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How To Use Heat Transfer Vinyl On Shirts

Jan 07, 2023

Do you know how to use heat transfer vinyl on shirts?


To use HTV on a shirt, you’ll need to create or edit a design, cut out the design, remove any areas of negative space from the cut, transfer the vinyl to the fabric, and then use heat to glue the HTV to the shirt.


It’s not a complicated process, but with practice and a few helpful tips, it gets easier! For example, certain types of HTVS create a neater design when you use thermal stripping, which means you peel the back of the vinyl while the design remains warm. Other types of vinyl work better if you allow everything to cool completely and do a cold strip to remove the backing.


You will also find this art form easier if you have the right tools at hand. For example, you can use an iron to apply HTV 100% effectively. But if you have a hot press that you can use, it’s easier to get to the right temperature.


Apply with Heat Press machine

The easiest and most professional way to apply HTV to a shirt is to use a hot press. You don’t have to have a hot press for this process because you can use an iron instead! But a hot press allows you to set a specific temperature and apply heat and pressure evenly across the entire design at once.


If you have a cricket hot press, you can use the Cricket Guide’s temperature Settings. However, any hot press will do. You just need to set the temperature to fit the vinyl you have. For more information on choosing a temperature, see the “What Temperature to Use with HTV” section below.

Spread the shirt out on an ironing mat. Preheat and press with a hot press for a few seconds to smooth the fabric surface.

Put your vinyl design on your shirt. You can do this easily if you cut it out with a , as the plastic back will keep the vinyl properly spaced. Otherwise, you may need to use transfer tape to help place your design on the fabric.

Make sure you put the dull side of the vinyl down and the back of the plastic up.

Apply hot press to the plastic substrate at the temperature and time recommended by your HTV.

Turn the shirt over and heat it on the back of the fabric where the pattern is.

Finally, use warm or cold peel depending on the type of HTV you use. Circut’s daily ironing guide will tell you to allow the design to cool completely before removing the plastic backing.

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