How to Laminate Something without a Laminator: A Guide to Protecting Your Documents & Photos


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    Lamination is an effective way of protecting your documents and images using sheets and adhesive. This is done when such items need protection due to importance or sentimental value.

    Key Takeaways

    Synthetic paper

    A piece of paper that has the strength of laminated paper but with more integrity that prevents printer jamming. Synthetic paper is tear resistant, water resistant and chemical resistant. Printing on this paper removes the clumsy and fiddly step of using a laminator.

    Laminating with clear packing tape

    This process is a little fiddly. However, it’s not always worth purchasing a machine if you don’t laminate in bulk. When using this method, a sharp pair of scissors is a godsend. Make sure you have a good pair!
    Also, watch this video on how laminating with clear packing tape can be a time saver!

    There are plenty of unique ways of laminating different things without a laminator. In this article we have gathered some of our favorite tips and tricks.

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      Lamination is the best and easiest way to protect your photos and documents.

      However, professional lamination equipment is quite expensive. Since most people need it once in a while, it is not worth the investment.

      For that reason, we have gathered all the best ways you can laminate a variety of things without purchasing an actual laminating machine.

      Laminate With Synthetic Laminating Papers

      Synthetic papers are made of different types of plastic, but they look and feel similar to a regular piece of paper.

      It is waterproof paper inside. Once you cover your documents in the synthetic layer, you won’t need to use a lamination pouch and paper anymore.

      All of your documents will be stiff. You can be sure they will not tear or rip apart.

      These papers come in various sizes. You’ll find one that fits your documents, and you will be able to work them through a laser printer too!

      All you have to do is place it the right way. Be sure to remove all the air bubbles between the document and synthetic paper.

      Place the document and the paper on your table. Be careful of the position, because you will need to iron through the whole thing.

      I would recommend you to heat the iron to the maximum temperature because the process will be faster, and you will get results instantly.

      You can put the clear contact paper over the synthetic to make sure the process will go smoothly, and you can be sure the iron will give you the same effect as the lamination machine.

      This is something all of us can do with the things we have at home, so if you are looking for a quick way to laminate without a laminator as soon as you can, you should get some synthetic paper.

      Laminate With A Laminating Pouch

      Since everyone on the market is aware that people are not willing to spend money on laminating machines, they have come up with a special laminating pouch.

      There are different types of laminating pouches in different shapes and sizes. And it doesn’t require any device or laminating machine to provide the desired results.

      They are self-sealing pouches. So once you put your photo or document in that plastic wrap, all you need to do is seal it. 

      Save yourself from buying a laminator and learn how to do it manually using laminating sheets!

      It is a very inexpensive alternative to a real laminating machine. People seem to be using it for every sort of document, so you should check out this technique.

      It is also the easiest way to laminate paper for a few dollars, and you can find it anywhere, so if you know you will need to laminate something, it is best to purchase several of these and keep them at home.

      Laminate With Clear Packing Tape

      Clear packing tape is a popular way to laminate different things, from driver’s licenses to bookmarks, and since it can be found in pretty much every bookstore, it is the most practical way to laminate something.

      It will take you some time until you put the tape the right way, but there are several recommendations a customized youtube videos that can help you handle the whole process efficiently and quickly.

      Crafter using packing tape to protect the surface of his artwork.
      Layers of packing tape can be used as a clear film to protect artwork, business cards and other projects.

      There are different types of clear tapes, and if you learn how to handle the whole process, you will get the same results as with any expensive laminating machine.

      Clear packing tape is also the easiest way to laminate personalized content and ads, so you will be able to use it for pretty much every kind of lamination project.

      As you can see, there are plenty of lamination techniques you can use, even if you are not willing to invest in a laminating machine.

      All of these can be performed at home, and you will need just a few dollars to find all the needed products, and you can usually get them at your local bookstore.

      Lamination is very useful, and I would recommend you protect all of your important documents and photos, especially those you are carrying around every day, so try out some of these techniques and protect your valuable belongings.

      Watch this video: How To Laminate With Packing Tape [04 mins 29 secs]

      To save time, skip to timeline 01:38!


      The purpose of this article is not to guide people away from purchasing a laminator. In fact, a laminator will get the job done more professionally, which is important if you have a product you want to protect while also making it presentable. There is nothing uglier than a badly laminated item that contains bubbles and creases.

      However, if lamination is something you do not do often, it won’t be worth purchasing a machine. This is where this article comes in handy and provides two quick and simply ways to get the job done!

      It is ultimately a balance between protection and presentation that determines the method you go for.

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