8 Best Shirts for Sublimation Printing

8 Best Shirts for Sublimation Printing

If a plain white shirt is not the go-to choice for your customers, try selling sublimated t-shirts.

In this article, you’ll learn all about sublimation printing – what are the best shirts for sublimation dyes, why cotton is not your friend, and helpful tips to get the most out of the entire sublimation process.

First and foremost, consider the sublimation shirt blanks. It’s the canvas for your beautiful designs, so you need to pick a shirt that won’t fade, cling, itch, or deteriorate after the first wash.

Now, let’s take a look at the rest of the process. When you’re ready, go and customize a product from our list of the best sublimation t-shirts with your sublimation design.

How Does Sublimation Work?

Sublimation printing is a distinct t-shirt printing technique where the print is first transferred onto a special sublimation paper, then applied onto a polyester or high-polyester-content fabric.

The sublimation paper is specially coated to hold ink in place, allowing your print to transfer through a heat press straight onto the fabric. This creates a bright, vivid garment with a pattern that covers the entire canvas from seam to seam.

The machine holds the sublimation dye in place until the ink and fabric fuse resulting in bright sublimation prints and a durable garment that withstands hundreds of wash cycles without losing its vibrant colors.

Which Shirts Are Best for Sublimation?

8 Best Shirts for Sublimation Printing 1

There are many types of t-shirts with different material blends, but only some will work for the sublimation printing method. We don’t recommend putting sublimation designs on shirts made from natural fibers, like silk or cotton shirts.

Technically, dye sublimation is possible on cotton shirts, but the image won’t last forever. Cotton fibers are more absorbent, and the ink can bleed and wash out easily. Similarly, silk is not heat-resistant, and sublimation printers can significantly damage and burn the super-soft fabric.

Will 50/50 Polyester Blend Shirts Work for Sublimation?

The sublimation method works best with garments made from pure polyester or a polyester blended material that has at least 80% of polyester in the mix. The dyes in sublimation inks bond with polyester molecules, enabling you to print your designs with the highest quality.

Blends with less than 80% polyester will look more faded. If you’re going for a retro look, consider choosing a t-shirt with a lower polyester percentage. However, we don’t recommend going any lower than 65%.

Polyester shirts have other advantages – they’re lightweight, smooth to the touch, comfortable, and not scratchy or clingy.

Quick Tip

Choose light colors for the background so your logos, images, and motives turn out strong.

8 Best Shirts for Sublimation

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Our Catalog features various products from top brands for sublimation, with an excellent collection of all-over-print shirts, short-sleeve and crop tees, jerseys, and button-up shirts. Choose from full-polyester shirts or dynamic cotton, and poly blends to achieve that perfect outcome you’re looking for.

A mockup image of a man wearing a unisex custom all-over-print t-shirt with a tiger print.

This is one of our most versatile AOP t-shirts – it has no tags and sports a regular unisex fit that’ll match all style preferences. The cut and sew tee is made from a unique lightweight 100% polyester, resulting in a comfortable and breathable material. 

Cut and sew means that the image is transferred onto the fabric before it’s sewn together, making sure the pattern covers every inch of the garment. It’s then cut and sewn into the desired t-shirt shape.

A mockup image of a woman wearing a unisex custom all-over-print t-shirt with a peach print.

Apart from being lightweight and durable, this t-shirt is perfect if your customers want to sport a trendy look. Its ribbed-knit collar and shoulder tape helps it retain shape while looking super flattering with your designs. 

This t-shirt works perfectly with sublimation dye, creating a stunning product. Available in six sizes in black or white, this is the perfect product for all niches.

A mockup image of a men's custom all-over-print Hawaiian shirt with a pinapple print.

Our men’s Hawaiian shirt is a classic summertime option with a look sure to become a fan favorite among your customers.

This AOP option has a full button-up front, a spacious chest pocket, and a notch-lapel collar that creates a stylish uniform shape. They make excellent sublimation shirts for hot weather and beach days.

A mockup image of a man wearing a unisex custom all-over-print baseball jersey with a baseball-styled print.

