Abrasion Resistance:Measure of a paper’s resilience when subject to abrasive actions of an eraser.

Absorption/Absorbency: Ability of a paper to take in or absorb liquids

Acid-Free Paper:A quality of paper manufactured in a slightly alkaline environment buffered with calcium carbonate. The alkalinity prevents internal chemical deterioration

of paper while the buffering with calcium carbonate makes the paper resistant to the external acidic environment, making it last longer.

Acidity: Degree of acid found in a paper. It’s measured by the pH factor. A paper with pH 0-7 is considered to have been treated with acid.

Adhesion: Strength of a label material to cling to a surface. It’s measured in gsm/sq/cm. The adhesion levels include permanent, ultra-cling, removable and ultra-removable.

Against the Grain: folding the paper in the direction in which the fibre lies

Air Emissions: Air-polluting by-products from paper manufacturing activities

Alkali-Proof Paper: A paper that resists discoloration when in contact with alkaline substances, such as soap

Alternative Energy: Energy produced from renewable sources, such as sun, wind and waves instead of burning fossil fuels or splitting the atoms.

Antique Finish: Rougher than usual finish, giving paper a traditional look. Antique finish is created with little calendaring and by dipping pressure during the wet presses.

ANSI: American National Standards Institute. It’s a private non-profit organization that administers the development of voluntary consensus standards.

Archival Paper: Acid-free paper that doesn’t deteriorate over time

Arctic Paper: Paper from Arctic Paper, a group originated in northern Europe manufacturing super fine paper

Aqueous: A water-based coating applied to enhance the printing on paper


Basis Weight:Weight of 500 sheets of standard-sized paper of any grade. The standard size of a cover is 20-by-26 inch, text is 25-by-38 inch and writing paper

is 17-by-22 inch.

Biological Diversity / Biodiversity: According to the United Nations Earth Summit, it’s the variability among living organisms from all sources, including ‘inner alia’,

terrestrial, marine, and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are a part; this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystem.

Bleaching: Whitening of pulp fibre to obtain clean white paper sheets.

Bond: Typically a term applied to a paper with cotton-content, which is used for legal documents. This paper is distinguished in terms of performance,

durability and strength.

Book: General term for any kind of paper which is suitable for printing, apart from newsprint and boards

Boutique Paper: A designer and aesthetical paper for special purposes, which have excellent printing capabilities

Brightness: Degree of reflectivity of a paper or the percentage of light reflected back from a paper sheet

Bulk: Thickness of a paper


C 1S:A sheet of paper quoted on one side

C 2S: A sheet of paper quoted on both sides

Calendar Crushed: A paper that has been crushed in the calendaring process

Caliper: Thickness of a sheet of paper expressed in thousandth of an inch

Carbon Dioxide (CO?): A colorless, odorless, non-poisonous gas emitted through human activities or by burning anything that contains carbon. It’s vital to life on Earth

but when emitted in large quantities, it results in climate change.

Carbon Footprint: The total sets of greenhouse gas emissions caused by a product, manufacturing process, an event, individual or an organization

Carbon Neutral: processes, activities and operations with calculated, reduced or offset carbon dioxide emissions, through emission-free energy projects, wind power,

solar energy and other energy efficient projects

Cast-Coated Paper: High-gloss coated paper. The gloss is acquired by casting the coated side of the paper against a heated and highly polished chrome cylinder.

Chain of Custody: A procedure for tracking a product (paper in this case) from its origin to its use

Coated Paper: A paper with surface coating, available in diverse finishes from matte to gloss and dull. Surface quoting allows for high opacity, maximum

smoothness and better ink holdout in the printing process.

Colored Paper: Paper available in different colors

Cotton Paper: Paper that has cotton as a primary material source

Cover Paper: Heavy-weight coated or uncoated paper used for pamphlets, brochures, book covers and folders

Cut-Size: A paper cut to a standard minimum size, typically 8.5 x 11 inches and 17 x 11 inches


Debossing: Pressing an image into a paper, so that it looks sunken into the surface of the paper

Deckle Edge: Feathered / ragged / rough / untrimmed edges of hand-made papers

Density: Weight of the paper compared to its volume. A dense paper is made from hydrated or strongly beaten pulp and is more opaque, stiff and resilient.

