Single-Use vs Reusable Stencil Material

88 comments by Hayley Aiono

If it isn’t obvious by now, we love stencils. Whether you are adding personality to your home, celebrating a special occasion or even using them to advertise for your business- stencils are the perfect tool!  The potential uses of stencils are practically endless and allow you to take any design and apply it to many different spaces, surfaces and projects. 

Whether you are a professional designer or a DIY kind of person, you will often be faced with the question of what kind of stencil to use. While there are so many types of stencils to choose from, your most common choice will come down to this: should you choose a single-use or reusable stencil? Some of you may wonder what the difference is or how to decide which is best for your project- and we are here to help guide you through that process! 

For starters, deciding which type of stencil to choose will depend entirely on how and how often you want to use it. There are advantages to each type of stencil- and hopefully this blog will help you decide works best for you and your unique crafting style. Before we decide which kind, let’s dive into why we love stencils to begin with! 

Why Stencils Are So Useful

Stencils make crafting doable for any and every skill level. Whether you are a professional painter or stenciling just for fun, a stencil can help you to take your design to the next level without the time and stress of free-handing. Stencils do the work for you by giving you a professional and consistent look every time! 

Stencils allow anyone to create a beautiful piece of decor- whether it is for your own home or a present for friends and family. We love seeing the crafts our clients create and are constantly amazed by the unlimited possibilities. Below, you can see an example of one of our stencils being used on a wooden board. Whether it is a simple single design or a patterned multi-stencil creation, the design possibilities are endless and beyond beautiful. 

farmer's market stencil

While it is often said that diamonds are a girl’s best friend, we are strong believers that it is actually stencils! And trust us when we say that doesn’t just apply to girls- everyone loves stencils! If you don’t believe us that there is a stencil for everyone, take a look at our incredible selection. Pick a stencil and give it a try- we promise you won’t be disappointed! 

Reusable Stencil Material

As promised, we want to share with each of you wonderful readers what these “reusable” and “single-use” phrases actually mean. Reusable stencils are exactly what they sound like: stencils you can use over and over again. We here at WallCutz choose to create our stencils using a 10milimmeter mylar which is a reusable stencil material. Why, you might ask? Here are just a few of the advantages of reusable stencils and why they are our personal favorites! 

  • Cost-effective: Since you can use your reusable stencils as much as you want, you will easily get your money’s worth and then some. We can’t tell you how many times we made a project and loved it so much, we made more to share! And this way, you already have almost everything you need to do so.
  • Designed to last: Reusable stencil materials are much more durable than single-use stencils, meaning you can use them again and again with little risk of tearing. These stencils are designed to be easy to use, easy to clean and easy to store until you need to use it again.
  • Great for branding: If you own a business and have a logo or tagline you want to put up everywhere in your store, reusable stencil materials can make that happen. So whether you are branding or gifting, these stencils go a long way. 

One of our favorite examples of a classic reusable stencil is our Christmas tree collection. You can add some holiday festivity in a variety of ways each year with the same great stencils. Create a gift, decorate a stocking or make the perfect Christmas sweater- or do all three! That is the beauty of reusable stencils.

While we can go on and on about reusable stencils, the responsible stencilers in us must also admit that there some disadvantages to reusable stencils:

  • Less flexible: Since reusable stencil materials are built to last, they are not as flimsy or flexible as their single-use counterparts. For all of those creative surfaces we mentioned, you may have a harder time applying these stencils to the curved or uniquely shaped canvases. 
  • No adhesive back: If you have never used a single-use stencil, it is important to note they typically have an adhesive side so they can easily stick to the surface you’re working on. Reusable stencils do not have this sticky side and will need to be taped down or sprayed with adhesive. A little less convenient and leaves for some extra cleanup.

Single-Use Stencils

Now although we may be biased, we can also sing praises to single-use stencils. Let’s be honest- we love all stencils! These types of stencils are designed to only be used once, but give an excellent and clean design when you do use them. Here are a couple of the advantages and reasons that we love these kinds of stencils:

  • More versatile: As mentioned above, these single- use stencils have the flexibility that reusable stencils lack. They are more pliable and can be molded to perfectly fit where you need them. What you lose in reusability you gain in precision and versatility.
  • Adhesive back: If you are a fan of an easy peel off and stick technique, these are your winners! Thanks to its adhesive back, single-use stencils can easily be applied to any surface and maintain crisp lines on your designs without having to tape or spray down. 

Of course, the biggest drawback to single-use stencils is they can only be used once. At times, that may be all you need. If you have a unique design that will only need to be used once, single-use stencils are a great choice. Because its material is so thin, it is easy to break once you try to peel it off the surface you first applied it on- so remember with these, it is a one and done mentality. 

Find The Right Stencil For You! 

So to wrap up this blog, we will leave you with one last question- why even bother having two types of stencils? Some stencils are designed to work best with a certain medium or surface material, giving you options. Reusable and single-use stencils both have their own best use situations, and the variety makes the possibilities for stenciling projects infinite! 

While we have shared our pros and cons list, we encourage you to do your research and find exactly the right type of stencil for the project you have in mind. Given all the available stencils WallCutz offers, you’re bound to find a stencil that is perfect for your next design project. 

We love sharing our ideas with you- and love to hear from each of you in the comments about what you prefer on the topic we tackle! So tell us: are you a single-use stenciler or a reusable kind of crafter? We are certain that no matter the answer, we have lots of stencils for you!


88 comments


  • Virginia Hansen
    I love the new spiritual stencils!

  • Sandy Bouch
    How do I know what size of stencil to purchase? For example like for a 5 foot long vertical board?

  • Nancy Townsend
    Wallcutz stencils are my absolute FAVORITE!!

  • Dianne
    I am new to stenciling. Just love doing it. Made noodle boards for Mothers day gifts for my kids. Love the way they turned. Thanks wallcutz

  • Deborah Langley
    I just love all of the stencils I have purchased from wallcutz. I love being able to get different sizes and the durability of the stencils and you always put a special free stencil and a very nice thank you note all of this makes you feel special. Appreciate you very much and God bless

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