best heat press for sublimation

Best Heat Press for Sublimation: The Best Heat Press Machines for Everyone

Getting to buy the best heat press for sublimation is an essential part of the sublimation craft, whether you’re a business owner or an amateur crafter.

It’s just as important as using the right printer for sublimation. Or the best sublimation paper. Or the best sublimation inks.

The thing is that without a heat press, we can’t complete our work. Sure, our design is printed beautifully on a nice piece of sublimation paper. But now we need to transfer it to our desired substrate.

We need to make our design a part of our T-shirts or to personalize a cool looking glass piece or to personalize our mugs and so on.

Of course, all these substrates must be ready for sublimation.

The T-shirt must be made of polyester or at least 65%-70% polyester and the rest of the objects must come with a sublimation coating in order for the design to stick.

Thus, the heat press is the machine that makes the magic happen. If our heat press doesn’t work as it should, the transfer will be a bust. And we’ll end up with a failed project.

So, looking for the best heat press for sublimation is kind of a big deal.

Best Heat Press for Sublimation Reviews

While there are some heat press models that will offer accessories for hats, mugs or tumblers, generally we buy separate heat press models for different objects.

That will increase the price as we expand the objects we want to sublimate on. The shape is the thing that sets apart the type of heat press machine that we need.

A model with flat plates is obviously meant for flat objects, like T-shirts, blank sheets of acrylic, glass, phone cases, aprons, mouse pads, etc.

If we want to personalize mugs, we need a heat press that’s specifically designed for mugs. Cricut is the one you want to go for.

Tumblers are narrower than mugs so you need a different press.

If we want to personalize hats, we might want to look for a hat press. Agrain, Cricut is the one to go to, they make amazing heat presses of different types and their prices are some of the best in the industry.

You’ll have a harder time looking for the best heat press for sublimation with flat plates than you’ll have looking for specific types for hats and mugs.

Let’s jump straight to reviewing some amazing machines and you’ll take it from there. I hope you’ll find whatever you need for your budget, needs, and specific substrates.

1. HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10”x10”: Best Small Heat Press for Sublimation

Since most people will be interested in personalizing T-shirts with sublimation, I think that reviewing the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10” as my first pick for the best heat press for sublimation is perfectly reasonable.

The 10 x 10 size might be too small for some and I totally get that.

If you think that you want to focus on bigger designs, then you should look directly for a 15 x 15 heat press. I will review one just below. After all, those medium-sizes machines have the advantage of also being able to transfer small designs on small items, like keychains but they also provide the convenience of transferring very large images and designs. They’re immensely versatile, that’s for sure. But they’re also considerably more expensive.

On the other hand, if your budget is around $100 and you certainly like the 10 x 10 size, then the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10” can be quite the awesome pick.

It’s immensely popular and among the highest rated machines at the moment. Unfortunately, we can’t say the same about 15 x 15 machines, the good ones are harder to find.


10 x 10 heat presses are tiny and portable. They’re also quite adorable. For the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt 10 x 10 we also get to choose from a few different colors: raspberry, blue, light green, mint, purple, yellow.

It’s a tiny press that is very easy to use.

On top, we have a display window for: pressure, temperature, and time.

The pressure goes up to 99LB, the temperature can be set between 70 F and 400 F, and the time between 1 – 999 seconds.

There’s an insulated safety base to place it on when things are heating up, to rest it on between T-shirts.

The safety base is needed because there is only one heat plate, which measures 10 x 10 inches.

Thus, this HTVRONT with its singular plate is pressed on the T-shirt, over the design, with butcher paper over the design and between the folds of the shirt of course, until the beep sounds and then we remove the plate and set it on the safety base to cool off.

However, you must note that we must continuously put pressure on the plate until the beep sounds and the time is done. We can’t place it over the paper and then leave it to do its job alone as we do with clamshell 15 x 15 presses.

It also automatically shuts off if we don’t use it for 15 mins.

