Picking Out a Suitable Foamboard for your Project

Versatile foam boards are suited for all kinds of domestic, commercial and art projects. 

So what exactly is it about foam boards that make them so versatile? 

It is a unique mix of affordability, durability, and light weight. Owing to its light weight, it is easily cut and used, which makes it a common preference for mounting of prints and photographs and as backing material in picture frames. So how do you figure which foam board will be best for your project? Below are some tips to help you choose the right foam board for your project.

Suitability for Different Projects

Foam boards consist of three sturdy parts, an inner layer of polystyrene or polyurethane foam that is sandwiched between two layers of bleached, semi-gloss white clay coated paper. They are easily formed into shapes that can be used for interior designing and in architectural models. For high-end conservation framing, a further barrier of cotton rag boards or alpha-cellulose boards should be placed between the foam board and the original artwork. 

Foam board

Self-adhesive foam boards are best for cold mounting photos and artwork on to foam boards while the pressure-sensitive gatorfoam is particularly chosen for mounting exhibits and signs where strength and rigidity are considered a must. On the other hand, the most widely used category for photo mounting purposes is the Sintra PVC foam board. Therefore, your choice of foam board will largely depend on the nature of your project.

Choosing the Right Size and Thickness

With archival-quality variants now available through several manufacturers, foam boards have recently gained popularity as a backing material in picture framing. The product is ideal for use in screen printing, die cutting, mounting, framing and prototypes and is available in various sizes to meet specific requirements. All the basic foam boards including FomeCor, Acid-Free foam board, self-adhesive foam board and many other varieties are easily available online. You can get any foam board of your choice either with self-adhesive (pressure sensitive) or heat-activated coatings for mounting purposes. The products are available in a variety of thicknesses; commonly available for use in 1, 2, 3, 6, and 13 mm thicknesses.


Although foam boards are quite convenient to work with, some of them do not support certain glues and paints. For example, the clay-coated foamcore does not accept certain types of paint and glues such as superglue, which is not suitable for bonding. Using such products to bind these foam boards must be avoided. Solvents used in some paints and glues can dissolve the foam center, further causing weakness and breakdown of the structural integrity of the foam board.  

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