Do you know custom enamel coins? We are often asked that the difference between soft enamel and hard enamel challenge coin from our customers when they are ready to drop orders. The difference is huge, and here I will show you in the following.

Soft Enamel Coins VS Hard Enamel Coins

Soft enamel challenge coin
Challenge coins crafted by soft enamel

Soft enamel coin is not “soft” when touching.

The “soft enamel”, an industry term, is the meaning of the color fill process used to create the challenge coin. Recessed areas will be filled with liquid enamel by using a tiny needle, and are surrounded by raised metal as a line to contain the enamel well. After baked and polished, the challenge coin can be ready for package and delivery. If you rub your fingers over your custom soft enamel coin you will have a layered feeling.

Hard enamel coins
Challenge coins crafted by hard enamel

And for hard enamel, this craft is a multi-step enamel process, which is often used to produce jewelry, vases, and high-end decorative handicrafts. It is also called cloisonné. This type of challenge coin has its flash-point, smooth surface, and colorful images that are the same level as the based metal, with a glossy finish.

The process of hard enamel is always made from great material and costs a little more. The enamel color will be added several times to match the higher raised metal line, and then it is heated at a very high temperature to harden and polished in detail.

The different process makes different features for your custom coins. You can know it well from the below pictures and lists.

Firefighters Custom Enamel Challenge Coins
Firefighters Custom Enamel Challenge Coins

Custom Soft Enamel Coins

  • Color filled with liquid pigment
  • Created with raised and recessed areas when touching
  • 3D image can be engraved on its surface
  • A wide selection of shapes and sizes for soft enamel coin
  • Optional epoxy coating can be added if wanted
  • Popular and cost-effective style
  • Good for corporate challenge coins, honor coins, etc.

Soft enamel coin is the most popular option for customers and is provided at a cost-effective price. The color fill is liquid pigment, and the color areas are lower than metal parts; so the soft enamel coin looks more layered. With raised metal and recessed color areas, enamel-colored parts are more attractive and vivid under the light.

Veteran Custom Hard Enamel Coins
Veteran Custom Hard Enamel Coins

Custom Hard Enamel Coins

  • Color filled by solid pigment
  • multi-step enamel process to make enamel parts as higher as raised metal
  • The intense polishing process make hard enamel coin more bright and harden with a smooth finish
  • Highest-quality, most durable
  • Expensive price
  • Good for Military coins, Navy and Air Force challenge coins, etc.

Hard enamel coin is a high-quality challenge coin, and its color is filled with solid pigment. The color and metal area are flushed with a smooth surface with intense polish. Hard enamel coin is a durable challenge coin; colors are vibrant for years to come. If you want to collect valuable challenge coins, a hard enamel coin is a great choice.

What’s more, custom coins are crafted with hard enamel and often be presented themselves well and of higher quality because of their luxurious appearance.

Soft Enamel Coin or Hard Enamel Coin: Which is Better?

Someone had custom coins minted in soft enamel because he liked the realistic feeling. While, others prefer to choose hard enamel coins, which feature a smooth surface.

Whether to choose soft enamel or hard enamel manufacturing methods ultimately depends on your preference and budget. We can create your challenge coin using either process perfectly.

As a leading challenge coin maker, we employ quality control inspections to ensure all custom coins meet the customer’s requirements. We even take your personalized design ideas and turn them into real great pieces through our finest craftsmanship.

If you are still not sure which challenge coin process to choose from, please directly contact us at 1-888-864-4755, our talented sales will help you and give you’re the best advice under your budget.

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