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The Best Cricut Materials - 2021

Last updated on September 10, 2021

We looked at the top 6 Cricut Materials and dug through the reviews from 22 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Cricut Materials.

Best Cricut Materials

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Our Picks For The Top Cricut Materials

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  Best All-Purpose

Cricut Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Cricut

Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine

Overall Take

Create Custom DesignsThis quality Cricut machine helps you create unique logos, greeting cards and homemade gifts for all occasions.

Experts Included
DWYM Crafts & Art Supplies Experts plus BestReviews, Creative Bloq, The New York Times, The Spruce Crafts, Vinyl Cutting Machines, How To Heat Press and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart.
Pros
" Upload your own images, or access a good selection from Cricut's free library. Cuts through foils, leather, vinyl, and a whole lot of other good stuff. Has a Fast Mode to cut time in half, which is a big help..."
Cons
"We wouldn’t recommend this for anyone doing commercial cutting, but it’s certainly the best Cricut machine for anyone at the start of their journey."
  Runner Up

Cricut Fine-Point Water-Based Pens, 30-Pack

Cricut

Fine-Point Water-Based Pens, 30-Pack

Overall Take

Ultra Fine TipsThese water-based, acid-free Cricut pens are permanent once dry and provide beautiful colors for any project.

Experts Included
DWYM Crafts & Art Supplies Experts plus Best Products, The Spruce Crafts and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart and Michael’s.
Pros
" Custom-design your greeting card, upload it to the Cricut app, and watch it come to life with this set of Cricut-compatible fine-point pens. This set of 30 colors can be used for a myriad of other crafty projects, such as..."
  We Also Like

Cricut Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

Cricut

Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

Overall Take

Compact SizeThe Cricut EasyPress Mini is perfect for customizing unusual objects with hard-to-reach areas.

Experts Included
DWYM Crafts & Art Supplies Experts plus BestReviews, Vinyl Cutting Machines, Cutting Machine Reviews and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart, Michael’s and Target.
Pros
" Pint-sized powerhouse that's perfect for customizing small and awkwardly angled projects."
Cons
"One thing we would caution is that this is a specialist machine and it’s worth considering how much you’re planning to use it before you buy."
  Strong Contender

Cricut Insulated Base Heated Press

Cricut

Insulated Base Heated Press

Overall Take

Multiple Color OptionsThis Cricut press works perfectly for heat-transfer and sublimation projects and comes in three fun colors.

Experts Included
DWYM Crafts & Art Supplies Experts plus BestReviews, Creative Bloq, iMore, Vinyl Cutting Machines and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart, Michael’s, Target and Best Buy.
Pros
" An updated version of one ofthe brand's top machines, it enables you to transform iron-ons to a variety of materials. Results look professional. Slim build. Equippped with an insulated safety base with an auto-shutoff feature."
Cons
"No good for small items."
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13

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the cricut materials available to purchase.
6

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

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22

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: The Spruce Crafts, Electronics Hub, Best Products, BestReviews, Creative Bloq.

879,630

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 6 Cricut Materials and also dug through the reviews from 22 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Cricut Materials.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Cricut Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine


Our Expert Score

8.6
7 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.4
2,271 user reviews

Our Take

When it comes to Cricut materials, you'll first need to invest in a quality machine. This model allows for endless project possibilities and comes with a host of accessories, such as a cutting mat and fine point pen. This powerful machine is able to cut through 100 different kinds of materials.

What other experts liked

Upload your own images, or access a good selection from Cricut's free library. Cuts through foils, leather, vinyl, and a whole lot of other good stuff. Has a Fast Mode to cut time in half, which is a big help...
- BestReviews
The Cricut Explore Air 2 will cut more than 100 different types of material, including premium vinyl, iron-on and HTV vinyl, cardstock, faux leather, adhesive foils, specialty paper and poster board, and you get five tools for cutting, writing and...
- Creative Bloq
This machine offers the easiest-to-learn software, smooth cutting, a large image and project library, and strong community support.
- The New York Times
Looks great. Simple to use. Fun, pre-programmed projects. Feels professional.
- The Spruce Crafts
Fast Mode. Automatic settings for over 80 materials. Precision cutting. Dual carriage. Bluetooth connectivity for wireless cutting. Excellent price. Chic look.
- Vinyl Cutting Machines
High quality components. Beautiful design. Very affordable. Easy to learn. Cut hundreds of materials. Huge FB support groups. Tons of online resources. Suitable for small business.
- How To Heat Press
100 material options. Smart storage options. Lightweight. Looks great. Accessible for beginners. Free software available. Works with Bluetooth devices.
- Top Ten Reviews

