Which type of plastic do I need?

There are many types of plastic materials, with a wide range of physical properties and attributes. To help you define what you might specifically be looking for, we’ve developed a handy Hierarchy of Plastics and their relative performance and cost.

Plastic Hierarchy

People often use generic terms to describe specific types of plastic film. For example, one of the most popular generic terms used to refer to film is “acetate”. However, acetate is a specific type of cellulosic polymer that is one of the oldest types of material used for making plastic film. This is why “acetate” is so commonly used to refer to plastic film.

The meanings of these generic terms can vary from industry to industry. An example of this situation is the use of the name “Mylar”. Mylar® is the registered trademark owned by the E.I. Dupont Corporation for bi-axially oriented polyester film. There are dozens of different types and grades of Mylar® brand, even though the term is frequently used generically to describe a range of different films. For example, people who work in architecture or engineering often use the term “Mylar” when discussing matte drafting film, a translucent base polyester film with a matte coating that can be drawn on with pen and ink. People who work in graphic arts, printing, or document archiving tend to use the term “Mylar” to refer to clear polyester film.

Grafix Plastics stocks a wide variety of different kinds of plastic film products, in a variety of thicknesses and finishes. Start with our Materials page that starts to outline outlines all the different types of plastic film that we offer.