How to Cut Cricut Vinyl?

Do you want to cut vinyl with your cutting machine but need clarification? Following some simple steps, we will guide you on using the vinyl with your DIY machine. Cutting machines can be tricky to use, but they give an incredible look to your personalized products. This blog will make things easy for you and help you work with it. Hopefully, you will get answers to all your questions by the end of this blog.

What is Vinyl and Its Types

Vinyl is a versatile, flexible material that you can use for your crafts and create stickers, tumblers, decals, and customized mugs. The cutting machines provide you with intricate designs and precise cuts. However, you can cut the vinyl with your hands as well.

Types of Vinyl

Which vinyl to work with on what project are you working, and with which cutting machine? There are mainly two types of vinyl that are further divided based on their features.

  1. Adhesive Vinyl: It is used to do projects that need adhesive back like stickers. It bonds the material with vinyl using pressure and comes in various colors. The vinyl is made up of two layers, one is vinyl, and another one is paper liner; paper liner protects your vinyl until you apply it to your project, and vinyl has an adhesive backing. Based on the stickiness or strength, vinyl comes in different strength levels.
  • Removable vinyl has a temporary adhesive backing, so it works great for temporary projects, like wall decals and seasonal decor; it can be removed easily without leaving any residual.
  • Permanent vinyl: It has a durable and robust adhesive backing, so it works great with lost-lasting projects like cups, mugs, and window decals.
  1. Heat transfer vinyl: It applies heat and pressure of a heat press to fabric surfaces. The vinyl comprises a dull (vinyl) and a shiny (transparent plastic carrier sheet) side. There are different types of iron-on.
  2. Glitter Iron-on: gives you a glittery, shimmery effect with a wide range of colors.
  3. Smart Iron-on: it does not need a cutting mat to finish the cutting work.
  4. Sportfles Iron-on: it is designed to flex and stretch on fabrics like nylon and polyester and is thin and lightweight.
  5. Holographic Iron-on: gives you a multicolor finish that changes in the presence of light.
  6. Foil Iron-on: provides a variety of metallic colors with a reflective and shiny finish.
  7. Patterned Iron-on: gives you a wide range of classic and trendy patterns.

How to Cut Cricut vinyl

Cutting vinyl is straightforward; you need to follow some steps. This blog will give you an overview of the whole process.

Materials Required for Cutting: cutting machine, vinyl, cutting mat, or smart material, weeding tool, transfer tape, and heat press if you are working with a heat transfer vinyl.

Cut the Vinyl

  1. Create your design: Open your design space and design your project; you can also use ready-to-make projects from the Cricut image library or upload your designs on Design space. Click the “make it” button, cross-check everything, and click the “Continue” button.
  2. Place vinyl on the mat: Remove the transparent plastic sheet of your vinyl and put it on the cutting mat with the paper liner downside. To smooth everything, use a scraper or a brayer tool. Load your cutting mat in the cutting machine and press the “load/unload” button.
  3. Choose settings: In your Design space, set the setting that best suits your material. And make sure that your fine-point blade is loaded.
  4. Cut your design: When everything is set and alright, press the “go” button.
  5. Weed your design: Unload your material by pressing the “load/unload” button after cutting. And remove the negative or excess part of your design. Flip your cutting mat and peel the vinyl from the mat.

Apply the Vinyl

  1. Prepare the project surface area: Ensure your project surface is clean and dry.
  2. Apply transfer tape to your design: Remove the paper backing of transfer tape and apply it to your vinyl design, which is slightly larger than your vinyl; burnish the tape using a scraper.
  3. Remove the paper liner from the vinyl and transfer tape: Remove the paper liner at an angle of 45 degrees.
  4. Apply a vinyl design to the project surface: Apply your vinyl design to the project surface with the help of a transfer tape and burnish it with the help of a scraper.
  5. Peel off the transfer tape: Pull the transfer tape away from your project at an angle of 45 degrees.


Vinyl has many properties and benefits, is simple to use, and looks good. It can do different craft projects, like tumblers, mugs, t-shirts, etc. For many various tasks, like decorating, gifting, and personalizing items, you do not need a wide variety of tools to start the craft journey. It can add fun to your craft and will significantly aid your craft kit.


Question- Which side of the vinyl goes down during cutting?

Answer- Heat transfer vinyl is a flexible material comprising two layers: a colorful vinyl layer and a clear plastic backing; the dull side of the vinyl is a colorful vinyl layer, and the shiny side is plastic backing. While working with the cutting machine, the shiny side of the vinyl goes down for cutting; it covers the face of the heat transfer vinyl and holds the vinyl pieces in alignment during the cutting.

Question- Can you use a regular iron instead of a heat press?

Answer- No! A regular iron can ruin your project. You cannot do settings in a normal iron according to your material as in a heat press. And a standard iron does not provide an even spread of heat to your project, which can burn your project material from different places. However, if you can use a regular iron for your projects, you can go for it, but there will be a high chance of your project getting ruined.

Question- For how long should you apply heat to heat transfer vinyl?

Answer- You should not overheat your base material, as there are chances that overheating can ruin your project. However, if you do not apply enough heat, your vinyl design may not stick to the base material properly. To get your project perfect, you should know how much time you should provide heat to your vinyl design, and the answer is 10-15 seconds, depending on the material to the material; however, 10-15 seconds is an average ideal time.

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