How to Use Puff Heat Transfer Vinyl? | A Practical Guide (2024)

Have you ever heard about puff htv? And how to apply it on different garments to have a personalized look. Puff vinyl is simply an iron-on vinyl that provides a 3d design on the fabric.

It has a special composition due to which it expands heating and applying on the fabrics. Expansion creates a puff texture on the surface, just like a marshmallow, which adds depth and dimension to the design.

Puff 3d vinyl that is available in different colors and types like glitter, glow, plain, pink, blue, and red. You can buy it from Amazon, a heat transfer warehouse, or any well-known brand.

Working with Puff Vinyl | Factors to consider

When working with 3d vinyl, you can add on almost all types of garments by following the manufacturer’s instructions and guidelines. But here are some important factors you must consider before starting a puff vinyl project.

Fabric Compatibility

The fabric which can withstand heat and pressure is suitable for 3d vinyl printing. Socks, sweatshirts, hoodies, and t-shirts are workable products that have amazing results. For example, Puff vinyl application on nylon is challenging as it requires a higher skill set to prevent damage.

Skill and Expertise

Puff vinyl is slightly different than other personalization techniques. It demands higher expertise to have beautiful results and to minimize the level of damage to fabrics. 

We all know perfection comes with practice, so keep practicing on damaged fabrics to have full command over the puff vinyl process. 

With practice, you will know the time, temperature, pressure, heating, and preheating of iron to apply on various natural garments. Control over the temperature and pressure is essential.

Design Limitations

Simple designs are the top choice of puff vinyl designers. Working with intricate and complex designs doesn’t show clean and clear results. The reason behind this is after the expansion of the puff vinyl design, the small spaces inside the design disappear, and the design looks ugly.

So, use simple and clear designs for puff 3d vinyl.

How to use Puff heat transfer vinyl? 

Working with 3d heat transfer vinyl is easy; you have to apply the right instructions and follow the step-by-step guide to have vivid results on your project.

Cutting the Puff Vinyl Design

Most of the time, the designs come pre-cut, but some suppliers provide raw vinyl resources to have personalized designs.

In this step, we use a cutting machine to trim the design to have the desired dimensions.

The best choice of cutting machine is the Cricut Explore Air 2. Here, you have to apply iron-on settings and place a vinyl mat with the dull side facing up in the machine.

Then press ‘Go’ to cut the design and keep the force to 6-7 and speed at 3. Also, remember to have a test cut of the waste vinyl mat before working on the actual design.

Other vinyl-cutting machines you can use are Graphtec, Silhouette Xyron, etc.

Here are some puff HTV cutting machines and the recommended setting;

Puff Vinyl Cutting MachineSettings
For Silhouette CuttersBlade: Standard, 3
Speed: 8
Thickness: 6
For Graphtec CuttersBlade: 45°
Gram Force: 8-9
Tool: CB09U+0
Speed: 30cm/s
For Galaxy CuttersBlade: 45°/60°
Gram Force: 60-65
Speed: 300mm/s
*Blade Advancing Varies
For Brother CuttersBlade: 2
Cut Speed: 1
Cut Pressure: 1
For GCC CuttersBlade: 45˚
Gram Force: 80
Offset: .250
Speed: 30 cm/s
           Puff Vinyl cutting machine settings

Weeding of Puff 3D HTV

When the cutting process is complete, you have to remove extra vinyl from the design with care. Then, clean the puff vinyl with a cotton rag and make it free from residue.

Press the Fabric and Preheat the Heat Press

When you are free from the weeding process of puff heat transfer vinyl, now press the fabric that you want to have a puff 3d vinyl design. Make its surface smooth to have an even finish of the design.

Then, start preheating of Heat press and set its temperature 300oF to 305oF. Make sure the heat press is large enough to apply even heat to the entire design.

Place the design on the fabric and Heat Press

Now, Take the weeded design and place it on the surface of the fabric. Make sure that the shiny surface (carrier sheet) of the design is upward and the dull surface is toward the fabric.

Press the design with a heat press at medium pressure for about 10 seconds at 300oF-305oF temperature. You can increase pressing time for 05 seconds more to have a better puff rise like the marshmallow effect.   

The right temperature to heat press the 3d puff htv is 300oF to 305oF, which many professionals recommend.

Peeling off carrier sheet

When the design is cured, remove the shiny sheet from the surface of the desired design while it is warm. If you wait for a longer time to remove the shiny sheet, it will stick to the design and damage it.

