Our standard water-based inks produce a super soft, breathable print with unmatched comfort and durability. They will never crack or peel, because they are dyed directly into the fabric–they color the fabric instead of trying to cover it.

These inks are capable of printing bold vibrant color, delicate details, and clean photographic halftones. The semi-transparent nature of this ink can be creatively utilized for “tone on tone” prints, and on heather fabric for an authentic vintage look.

sample swatch of water based ink screen printed on apparel

Our water-based inks are comprised of 100% biodegradable pigment suspended in a water base. As the print cures, the water in the ink evaporates; leaving the pigment behind.

They perform best on light fabric colors. We print dark fabrics with water-based discharge ink.

Superior quality and comfort make Standard Water-based Ink essential to retail clients.

Discharge Ink


Discharge Screen Printing Ink allows us to get all of the qualities of a Water-Based print onto a dark garment. An active agent is added to Discharge Inks in order to displace the garment’s original dye; allowing our pigments to re-color the fabric.

These inks typically perform best on 100% cotton. Most cotton dyes discharge extremely well to produce vibrant print colors. Some garment dyes are more stubborn and will not discharge completely. This can cause the printed colors to become tinted by the fabric dye.

Discharge Inks can also be printed on 50/50 Blends and Tri-Blends when exact ink colors are not critical. Only the dye of the cotton threads discharge when printing on blends. This creates a very unique “instant vintage” look.

Discharge ink on 100% cotton vs. discharge ink on a 50/50 blend

Discharge Ink can also be printed without pigment. It will still displace the garment to show the fabric’s natural fibers. Clear Discharge results range from bright white to bone white or light tan.

Superior quality and comfort makes Water-based Discharge Ink essential to retail clients.

What's The Difference?


Water-Based printing was the industry standard until the introduction of Plastisol ink in the 1950′s. Plastisol, a PVC based ink, took over the market due to its versatility, easy use, and low cost to printers, not because of consumer appeal. This ink relies on its high opacity and heavy solids to cover the fabric color. On dark garments more than one layer of this thick ink is often needed to produce acceptable results. Because Plastisol prints sit on top of the garment they can feel heavy and stiff. They also have the potential to crack and peel over time.

Plastisol inks are extremely versatile, and can be printed onto almost any material. Plastisol out performs Water-Based on synthetic fabrics, such as nylon, spandex, and polypropylene. It can also be used as a “iron on” transfer; making names and numbers on athletic wear affordable. The fact that Plastisol ink “can” be used for so many items doesn’t mean that it “should” be.

plastisol ink vs water based ink

If you are looking for custom printed, soft, breathable, wearable apparel – Water-Based Printing is the clear choice. In addition to a better looking, more comfortable print, Water-Based Ink is considered to be more Eco-friendly.

Traditional plastisol ink is a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) ink. It is a known carcinogen and can leach out of products. It is not drain safe and requires harmful industrial chemical solvents for cleaning.


Standard Water-Based Screen Printing Ink

This is the most eco-friendly ink available anywhere. It is the perfect choice for clients with environmental concerns. It is also strongly recommended for all infant, toddler, and youth apparel.

Our Standard Water-Based Inks are free of environmentally damaging chemicals such as lead, PVC, heavy metals, Azo compounds,

Nonylphenol and Phthalates. They do not contain ozone depleting chemicals – CFCs, HCFCs, VOCs, or volatile solvents.

Water-based inks also allow the use of natural enzymes, including citrus and soy bases, for the cleaning of screens and equipment.

These inks have passed the most rigorous industry tests regarding health and environment with superlative results; Receiving both Nike’s extremely rigid RSL Certificate and the Oeko-Tex Standard 100.

Eco Friendly Screen Printing

Water-Based Discharge Screen Printing Ink

These Inks are PVC and VOC free. They do not contain heavy metals, lead, Azo compounds, Nonylphenol or Phthalates.

Water-Based Discharge Inks also allow the use of natural enzymes, including citrus and soy bases, for the cleaning of screens and equipment.

These inks meet or surpass all federal regulations and industry tests regarding health and environment. They are Oeko-Tex Standard 100 approved, and many colors have even been approved by Soil Association Certification Ltd. to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).