What is Spot UV?

Spot UV is the process of applying a clear, shiny coating to specific areas of artwork to create an eye-catching contrast, giving your artwork a luxury product effect.

SPOT UV Printing artwork guidelines.
  • SPOT UV Coverage should be no more than 30% of the artwork. Otherwise, the cards will be stuck together and become a block of cards. Up to 70% coverage is acceptable only with patterns, thin strokes, or small shapes. Ideally, the size of the area, shape, or image covered with raised foil should not exceed 1in x 1in.
  • We do not recommend having fonts smaller than 9pt on the SPOT UV Artwork.
  • The line strokes should be no less than 0.5 pt.
  • Use proper kerning between the text to avoid smudging of the clear coating.
  • When creating the mask file for fine details, cover it with the solid fills rather than just the design as is.
How to setup Mask files and prepare files for SPOT UV Printing?

When submitting files for print, SPOT UV jobs need a ‘separate’ file also known as the “Mask” file which is in addition to standard CMYK artwork files. The ‘mask’ file reflects the area which will have the special print treatment. This is how you can prepare files for SPOT UV printing:

Step 1: Identify the area(s) you want to apply the Spot UV to.

Identify the areas (text/logo) from your standard CMYK artwork file.

Step 2: Prepare a separate mask file in Vector Format.

For each printed side that has SPOT UV application, create a separate file with only SPOT UV elements. The file will be black and white, where the black represents the areas of SPOT UV application.

Note: The elements should be created in 100% black and as a vector format.

Step 3: Check alignment

You should practice and make sure that your artwork both the standard and mask file are aligned correctly.

Step 4: Saving the artwork files for submission

Save your artwork files with proper naming conventions, so that it is easy to identify which file is to be used for the printing process. For example, a Spot UV job with Spot UV application on both sides will have the following names:

  1. File-Name-Front-CMYK
  2. File-Name-Front-Mask
  3. File-Name-Back-CMYK
  4. File-Name-Back-Mask

Final Product

Can I have full coverage of the Spot UV on my card?

Yes, This will be like a Super Gloss coating all over the card. When order you will need to select the option of Full UV coating, rather than Spot UV.

Can you print Spot UV and Foil on the same Card?

Yes, we can print Spot UV and Foil on the same card provided Spot UV and Foil do not overlap. Also, while submitting the files for printing you will need to source Mask files for Spot and Foil separately.

What’s the difference between Spot UV and Raised Spot UV Cards?

Spot UV has a flat finish whereas Raised Spot UV has a raised finish, that if you run your fingers over the card you will feel the UV. The depth of the UV is approximately 50 microns.

I do not have a Mask file. Can you create them for me?

Yes, we offer design services for mask file preparation. Contact Us or send us an email with your design files at contact@printmagic.com