What we can use it for

HTVRONT describes their tiny 10 x 10 inch press as having the speed of an industrial heat press and the convenience of an iron.

Well, if you own a printer with a 8.5 x 11 inch max print size, then this model can be perfect for personalizing T-shirts or any other flat surface with a poly coating.

It has a wide-ranged applicability in transferring material: foil, Lite/metallic, glitter, holographic, sublimation paper, etc.

We can also use it for HTV.

And for hats, tote bags, shoes, and many other small items that have a flat surface. Glass blanks, acrylic blanks, flat metal surfaces, etc. they also work as long as they have their poly coating.

All in all, the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10” is amazingly versatile and one of the most affordable models at the moment. From my point of view, it’s a total winner.

It can also be considered one of the best heat presses for hats.

This brand also has a guide on how to use their product. It’s quite basic but you can search for YouTube tutorials for extra guidance.

2. Cricut EasyPress 2 Heat Press Machine, 9”x9” and 12”x10”

Both these sizes for the Cricut EasyPress 2 Heat Press Machine are extremely similar to what the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10” offers.

The sizes differ slightly but the design is incredibly similar.

We have the same heat plate that we lift off from a handle when we’re ready to press it down over the sublimation paper that will be imprinted in the fabric of our T-shirts or other textile fabrics. Of course, it also works for hats, aprons, bags, and many other flat objects that have a poly coating.

When the pressing is done, an insulated safety base is included to rest the plate on until it cools off. Or it can be used to set the heat press on for a few seconds until we’re ready to move on the other substrates/objects.

Thus, the construction is highly similar to what the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10” offers. I don’t know which brand came up with it first and the other followed but it doesn’t matter.

The important thing is that if you don’t like what HTVRONT offers, then you have an alternative.

Both these machines from Cricut are incredibly popular. Maybe even more so than the machine from HTVRONT.

Plus, these two models from Cricut are even more highly rated, which is amazing.


If that’s all true, then why did I decide to recommend the one from HTVRONT and these two from Cricut second?

It’s quite simple, actually.

The one from HTVRONT costs around $100 or something like that so it’s the more affordable option. Since it’s really good, then I decided that the cheap price is enough for me to put it a bit ahead of these two sizes from Cricut.

These two from Cricut are slightly more expensive. And by that, I mean that they’re about 2 times more expensive than the machine from HTVRONT.

Well, if you can find the Cricut EasyPress 2 Heat Press Machine, 9” x 9” on sale, then it can be sold for a price around $150 or a bit under. Otherwise, it’s quite expensive, at least by my standards.

For example, the Cricut EasyPress 2 Heat Press Machine, 9” x 9” or 12” x 10” can have about the same price as the Fancierstudio Heat Press 15 x 15, which is a medium-sized model. That’s something to think about.

Still, if you love Cricut and a small size is what you’re looking for, then the EasyPress 2 will be something you will definitely want to check out.


I must admit that I love the fact that we can choose between two sizes.

While the 10 x 10 inch plate from HTVRONT seems like an awesome size from my point of view, the two sizes from Cricut are a nice temptation, as well.

First, we get the 9 x 9 inch plate, which seems to be the most popular of the two. That might also be because it’s the more affordable of the two. But it can also be because the 9 x 9 inch size is definitely big enough for a 8.5 x 11 inch max print size printer.

The 12 x 10 EasyPress 2 is a really good size, too.

I believe that the 9 x 9 EasyPress 2 is more than big enough for all smaller projects that we might need to do. But the 12 x 10 has a lot of uses, as well. It just depends what kind of designs you like to print.


We get a display for the time and temp. And, of course, we can adjust those easily from a few buttons so it’s incredibly easy to use.

We can control temperature up to 400 degrees F.

However, there’s no pressure adjustment, which HTVRONT includes on their 10 x 10 machine.

Since we only have one plate, when we press it over the sublimation paper that I prefer to also cover with butcher paper, we need to press on the plate until our time is up. So we can’t leave it alone to do its job.

