so I ended up with a bunch of bright white card stock I want to print trifolds on. Since I want to use up this paper, is there anything I can get to add onto the paper AFTER the print job that will add gloss to it?

Want to see if I can DIY before I go and buy glossy paper.

Bonus points if there is something that I can add to the paper BEFORE printing (on an inkjet printer)

I tried some basic Mod Podge, but haven't used the clear spray stuff.

I used this for what it is worth: https://www.hobbylobby.com/Scrapbook-Paper-Crafts/Glues-Adhesives/Liquid/Mod-Podge-Gloss/p/80649315?gclid=EAIaIQobChMImsKT5Z_z3wIVlR-tBh0vSwJ7EAQYAiABEgJZDfD_BwE

2 Answers 2


Have you considered using a high-gloss clear spray paint?

And I would suspect that gloss = plastic to some degree, and an inkjet printer basically sets down ink droplets. If you print on glossy paper that's not specifically designed for inkjet printers, you might end up with a smear of ink. So I'd suggest do printing first, then if you use spray paint you could possibly do several pages at once.

Bonus perk of post-print gloss: inkjet ink doesn't always stay put (can be smeared by malicious fingers), so glossing the paper afterwards will help seal that ink in.


  • 1
    I would have suggested spray paint or varnish as well. To avoid smearing the printed page, you should apply several very thin coats and let them dry thouroughly in between.
    – Elmy
    Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 8:12
  • Would this work? walmart.com/ip/Plaid-Acrylic-Sealer-Gloss-6oz/… Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 15:38

Alterations to the paper both before and after the print job could have negative effects. I suggest doing a test batch first so you don't ruin your entire supply. Thee option I find most likely to work is clear spray paint, but you would only want to apply this to the finished prints as sending something spray painted through your printer could gum up your machine. (Also, printer ink may not even dry properly without smearing on any shiny surface not designed for printing.)

AFTER the print job, I suggest letting your printed sheets fully dry before trying to apply the clear spray paint. If your ink is not fully dry first, the paint could cause the ink to bleed. When you spray the paint, be careful not to apply it too thickly or unevenly because thicker, wetter areas will likely make the corners of your paper curl.

I do have one alternative suggestion, but it's more labor intensive. Thick paper can be dipped in clear melted wax to create a somewhat shiny surface finish. (I've seen this done with color photo prints with no detriment to the inked image for an art installation one of my peers created).

  • Would this stuff work? walmart.com/ip/Plaid-Acrylic-Sealer-Gloss-6oz/… Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 15:38
  • I don't know that particular brand, but it would probably work, assuming none of the issues I've already raised cause a problem. My personal recommendation is just to buy glossy paper. I think trying to DIY with what you have will make the project bigger and more expensive than intended. (However, if it does work, I suggest adding an answer to your own question with some photos of what you did for anyone with a similar problem in the future!) Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 16:27
  • "I think trying to DIY with what you have will make the project bigger and more expensive than intended." Yeah, if this doesn't work, I'm going to say F it and just get glossy paper. But I like to tinker with things, and I wanna know if this is something that can easily be DIY. I don't mind spending a little money to learn. (within reason) Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 20:30
  • Good luck! If my suggestions help at all, send an upvote my way. =) Have fun experimenting! Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 20:42

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