Glossy Vs. Matte Finish: Which Paper Is Best For Photo Book?

by Photo Book Expert on March 16, 2023

Glossy Vs. Matte Finish: Which Paper Is Best For Photo Book?

When it comes to photo printing, this is the most common question: Should I choose a glossy or matte finish? Your final decision may depend on your personal preference as well as your budget. In this article, we'll go over the distinctions between glossy vs matte for photo book pictures, as well as when you should use each one.

What is Glossy Photo Finish?

Photos printed with a glossy finish have a subtle sheen to them. They are designed to reflect as much light as possible. The gloss is placed as an additional layer on top of a matte photo to add shimmer to it.

Gloss appears to have a positive effect on an image's color palette. Glossy photographs have colors that appear deeper and more vibrant. The borders of images also appear brighter and sharper thanks to the gloss.

There are two main levels of intensity for glossy photos: semi-gloss and high gloss.

The highest shine is produced by the high gloss option, while the semi-gloss finish sits somewhere between high gloss and zero gloss (matte).

Semi-glossy photos make photo colors pop, though not as intensely as a full gloss finish. It also has the advantage of reducing light reflection.

When to Use Glossy Photo Finish

Glossy paper enhances the vibrancy of an image's colors; therefore, colored photo prints benefit most from this coating choice.

Glossy prints are not advisable for vintage-style photography, such as photos printed in sepia or black and white, because the sheen adds a modern feel to your photos.

Therefore, a glossy photo finish is an excellent option if you want to emphasize the colors in your images (like in family Christmas photos featuring ugly Christmas sweaters), since it will truly make all the colors stand out.

A glossy finish will also give your prints the crisp and clear appearance you want if you are printing high resolution photos.

What is Matte Photo Finish?

A matte photo finish is the ideal option for you if you want to reduce the shine of a photo as much as you can.


Photos with a matte texture can be displayed in highly lit spaces like living room walls or next to floor lamps since they reduce light reflection.

The refractive and light scattering effects of the matte coating result in the less intense light reflection observed.

When to Use Matte Photo Finish?

The best option for your photo prints is a matte finish if you intend to display them behind glass.

In addition to not sticking to the glass of the photo frame, matte photos will also reflect less light, which will make them much more pleasant to view.

Matte photographs show up beautifully on any glass surface, not only inside photo frames. Photos with a matte surface can also be easily removed from a glass office partition without causing any damage. However, matte photos tend to be more expensive than glossy photos because they use up more ink.

Ultimately, a matte finish is the best choice if your images will be handled frequently because it will prevent fingerprints from sticking to the surface.

Now that you’ve decided on the finish to use to develop your photos, it’s time to frame some, and display the rest in a photo book. A softcover photo book is an affordable way to design and keep your precious images, while a hardcover photo book is the ideal option to show off your treasured works or memories in the finest way possible.