Digital Paper: Smooth, bright, precision-cut paper with pre-defined moisture levels, specific caliper and surface treatments for inkjet, dry toner and liquid toner applications

Dimensional Stability: Ability of a sheet of paper to resist change in dimension and maintain size with the change in moisture content or humidity

Dioxin: A by-product of industrial processes, such as pulp and paper bleaching that involve chlorine

Dots Per Inch (DPI): A measure of the resolution of a printed page

Double-Thick Cover: A cover paper produced by laminating two pieces of thick and equal-weight paper. Double-thick cover is strong, stiff and durable with excellent

folding and printing characteristics.


ECF:Elemental Chlorine Free. This refers to pulp or paper that has been bleached without the use of elemental chlorine gas, to prevent the formation of dioxins.

Ecolabel: A green sticker for consumer products, showing that the products have been manufactured with minimum footprint on the environment. This is done to

make it easy for customers to shop green products or comply with minimum requirements for sustainability.

Ecolabelling: Method of environmental performance certification

Ecofriendly Paper: Paper that has been manufactured in a way that has minimal impact on environment. Also, a paper that is recyclable or doesn’t form acid when

infused in water is ecofriendly paper.

Ecosystem:A community of living beings in conjunction with the environment (air, water and mineral soil), interacting as a system

Embossing: The process of creating raised patterns, designs or images in paper. It’s the opposite of debossing.

Enamel: A shiny, glossy coating material applied on paper

Environmentally Friendly: A paper manufactured in a way that inflicted minimal, reduced or almost no harm to the ecosystem


Fiber:A thread-like filament or the smallest string-like component used to make paper pulp

Filler: Minerals added to pulp to improve printing ability of a paper. Fillers can be clay or any other white pigments.

Felt Finish Paper: Highly tactile, soft textured paper with elegant look and feel

Finish: Surface characteristics of a paper, such as smoothness, gloss and appearance. It is also a general term for trimming of edges, folding and binding.

Forest Stewardship: Forest management in compliance with FSC principles. This is to ensure that the resources are being used in a manner which is environmentally

friendly, economically viable and socially beneficial.

French Fold: A fold when paper is folded once and then rotated at the 90 degrees and folded again. The creases cross each other at the right angle. A French fold is

the most basic cross fold.

FSC: Forest Stewardship Council. It’s an independent, international, non-profit organization encouraging the responsible management of world’s forests.

FSC Paper: A paper manufactured in compliance with FSC regulations


Glazed Paper: A paper with shiny finish

Grain Direction:

Grade: A pulp distinguished from other pulps basis its characteristics, such as raw material used, look and feel, and end use

Graphic Design Paper:

Green Seal: A non-profit organization encouraging green product certification, green marketing and branding, public education on green products and environmental

standard setting

GSM: Gram per square meter. It’s a metric standard for paper weight and represents the actual weight of a square meter of a sheet of paper.


Handmade Paper:

Hardwood: Wood from deciduous forests

Head-to-Foot: Watermark configuration in which top of the watermark reads to the bottom of the watermark

High Conservation Value Forests: Forests with significant concentrations of biodiversity or forests containing endangered or rare ecosystems or forests critical to

local communities and their sustenance

Hydration: The process of beating the pulp to obtain the desired moisture content


Imported Paper:

Ink Holdout:Capacity of a paper to keep ink sitting on its surface instead of absorbing the ink. Better ink holdout gives sharper printed images.

Inkjet:A type of printer that creates a digital image by jetting/ spraying droplets of ink onto paper

ISO: International Organization for Standardization. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, it promotes commercial and industrial standards in 164 countries.


Kraft Paper: A smooth yet strong brown paper for packaging


Laser Paper: A very smooth paper with low moisture content, manufactured for laser printing. Manufactured in cut sizes, it prevents curling of paper from the high heat in

laser printers.

Laser Printer: A printer using laser beam to create images on a sheet. It uses dry toner which is attracted to the charged area and is fused to paper with pressure.

Ledger Paper: Paper used for ledger or accounting purposes. It is similar to bond paper in its strength and characteristics.