Then we place it on the insulated safety base.

What we can use it for

It works for pretty much everything: infusible ink, HTV, and sublimation.

We can use it with whatever sublimation paper we prefer.

As long as the objects are flat and they have the required coating, we can sublimate on whatever substrates we want.

We can also use it to personalize hats, t-shirts, aprons, and whatever other small objects we want. It’s highly versatile.

3. Fancierstudio Heat Press 15 x 15: Best Large Heat Press for Sublimation

Now that we’ve covered some amazing small heat press machines for different budgets, it’s time to move on to bigger things.

As I’ve heard someone say at some point, we need a 15 x 15 heat press machine to personalize T-shirts for big men.

Basically, we need a 15 x 15 model if we are doing larger designs, larger vinyls, T-shirts, aprons, etc.

Of course, we also need a printer with a 13 x 19 max print size. Otherwise, if we only use an 8.5 x 11 max print size printer, then we can do it well with a small model, like the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10” x 10”, which is also substantially more affordable.

Still, a 15 x 15 machine offers freedom, versatility, and it will hopefully be exactly what you’re looking for.

We can also sublimate on very small objects, too, like keychains or earrings. And we can do multiple smaller objects at the same time. There are tutorials that teach us how to print multiple designs on one sublimation paper and how to sublimate multiple items at once.

We can also do large glass cutting boards, if they have the required poly coating. There are vast possibilities.


Somehow, finding an amazing 15 x 15 heat press machine is much harder than finding smaller models.

Pretty much all available options also come with an unfortunate number of negative reviews. Make sure to check those out, too.

If your budget is around $200 and you want a 15 x 15 machine, this one from Fancierstudio might interest you.

While there are a lot of people who love this one, there are also quite many negative reviews to check out.

More than a few negative reviews mention that this machine is guilty of uneven heating. That’s without a doubt awful and it will ruin all your designs and it can even ruin T-shirts.

While I admit that the price is a nice deal and there is a huge amount of buyers who absolutely love it, I also think you should be prepared to be disappointed.

For example, there is a user review from someone who mentions that they’ve had it since 2020 and it still works perfectly after 3 years of use. While there are others who mention that it failed them after only a few uses.

You’ll have to experiment with it plenty in the first few days when you receive it and see how it goes, if it’s a total keeper or not.


It’s a powerful machine with 15 x 15 plates that will take up quite a bit of space. This is not a machine for people who don’t have a lot of space for their craft.

The fact that it weighs 43 pounds should give you an insight into the fact that you won’t be moving it often.

Its dimensions are: 33 x 23 x 20 inches.

It’s a 1400W model.

The temperature range is 0 to 500 degrees F, which is great.

The pressure is adjusted from a knob, which is quite typical for medium-sized heat presses.
But setting the time and temp is done digitally.

It’s a clamshell model that is very easy to use. This type is my favorite for easy use.

A teflon sheet is included but I prefer using butcher paper.

What we can use it for

We can do whatever sublimation projects we want as long as the substrate is a flat surface.

It’s also wonderful for HTV and there are plenty of people who use it for heat transfer vinyl.

Whether you’re doing sublimation or HTV, textile substrates are the main objects that people prefer customizing with the help of the Fancierstudio Heat Press 15 x 15.

All in all, while the Fancierstudio Heat Press 15 x 15 is not my number 1 pick, it’s still among my favorites, especially for a lower budget. As I’ve said, if you’re on a budget, this machine might be a nice option to consider. Even complete beginners love it.

15 x 15 vs 16 x 20 heat press machine

Most models that are larger than a smaller thing like the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt, 10×10 inch are going to come in the 15 x 15 inch size.

This is considered a medium-sized press. And it’s generally the perfect model for most crafters. That’s why I decided to only recommend machines up to 15 x 15 inch in my reviews for the best heat press for sublimation. This size is really good enough for almost everyone.

