Create a Killer Resume and Cover Letter

How To Print Your Resume Professionally

resume paper printing

Just because most resumes are submitted via computer doesn’t mean you don’t need to have printed copies of your resume as well.  We will tell you how to print your resume professionally so you can land that dream job.

It’s all in the details

It’s a small detail, but the paper you use to print your resume really does matter. If you hand over your resume on see-through, low-quality, sorta crinkled paper from the bottom of your desk drawer – it’s just not going to cut it. Resume-quality paper is available and affordable on Amazon and at most office supply stores. It will be well worth the investment. 

Times are changing

Even though searching for a job has become digital, there are still times where a physical copy of your resume is expected.  These days we don’t think about the challenges of choosing the ideal resume paper and then dealing with the negative vibes at the local office supply store (bad because everyone in there, customers and employees, was always in a terrible mood) for resume printing.

While you could consider printing your resume at home (on the paper mentioned above), it is probably best to consider a professional printing store such as FedEx.

Thankfully resume printing is easier now but it’s just as important as it always was.

resume paper printing

Why Bother?

Why should you bother printing a resume? You emailed it or you sent it through the company’s online portal, so surely the person interviewing you has already printed a copy. Of course, they have, but that isn’t the point.

“Until resumes are fully digital, job seekers are caught in limbo: both printed resumes and online profiles remain important for job applications. Without a well-written and up-to-date traditional resume, you can’t apply for jobs. Without a LinkedIn profile or an online resume, it’s more difficult for recruiters and employers to find you online. You need both to plot a successful job search and grow your personal brand.”

Bringing a printed resume to your interview is a way to demonstrate your professionalism and something every job seeker should do. It shows that you plan and are prepared. And bring a few copies of your resume even if you are only scheduled to meet with one interviewer. If that person likes you, they may want you to speak with someone else, and you want a resume for that person as well.

Best Resume Paper

Don’t use standard printer paper for resume printing. Yes, a higher quality paper is more expensive, but you don’t need reams of it, and it will make an immediate impression on potential employers.

resume paper colors

Resume paper weight

Resume paper is usually better quality than regular copy paper.  You can purchase high-quality paper which is thicker and has more texture than regular printer paper. Resume specific paper is also non-transparent. The thickness avoids tearing of the paper. 24lbs weight at a minimum is what should be used.

We recommend off-white, cotton, 32lb paper for printing your resume.

Are watermarks ok?

So, you will notice all this fancy resume paper has a watermark. The watermark is commonly a logo and can only be observed when the paper is held up to light – like money.  It’s certainly not necessary for resumes but it can show the potential employer you took the time and cost to buy top-notch paper.

What it comes down to is a watermark means it’s good quality paper.

Resume Paper Color

Resume paper typically comes in white, ivory, cream and sometimes a grey color. Many people try to choose something other than typical white paper. Selecting another color makes your resume stand out in that stack of paper.

Here are our favorites 

Type of Resume PaperWeightColorDescription Review
Cotton Resume Paper24lbsIvoryThis stationery has a rich texture and distinctive crispness that set it apart from ordinary printer paper or copy paper. Endorsed by the National Résumé Writer’s Association"I used this paper for my resume at a college career fair, and I'd say that it impressed especially considering that most college kids were printing their resumes on normal printer paper."
Linen Resume paper32lbsIvoryThis stationery has a rich linen paper texture and distinctive crispness that set it apart from ordinary printer paper or copy paper. "This is an amazing textured resume! It's a very light cream color. Not too thick or too thin (not transparent). Ink adheres fine and it looks and feels great with the linen texture.
Cotton Business Paper32lbsIvoryUsing this 25% Cotton Linen Business Paper, in creamy linen ivory, means you’re on your way to making a lasting impression. To be honest I never imagined I would get this excited over paper. I was just looking for some good quality papers for formal matters, and these are some very beautiful sheets I’ve stumbled upon here on Amazon
Business Cotton24lbsWhiteThis premium 24 lb. paper is great for proposals, resumes and reports or for any document where quality matter."This paper really is great. It has a very nice weight to it and is extremely professional looking. I found that it was just enough to be nicer than normal paper, but not so fancy as to be off putting. I do recommend it."
Parchment Specialty Paper24lbsGreyThis quality textured paper is free of acid and lignin, so your documents can stand the test of time and stand out with the distinguished, distinctive look of parchment."I love this brand of parchment paper for creating certificates, it's great quality, prints well, the price is better than what you pay in a retail store and because I buy in bulk, they last a long time!"
Cream Linen Paper28lbsCreamThis letterhead paper is made from a 28b bond Cream linen textured paper stock. ream Linen Paper & Envelopes combo pack makes it easy & simple to create professional resumes."A very nice stationery set -- no frills (which is what I wanted). The color and texture of the paper are elegant. "

Paint it Black

Don’t use colored ink to print your resume, stick to black ink. Colored ink looks unprofessional and can make a resume hard to read, particularly if the reader has poor vision.

Keep it Simple

Use standard business fonts like Helvetica, Ariel, Times New Roman or Courier. Don’t use multiple fonts, they look unprofessional and can cause eye strain for the reader. Don’t use “fancy fonts” and whatever you do, never use Comic Sans! Not even once.

Comic Sans is never an acceptable font. Unless you are an 8-year-old girl writing a poem about unicorns.

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Formatting

You have a few more choices when it comes to formatting your resume than you do for fonts. These are some excellent options. You can create a hybrid of formats, but you should avoid creating a format that is obscure. You may think it will make your resume stand out, but it will stand out for the wrong reason. Don’t go, rogue, choose a standard resume format.

Resume Printing

High-quality resume paper and great content won’t matter if you print your resume on a low-quality printer. Print your resume with a laser printer. Inkjet printers are also an option, but if the ink gets wet, it can run or smudge.

Photo by David Klein on Unsplash

A laserjet printed resume is less vulnerable to running if your interviewer spills their coffee on it! Never print a resume double sided. We know it can be tempting to get the most out of your expensive resume paper but it makes it more difficult for a reader to scan through your resume and it looks unprofessional.

Keep It Crisp

Don’t cram your resume into your bag or briefcase. The paper will crease and look sloppy. Transport your resumes in a thick folder. You can even buy a particular resume folder that has been designed for this purpose, but a regular old manilla folder should be good enough.

Every Little Bit Helps

It’s a tight job market out there, and you are up against a lot of competition. That means you have to use every advantage available to you to make yourself stand out.


How your resume looks should be as much a concern as the content. If you need a little resume inspiration, check out Gallery of Best Resumes. Happy job hunting!

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