprinkle DTF powder over the wet ink.
  • Wipe off excess powder and transfer the pattern onto the cloth using a heat press.
  • Peel off the release paper and reveal the final print on the fabric.

Tips and tricks for optimal results

  • Ensure the fabric is clean and free of any residue before printing.
  • Change the heat press settings according to the cloth and DTF powder you’re using.
  • Employ a vinyl cutter for detailed patterns or to avoid wasting it.
  • Experiment with different DTF powder thicknesses to achieve the desired level of stretchability and opacity.
  • To get the best results and save material waste, print a test design before printing a big quantity.

Applications of DTF powder

DTF powder offers a broad range of uses in the printing business, since it is able to make high-quality, colourful prints on a variety of materials. The following are some uses for DTF powder:

Apparel printing: Businesses use DTF powder for printing on garments, including t-shirts, hoodies, and sportswear. On both light and dark fabrics, they use it to create intricate designs, logos, and graphics.

Accessory printing: It is also suitable for printing on accessories such as hats, purses, and shoes. Printing on leather and other challenging-to-print materials is perfect for it.

Signage and display printing: You can use DTF powder to create signs and displays on a variety of materials, including vinyl, PVC, and acrylic. It generates prints with high degrees of opacity and colour saturation, making it perfect for indoor and outdoor applications.

dtf powder applications

Printing on promotional products: It is ideal to produce stunning prints on items like pens, water bottles, and mugs. You can also use it for printing on products with irregular shapes or surfaces.

Home decor printing: Make personalised prints for home decor goods such as pillows, blankets, and curtains. It is an excellent choice for creating personalised designs for special occasions such as weddings and birthdays.

Automotive printing:  Print on fabrics used in automobiles, such as floor mats and seat coverings. DTF powder generates prints that are sturdy and long-lasting, even in high-traffic locations.

What is the difference between black DTF powder and white DTF powder?

Black DTF PowderWhite DTF Powder
CompatibilityCompatible with light and dark fabricsCompatible with light fabrics only
Printing QualityProvides excellent detail and vibrancy on dark fabricsProvides good detail and vibrancy on light fabrics
Curing TimeRequires longer curing time than white DTF powderRequires shorter curing time than black DTF powder
Suitable FabricsCan be used on cotton, polyester, and blends of the twoCan be used on cotton, polyester, and blends of the two
UsageIdeal for creating designs on dark fabricsIdeal for creating designs on light fabrics
ApplicationRequires a white base layer to be printed before applying black DTF powderDoes not require a white base layer to be printed before applying white DTF powder

What is black DTF powder used for?

Black DTF powder is widely used for printing designs on dark-colored textiles. Because to its high degrees of opacity, it may generate vivid patterns on materials that are difficult to print on using conventional printing techniques.

We can use it to print on a variety of fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. T-shirts, hoodies, and sweatshirts, as well as accessories like hats and bags, are few common examples.

The use of black DTF powder guarantees that the design shines out and has a high degree of contrast, resulting in a professional and eye-catching finished product.

Can I use DTF powder for sublimation?

The usage of DTF powder for sublimation printing is not possible. Both DTF (Direct to Film) printing and sublimation printing are distinct printing techniques that make use of various medium and technological requirements.

DTF printing is utilising a digital printer and DTF powder to print a design onto a specific film, which is then heated to transfer the pattern to fabric. On the other hand, sublimation printing entails printing a design using sublimation ink on unique sublimation paper, and then using a heat press to transfer the pattern to the fabric.

Sublimation printing is incompatible with DTF powder since it was created expressly for use with DTF printing. For sublimation printing, sublimation ink and paper are necessary; you can’t use DTF powder and DTF film in their place.

In a nutshell, powder and film are necessary for printing with DTF, whereas you need sublimation ink and paper for printing with sublimation.

How long does it take for DTF powder to cure?

Many variables, including the kind of DTF powder used, the cloth being printed on, and the curing circumstances, might affect how long DTF powder takes to cure.

In general, heat is necessary for the efficient curing of DTF powder. To ensure that the powder adheres correctly and creates a lasting print, the fabric must be cured for a certain amount of time at a predetermined temperature after the pattern has been printed onto the film and transferred onto the fabric using a heat press.

red tshirt printed using DTF heat press

The typical drying period for DTF powder is between 30 and 2 minutes, and the typical curing temperature is between 320 and 340 degrees Fahrenheit (160 and 170 degrees Celsius). The particular kind of powder you use and the type of cloth on which you’re printing affects the curing time and temperature.

To ensure that the print is strong and long-lasting, it is crucial to adhere to the manufacturer’s curing guidelines. After curing, washing the cloth is advised to confirm that the powder has bonded completely and to remove any extra powder from the fabric’s surface.

Is DTF powder toxic?

Generally, DTF (Direct to Film) powder is non-toxic and safer to use. It  is manufactured from a blend of polyester resin and pigments and does not include any potentially dangerous chemicals or materials.

To maintain your safety, it is still crucial to adopt certain measures while handling it. To prevent inhalation or skin contact with the powder, we advise to use gloves and a mask when handling DTF powder. It’s crucial to get help right away if you unintentionally swallow or inhale the powder.

To prevent taking in any dust or fumes that the printing process can emit, it is also crucial to utilise it according to the manufacturer’s recommendations and in a well-ventilated location.


In summary, DTF powder is a flexible and powerful printing material that has transformed the textile printing sector. DTF printing with powder has been a well-liked option for companies and amateurs alike because to its capacity to generate high-quality, long-lasting prints on both light and dark textiles.

The polyester resin content of DTF powder and the need for adequate curing after application to the cloth are important considerations. In addition, there are various phases in DTF printing with powder, including design generation, powder application, transfer to fabric, and curing.

Although powder-based DTF printing has numerous benefits, it is also subject to several drawbacks, such as the possibility for powder dispersion and the need for specialist equipment. Yet, DTF printing with powder may provide exceptional results and be a successful addition to a printing firm with the right training and tools.


What kind of cloth works best for powder-based DTF printing?

Tight-weave materials with a smooth surface, such cotton, polyester, and mixes of the two, work best for DTF printing with powder.

How does the DTF powder curing procedure operate?

To ensure that the DTF powder completely adheres to the fabric after the transfer is complete, you must cure in a heat press at a certain temperature and for a specific period of time.

How much DTF powder should I use per transfer?

Depending on the size of the transfer, you’ll need different amounts of DTF powder, but often only a light dusting is enough.

When a transfer is complete, can we use it again?

No, once the powder has been used for a transfer, it cannot be reused.

Are there any particular safety measures that I need to follow while handling it?

In order to prevent inhaling or swallowing DTF powder, it is crucial to use a mask and gloves while handling it.

When applied to garments and other fabrics that come in touch with flesh, is it safe?

As long as you thoroughly cure and clean it before wearing, DTF powder is acceptable to use on garments and other fabric products that come into touch with flesh.

Can we use DTF powder to create multicolor designs, or is it limited to monochrome prints?

You can use it to create multicolor designs by layering the powder on top of each other to create the desired colors.

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