A large press will measure 16 x 20 inch and over.

Both 15 x 15 and 16 x 20 are clamshell presses. They’re efficient and very easy to use. The pates lift straight up to open completely so they’re perfect both for amateurs and professionals.

There are also 20 x 25 inch models and even giant things like a 40 x 64 but those are the kinds of machines that don’t belong in this discussion.

If you need something bigger than a 15 x 15 press, then I recommend the Geo Knight 16×20 Auto Clamshell.

However, these bigger heat presses are not only hard to find, they’re also a lot expensive. For example, the Geo Knight 16×20 Auto Clamshell will cost somewhere between $1,500 and $2,000. These are obviously made for businesses and not even all businesses are going to be needing a product like that.

4. Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press: Best Press for Sublimation for Small Objects & Hats

This is pretty much among the most sold, most popular, and most highly rated heat presses.

It’s also very cheap, being sold for a price well under $100.

It is actually designed like an iron and you’ll come across quite a few other similar models from other brands that have a similar design and are used in a similar way.

All in all, while the Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press is small and affordable, you’ll quickly discover that it’s quite versatile.

While I wouldn’t replace a big heat press for T-shirts with this tiny thing, I can admit that it can be absolutely a good piece of equipment to have around for various projects.

I guess it would also be a good tool for beginners or for people who really don’t have a lot of money to spend at the moment.

Buying this Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press for about $50-$70 can be a nice idea if you’re on a budget or if you’re just getting started and you’re not entirely sure that sublimation is a craft that you’re sticking with long term.

When you decide to stick with sublimation long term and you want to do textile application on T-shirts and many other objects, maybe using a 10 x 10, 12 x 10 or even a 15 x 15 will be something you’ll seriously consider. Until then, the Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press can absolutely handle all kinds of projects.


Like I’ve already mentioned, this type is designed somewhat like an iron, although it doesn’t have the shape of an iron.

Of course, we already know that inkjet heat transfers can be done with a regular iron if we use iron-on heat transfer paper but sublimation is a craft that absolutely requires a heat press.

And it can be one as adorable as the Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press.

The whole thing only weighs 1.5 pounds so it’s portable and tiny.

However, just as Cricut says, it’s mini but mighty.

It is a small, compact heat press for uniquely shaped, extra-small projects with hard-to-reach spaces.

Moreover, it’s a 3-in-1 machine that can be used for:

  • iron-on (HTV) – iron-on vinyl or heat transfer vinyl but for vinyl we also need a cutting machine, Cricut makes those as well
  • infusible ink
  • sublimation

We can also use it on our sewing and quilting projects.

It also includes an insulated safety base and auto-off feature.

What we can use it for

In general, the Cricut EasyPress Mini Heat Press is designed for smaller projects or for dealing with objects that have hard to reach places or edges.

It’s great as a heat press for hats. It’s certainly a pretty amazing heat press for hats. There are many people who use it to personalize hats. And for other delicate objects like earrings, belt buckles, eye masks, etc.

Or for customizing shoes. And for stuffed animals.

Of course, it will also work beautifully for personalizing baby’s clothes. It’s highly versatile as long as you have projects that include smaller designs. As long as you are creative, you can do a lot with it. The price is totally worth it.

5. HTVRONT Auto Heat Press Machine for T Shirts 15×15

Unlike the Fancierstudio Heat Press, which is my top pick for the 15 x 15 heat press for sublimation category, this one from HTVRONT is considerably more expensive, costing around $300 or so. But maybe you’ll find it on sale.

Plus, I must confess that I like the HTVRONT Heat Press Machine for T Shirt 10” x 10” a lot better.

That’s my favorite from this brand. But the HTVRONT Auto Heat Press Machine for T Shirts 15×15 comes in a close second.

Still, it’s going to be interesting to see what such an expensive machine can offer, even if most of us won’t end up buying it.

Plus, I must warn you that there are quite a few negative reviews to check out before making a decision. Of course, there are significantly more happy buyers so we should read a bit of both to form a clearer picture.


