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What Are the Different Paper Weights?

Posted by Capital Shredder Corp. on 12/14/2020
What Are the Different Paper Weights?

From invitations to bulletin postings, there are quite a few options when it comes to the category of paper that’s right for a particular project. Understanding what the different paper weights are will help you make the most sensible selection. Some standard weights are best for specific tasks, based on the stability necessary, and then there are envelopes to consider as well.

Bond Type

Choosing a bond type will depend on the print job you’re doing. Making basic copies will need one kind, whereas announcement prints will require an alternative. The heavier the weight of the paper, the thicker you can expect the sheets to be. Thicker (heavier) paper tends to be more impressive to the receiver. Imagine receiving a business card cut from regular printer paper—it would be hard to take the giver seriously.

20-Pound Bond

This lightweight paper is perfect for memos, basic copy prints, or multi-page reports. It may appear more translucent than heavier grades and is not typically appropriate for formal printing.

24-Pound Bond

Companies typically use this paper for prints that they send out. It functions well for company letterheads, formal reporting, and invites. This paper prints well and maintains its durability after multiple people have handled it.

32-Pound Bond

This selection of paper makes a statement and works best if you want to impress its receiver. For résumés, business proposals, and legal paperwork, this type commands attention. It’s durable and can easily handle the intense saturation of colors, a lot of graphics or ink on the page, and two-sided printing, as the paper’s opacity will prevent ink from bleeding through.

Disposing of forms printed on paper that is 32 pounds or heavier may require the use of industrial paper shredders or large shredding systems, as standard shredders may not be able to handle the weight. Capital Shredder Corp. offers an array of shredder models to prevent sensitive information on these documents from falling into the wrong hands.

65-Pound Cover Stock

Cover stock works well for menus, brochures, greeting cards, signage, presentations, and other documents that can stand on their own. Stationary often uses 65-pound cover stock. Typically, for business cards, you’ll go even higher for the weight and thickness of your paper.


Choosing the proper envelope to deliver a document may depend on the paper type. The envelope should be equal to the weight of the paper for anything 24 pounds and higher. The proper envelope for 20-pound paper would be one made from 24-pound paper.

Choosing the paper that sends the right message to its recipient is essential. Next time you’re holding an important document, note how the paper feels in your hand. Lightweight can feel cheap. Understanding the different paper weights will allow you to make the impression you desire.

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