How To Print White Text Ink On Coloured Paper

How to Print White Text Ink on Coloured Paper

We can all agree that white text printed on coloured card looks undeniably cool, adding a touch of elegance and uniqueness to any design. But have you ever wondered how exactly white text is printed? In this article, we’ll divulge into the intriguing world of printing white ink, exploring the possibilities, alternatives, and cost considerations. Whether you’re a designer seeking to incorporate white ink into your projects or simply curious about the process, we’ve got you covered. Let’s unravel the secrets behind achieving that striking white-on-colour effect and discover the answers to common questions about white ink printing.

White ink on green invitation

Contents & Shortcuts

Can home printers print white?

The short answer to this question is, no. But there is a special printer on the market that can (we’ll dive into that in the next section). The first thing you should note is that a ‘normal’ printer can’t print the colour white. When I say ‘normal’, I mean printers such as home desktop printers, regular office print and copy machines, and everyday commercial printers.

As far as I am aware, white ink for personal use is not available for purchase at the moment. Companies don’t make white ink for general home printers, so it is very difficult to find. Epson has a range of white ink for their large format industrial printers but not for the small printers.


Without getting too technical, the colour white is an ink which most print shops don’t use by default. There is a fair amount of time, cost and maintenance required to upkeep white ink printers. Most printers will use the CMYK inks (cyan, magenta, yellow and black) which mix to create all the other colours. As white is achromatic (having no hue) it can’t be created or mixed by other inks. Therefore, to print white onto something, it will require a specially created white ink.

Ghost White Toner

After a considerable amount of research, I discovered a company that indeed manufactures white ink specifically designed for smaller printers. Ghost White Toner in the US makes white ink toners that are compatible with a number of small printers on the market. Whilst I haven’t personally tried out their white ink, they have a ton of information on their website about it that you can check out. When it comes to pricing, if you plan to use the printer commercially and require frequent white ink printing, the costs are reasonable. However, for a one-time job, opting for a professional print job proves to be the more cost-effective choice for white ink printing.

Where do I go to get white ink printed professionally?

If you require white ink printing, it’s best to find a printing company who can print white. In Australia, specialty print places such as Peterkin in Perth and Papermarc in Melbourne provide the service of printing with white ink. Here is a list of some other suppliers I’ve found that print white ink:




White ink alternative

Instead of printing with white ink, you can ‘reverse’ the format and print on white paper and use colour for the background. For example, if your design has a coloured background, then it will print everything that’s coloured but ignore the white items. The white of the paper will then show through as ‘white’. However, bear in mind this technique won’t work on coloured paper as the colour that will show through will be whatever the colour of the paper is.

The invitations pictured below was in fact printed on linen-textured white paper and no white ink was used. The background was designed with colour, so only the background was printed and the text and graphic elements stayed white.

Reversed white ink printing

In the following image, the card at the back is white ink printed on coloured card. The front card is reversed white printing.

White ink on coloured paper

As you can see, it doesn’t look too different between the two. The most prominent difference is when you flip the cards around and the back of the front card is white. In contrast, the coloured card is the same colour on the front and back.

How much does white ink printing cost?

In comparison to regular printing, white ink printing generally tends to be more expensive due to the additional ink and printing processes involved. The cost of white ink printing can be higher because it requires specialised equipment, different ink formulations, and often involves additional printing passes to achieve the desired opacity.

As a result, the overall price range for white ink printing is typically higher than traditional printing methods. However, specific pricing can vary significantly depending on factors such as the printing technique, the quantity of prints, the complexity of the design, and the printing service provider. It is advisable to consult with printing companies or request quotes to obtain a more precise estimate for your specific white ink printing requirements.

Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and any purchase made through the links will give us a small commission (at absolutely no extra cost to you). These are brands that we trust and choose to recommend because we love what they do. Please read our Affiliate Disclaimer for more info.

Scroll to Top