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The Best Contact Paper for Shelves

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Buyer's Guide

Buying Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Contact Paper for Shelves

Shelves are an excellent way to display your favorite items while also making your space feel more organized. However, if you want to jazz up your shelving unit, try adding contact paper! It's the ideal do-it-yourself project for anyone looking to get creative with their living space. Contact paper, which comes in a variety of patterns and colors, is an inexpensive way to add some style to any room in your home. These are some of our favorite patterns and designs that we believe would look fantastic on a shelf!

Here's what you need to know about the various types of contact paper and how they work on shelves.

What is contact paper for shelves?

marble designed contact paper

Contact paper is a flexible, non-reactive paper that will stick to almost anything. If you want thicker or darker paper, you can have it cut to your specifications.

It can be used for a variety of purposes, such as covering up unsightly walls or corralling bookshelves, among others.

Contact paper is made of layers of paper and adhesives and is heat resistant to 92 degrees Fahrenheit. You can remove it from your project at any time, making it ideal for quick and easy cleanup.


Why would I want Contact Paper for Shelves?

If you haven't already, you'll want to know what makes contact paper unique and special. It is essentially a thin, clear sheet of coated paper with an adhesive backing that can be used on a variety of surfaces such as a door frame, window, shower door, bookshelf, or desktop. All you have to do is apply contact paper to the surface you want to protect, and it will stick just like any other flat piece of paper. When you're finished, remove the sheet and clean up any fingerprints or other marks that may have remained on the surface.


What's the difference between Contact Paper for Shelves & Drawer Liner?

Contact paper and drawer liner are the two main types of contact paper. Contact paper is the more expensive option and usually necessitates a few extra steps to install. It's a more difficult option because you'll need to remove your existing drawer liner before applying contact paper. But once you've done that, you can pretty much use it to turn any surface into a shelf.

Many people mistake contact paper for wrapping paper with paper plates that is used on bookshelves. Contact paper, on the other hand, can be used on a variety of surfaces, including drawers, shoe racks, and flat surfaces such as bookshelves. While contact paper is thin, it is still relatively strong and can withstand a lot of wear and tear.

While contact paper is thin, it is still relatively strong and can withstand a lot of wear and tear. Contact paper for shelves is more durable and does not require glue to adhere to the surface. In fact, you can reuse it without having to seal it with adhesive or wax.

Different types of Contact Paper for Shelves

There are two methods for making contact paper for shelves. You can choose between sticky and matte finishes. In any case, it's very simple to use and you can select the texture you want. Contact paper, which comes in a variety of colors such as black and white or fuschia and gray, is one of the most popular options.

Contact paper is available in a variety of widths and thicknesses, depending on the size of your shelves and how you want to arrange your items. The Contact Paper Store offers contact paper in three different thicknesses.

How do you apply contact paper to a shelf?

contact paper installation on shelves

This is the question most people ask. Contact paper isn’t easy to apply to a wall or shelf. This is usually the part that takes the most time and effort.

First, you will need to scrape your contact paper into the back of the shelf with either a razor blade, screwdriver, or even a nail. This is called taking the scraped contact paper and placing it on the back of the shelf.

Once your contact paper has been removed from the shelf, you’ll want to measure and cut out the holes you need. Usually, when contact paper is put on a shelf, it’s cut at a specific height. It’s recommended that you cut your holes to the same exact size of the shelf.

Once you have cut the holes, you’ll need to choose which pattern of contact paper you want to use.

Things to consider before purchasing Contact Paper for Shelves

When purchasing contact paper for shelves, there are a few factors to consider.

Here are some things to think about when selecting the right type of contact paper for your shelves and your specific requirements.

Choosing the right contact paper

When it comes to contact paper, you have several options. You can buy "off-the-shelf" contact paper, or you can look for a brand that has patterned designs or photos that you can customize and have printed directly on your contact paper.

Choose the appropriate colors

rolls of contact papers for shelves

The appearance of your shelves can be greatly improved by using different colored contact paper. If you're unsure about which colors to use, consult our guide to matching colors to your decor.

Size and Cost

The amount of contact paper required will be determined by the size of the area to be covered. Contact paper for shelves is available in a variety of sizes and shapes, such as rolls, sheets, and sheets of varying thicknesses. When purchasing contact paper for shelves, thickness is the most important factor to consider. It should be thick enough to withstand heavy use while also preventing the vinyl or paper backing from peeling away. The size and price will also be affected by the adhesive's quality. Some adhesives work best with thicker materials, while others require thinner materials.


Contact paper is made of durable and flexible materials and is available in a wide range of colors, patterns, and textures. This makes it an excellent choice for your DIY project and makes matching the color of your existing shelves simple.


If you want to be creative, experiment with different textures on your contact paper to add visual interest.

How to choose the best Contact Paper for Shelves for your specific needs

Because there are so many different kinds of contact paper, it's important to think about your needs as well as the aesthetics of your space. For all shelf-bound applications, the best materials are glossy and matte.

A matte surface gives the papers a more matte appearance and can make them extremely durable. The glossy options are more vibrant and glossy, but they fade more quickly. You may prefer one over the other depending on your budget. Both are suitable for displaying on your shelf and are a fun way to create patterns and illustrations.

When selecting matte contact paper, experiment with clear and light colors. These are usually the cheapest, but you won't be able to see all of the colors and they can be difficult to assemble.

