Dye Sublimation vs. Heat Transfer
Dye sublimation is actually a form of heat transfer! However, each decoration method uses different film and equipment. In dye-sub graphics are digitally printed and then heated to transfer the dye onto your material on a molecular level. Because the design is bonded on a molecular level it will never crack or peel. However, Dye-sublimation also comes with some limitations as well. Dye-sub can only be done on white or light colored fabrics. Additionally, dye sublimation is limited to polyester in terms of fabrics but is also used on hard surfaces like custom water bottles or personalized pens.
Heat transfer designs can be applied to a much broader range of fabrics and colors than dye sublimation designs, although they work best on cotton. Heat transfer printing is not quite as durable as dye-sub, but it is more affordable and is typically the go-to decoration method for small run custom t-shirts, sweatshirts and hoodies.