Wristbands have become an integral part of events, serving various purposes, from identification to access control. Among the plethora of wristbands available, paper and fabric wristbands stand out as popular choices. In this post, we’ll delve into the pros and cons of both paper and fabric wristbands to help event organizers make an informed decision and answer the question of what is the Difference between Paper Wristbands Or Fabric Wristbands?

 Which is Better?

Paper Wristbands

Characteristics and Use Cases

Paper wristbands, characterized by their simplicity and lightweight design, have been a staple in the event industry for years. They are often the go-to choice for events such as concerts, fairs, and one-day festivals due to their cost-effectiveness and ease of use. The technical name for them is actually tyvek wristbands, as they are made from a mix of paper and tyvek. That gives it the toughness, durability and waterproof attributes that make it such a popular product.

Tyvek Wristbands
Tyvek Wristbands

Pros of Paper Wristbands

  • Affordability: One of the critical advantages of paper wristbands is their affordability. Event organizers can purchase them in bulk without breaking the bank. These are excellent choices for large-scale events with budget constraints. Prices start from just 10c per band for custom printed wristbands and from as little as 5c for plain tyvek bands.
  • Ease of Application: Another notable benefit is the ease of application. Attendees can quickly slip them on, reducing wait times at entrances and ensuring a smooth flow of guests into the event.
  • Customization Options: Paper wristbands are highly customizable. Organizers can imprint them with event branding, logos, specific information, and even unique QR codes or barcodes for enhanced functionality. This customization not only serves as a means of identification but also reinforces the event’s identity and branding efforts. Use our interactive online designer to add text and logos and create a unique design for your event or venue.

Cons of Paper Wristbands

  • Durability: The primary drawback of paper wristbands is their relatively short life span. The product is only suitable for use for 24-48 hours as a maximum. They are not ideal for long term use such as at festivals that last days or even weeks as they are sometimes susceptible to wear and tear. In adverse weather conditions, such as rain or excessive sweating, paper wristbands may deteriorate after a few hours, leading to potential access control and security issues.
  • Single-Use: Typically, paper wristbands are designed for single use. Once removed, they cannot be reapplied, which can be wasteful for events that span multiple days or require re-entry. We are very proud to have recently launched biodegradable wristbands, which are available in a variety of colours such as neon yellow, neon green, white and red.
  • Security Limitations: While paper wristbands can deter some counterfeiters, they are generally easier to tamper with than their fabric counterparts. This limitation may pose security concerns for events where access control is critical.

Fabric Wristbands Custom

Characteristics and Use Cases

Fabric wristbands, on the other hand, have become extremely popular in recent years due to their durability, reusability, and enhanced security features. They are often the preferred choice for events where these qualities are paramount, such as multi-day festivals, upscale parties, and exclusive VIP access events. These are a premium product and many people wear the wristband even after the event has passed. They are sometimes known as Festival Wristbands as they are commonly worn at events like Glastonbury.

Design Fabric Wristbands
Design Fabric Wristbands

Pros of Fabric Wristbands

  • Durability: Fabric wristbands are renowned for their durability. Crafted from sturdy materials, they can withstand extended wear and exposure to various environmental factors, making them ideal for events that span multiple days.
  • Reusability: A significant advantage of fabric wristbands is their reusability. Unlike paper wristbands, they can be removed and safely stored for future events, reducing waste and environmental impact. There are 2 types of closures that can be added to fabric bands. The first is a barrel lock – meaning that the wristband cannot be removed once worn. The second is a sliding bead – meaning the band can be removed and then worn again at a later stage.
  • Customization: Sublimated Fabric Wristbands have endless ways to be customized and can include logos and text in full colour. Use our interactive designer tool to create a unique design and select from our ready made templates that are ideal for Festivals. Dye Sub Wristbands are perfect for logos that have very fine details such as gradients or shadows.
  • Enhanced Security: Fabric wristbands often have advanced security features like barrel lock mechanisms. These locks are not only more secure but also harder to replicate or transfer between individuals. This added layer of security makes fabric wristbands an excellent choice for events where access control is a top priority.
  • Eco Friendly: We now offer Fabric Wristbands made from recycled plastic material, meaning they are eco friendly and good for the environment. Many organizations and venue are looking to decrease their carbon footprint and this is an ideal way to do so.

Cons of Fabric Wristbands for Events

  • Cost: Fabric wristbands generally have a higher initial cost compared to their paper counterparts. Event organizers need to factor in this cost when budgeting for their event.
  • Application Time: While fabric wristbands are not difficult to put on, they may take slightly longer to apply compared to paper wristbands. This can cause minor delays at event entrances, especially during peak arrival times.
  • Production time: Fabric Wristbands have a standard leadtime of about 10-14 days from when an order is confirmed. We do offer a Super Express service which is about 6-10 days for those deadlines that are very tight. Sometimes this production time is too long for last minute orders.

 Fabric Wristbands for Events: Highlighting Suitability

Fabric wristbands are increasingly favoured in the event industry thanks to their durability, reusability, and enhanced security. Fabric wristbands custom are particularly well-suited for events where attendees expect higher comfort and security. 

Customization with Fabric Wristbands: Exploring Customization Possibilities

Event organizers often seek to create a unique and memorable experience for attendees. Fabric wristbands offer ample customization options, allowing organizers to incorporate event branding, logos, vibrant designs, and specific messaging. This personal touch enhances the overall event experience and helps reinforce the event’s identity. Our online designer tool is a perfect tool to create designs with text, logos and even icons or QR codes.

 Security Features of Fabric Wristbands: Discussing Enhanced Security

Fabric wristbands often come equipped with advanced security features, with the barrel lock mechanism being a prime example. This mechanism significantly enhances the security of fabric wristbands, making them a robust choice for events where access control is critical. Customers are able to select either a black barrel lock or a sliding bead before they proceed with their order. If the wristbands are to be worn at private ticketed events then we strongly recommend the barrel locks.

 Cost Considerations: Analyzing Long-term Benefits

While fabric wristbands may have a higher initial cost compared to paper wristbands, event organizers should consider their long-term benefits. The reusability of fabric wristbands can make them a cost-effective choice for events that span multiple days or require access control for different areas. Additionally, the reduced environmental impact of fabric wristbands aligns with the sustainability concept in event planning. The ability to reuse wristbands reduces waste and contributes to a more eco-friendly event. Click here to compare the prices of Fabric and Tyvek Wristbands for different quantities. Price is one of the main Difference between Paper Wristbands Or Fabric Wristbands, especially for smaller orders under 500 units.

 Which is Better: Fabric or Paper Wristband

Choosing paper and fabric wristbands for your event depends on various factors, including your budget, event duration, and security concerns. Paper wristbands are cost-effective and easy to customize, making them suitable for one-day events with budget constraints. However, their durability and security limitations may not align with the needs of certain events.

On the other hand, fabric wristbands offer enhanced durability, reusability, and advanced security features like barrel locks. While they may have a higher initial cost, their long-term benefits, including reduced waste and enhanced security, make them a worthwhile investment for events that prioritize these qualities.


At Malta Wristbands, we specialize in providing custom fabric wristbands tailored to the unique needs of our clients. Our expertise in creating high-quality wristbands ensures your event runs smoothly and securely. We hope that this has helped outline some of the Difference between Paper Wristbands Or Fabric Wristbands. Whether you choose paper or fabric wristbands, our commitment is to help you create a memorable and well-managed event experience for your attendees. Contact us today to explore the world of wristbands and discover the perfect solution for your event needs.

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