GSM Paper – What Does It Mean?

GSM Paper - What Does It Mean?

Have you ever browsed through a paper catalog? If you have, then you most certainly have viewed paper-listed products by GSM. GSM means the paper’s thickness. Suppose the GSM is low on the paper, the paper will be thin, and if the paper’s GSM is high, the paper will be thick. If you’re in search of the correct paper for a specific project and you’re confused about the GSM required, then this guide is meant for you. So, let’s delve in.


GSM denotes the grams per square meter of the paper. It is technically called the paper’s grammage. Just like the name suggests, it is the measure of the paper’s weight. A paper that has an increased GSM is usually heavy duty. It is ideally used for the packaging of food. On the other hand, a paper with lower GSM will be flimsy and light in weight, it is ideally utilized for newspaper printing. However, you must remember that GSM means grams per square meter, and it is not particularly a measure of its thickness. Although it is, in general, a reliable guide to determine the thickness of specialty paper, in certain instances, the paper thickness will differ from what the GSM may imply.

It is always advisable to speak with a paper professional while deciding on the paper ideal for your project. This is particularly true if you are planning on utilizing specialty paper.

The Correct GSM For Your Product

Selecting a paper that has a higher or lower GSM would completely depend on the project requirements. For instance, a newspaper requires a lower GSM because the paper requires to be foldable. Just like this, the paper utilized to pack food must be resistant to tear and robust; therefore, they would require a paper that has an increased GSM.

There are also certain intangible reasons to pause in selecting a specific GSSM. When you’re looking at printing business cards, they require thick, luxurious paper. If you look at it, there seems to be no practical utility for utilizing a high GSM paper. However, by doing so, it adds an upmarket feeling to the product.

GSM is a single element for selecting the correct paper for a project. For instance, if your priorities are offering a premium feel and look, which paper must you choose? Coated or uncoated? Loss or match? Bottom line: selecting the correct paper is not just about a single thing but using the correct combination of certain specifications in order to create the functionality that is required along with a unique feel and look.

Paper Weights—Feel Or Look Like

Paper Weights—Feel Or Look Like

Paper is available in various GSM, beginning from 35 right up to 400. A paper with a GSM ranging from 35 to 55 is generally utilized for books and newspapers that have hundreds of pages. 80GSM woodfree paper is commonly used as everyday printing, admin stuff, and photocopy paper. Premium paper, 120x 2140 GSM, is used for notices and flyers. 200 to 300 GSM is a thin card used for brochures and certificates. A 300 to 400 GSM thick card can be used for four brochure covers, postcards, and greeting cards.

Overall, selecting the right paper for your project is important. Therefore, we recommend consulting with a paper professional to help you with the same. Whether you require a 100GSM woodfree paper or any other, they would be the right one to guide you.