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The Best Laminating Sheets

Last updated on October 10, 2023

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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

Our Picks For The Top Laminating Sheets

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

Scotch Tear-Proof Letter Size Laminating Sheets, 100-Pack

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Scotch

Tear-Proof Letter Size Laminating Sheets, 100-Pack

Coming in a pack of 100, these pouches are versatile since they can handle being drawn on, don't harm photos and are washable. They're slightly larger than letter paper for flexibility. You'll need a machine to use them.

Overall Take

Suits Most PurposesConsider these pouches especially if you want something that's safe for photos and washable.

 Runner Up

Fellowes Dry-Erase Friendly Laminating Sheets, 200-Pack

Fellowes

Dry-Erase Friendly Laminating Sheets, 200-Pack

Compatible with markers and photos, these pouches have broad compatibility with many machines and come in a large pack of 200. They accomodate letter-sized paper and are designed for a smooth finish.

Overall Take

Large QuantityThis economical option gives you a large quantity of versatile pouches for your machine.

 We Also Like

AVERY Acid Free Self-Adhesive Laminating Sheets, 50-Pack

AVERY

Acid Free Self-Adhesive Laminating Sheets, 50-Pack

Requiring no machine, these sheets come in a pack of 50 and measure slightly larger than letter paper at 9 inches by 12 inches. You can use dry-erase markers on them, and they're acid-free.

Overall Take

Convenient to UseIf you lack a laminating machine, these durable sheets help you protect your documents quickly and easily.

 Strong Contender

Simply Cool Assorted Sizes Clear Laminating Sheets, 150-Pack

Simply Cool

Assorted Sizes Clear Laminating Sheets, 150-Pack

This set gives you 150 thick pouches to use with your machine. You get the flexibility that comes with various sizes ranging from 2.3 by 3.7 inches to 9 inches by 11.5 inches. They're very clear and dry-erase marker compatible.

Overall Take

Handy SelectionYou get a wide selection of small to large sizes with this large set of pouches.

Buying Guide

Whether you want to protect photos, certificates, artwork or other documents, laminating sheets and pouches are a good solution. These plastic films keep paper from getting torn, wet or stained so that it lasts longer, and they also provide a more professional appearance. Plus, they don’t affect the attractiveness or readability of the sealed document since the finish is clear and often shiny.

Some laminating sheets and pouches are self-adhesive so that you don’t need to have a laminating machine. These provide the simplest and cheapest way to get started with protecting documents. A self-adhesive pouch is usually the most convenient since you can stick your item inside and press down firmly to seal the entire thing. Self-adhesive sheets take a bit more work since you’ll need to apply separate sheets to each side of the document and ensure you line them up together properly.

If you have a laminating machine or are willing to invest in one, you can use laminating pouches that get sealed by the machine’s heat. These offer the convenience similar to self-adhesive pouches since you just put your document inside and run the pouch through the machine. These pouches often work with most brands of laminating machines, but some are labeled as recommended for a particular brand.

Both laminating sheets and pouches usually come in sizes that fit traditional letter paper measuring 8.5 inches by 11 inches. However, the measurements may be slightly larger such as 9.5 inches by 12 inches or 9 inches by 11.5 inches. The lamination is easy to cut, though, so you can easily adjust the size as needed for smaller documents like business cards. 

You’ll also want to consider how many laminating sheets or pouches you need. They often come in quantities ranging from 24 to 300. If you opt for sheets, remember to get double the number of the pages you need to laminate since you’ll need a sheet for each side.

Some laminating sheets and pouches have features suiting certain uses. For example, many are made to be safe to use with dry-erase markers or are acid-free to avoid damaging photos and artwork. You can also find options with different levels of glossiness and thickness.

What to Look For

  • Removing your document from the laminating sheet will be very difficult or impossible. So, you should think carefully before sealing any important document. In some cases, the heat from a laminating machine could destroy the document, or the film could render security features such as special seals invalid. The Social Security Administration warns against laminating your Social Security card for this reason.
  • Whether you choose self-adhesive sheets or thermal laminating pouches, it’s important to position your document appropriately. It’s best to center the document and leave around one quarter inch of space between its edges and the edges of the laminating sheet or pouch. Even if the thing you’re laminating is small, this won’t be a problem since you can trim away the rest of the film after you’ve sealed it.
  • If you want something more durable, look for laminating sheets that are around five millimeters thick versus the typical three millimeters. These are ideal for documents that will experience heavy use and where increased rigidity isn’t a problem. The downside is the finish won’t look as clear due to the increased thickness.
  •  Always make sure the document is clean and dry before you start using laminating sheets or pouches. 
  • When using a laminating machine, make sure that you’ve let the machine warm up and chosen the same thickness setting as your laminating pouch. After you’ve properly positioned the document in the pouch, you can insert it in the machine for sealing. Make sure to let the machine cool down per the manufacturer’s instructions before you shut it down.
  • If you notice that your laminated document has bubbles after you put it through the machine, the issue could involve the heat setting, the speed you’re pushing the document through or the quality of the film you’re using. Make sure you’re using the right temperature, not putting the document through too quickly or slowly, and following the manufacturer’s instructions.

More to Explore

There are many creative uses for laminating sheets and pouches beyond just simply protecting documents. If you have kids, you can laminate activity sheets and provide dry-erase markers so they can practice skills such as handwriting. Lamination also works for making games such as tic-tac-toe or hangman or for creating your own set of playing cards or flashcards.

If you’re crafty, you might make laminated bookmarks, gift tags, signs or labels. Laminating important items such as emergency contact lists and maps also comes in handy if you’re going hiking or camping.

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