What other experts didn't like

Access to the extended graphics and font library requires a pay-per-image fee. Some users had problems with software.
- BestReviews
We wouldn’t recommend this for anyone doing commercial cutting, but it’s certainly the best Cricut machine for anyone at the start of their journey.
- Creative Bloq
It’s expensive but very beginner-friendly.
- The New York Times
Tools run down quickly. Finicky Bluetooth connection. Extra accessories can get pricey.
- The Spruce Crafts
Quite loud, especially in Fast Mode. Print Then Cut sizes are restrictive. Design Space software — you either love it or hate it!
- Vinyl Cutting Machines
Does not cut as many materials as Maker. Design Space software slow. Only 12 inches wide.
- How To Heat Press
Needs Wi-Fi to work. You'll have to pay for premium design software access.
- Top Ten Reviews

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Cricut Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

Our Expert Score

9.2
4 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.6
23,750 user reviews

Our Take

If you plan on customizing non-standard shaped items like hats, teddy bears or shoes, you'll need to add this small, portable press to your Cricut materials hoard. The device offers three heat settings, a precision tip, and a safety base. It also has a comfortable handle for better control.

What other experts liked

Pint-sized powerhouse that's perfect for customizing small and awkwardly angled projects.
- BestReviews
Wonderful product it gets right into small spaces.
- Cricut
It’s a very sophisticated machine — despite its tiny size! — and is perfectly suited to small and tricky heat transfer projects that larger heat presses and irons simply can’t accomplish. Like the rest of the EasyPress line, it’s safe and easy to use and promises professional results thanks to...
- Vinyl Cutting Machines
Lightweight. Timer. Easy to store and compact. Quality and effective prints. Easy to use & Safe. Unlike an iron, there is a solid safety base. The even heat and consistent pressure prevent any steam holes. The design is much better for applying even pressure than an iron. The heat setting...
- Cutting Machine Reviews

What other experts didn't like

May not heat as much as larger machines. Questionable longevity.
- BestReviews
Turning itself off while on the high setting.
- Cricut
One thing we would caution is that this is a specialist machine and it’s worth considering how much you’re planning to use it before you buy.
- Vinyl Cutting Machines
The cost. The mini size makes the product only appropriate for very small jobs.
- Cutting Machine Reviews

Overall Product Rankings

Cricut Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine

1. Cricut Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine

Overall Score: 9.5
Reviews Included: 11

Cricut Fine-Point Water-Based Pens, 30-Pack

2. Cricut Fine-Point Water-Based Pens, 30-Pack

Overall Score: 9.3
Reviews Included: 9

Cricut Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

3. Cricut Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 10

Cricut Insulated Base Heated Press

4. Cricut Insulated Base Heated Press

Overall Score: 9.1
Reviews Included: 11

Cricut Adhesive Grip Cutting Mat, 3-Pack

5. Cricut Adhesive Grip Cutting Mat, 3-Pack

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 10

Cricut Essential Basic Tool Set, 5-Piece

6. Cricut Essential Basic Tool Set, 5-Piece

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 9

Our Cricut Material Findings


Cricut Explore Air 2 DIY Cutting Machine

Best All-Purpose

What We Liked: When it comes to Cricut materials, you’ll first need to invest in a quality machine. This model allows for endless project possibilities and comes with a host of accessories, such as a cutting mat and fine point pen. This powerful machine is able to cut through 100 different kinds of materials.


Cricut Fine-Point Water-Based Pens, 30-Pack

What We Liked: Add this set of fine-point water-based pens to your Cricut materials cabinet. The pack includes a total of 30 pens, each of which is a unique color. The pens allow for adding handwritten messages in a variety of fonts to your designs.


Cricut Automatic Shut-Off Compact Heated Press

What We Liked: If you plan on customizing non-standard shaped items like hats, teddy bears or shoes, you’ll need to add this small, portable press to your Cricut materials hoard. The device offers three heat settings, a precision tip, and a safety base. It also has a comfortable handle for better control.


Cricut Insulated Base Heated Press

What We Liked: This heated press does an excellent job of keeping a consistent temperature, so you can transfer vinyl designs to your favorite items. Add a name to your child’s blanket, a mermaid to the front of your niece’s shirt or a few flowers along the side of your shoe. It comes in several colors, including raspberry, lilac and mint.


Cricut Essential Basic Tool Set, 5-Piece

What We Liked: Your Cricut materials stash should include a basic tool set. This high-quality version comes with all the necessities — a pair of scissors, a spatula, a weeder, tweezers and a scraper. Crafters will also love the budget-friendly price tag. Use these with vinyl and paper, your iron-on projects, and more.

Our Cricut Material Buying Guide

A Cricut machine is digital craft cutter. It works with your home computer, tablet or phone, which sends a signal to the machine to tell it the path to take when cutting. Crafters will find this device saves a significant amount of time when it comes to designing and producing DIY projects.

If you do a lot of crafting, a Cricut machine can be a necessary purchase, but you’ll want to check that the model you want can handle the materials you plan on using. While all models can handle basic designs, some of them have the power to cut through over 300 different types of materials, including thick leathers and felts.

