How Do Self-Healing Cutting Mats Work

Cutting mats are used to protect the surface of your tabletop or workbench from cuts, glue or any other damage that can occur while paper cutting, cosplay crafting, model making or just about any other hobby. Cut, slice, mold and paint on the surface, wipe clean and then do it all over again with the next project. Cutting mats are a versatile “tool” we don’t always notice but are always glad we have. So ever wonder how cutting mats work?

Excel’s self healing cutting mats are 3mm thick, about twice as thick as many other cutting mats on the market today, rigid and pliable. They have soft self-healing PVC layers on both sides and have a durable hard PVC center layer. 

a close up of the corner of a self healing cutting mat
This five-layered combination protects not only the work surface but the craft knife blade or rotary cutter blade. By using blades on the self-healing PVC surface, the sharp edge of the blade is exposed to a softer cutting surface which provides less impact and pressure, prolonging the longevity of the cutting edge.


How do Cutting Mats Self Heal? 

If cutting mats were as fragile as the table surface you work on, they wouldn’t last very long. Self-healing cutting mats were designed to withstand a lot of use and handling. Self-healing cutting mats heal because they are not made of a solid material, like glass or even soft plastic. Instead, self healing cutting mats are made of tiny particles pressed into a semi-solid surface that absorbs cuts and then, due to the non-solid nature of the mat, quickly fills in the cut.

When to Use a Self-Healing Mat?

When vinyl crafting and using tools like awls and hook weeders, working on the surface of a cutting mat is recommended to avoid making scratches and puncture marks on the table surface. 

Another helpful feature of the cutting mat is the inch grid on the surface layer. Both metric and imperial rulers on each of the sides make it easy to measure materials like paper, fabric or cork, and to align rulers for the perfect straight cut.

a hobby knife and a ruler on a cutting mat with a piece of construction paper

Cutting mats should be cleaned with a damp cloth, especially when using art mediums like polymer clay, glue or paint. Keep away from direct heat sources so the mat does not warp. Store flat so that it does not bend out of shape. 

Explore our large selection of self-healing cutting mats to protect your work area from damage and prevent your knives and tools from dulling.