Final Thoughts

It's not only a quick and inexpensive way to add some style to your home, but it's also simple to remove when you're ready to restock the shelves! When contact paper becomes dirty, it is simple to peel off and replace if a sheet is lost. Another advantage of using contact paper is that it can be used to hang any type of wall art. Take a look at this DIY gallery to see how adding a touch of art to the surfaces around you can benefit your home.


Is contact paper good for shelves?

Contact paper, which is smooth on one side and sticky on the other, has long been favored for its practical applications, such as lining drawers and shelves.

Can you put contact paper on shelves?

Because contact paper adheres best to smooth, clean surfaces, it's critical to ensure that your shelves are properly prepared before applying the paper. You may be required to complete some (or all) of the following tasks: Remove any old contact paper, stickers, or other items that have accumulated on your shelves. To smooth out the rough edges on the shelves, sand them down.

How do you use contact paper on a bookshelf?

Check to see that the bookcase is clean and dry before using it. The contact paper should be measured and cut to fit on the designated shelf. Remove the backing from the paper, position it where you want it, and smooth it out by rubbing (again with even pressure) from one side of the paper to the other side of the paper Continue to apply another strip after peeling back the next section of backing. Repeat the process until the entire shelf has been covered. Allow for overnight resting before stacking anything on top of it, as the glue will need time to adhere properly.

How Do You Clean Contact Paper For Shelves?

Using a sponge, gently wipe the sticky side down with warm water and mild dish soap. Clean your sponge on a regular basis. Remove any remaining soap bubbles from the area you are cleaning by wiping it down with a clean damp cloth to remove any remaining residue. Fill the bucket halfway with clean water and rinse the cloth as necessary. Allow to dry completely.

When To Take Contact Paper For Shelves Off?

Remove the contact paper from your shelves when you want to change the look of your home or try something new. Just remember to lift from the corners when you're done.

How Do You Remove Contact Paper For Shelves?

Use an exacto knife to cut through the corners of your piece by turning it over and cutting from the other side. When you try to pull it up, it will not curl up as much as it would otherwise. Then carefully begin pulling it away from the wall, being careful not to tear any small pieces that are stuck down. If necessary, you can use a blow dryer on a warm setting to soften the glue and make it easier to remove later.

What Is The Difference Between Contact Paper For Shelves And Wallpaper?

Because of its waterproof properties, contact paper is commonly used in kitchens and bathrooms. Wallpaper is more durable and will last for a longer period of time. Contact paper has a shorter shelf life than regular paper.

How Do I Remove Sticky Residue From Contact Paper For Shelves That Are On My Wall?

Rubbing alcohol can easily be used to clean small areas or corners that may have a residue on them. All you have to do is wet an old clean cloth with rubbing alcohol and rub it onto the sticky area. As soon as you notice glue on the wall, use a paper towel to sop up as much as you can before applying alcohol to remove it from the shelf lining.

How Do You Line A Shelf With Contact Paper?

Check to see that the bookcase is clean and dry before using it. Measure and cut your contact paper so that it will fit onto a specific shelf. Remove the backing from the paper, position it where you want it, and smooth it out by rubbing (again with even pressure) from one side of the paper to the other side of the paper Continue to apply another strip after peeling back the next section of backing. Repeat the process until the entire shelf has been covered.

What Is The Best Way To Cover A Shelf With Contact Paper?

Contact paper sheeting should be peeled back from its backing, centered over your shelf, and smoothed down to ensure adhesion. Remove an adjacent section of backing so that you can apply it directly next to the first piece of backing you removed. Continue to smooth out the contact paper with even pressure until the entire shelf is covered with it.

Is Contact Paper for Shelves worth it?

Yes! A great way to give your bookshelves a facelift is to use contact paper for shelves. They are simple to cut with a pair of scissors, and they are equally simple to reposition if you make a mistake. Never get bored or want to change your décor again because there is always something new to look at and enjoy.

How Do You Get The Contact Paper For Shelves To Stick?

Smooth the contact paper onto the shelf with your fingers. To ensure good adhesive properties, press firmly around all of the edges and corners of the container. If you do not achieve a tight seal, the shelf will have a tendency to curl. Applying another layer of contact paper and trimming away any excess contact paper with a sharp blade may be necessary if this is the case.

What is the purpose of contact paper for shelves?

Contact paper for shelves is intended to be used only as a temporary covering for shelves. Because it has no adhesive properties, it can be easily removed and replaced with something else without causing any damage to the surface beneath it. The high-quality vinyl or pvc adheres to most surfaces with little effort and is suitable for indoor use. Because of the ease of movement, it is stress-free and enjoyable to decorate your shelves.

Are contact paper for shelves reusable?

It is not intended to be used more than once, as contact paper for shelves is. Because it is not adhesive, it will come off if you attempt to reposition it. Even double-sided tape can cause damage to the surface if it is attempted to be removed more than a few times.

How often should contact paper for shelves be replaced?

Contact paper for shelves is intended to be used only once and should not be reused. They would make an excellent decorative item, but they would quickly lose their "stick." It is recommended that you replace them with each season or with each change of décor. Aside from that, it would be a complete waste of money. For those of you who don't want to replace them on a regular basis, find another way to dress up your shelves that will last for more than a season.

What is contact paper for shelves made of?

Vinyl, PVC, and cloth are the most commonly used materials for shelf contact paper. In contrast to vinyl, which is coated with fabric, PVC is solid plastic with no fabric, and cloth, which has a mesh backing. They are available in a variety of colors, with the majority of them having some shimmer or shine to them.

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