Then, once you bought your Cricut machine, you’ll want to supply your Cricut with additional accessories and materials to make it even more useful.

All Cricut machines come with a fine-point blade that cuts through paper and vinyl, but a variety of other blades are available as well and you may want to add these to your Cricut materials shelf. Deep-point blades cut through magnets, thick cardstock and felt. Bonded fabric blades are ideal for making intricate cuts on bonded fabrics or fabrics with an iron-on backer.

Next, you’ll want to pick up a set of Cricut pens, so the machine can write or draw out your design in your selected font. You can get them in a variety of colors and in large packs of 30. The important thing is that you make sure the set you select is compatible with the machine you currently own. Make sure the pens are non-toxic and acid-free. The ink isn’t permanent until it dries, so resist the urge to touch the design until then.

Another important Cricut material to consider is a Cricut mat. Mats are flexible and adhesive, sold in a variety of colors and sizes that are suitable for different papers and fabrics. The mats work to hold your design in place as the machine does the cutting and are utilized for every project you do. Although your machine will come with one mat, it’s best to have a second, so you can prepare your next design while the first one is being cut.

Pick up a Cricut EasyPress Mini for specialty projects that involve vinyl, paper and heat transfers. Check that the press has a comfortable handle, as this allows for a more precise application. Size should also be a consideration. Smaller presses allow you to get in corners and hard-to-reach spaces. Larger presses allow you to complete bigger jobs much faster. Some models offer three different heat settings, while others are made with built-in timers.

You may also wish to obtain a basic tool set for use with your machine. Look for a set that is budget-friendly, as these tools aren’t generally expensive. You’ll want a spatula, scraper, tweezers, weeder and a pair of scissors. The spatula and scraper help place and remove items from the mat, tweezers work well to apply small details, and weeders assist in removing excess material.

There are a host of additional Circut materials that you can use to make a variety of projects easier. For example, a foil transfer tool comes with three interchangeable tips and allows for adding intricate foil designs to your project. Are you interested in making boxes, cards and 3D crafts? Then you want to pick up a scoring stylus.

Ultimately, the Cricut is such a versatile tool. Adding materials to it just makes it more so and allows your creativity room to assert itself.

DWYM Fun Fact

Provo Craft & Novelty. Inc. put the very first Cricut machine onto the market in 2006. It was called the Cricut Personal Electronic Cutter and it operated without the use of a computer. Instead, it was built with a cartridge that contained a set of pre-installed cut and design settings. The machine was small in size (5.5 inches by 11 inches) and wasn’t able to cut more sophisticated designs.

Over the years, Cricut has significantly improved upon its machines. Generally, there are several different models available, ranging from more basic to high-end. As of 2021, they are selling three different designs, each of which improves on the other. The Circuit Joy is the simplest available, while the Cricut Explorer 3 comes with six tools and cuts through more than 100 materials. The Cricut Maker 3 is the most powerful, with 13 tools and the ability to cut through 300 materials. You can also find older models available.

The Cricut Material Tips and Advice

  • Just a few of the things you can create with a Cricut machine include iron-on vinyls for t-shirts, decals, stickers, leather jewelry, magnets, party invitations, stencils for wood and labels for your kitchenware.
  • When choosing a Cricut machine, make sure you don’t need a paid subscription to use the designs — unless that’s what you want. Cricut Design Space is free software that you can download and use; however, the Cricut Access app requires a paid subscription for all but the most restricted options. Some machines come with a limited free trial of Cricut Access, but you’d then have to pay for the subscription once the trial runs out.
  • You can use designs that are already on your device without any extra cost, so one way to work around getting a subscription is to download images from free websites.
  • Make sure the pens you select are compatible with your Cricut machine. Otherwise, you’ll need to pick up an accessory adapter separately.
  • Cricut blades are extremely sharp. Care should be exercised when handling or replacing your machine’s blades.
  • It’s best not to substitute an iron for a Cricut press. Irons contain small holes for steam and do not offer consistent temperatures for successful transfer.
  • Look for a Cricut press with an auto-shutoff feature that provides added safety.
  • If you plan on using your mobile device with your Cricut machine, you should be aware that some restrictions will apply. You’ll want to look these up to make sure you can still continue with your chosen design.
  • Always place a Cricut mat’s clear film cover over it when you store it, as this keeps dust and paper scraps off the mat.

About The Author

Alicia Bodine
Alicia Bodine 

Alicia Bodine is a New Jersey-based writer specializing in finance. With more than 15 years of experience, her work has appeared in leading financial publications. She's also a financial coach and mother to two daughters. When she's not writing, you'll find her gardening, spending time with her kids, cooking in the kitchen or playing with her two kitties, Flitter and Otter. Alicia loves researching the latest and greatest gadgets, products and items that help her save time, energy and money.