Paper weight is determined by the weight of a ream of paper, which is 500 sheets, based on the type of paper basis size. The basis size of each paper type is the original dimensions before cutting the paper down to traditional sizes such as 8.5-by-11 inches. Each type of paper has different basis sizes making it difficult to tell one weight of paper from another. Selecting the right paper weight for a brochure requires a paper capable of withstanding the elements.
There are multiple types of paper that can be selected for a brochure. The main categories paper falls into are bond, book, text and cover. The stiffness of the paper increases from one category to the next with bond paper being the least stiff and cover the most. Brochures require a stiff paper so the brochures will not droop over when placed in racks. Text paper is the preferred paper type for brochures.
Each printer of the brochure will have different paper weights to suggest based on experience and the requirements of the brochure. For example, a brochure that is to be placed outside and exposed to the elements will require a stiffer and heavier weight paper as opposed to a brochure intended for inside display. Discuss with an experience professional to determine which paper weight is right for your project. Text paper weights typically run between 60 and 100 pounds, according to the Print Outlet website but lighter and heavier weights are available.
When comparing paper types and weights another item to consider is the finish on the paper. Glossy finishes give the brochures a shiny finish. A glossy finish tends to be more expensive than matte gloss. Each finish has it's purpose. Glossy finishes are great for advertising and marketing brochures. Matte finish paper can be used to reduce costs and are good for brochures meant to convey information, according to Graytex Papers website. The different finishes may be found of similar paper weights according to your needs.
A final selection may be the texture of the paper. Most brochure papers have an enamel type finish which give the paper a smooth feel. However, specialty papers are available at varying paper weights that contain different fibers. These fibers give the paper a different texture and feeling when held or touched.