Choose the Best Materials to Make Your Signs Work for You

Have you ever considered how many times a day signs affect your life? Road signs, menu board signs, entrance, exit, and restroom signs, grocery store signs, storefront signs, election signs, movie marquis, the list is endless!  We continually look to signs for information and guidance, often without being consciously aware. According to NVISION, a supply chain management organization, 90 percent of the information transmitted to our brains is visual, and most people are 6.5 times more likely to recall visual information after three days than auditory information.  Well thought out signs are ideal for relaying messages that you want or need others to know and remember.

Once you have developed your message, displaying that message on the appropriate sign is equally as important. Materials matter. Quality custom signage is a worthwhile investment that is most likely to return dividends far beyond its initial cost. Here, we’ll answer some key sign questions that will help you make informed, effective decisions about which signs will best meet your needs.

Vote Signs

Three Best Outdoor Sign Materials

What is Sintra Board?

Sintra Board is one of the best sign materials for withstanding extreme weather conditions and maintaining its integrity through long term exposure to the elements. This rigid, weatherproof, non-flexible paneling material is made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride), resists warping or bending, and does not break easily. Sintra Board effortlessly absorbs color and has a low gloss, matte finish.  Often used for permanent outdoor signage, Sintra Board also is ideal for real estate and yard signs.

What is Coroplast?

The brand name for corrugated plastic, Coroplast is also referred to as plastic cardboard. An ultra-lightweight zigzagged Coroplast sheet is placed between two smooth sheets of plastic to form signs of various shapes and sizes. While Coroplast is durable, waterproof and weather resistant, it is an economical option best used as temporary outdoor signage, for example, election signs, holiday special signs, car wash signs, open house signs, or custom neighborhood yard signs, just to name a few. Coroplast is easily affixed to H-Stakes or mounted into frames for ready-to-go use.

What is Dibond?

Dibond is an aluminum composite that is made by filling two aluminum sheets with a polyethylene core. Exceptionally durable and resembling the structural integrity of metal, Dibond can be cut into a variety of custom shapes and sizes, perfect for creating signs that stand out from the others. This lightweight, rigid material is weather resistant, noncorrosive, available in a multitude of colors, and can be made with a matte, glossy, or mirrored finish. Because of its versatility and appeal, common uses include outdoor signage and temporary setups such as kiosks or exhibition stands.

The Best Indoor Sign Materials

What is Gator Board?

Commonly used for temporary yard signs, Gator Board is a firm, lightweight material ideal for permanent indoor signs. Manufactured from a dense foam interior placed between two wood fiber veneers, these veneers superbly  absorb vivid, full color inks and images that will stand the test of time. Water, scratch, and dent resistant, Gator Board is known for its structural integrity. Gator Board also is used for mounting posters and photographs and makes attractive conference or temporary kiosk displays.

What is Foam Core?

Best for indoor and temporary uses, foam core is made of a dense piece of foam placed between two layers of thick matte paper. With its low glare finish and versatility, it is often used for classroom projects like science fair displays. Foam core also works well for presentations or temporary store displays.

What is Ultra Board?

Because Ultra Board is made with a covering of polystyrene plastic, it is considered one of the most durable indoor sign materials. This material is scratch and warp resistant and is able to be cut or folded to support its own weight, for example freestanding life size Ultra Board cut outs that often feature celebrities.

At, our Design Your Sign From Scratch page is the ideal starting point for creating signs that will perfectly fit your needs. Follow our link to get started today!

Can Yard Signs be Recycled?

Most yard signs are recyclable! If your yard signs are made of corrugated plastic (Coroplast) and metal H-Stakes, simply separate the stakes from the signs and place them in your recycle bin or drop them at your nearest recycling center.  Polypropylene, a main component of most plastics, is not biodegradable. Therefore, recycling is a much better option than making a long term contribution to your local landfill.

What Other Signs or Sign Components are Recyclable?

Recycling guidelines vary widely within counties, communities, and other municipal jurisdictions. To help you determine whether your specific signs (or parts thereof) are recyclable, contact your local recycling facility. In addition, below are the most common recycling symbols and the materials they represent.

1 – Polyethylene Terephalate Ethylene (PETE)

Soft drink, juice, water, detergent, cleanser, cooking, and peanut butter jars.

2 – High Density Polyethylene (HDPE)

Milk and water jugs, bleach, detergent, and shampoo containers, plastic bags and grocery sacks, motor oil bottles, household cleansers, and butter tubs.

3 – Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

Window cleaner, detergent bottles, water jugs, cooking oils, and peanut butter jars.

4 – Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE)

Plastic bags and grocery sacks, film packaging, and some bottles.

5 – Polypropylene (PP)

Syrup bottles, yogurt tubs, caps, straws, and film packaging.

6 – Polystyrene (PS)

Egg cartons, meat trays, plates, flatware, carry out containers, and clear trays.

7 – Other

Resins or plastic combinations.

For more information on how to make custom signs work for your business, please see our related blog posts:

Tips for Designing Visually Effective and Interesting Signs

Making Temporary Signs Work for You

Political Yard Signs, What You Should Know 

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