"IndoorGameBunker is supported by its readers. Please assume all links are affiliate links. If you purchase something from one of our links we make a small commission from Amazon."

What Are Matte Card Sleeves?

what are matte card sleeves

What is the difference between matte and normal card sleeves is? Wondering whether one option is going to be better for you than the other? We are going to try and answer all of the questions that you may have on this page. 

So, what are matte card sleeves? Well, when we talk about matte card sleeves, we are talking about the back of the card. Most card sleeves have a shiny back. Matte card sleeves have the opposite to that. The back of the card sleeve is meant to be a little bit rougher. This can help when shuffling your cards.

On this page, we want to talk a little bit more about the benefits of matte card sleeves. We also want to introduce you to the idea of double matte card sleeves.

Are Matte Card Sleeves Better?

Click Image for More Info

It depends on what you want from a trading card sleeve.

There are some people that do not like the aesthetic of the matte card sleeves. Some people really do seem to enjoy that glossy finish. However, in this case, aesthetics are going to be the only benefit that glossy card sleeves have over the matte options.

Matte card sleeves are easier to shuffle. This is because they have that grip on the back of the card sleeve that prevents too much slipping. The matte finish is also a little bit thicker, which means the cards bend less when you are shuffling. in our opinion, shuffling with matte card sleeves is that much more satisfying.

Matte cards also have a bit better grip. This is fantastic when you are handling cards while playing. We are positive that most of us have had to deal with glossy card sleeves slipping out of our hands during some of the more intense plays.

The aesthetics of matte card sleeves tend to hold up a little bit better over time too. Scratches and scuffs tend to be much more prominent on glossy card sleeves.

To check the current price and availability of Ultra-Pro Standard Size Matte Card Sleeves, click here to view them on Amazon.

Do You Need to Wear Matte Card Sleeves in When You Buy Them?

Normally, when you buy trading card sleeves, they take a little bit of wearing in when you buy them. It is not uncommon for brand-new trading card sleeves to either be sticky or slippery when you first pull them out of the packaging.

This does still happen to matte card sleeves. However, because they have that slightly rough surface on the back of the sleeve, it isn’t going to be that much of a problem. We suggest that you shuffle the cards several times, or even play with them for an hour, before you take them to an actual tournament, though.

What Are Double Matte Card Sleeves?

Double matte card sleeves are like matte card sleeves insofar as the fact that the back of the card has a matte finish. However, they have one major difference.

The front of almost every single matte card sleeve on the market will be glossy. This will allow you to get a good view of the card inside. This means that the front of the card is nice and smooth.

Double matte cards make the front of the card sleeve matte too. This means that the front of the card sleeve feels roughly the same as the back of the card sleeve. This does have an impact on the front of the card sleeve, though. Because of the matte finish, it is not as clear.

This means that your card’s artwork and text doesn’t quite pop out in the same way. It is also worth noting that double matte card sleeves may not be allowed in Yugioh tournaments if you are planning to double-sleeve your cards. This is because the rules of the game require that you can see clearly into the card sleeve. If that text or artwork is even slightly hindered by the matte finish, you may not be able to play with it.

Because the front of the double matte card sleeves is often thicker, some people report that they last a little bit longer. Although, we are talking a couple of weeks longer. Not months. You do feel as if the double matte card sleeves will be protecting your cards a little bit better, though.

In our experience, double matte card sleeves tend to be a bit easier to shuffle too. Although, the difference between double matte and matte is quite negligible.

How Long Do Matte Card Sleeves Last?

Contrary to popular belief, matte card sleeves do not last longer than their glossy counterparts. Assuming that you are purchasing card sleeves from the same brand, the two of them will have roughly the same lifespan.

You may, however, find that double matte card sleeves do last a little bit longer. Although, of course, you will have to put up with that slightly ‘frosty’ finish on the front, which isn’t always going to be ideal.

On average, with semi-regular play, you can expect a matte card sleeve to last between 3 and 4 months. This is if you are going to Friday Night Magic or another weekly event and just playing for a few hours.

If you are playing with your trading cards several times per week, then you will probably need to replace the card sleeves a lot more frequently. We are sure that you will be able to tell as and when you need to replace the card sleeves.

Who Are the Best Manufacturers of Matte Card Sleeves?

Click Image for More Info

Ultra-Pro and Dragon Shield

You won’t go far wrong with either Ultra-Pro or Dragon Shield matte card sleeves. These are the ones that you will often find used extensively in trading card game tournaments or at your local Friday Night Magic. This is because both of these manufacturers produce card sleeves that are built to last.

If you want a cool pattern on the back of your card, you will also be pleased to know that both Ultra-Pro and Dragon Shield offer an extensive selection of colors. This means that you can really choose the trading card sleeve that suits your tastes.

To check the current price and availability of Dragon Shield Matte Card Sleeves, click here to view them on Amazon.

Final Thoughts

For the most part, matte card sleeves are better than more traditional ‘glossy’ card sleeves. They feel better to shuffle and, in some cases, they may even last a little bit longer.

If you don’t mind a less opaque front of the card sleeve, then you may even find that double matte card sleeves will be better for you. However, do bear in mind that only a limited number of card sleeve manufacturers currently offer them.

If you have yet to try out matte card sleeves yourself, why not use them for the next deck your build? Chances are that you will probably fall in love with the way that they feel. 

Indoor Game Bunker

We are Indoor Game Bunker, a group dedicated to providing reviews, how to guides, and helpful information to those interested in a wide variety of games and hobbies.

Recent Posts