And it’s done. Don’t you think it’s easy?

Why do we choose Puff 3D transfer Vinyl?

Super Finish and Appearance

After the application of 3d puff vinyl on fabrics, it gives a raised feel, which makes the garment cozy and enhances the elegance of garments.

Variety in Colors

Puff heat transfer vinyl is available in different colors like white, pink, blue, red, etc., so selecting the desired color makes it easy to match or contrast with the garment’s color. The design becomes more expressive and striking by selecting a different color puff vinyl than the garment’s color.

Cost Effective

Applying the puff htv is the cheapest method of printing on garments. For smaller and medium scale, it’s affordable to customize the garments. No need to purchase heavy and costly machines to apply 3d htv on fabrics.

Care instruction for 3d Puff vinyl Garments

  • After application of 3d puff vinyl on the garment, allow them to cure and wash them after 24 hours. Washing early will make the design fade or wash out.
  • When washing the clothes with a puff vinyl design, make them inside out and wash them with your hands. Use cold water for washing only; warm or hot water will damage the design.
  • Don’t use any bleach or fabric softener, and hang them under shade to avoid direct contact with sunlight.
  • Never dry clean the clothes having puff 3d htv
  • While pressing such garments with iron, make them inside out.

Puff Vinyl Looks like a Brain?

Sometimes, the puff vinyl design looks like a brain; most beginners face this issue. The reason for this problem is pressing the design twice because of the uncertainty of heat press temperature.

So, before starting the actual project, it is better to play with a heat press at different temperatures. Use scrap pieces of shirts and puff htv and apply different temperatures.

After practice you will have the right time and temperature settings and solve this issue.  

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Which side of puff 3d htv goes down?

While applying 3d heat transfer vinyl on the project, keep the dull side down and the shiny side upward. The dull side has a small amount of adhesive, which makes the design stick to the project.

Do I need to mirror puff vinyl?

Yes, before cutting your design on a Cricut machine, you need to mirror the design.

Can you repress puff vinyl?

No! Never press the puff 3d vinyl, as it will damage the puff surface of the design. So, before working on the actual project, have some test runs of the heat press and piece of puff htv on scrap shirts. In this way, you will have the right time and temperature settings for the heat press.

How long to heat press 3d puff heat transfer vinyl?

Most of the 3d puff htv require only 08-10 seconds to heat press. You can increase 2-3 seconds to have more puff effect.

Which fabric blends work best with 3d puff heat transfer vinyl?

3d puff heat transfer vinyl works best with 100% cotton garments. It also works with polyester and cotton blends but has the worst results in the case of nylon.

Why is puff 3d heat transfer vinyl bubbly?

Over-pressing the design causes this problem. Too much pressure will make the adhesive evaporate at a pressing temperature, and it forms a bubble on the surface of the design.

Why isn’t my puff vinyl sticking?

It usually happens due to a lack of pressure at the time of pressing. We usually adjust the time and temperature correctly but increase the pressing time if the HTV doesn’t stick. Instead, we should increase the pressure. The heat press works by adjusting the time, temperature, and pressure.

Can you remove puff vinyl from a shirt?

Yes, puff 3d htv will wash away if you use strong detergent and hot water. Dip the garment with the puff design for 03 hours and then peel off the puff design as it softens.

Can you print on puff vinyl?

Yes, you can print your desired designs on the puff surface of 3d puff vinyl. So, be creative and have funny and innovative designs on the puff surface of 3d htv.

Are puff 3d heat transfer vinyl designs durable?

Yes, puff 3d vinyl designs stick to the garments strongly due to the application of heating and pressing with a heat press. If cared for, the puff effect doesn’t fade or crack over time.

How long does puff vinyl last on garments?

1 to 3 years. The life of puff 3d vinyl is a maximum of 3 years if applied properly.

is puff vinyl hot or cold peel?

puff 3d vinyl is a hot peel, so remove the plastic sheet from the surface of the puff while it is warm.

Can you layer puff vinyl on top of glitter htv or regular vinyl?

Yes, it is possible to apply puff 3d htv on top of glitter or regular vinyl. But make sure you have the right settings for time and temperature. Also, always keep the puff 3d htv a top layer while applying it on any htv to have a puffy effect.


From hoodies to socks, puff 3d htv is applicable to a variety of garments. Customizing the clothes with puff 3d heat transfer vinyl gives a personalized look with a puff effect.

While applying this type of vinyl, ensure the right settings of heat press and shiny surface upward.  

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