How to choose

A successful choice of paperboard is achieved by understanding the different paperboard properties, their significance and their interdependence, and relating them to the appearance and performance needs of the intended graphical application. You can simplify your choice by taking a systematic approach.

Which paperboard properties are the most crucial for implementing the intended design? Which properties are essential when it comes to cost-effective printing and conversion processes? When everything is taken into account, which paperboard product would be the most suitable for carrying out your intentions?

To make the best choice of paperboard you must evaluate the most crucial factors of design, production, application and economy.

Selecting paperboard

Since not all paperboard products can be superior in all respects, you need to prioritise the most important factors for your application. Because assessments are general and your application is specific, we must stress the importance of following up in practice by proofing and sampling. Our nearest sales representative will always be glad to discuss the best selection for your specific needs.

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A cover should reflect its contents, carry a message and provide protection. It should also create a strong visual impression.

Design aspects

Covers often need to have advanced designs to convey an impression and anticipation of their contents. A cover should entice us to investigate its message. The cover is intended to sell something to us, be it an idea, product concept or book. A cover must be attractive and alluring while also providing physical protection for its contents. Usually it must also be durable. The visual impact is crucial because the cover must often convey multiple messages and fulfil many needs, expectations and intentions.



A silky surface, extra details or an ingenious construction – these are all ways to attract the attention that the designer wants.

In addition to acting as a substrate for the graphic presentation, the paperboard must prevent it from aging or yellowing. It also must prevent the corners from becoming dog-eared and the creased fold or spine from being cracked. These factors are especially important for book covers, since books need to endure many years of use and shelf storage without deteriorating in shape or appearance. The printed creases on the spine therefore need to withstand repeated opening and closing without cracking.

The use of virgin fibres and selected coatings provides the whiteness, light stability, smoothness and surface finish necessary for achieving excellent graphic presentation and very high print quality with good contrast between the paperboard surface and the print. Sometimes the same surface properties are also required for the reverse side; at other times the reverse side needs different properties. The smooth surface provides for good rub and abrasion resistance. Embossing, lamination and hot foil stamping require surface strength. Creasing and durable folds demand folding rigidity and tearing resistance. To protect the insert and prevent dog-ears, a strong and resilient paperboard is needed.

Production aspects

To obtain efficiency and runnability in printing and finishing, a flat, stable and dust-free paperboard is essential. Good absorption and drying properties ensure high print quality and also help to minimise process stoppages and material waste. Good cutting, creasing, embossing and gluing properties are important for reliable production and good results.

High-end covers that are produced in a multi-step process require paperboard with exact sheet squareness and extremely good dimensional stability to achieve perfect register. For the converting process, good creasing, folding and gluing properties plus good rub resistance are necessary. For efficient bookbinding, additional important factors are delamination strength and properties that facilitate good clean cutting, folding and gluing of the spine.


A paperboard cover gives the designer more surface design possibilities than traditional CD covers.



Iggesund Paperboard
825 80 Iggesund

+46 650 - 280 00

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