This press looks amazing, there’s no doubt about it. It’s just pretty and sleek.

It consists of: automatic lifting structure, digital screen display, thermal insulation cover, large heating plate, machine base, and large ironing board.

What I’m interested in is the word Auto in the name of this 15 x 15 press from HTVRONT.

HTVRONT informs us that it features the industry-first advanced pressure transducer. This thing allows the press to auto-adjust optimal pressure for items up to 1 inch thick. I guess that sounds nice but it’s not exactly a thoroughly impressive thing.

The nice thing is that it releases our objects automatically after pressing.

It also claims 2 times faster heating time. It takes around 6 min to reach its max temp of 410 degrees F.

We also get a pullout drawer design, which is meant to protect us from the heat source hovering over our hand. Well, I still recommend wearing heat resistant gloves.

Plus, it has an auto-off feature if the machine isn’t used for 10 minutes.

All in all, it’s a smart piece of equipment with some intriguing features but the price is high and we still have those negative reviews to take into account. I’ll let you decide if the HTVRONT Auto Heat Press Machine for T Shirts 15×15 is the best heat press for sublimation for your projects.

6. Cricut Mug Press: Best Press for Sublimation for Mugs

While the Cricut Mug Press is absolutely among the best presses for sublimation, especially when it comes to personalizing mugs of different sizes, it’s not the cheapest purchase you could make.

Cricut sometimes has some affordable machines but that’s not the case here. Well, in general, we really can’t expect heat presses to be cheap purchases.

The price around $200 can be a bit much for some amateur crafters but it can be seen as a good investment for business owners.

It could be awesome if you’re lucky enough to get it on sale, maybe for $150 or something like that.

As a side note, I wanted to mention that some buyers have tried to personalize tumblers as well with the Cricut Mug Press.

The manufacturer certainly doesn’t mention that it’s made for anything other than mugs of various sizes so if you don’t succeed with your tumbler experiment, that’s absolutely not a con.

Some buyers have been successful. Others mention that they wait for the day when Cricut will release a press specifically designed for tumblers, a sentiment I share.

Before delving into what it can do, I want to mention that there are a bunch of negative reviews to check out. You should definitely do that.

And if you need help with how to use this particular press, there are plenty of YouTube tutorials to explore. Since it’s so incredibly popular, you’ll have access to plenty of resources to find out everything.


When it comes to this press, Cricut has a table that includes the types of cups that this heat press machine is a good fit for.

We get the following recommendations: Cricut beveled ceramic 15 oz, Cricut ceramic mug 15 oz, Cricut stackable ceramic 10 oz.

However, we can also use other mugs, non-Cricut mugs, as long as they’re sublimation ready or they have a poly coating. And as long as their size fits.

It fits 11 – 16 oz mugs. That’s a good range.

The walls must be straight and the mugs must have a 3.2-3.4 inch (84-86mm) diameter.

It also works with all Cricut smart cutting machines but those are for materials like vinyl, paper, card crock, and iron-on transfers so they won’t interest everyone.

We can use this press with whatever sublimation paper we prefer using but make sure to use some good quality paper.

7. PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine: Best Press for Sublimation for Tumblers

Finding a heat press for personalizing tumblers is not as easy as finding the best heat press for sublimation for T-shirts, in different sizes, or for mugs.

Of course, mugs are much more popular. And textile sublimation is pretty much the craft that most people engage in.

Some people have tried using the Cricut Mug Press for sublimating on tumblers, as well.

If we look at the reviews for those who have tried the Cricut Mug Press as a tumbler press as well, you’ll get some mixed results.

In my opinion, if you already own the Cricut Mug Press, then it’s worth a shot to see how it works out for you before considering looking at the PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine.

Regarding using the Cricut Mug Press for tumblers, as well, some user reviews report that it works for 20 oz tumblers. Some others mention that we can do straight tumblers with a little patience. On the other hand, there are definitely people who tried and had not much success in transferring their whole designs successfully. I guess you won’t know until you try.

