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What Are Business Cards Made Of?

Most likely, if you are wondering what business cards are made of, it is because you plan to start a business, you have a business, or you need to boost your business. 

In this blog, we will explain what business cards are made of so that you can make a better decision when printing your business cards. If you’re just curious about the materials that a business card has, then you’re also in the right place. 

Materials Most Printers Use To Print Business Cards

To start, we will tell you which are the different materials printers use to create traditional paper business cards.


The first and most common material used for creating Business Cards is Cardstock. Cardstock is also known as pasteboard and cover stock. This type of paper tends to last longer than the traditional paper on which we make our notes, as it is thicker. However, this paper is still flexible and thinner than other paperboards.

Keep in mind that although cardstock, pasteboard, and cover stocks tend to be called the same because of their similarities, they are a bit different.


Cardstock is a paper stock stiff enough for the printing of business cards and similar uses.

Definition from: https://www.dictionary.com/browse/cardstock

Pasteboard is a type of thin board made by pasting together sheets of paper.

Definition from Oxford Languages

Cover stock:
Cover stock is paper that is thicker and more durable than regular writing and printing paper.

Definition from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Card_stock

Cardstock is thick, stiff cardboard composed of layers of paper or paper pulp compressed together.

Definition from https://www.dictionary.com/browse/paperboard

To better understand how business cards are made, it is crucial that you first understand what paper sheets are made of because they share several characteristics.

What is paper made of, and how is it different from business cards?

The traditional paper on which we write every day has a different process or technique than business cards. Although the two types of paper may have certain similarities in the process, there are key elements that differentiate them.

The process of traditional paper sheets

  1. Creating the traditional paper begins with the logs being fed into a rotating drum. This removes the bark, and the end product is more minor wood chips.
  2. The wood chips are moved to the pulp mill. In this part of the process, the wood chips are added to an acid solution to separate the plant fibers, and then the fibers are washed.
  3. The pulp is bleached. This helps the paper with its white color.
  4. The pulp is dried, belated, and moved to other paper mills.
  5. In this part of the process, the pulp is mixed with water and fillers like clay and calcium carbonate. This makes the paper more opaque.
  6. The mixture is ready to pass through the paper machine, draining all the water from the mixture and preparing the paper to go through the drying cylinders.
  7. The paper is sized and coated with colors and starch. This part of the process helps the ink dry on the surface, preventing the paper from absorbing it.
  8. The paper passes through several rollers that add pressure and heat to complete the process and deliver the final product.

 How is traditional paper different from business cards?

The most noticeable difference between how traditional paper is made and how business cards are made is thickness. Traditional paper is 0.0039 inches thick, while cheaper business cards are 0.010 inches thick. Now, keep in mind that the technique used to give the texture or thickness to some business cards is key to differentiating.

When we talk about texture, we talk about the fact that while creating the multiple sheets of paper to make the card’s composition, additional materials and chemicals were added in the process, such as cotton or china clay, among others.

However, there are non-traditional materials with which business cards are made that also help giving texture or thickness to the business card. 

Here, you can find materials like:

  • Plastic
  • Stainless steel
  • Canvas
  • Parchment
  • Linen
  • Cardboard
  • Wood
  • Leather
  • Edible materials: Beef Jerky, Chocolate, etc

These are some non-traditional and unique materials with which some printers can also make some types of business cards. Keep in mind that making a business card with these materials is a very different process. From the list above, we only print plastic, linen, and cardboard business cards.

Finally, there are business cards that use a technique very similar to that found in cardboard boxes, but their details are finer.

This technique includes three basic components: one wavy sheet of paper called the fluted and two flat sheets called liners.

Together these three elements form what is known as a corrugated board. In cardboard boxes, it is easier to identify the composition or technique used if you detail the edges of the cardboard. Still, it is impossible to determine when this technique is used in business cards if you do not have the necessary knowledge on this subject.

With this, we conclude the topic of how business cards are made, and we hope that this topic has helped you better understand how business cards are made.

In case you need to print professional business cards for your business, contact us at the email info@japanprint.com or phone number 212-406-2905 in the footer. We are Japan Print, and we are experts in printing business cards of all kinds. We are located in Downtown Manhattan, NY.

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