When it comes to business card design, plastic offers several advantages over paper. Not only do plastic business cards offer durability and a more substantial look and feel, they also offer something that paper business cards cannot: translucency. Translucent business cards, also known as frosted business cards, are neither opaque nor transparent, offering a refined sophistication.
How Translucent Business Cards are Made
Translucent business cards are typically made by applying a silkscreen to the card’s surface, which lightly obscures the clear plastic card stock underneath it. The same goes for anything printed on the card’s surface. The end result is a business card with a contemporary design aesthetic, where clear frosted portions permit light, and printed portions take on a matte look while maintaining a smooth texture.
Another way to produce translucent business cards is by applying a matte finish to clear card stock. This process produces a card with both translucency and texture. Which finish is right for you is a decision best made with your designer or marketing department. The right choice is the one that enhances your design while reinforcing your brand message.
Translucency is a design effect that is sometimes best used in moderation. While the temptation might be to devote large areas of your design to translucency with the intention of highlighting its uniqueness, it’s sometimes best to utilize this effect as an accent to your design. Something else to keep in mind when designing your business card are the other options that can be used to customize your card, including foil stamping and raised crystal ink, which is similar to spot UV. Raised crystal ink adds gloss to specific design elements and a raised effect, creating contrast with the frosted finish.