If you’re confused about which black ink you should use for which cardmaking and paper crafting projects, you’re not alone! Stampin’ Up! has three different black ink pads at this time, and I’ve had enough customers ask about which one they should use, that I thought they’re not the only ones who are puzzled.
The Basic Black Ink Pad is a dye ink, which means it’s water-based. It has been a staple in my craft room for years – that is until Stampin’ Up! changed to the firm foam ink pads a few years ago. Since then their manufacturer has had problems coming up with a formula that won’t smear on Whisper White or Very Vanilla card stock. You’ve probably noticed that these card stocks are much smoother than the rest of Stampin’ Up! card stocks. They’re actually coated with something to make them that way, and this makes for a great surface for images and sentiments. Unless your ink smears.
Since the new formula of Basic Black can make a mess on coated card stocks, I’ve stopped recommending this ink to my customers. There are other black inks that don’t smear, and will serve specific purposes at the same time.
Stampin’ Up! has carried Black StazOn Ink for a long time. It is what’s called a solvent ink, and is fast-drying and permanent. In addition to card stock, it can be used on non-porous surfaces, like plastic, metal, acrylic, glass, etc. One of the advantages of StazOn Ink is that it is waterproof. If you are going to color an image with watercolors or with water-based Markers and Blender Pens, StazOn won’t run. However, it will run with Blendabilities Alcohol Markers, so don’t use them together.
Black StazOn is my ink of choice when I use the Stamp-a-ma-jig. Water-based inks don’t dry well on the Stamp-a-ma-jig’s plastic image sheet, which means you can end up with smudges on your work. 😥
Solvent ink requires a different cleaning solution than Stampin’ Up!’s dye inks. StazOn Cleaner is oil-based, and will clean Black StazOn off your stamps quickly and easily. It’s best to clean StazOn from your stamps right away to prevent staining.
You CAN use StazOn with photopolymer stamps, but it’s even more important to clean them right away because solvent ink can damage the photopolymer if left in contact for a long time. StazOn Cleaner should also be thoroughly removed from photopolymer stamps.
When I use StazOn Cleaner on a stamp, whether rubber or photopolymer, I always wipe it off the stamp, then rub the stamp on the Stampin’ Scrub with Stampin’ Mist Cleaner. This will get rid of any oily residue left by the cleaner, and help protect and condition the stamps.
Tuxedo Black Memento Ink is a recent addition to the inks sold by Stampin’ Up! It’s a water-based ink, and the black is bright and well-saturated. It’s great for sentiments AND images. The best thing about it is that it’s the perfect ink for Blendabilities as It won’t run when using alcohol markers.
Tuxedo Black Memento Ink has replaced Stampin’ Up!’s Basic Black in my studio. It doesn’t require the special cleaning solution that StazOn does, so I will use it for everything that doesn’t need a waterproof ink.
DON’T FORGET THE REFILLS! Whenever you order an ink pad, be sure to order the refills to go with it. You really don’t want to be in the middle of a project and find that your ink pad is drying out and have to wait to order the refill before you can finish the project!
Leave me a comment and let me know if this has helped clear up any confusion about which black ink you should use!