Lenzing Paper: Paper from Lenzing AG, a paper mill based in Austria

Linen: Threads of linen cloth used to manufacture high quality rag content paper

Linen Finish: A textured paper with woven-like effect

Logo: A graphic representation of a company name, product or trademark, in the form of an image, pattern, sign, symbol, digits, alphabets or words. This is used for



Matte Finish:Dull coated paper with zero or little gloss. The gloss level ranges from 0 to 20 on a gloss scale.

Moisture Content:The level/amount/degree of moisture found in a sheet of paper. A paper with too high or too low moisture content can curl when it runs through

the printer.

Mottle: Irregular smears or spots of color on paper

M: 1,000 sheets or two reams of fine paper

Munken Paper: High quality, uncoated paper from Arctic Paper

M-Weight: Weight of 1000 sheets of paper of a given size, represented in pounds


Neutral pH Paper: An acid-free paper with a pH of 7 or slightly higher. The paper is lignin or sulfur-free, which means it yields a basic or neutral pH when diffused in water.

Nominal Weight: The basis weight of the paper for which it is billed


Offset Paper:Uncoated paper with characteristics, such as high surface strength, good internal bonding and dimensional stability. It is manufactured for use in offset


On-demand: Our ability to supply the paper you want, when you want and in the quantity you want

Opacity: The ability of a paper to prevent transmission of light through it. Opacity and brightness are inversely proportional, which means brighter the paper, less opaque it is.

Opacity is also affected by the shade and surface smoothness of the paper.


Paper Grade:Classification of paper by their quality, content and features

Paper Merchant: A paper trader who sources papers from diverse paper manufacturers or mills and offers an array of papers to end users and businesses.

Paper merchants also advise buyers on best sheets for particular jobs.

Per M: Per thousand

Percent Tensile: Tensile strength or maximum stress that a paper can withstand, expressed in percentage

Perforation: Dotted lines on a paper, making it easy to tear it

pH: A numeric scale to specify alkalinity or acidity of an aqueous solution

Pigment: Fine solid particles to give ink its color

Porosity: A measure of open space on a paper’s surface that lets air pass through it

Post Consumer Waste: Material discarded after its use by the end user

Poster Paper: Paper manufactured for posters and billboards

Print Quality: The quality of a visual impression of a printed piece

Print Smoothness: Ability of a paper to receive ink in consistency, without resulting in any smears or patches

Pulp: Cellulose fiber material from wood, separated mechanically or chemically from which paper is manufactured


Rag Paper: Paper made with rag pulp. Rag refers to either linen or cotton

Ream: 500 sheets of paper

Ream Weight: Weight of one ream or 500 sheets of paper

Recycled Paper: Paper made from post consumer waste

Renewable Energy: Energy derived from continuously available energy sources, such as wind, sun, water, ocean tides and geothermal

Resolution: Degree of clarity of an image, usually specified in dots per inch (DPI)

RGB: Red, Green, Blue. The primary additive colors


Satin Finish Paper: Very fine finishing that is aesthetically captivating

Scoring: Folding of paper

Smoothness: The surface quality of a sheet of paper, affecting ink and toner receptivity

Social Stationery: Sheets of paper used for announcements, like wedding, anniversaries, birthdays, etc.

Stewardship: A commitment to reduce environmental footprint

Substrate: The surface or material on which another material is quoted

Sustainable: Environmentally friendly business practices

Sustainability: A manufacturing process that is environmental friendly, economical viable and socially beneficial

Swatch Book: A book grouping papers displaying the colors, weights, finishes, grades and other particulars

Synthetic: Non-paper product, such as PVC, vinyl and polyester


TCF: Totally Chlorine Free. Virgin fiber paper that has been bleached without using chlorine. Instead oxygen, hydrogen peroxide or ozone is employed for bleaching.

Text Paper: Uncoated paper in different colors and textures used generally as inner pages of a book or a magazine


Uncoated Paper: Paper without any surface coating


Varnish: A thin protective coating applied to a printed sheet for protection

Virgin Stock: Pulp sourced from wood, cotton or another source which has not been used previously


Water Resistance:Ability of a sheet of paper to resist penetration of water from one surface to the other

Wet Strength: Ability of a paper to resist moisture

Wind Energy: Energy or electricity produced by wind-driven turbines

Wood Free Pulp: Pulp free from mechanical pulp

Wove Finish: Uncoated paper with smooth surface

Writing Paper: Paper suitable for pencil, ink, pen and laser and offset printing