Well, if you’re looking for the best press for sublimation for tumblers, the PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine is among the top options at the moment.

An alternative is the Pokovici Tumbler Heat Press Machine, which is pretty awesome but it’s not as popular as the one from PYD.

However, I should also mention that this one from PYD is among the most expensive heat press models that we could buy. We can get an Epson inkjet printer for conversion to sublimation for a cheaper price.

Thus, while the PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine is nice, it’s very expensive, costing around $350.


First of all, the design looks really amazing. It really is a nice looking machine, very professional. And I love the light blue color.

PYD mentions that it’s portable, easy to use, and needs just a small work space. Well, it still weighs 21.12 pounds so it’s not the easiest thing to carry around.

However, the amazing feature is not the design. It’s what this machine can do.

It pretty much works for all kinds of tumblers, of different shapes and lengths and materials.

As long as the tumblers have the needed poly coating, we can use them in the PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine.

Of course, we can do the same for mugs.

Thus, this PYD is actually a 2-in-1 heat press machine that will work for a variety of mugs and tumblers.

The technical details amount to: it’s a 210 V / 110 V, 698W machine. You can find a user manual here.

The heat press attachment length is 10.6 inches (27cm).

It’s described as a 30 oz machine but we can also use it for other smaller sizes, like 10 oz and 20 oz. And for 11 oz and 15 oz mugs.

We can actually insert 2 ceramic mugs at the same time for our heat pressing.

The temperature range is 0-464 degrees F. It’s more than enough.

We can use it for

It will work for:

16 oz, 20 oz, and 30 oz tumblers – the diameter range is 2.83-3.43 inches and it can obviously print straight sublimation tumblers in various sizes

2 pcs of 11 oz and 2 pcs of 15 oz mugs at the same time

The time range is 0-999 seconds. Of course, the time we set up depends on the material that the tumbler is made of. Sawgrass has a guide here for temperature, time, and pressure for different substrates.

You’ll notice that metal can need 60-90 sec for a full wrap. On the other hand, glass tumblers can take up to 4 minutes but others might need 120 sec.

If we buy blank tumblers that are designed for sublimation, having the required coating, then sellers should also offer info about time, temp, and sometimes pressure for their respective products. That would be the easiest way to figure out without guessing.

PYD also has their own recommendations for time and temp.

They recommend:

  • Ceramic/glass mugs: 356 F, 280 sec
  • Stainless steel skinny tumbler: 356 F, 60 sec
  • Water bottle (aluminum/stainless steel material): 356 F, 60 sec
  • Plastic mug: 356 F, 280 sec

If the print designs are the full wrap, they recommend printing twice. Thus, we first do one half of the design, then remove the mug/tumbler, attach the paper with the second half of the design, and then put the second half in the heat press.


While I consider the PYD Life Mug & Tumbler Heat Press Machine to be among the best for tumblers, there are cons to take into account.

As I’ve already mentioned, an alternative is the Pokovici Tumbler Heat Press Machine.

An even better alternative that will cost you nothing on equipment because there’s nothing to buy is using your oven to sublimate tumblers.

Frankly, I totally recommend trying to sublimate tumblers in the oven if you’re an amateur crafter and you just want to do a few.

If you’re a business owner, that’s a totally different conversation but if you just want to do a few pieces, just personalize stainless steel tumblers and use an oven instead of a specifically designed heat press for them.

But that countertop oven can no longer be used for cooking food if you use it for heat transfer.

In my opinion, the biggest con for this PYD press is the extremely expensive price. I’m pretty sure that some amateur crafters won’t be willing to spend that much. For businesses, the price is certainly more feasible because it’s an investment.

However, there is also a big percentage of negative reviews to check out. I absolutely recommend doing that before making a purchase of any kind, including when you’re looking to buy the best heat press for sublimation.