Types of Window Decals


Types of Window Decals

Types of Window Decals

Your shop’s windowpanes are prime advertising space; you can place information on current deals, new merchandise or indicate your store’s hours. Window decals are perfect for delivering this information – they’re easy to put up, come in many different styles and can be switched out whenever you need.

Decals are also a great way to add some personality to your storefront. Seasonal or holiday decals are readily available to spruce up your windows and add some spirit. With the help of cool window decals, you can catch the eyes of passersby and create a welcoming atmosphere for everyone who steps through your door.

But with so many options, how can you determine which type of window graphics will work best for you. To help you out, we’ve created a breakdown of the most commonly used window decals.

Window Decal Basics

Not everything that sticks to your window is an actual decal. There are several different kinds of window dressings you may opt for, including stickers and clings. What’s the difference, and why is a decal the best option?


Stickers have a printed image on one side and adhesive on the other. While usually quite strong initially, this adhesive may degrade over time depending on the type used. High temperatures may cause the adhesive to soften, destroying the bond between sticker and surface. Lower temperatures may make the sticker brittle.

Because of their design, stickers have an inherent disadvantage: They have to be placed on the external side of a window in order to be visible to those outside. This means prolonged weather and sun exposure, which can result in a shorter lifespan.


Window clings stick to surfaces by virtue of static cling and are usually made of plastic. These are generally placed inside windows, thereby protecting them from the elements while still being visible to passersby. Clings are usually easy to place and remove, leaving no adhesive behind. They’re also reusable, making them great for seasonal decorations that go up every year. However, static clings don’t endure use very well, so if you’re in need of something durable this may not be the best option.


Decals are usually made with vinyl and are fixed to surfaces by way of adhesive, which may be on the back or front of the material. There are several different strengths of adhesive you can choose from: Semi-permeant adhesive keeps vinyl window decals in place until you apply a heat source to remove them, while weaker adhesive allows you to slightly adjust the decal once placed.

Due to their adhesive strength and durable material, decals are a great option for external placement. Unfortunately, they aren’t reusable, making them a better choice for one-time deals or brand promotions.


When placing anything on your windows, it’s important to consider how they’ll affect the amount of natural light. To provide owners with variety, decals come in several different levels of transparency.


Opaque decals don’t let much light pass through the material, creating a poster-like effect. Areas not covered by design are generally white, but can be customized with other colors.

These can be a great option during the summer months or in hot climates, where sunlight can drastically raise the room temperature. Using opaque decals to limit the amount of sunshine can help with energy costs, as it won’t take as long to cool your store. However, too many or poorly placed opaque decals can make a building seem dark.


Clear decals can still sport vibrant colors, but have a greater level of transparency. Areas without printed graphics are clear, allowing individuals on both sides of the glass to see through.

This type is great for letting in light and allowing patrons to look outside. They can be especially effective in restaurants or other establishments where customers will be seated for a while, since the natural lighting and accessible view creates a welcoming atmosphere.


If you want the best of both worlds, perforated decals are the way to go. One side is printed with the bright graphics, while the other is dark-colored. Tiny holes are then cut into the vinyl to allow light through. The result is an opaque-looking graphic on the side facing outward, while allowing individuals inside the store to look through the windows as well.


Double-sided decals are an excellent choice if you want graphics to be visible on both sides of the window. They can be either clear or opaque depending on your needs. However, these may require custom printing, and therefore can be quite expensive. An alternative is to order two separate decals to place on each side of the window.


Beyond the transparency of your decal, you’ll also need to choose what kind of cut you want. There are two options: contour and halo.


A contour cut matches the borders of your graphics with no excess vinyl. This gives the vinyl and window a more seamless look, as though the graphics were printed right on the glass.


Halo cuts leave a small edge of vinyl, approximately 1/4 inch wide. This creates a visible border around the decal.

Do you have extra window space you would like to customize? Contact KKP to get started!

From static clings to office signs to custom window decals, we can offer a sign that fits your needs and your establishment’s atmosphere. Fast. Local. Personal. For over 35 years KKP has been supplying a comprehensive range of high-quality print, design and sign services as well as marketing assistance to Canadian businesses. For expert assistance, attentive service and affordable prices, contact us today.

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