What's the difference between kiss cut and die cut stickers?

A fundamental choice often arises when considering your sticker options: do I need a kiss cut or die cut sticker?

The differences are minor, and while similar, they still serve slightly different purposes. Making an informed decision is essential and will ensure you get the best results.

What is a kiss cut sticker?

Kiss cut stickers are cut through the vinyl layer around the edge of your design without cutting through the backing paper. This leaves an extra backing around your sticker.

They look like this:

3 different kiss cut sticker piles with one applied to an iPhone

What is a die cut sticker?

Die cut stickers are cut around the edge of your design through both the vinyl and backing paper layers. They can be any shape and are the most popular sticker.

They look like this:

Die cut holographic and glitter Tribal Rhino stickers

This GIF helps to explain it too:

Animation showing a kiss cut and a die cut sticker peeling off their backing

The terms kiss-cut and die-cut only refer to how a sticker gets cut, and it doesn’t refer to the material of the sticker.

Here is a helpful video that also explains the difference:

Kiss vs Die cut stickers

Here are some of the advantages of each sticker so you can easily compare them to see which is best for you.

Kiss cut advantages

  • They have extra backing paper around the outside of your sticker – this can get printed with your brand name, website, or contact details, making them brilliant for handouts at events.
  • If you have an intricate design, a kiss cut sticker will be better because the extra backing paper protects the sticker until it’s applied.
  • Easier to peel away from the backing paper and therefore quicker to apply.

Die cut advantages

  • Tend to be a lower cost option because there is less cutting per sticker.
  • The edge of the backing paper is the edge of the sticker, making it easier to see what your sticker will look like on the surface you’re applying. Great if you are re-selling your design as a sticker to your customers.

Some examples to look at

Here are some great examples of both kiss cut and die-cut stickers. They should also help you decide which option is best.