Tips for Heat Printing Tank Tops

Summer has finally arrived, and more of your customers will be needing tank tops.    Heat Printing tank tops is as easy as printing t-shirts with a couple of extra considerations.     Here are some tips to achieve the best results.

Types Of Tank Tops

Just like t-shirts, tank tops do have gender variations that will need to be considered.    Men’s tank tops typically have wider straps and a looser fit.   Common styles include classic, muscle and athletic tanks.    Women’s tank tops are often designed with more variety in straps, fit and embellishments.    This would include styles like racerback, cropped, muscle and flowy.

Let’s take a look at how the tank variations relate to design considerations.   For the Men’s styles there really is no special design considerations.    The same design size used for adult t-shirts (11 x 11) will work for the tank top as well.

When pressing most tank tops, including men’s styles, you will want to thread your shirt over the platen so the arm seams will not cause pressure obstructions.   Threading is simply sliding the shirt on the heat press, as if dressing the platen, so you are only working with a single layer.

Many of the women’s styles have arms that are cut in reducing the amount of design space.    We recommend going about 8×8 in size for these styles.    Threading women’s styles are even more important as they almost always have obstructions.

A women’s racerback tank has limited printing space on the back so you will want to measure before ordering.   On a racerback tank the shoulder straps converge to a point between the shoulder blades, leaving much of the back exposed.

Crop style tanks will also have a reduced print space and we recommend even going smaller in print size on this style tank top.

Flowy tanks have extra materials so be sure you are hitting the center when pressing so the shirt looks correct when worn.

Tank Top Materials and Transfer Choices

Much like t-shirts, tank tops can be cotton, polyester or a blend.

All our transfer types can be applied to cotton and poly/cotton blends.   Some tanks have viscose or rayon as well.      Viscose and rayon are both heat sensitive and with this fabric content we recommend a low temperature transfer such as UltraColor. 

Use the What to Use When Chart to help you decide on the best transfer to use.

Printing tank tops using your heat press and custom transfers is a creative and profitable addition to your t-shirt business.     Just take the style into consideration and you are ready to print.

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