Best Resume Paper: What Type of Paper Should You Use?

Your resume is the first impression your potential employer gets. Before even having an opportunity to read through your educational history, job experience, and skills, the employer will touch and feel your paper. The quality and type of the paper are as significant as is the wording on the resume. As a devoted job applicant, when preparing your resume, accord more importance to your paper selection. The article is a breakdown of all you need to master about resume preparation, the type of paper that works best, and what qualifies as the best resume paper.

Why Do You Require a Resume Paper?

In most situations, you will submit your resume by electronic means. Nevertheless, there are some instances, such as career fairs or face-to-face interviews, where you present it in hard copy. Similarly, it is clever to retain a copy for other professional contexts, including networking. The types of resume paper you print on speaks volumes about you. A resume on a high-quality paper reveals to your colleagues, prospective employers, and contacts that you have put effort to leave a lasting impression and reflect a higher degree of professionalism. All said you might wish to secure your resume in a folder to ensure it is spotless and well-ordered.

What Type of Paper Is Best for Your Resume?

There are myriad factors to consider while selecting your types of resume paper. The list might be endless, but here are the critical factors for consideration.

Paper Weight

In the United States, a sheet of paper’s weight is measured as the weight of a five-hundred-sheet pile of full-length paper. The paper’s thickness is directly proportional to its weight, meaning the thicker the paper, the heavier it is. Most copiers use lightweight papers, such as the 20-lb ream.
These sheets are delicate and move through the copier effortlessly. However, using a relatively thicker paper for a resume is typical, such as the 24-lb sheet. The thickness or weight of the latter is slightly studier than the twenty-pound ream but still lighter than cardstock.
If you can afford 32-lb weight resume paper, we highly recommend getting it.

Paper Color

For a resume, color matters just as the weight. Typically, resumes are white, light gray, cream, or white-off (ivory). Nevertheless, most people believe that having a slightly different color from the traditional ones makes your resume stands out from the huge pile of papers. Moreover, when seeking a creative job, such as an advertising executive or graphic designer, it may be critical to be creative through ingenuity in color selection. Other than being bold, creative color selection might even add more value in the right industry.
We recommend sticking with a white or slightly off-white color. Ivory may look too antique for modern-day jobs.

Paper Texture

The paper’s texture refers to its feel or finish. While cheaper, lightweight sheets of paper are smoother; their more expensive versions come with multiple textures and a wide selection. The texture may range from laid and linen to coated and uncoated. When selecting your preferred resume paper, the texture should guide you on the best resume paper. Linen paper comes with textured lines on the upper section, lending it a more formal appearance. This texture is typically preferred for resume writing and business letterhead.


A watermark is a logo or mark etched on more expensive sheets of paper by manufacturers. The mark is often seen when the sheet is held upon a source of light. Although it is not necessarily a requirement for resumes, it indicates to the potential employer the value you accord to the exercise by purchasing a high-quality paper.
Do some industries require different papers for a resume?
Generally, no sector voices a clear preference for a given type of resume paper. However, more professional job positions require clean layouts that employ standard templates on papers of superior quality. The visual arts sphere is a sector that hugely entertains creativity. For instance, if you are seeking a graphic design job, a slightly artistic resume is preferable. You can experiment with paper layout and color to display your aesthetic. Nevertheless, you need to proceed with caution by getting some sense of the level of creativity your prospective employer can welcome. Although operating in a creative space, some panelists might prefer the professional, standard feel and look.

Paper Comparison

Are you wondering the type of paper to use for your resume? Here are the different types of resume papers with the pros and cons to help you decide.
  • Linen: it has a unique, premium texture and is highly durable but comes at higher price points. This is our recommended resume paper if you can afford it. You can find 75% and 100% cotton linen resume paper, but we recommend 100% cotton for the best texture.
  • Marble: Marble-colored resume paper has a nice look-and-feel and is a great option for making your resume stand out for certain jobs.
  • Plain: It’s crisp and formal and reduces distractions though less impressive, and it does not set you apart from other applicants.
  • Ivory: Pleasant texture and durable but lacks the premium feel. You can get ivory-colored paper with most materials. The off-white color will definitely stand out, but has more of an antique look which might not resonate with a lot of employers.
The standard copy papers will not differentiate you from other applicants. And obviously, you should not share your academic credentials on a creased or wrinkled paper. It mirrors laziness and a lack of attention to detail.

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