We’ll print your sublimation baseball jerseys in bold, vibrant colors that stay the same even after regular, active use. Both are made from 100% polyester material, making sure the printed shirt won’t fade in the sun.

This medium-weight breathable polyester garment sports a nice, semi-flowy fit that works for both athletic and everyday-casual wear. It’s also moisture-wicking and odor-resistant – a go-to choice for athletic shops with sporty designs.

A mockup image of a man wearing a custom all-over-print polyester t-shirt with an abstract print.

Make your unique sublimation projects come to life with this 100% polyester tee. Sell them in eight sizes, from XS to 4XL.

The light fabric will mesh perfectly with a colorful design, and we’ll automatically match the seam-thread color (black or white) with your design’s color palette. The sleeves and hems are reinforced with double-needle stitching, providing long-lasting durability and comfort.

A mockup image of a woman wearing a custom crop tee with a blue and yellow flower print.

For an even lighter and more fashionable option, check out our AOP crop tee delivers both comfort and style. The garment tapers to the midsection, resulting in a breezy and relaxed fit.

This 100% polyester t-shirt was practically made for sublimation printing. You can customize it with the most colorful design, and it’ll look great for years.

This hot-weather favorite is perfect for everyday wear. Help your customers stand out with bold designs, like continuous patterns, scenic graphics, branded symbols, and memorable illustrations.

A mockup image of a man wearing a custom all-over-print loose t-shirt with an abstract print.

If you want to sell polyester shirts for customers who love dressing casually, this will be your go-to t-shirt. It has a classic, round collar, double-needle stitching for reinforcement, and it’s made from 100% polyester, making it one of the best shirts for sublimation printing.

Our men’s loose t-shirt comes in various sizes, up to 5XL.

A mockup image of a woman wearing a custom short sleeve t-shirt with a floral print.

Last but not least, this fan favorite will be a great addition to your catalog. It’s a lightweight, blended shirt with enough polyester to guarantee vibrant designs with sublimation printing. The 5% spandex adds elasticity to the fabric.

We’ll automatically match the seam-thread color (black or white) to your design. It has a form-fitting look and comes in eight sizes, from XS to 4XL.

Find More Bestselling AOP Products

Browse the Printify Product Catalog to find other AOP garments for sublimation printing. We’ve got everything from dresses to long sleeves and v-neck shirts.

The Best Shirts for Sublimation Are 100% Polyester

Looking for pure polyester t-shirts for sublimation printing? We got you. Check out our list of 100% polyester options. They have the perfect surface for designing AOP sublimation shirts. Beautiful quality and durability are guaranteed.

  1. Unisex Cut and Sew Tee 
  2. Women’s Cut and Sew Tee
  3. Men’s and Women’s Baseball Jerseys
  4. Men’s Polyester Tee 
  5. Crop Tee 
  6. Men’s Loose T-Shirt

Why Choose Printify to Sell Sublimation Shirts?

Less hassle. More profits. Printify is free, simple, and requires no upfront investments. All you need to do is create and sell products. We’ll print them with good-quality sublimation ink and deliver them to your customers.

Browse our catalog of over 850 items, including our top-selling blank shirts for sublimation ink.

Sit back and profit

Once you sell a shirt, we automatically send it to a sublimation printer. Then, we package and ship it directly to your customer’s doorstep.

High quality

We work with vetted Print Partners and do quality checks to guarantee beautiful quality for each one of your sublimation products.

Printify Premium

Upgrade to the Printify Premium plan and get up to 20% off on our products to secure more profits.

High quality

Connect with the world’s biggest online marketplaces and eCommerce platforms, like Shopify, Etsy, Wix, WooCommerce, eBay, and Walmart. Check out these Shopify t-shirt stores to gain inspiration for your business.

Summary

Now you know which type of shirt for sublimation works best and guarantees good print quality. The best shirts for sublimation are made of quality materials and have a generous mix of polyester fibers that perfectly blend with the sublimation transfers.

It’s remarkably simple to source shirts from polyester blends and create bestselling AOP polyester shirts. You don’t even need your own sublimation printer.

Once you have a design in mind, simply upload it to our Mockup Generator and start selling.

Create Beautiful Products With Sublimation Printing

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