Why Is My Black Sublimation Turning Green? | How to Solve (2024)

The sublimation printing business is prospering day by day, but the quality of results is getting down. Most highlighting issues are black sublimation turns brown, orange or green. It has become difficult to achieve the true result on the sublimation blanks.

Black sublimation turns green due to inaccurate temperature & pressure settings, low-quality sublimation inks, and the wrong selection of substrate.

Why Black Sublimation Turns Green? | Reasons

Turning black sublimation into a green tint is frustrating. There are several reasons behind this issue; I have compiled all of them to discuss deeply. In this way, we can find a real solution to avoid in the future and elevate the sublimation printing business. Here we go;

Inaccurate Temperature settings

Temperature plays a pivotal role in the sublimation printing process. It directly affects the quality and color saturation of the final sublimation design.

Suboptimal settings of temperature will produce insufficient heat. Low heat will be unable to sublimate the particles of sublimation ink.

As a result, the permeation of ink through the substrate fibers will be insufficient. It will consequently turn the black sublimation design into green.

Inadequate Pressure

Pressure affects the ink penetration through the sublimation blank. If the pressure is lower than the recommended value, ink particles will only bond with the top surface.

But, deep down inside the substrate, no ink will pass, causing uneven dye distribution. As a result, when light reflects from the top surface of the sublimation design, it appears green.

So, select the right amount of pressure according to the nature of the sublimation blank, i.e., low, medium, or high.

Read more: Sublimation black looks brown

Low Quality and Incompatibility of Sublimation ink

A variety of sublimation inks is available in the market. All have their specific chemical formulations. A high-quality sublimation ink has consistent additives and pigments and meets the industry standards during manufacturing.

A low-quality, aged, and improperly stored sublimation ink leads to color shifting in the final stages of printing.

It can also cause reduced color clarity, intensity, and susceptibility to color changes.

Similarly, the chemical composition of sublimation inks has a significant role in this issue. One type of ink is not suitable for all sublimation blanks. Each substrate requires a specific kind of sublimation ink to have proper bonding.

If the sublimation ink is not compatible with the sublimation blank, there will be less chemical interaction, leading to deviation from the intended color. In particular, the black sublimation ink changes color to greenish while interacting with incompatible sublimate blank.

Wrong Color Profiles

When you start designing the desired design on the computer, select the right color shades. Moreover, while printing through the sublimation printer, input the correct color settings into the software.

If you choose incorrect color profiles, it will cause color distortion, less intensity, and color shifting to greenish.

Low-Quality Sublimation Paper

High-quality sublimation papers produce vivid, elegant, and clear sublimation prints. But, if you use low-quality or wrongly stored sublimation papers, you will end up with color discrepancies.

Also, low-quality papers have less coating. Therefore, they will absorb less sublimation ink. Such low quality, as well as uneven coating, will produce a green color sublimation print from black.

Contaminated Sublimation Blanks

Normally, a sublimation substrate is properly cleaned and iron-pressed to have a clean and even surface. If a blank contains residue chemicals or dust particles, this will hinder the chemical interaction of the substrate with sublimation ink.

Such low-quality chemical interaction will contribute to the color changing to green from black.

Read more: Heat Press Turned White Shirt Yellow

Solving the Black sublimation turning Green issue

To solve the issue of black turning green, various tips and guidelines are available. You have to take control over the selection of substrate, sublimation ink, color profiles, and temperature while heat pressing. Follow the below give guidelines to avoid the black print turning green in the future.

If you solve this issue, you will be able to grab more clients and hence improve then sublimation printing business.

Take the Right Color Profiles

Before printing the desired design on sublimation paper, double-check the color profiles. Select the right input of black color shade.

Take a print on regular paper to check the intensity and shade of black color. If it is still incorrect, calibrate it right printing equipment.

Adjust Temperature and Pressure settings

First of all, set the recommended temperature settings of the heat press. Then, take a print on the old substrate to check that the settings are correct as per the given. Keep checking the temperature with a calibrated thermometer for any set temperature discrepancy.

After fully satisfaction with the correct settings, start sublimation printing on the client’s substrates.

You can also make an experiment for high and low settings within a given temperature range to have optimal results. In this way, the black sublimation will never turn green.

Similarly, set the right amount of pressure according to the nature of the sublimation blank. Keep the pressure even throughout the surface to have consistent ink distribution. In this way, there will be fewer chances of color variation.

Use high-Quality Sublimation Ink

A lot of sublimation ink brands are present in the market. Some of them are producing consistent and vivid results. Such inks have industry-standard chemical formulations.

So, choose the ink brand with great care and ensure their compatibility with the sublimation printer.

Use the sublimation ink, which is not expired, as the formulation of the sublimation ink inside the cartridge changes over time, which results in a color shift. It is the reason why we strongly recommend replacing cartridges that have passed their expiration date.

Right-quality sublimation ink will give you excellent adhesion to the substrate, vibrant color,r and solve the issue of color turning to green.

Also, one more thing is to maintain the cleanliness of the printer and cartridge refilling according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Read more: Hippo Sublimation Ink vs Cosmos Ink

Choose the Right Sublimation Paper

Selection of the right sublimation paper is crucial. Invest in high-quality paper that can take the right amount of black color sublimation ink. Also, make sure that the paper is well coated.

In this way, you will have a black color on your substrate, which will last forever.

Prepare the Substrate Appropriately

Proper preparation of substrate is essential to avoid the black color turning to green. Clean the sublimation blank according to the instructions of the manufacturer.

Cleaning will remove any residue or dust particles that may impede the interaction of sublimation ink and substrate.

In this way, you will surely get a true black color on the sublimation blank as desired.


Sublimation printing is growing day by day as it produces vivid color on the substrates and enhances elegance.

Suppose your prints are not according to customer requirements, and the color changes to green from black. To solve this issue of black sublimation turning green, you must use high-quality sublimation ink, paper, and substrate.

Also, set the right amount of temperature and pressure in a heat press.

Read more: Most Common Sublimation Problems

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why does my black sublimation look faded?

Black sublimation fades out due to incorrect settings of temperature and pressure while heat pressing.

Calibrate the temperature settings of the heat press with the standard heat gun or infrared thermometer.

Why does Black turn green when pressing?

It occurs when you are undercooking, so try to apply a slightly higher temperature or increase the time of pressing.

Why does the Color black look opaque and not intense at all on the substrate?

It is due to either you are using low-quality paper or printing on the wrong side of the sublimation paper.

So, use high-quality paper and keep the design face up while heat pressing.

Why does the Black image transfer green on a 50/50 blend shirt after heat press?

On most 50/50 blend shirts of polyester or cotton, black looks dull or grey. Also, when temperature settings are not appropriate, it turns green as well.

So, either use a Ricoh printer and set the temperature to 380 – 390 for 40 – 45 seconds or take a polyester dominant shirt.

Why does the mug print turn greenish in color once transferred?

It all happens because of the wrong selection of ICC profiles and washing in warm water just after printing.

So, take the right ICC profiles and set up your printer according to them.

Also, for sublimation printing on the mug, set the temperature to 400 degrees and apply high pressure for 05.30 minutes. You will have better results eventually.

Can you sublimate over black sublimation?

Yes, you can sublimate on top of black sublimation. Add a different color based on already black sublimation and start your desired sublimation design.

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