Our top picks↴
1. Best overall: US Art Supply
2. Best value: Arteza Self Healing
3. Cheapest: Anezus Self-Healing
4. Best square: Olfa Rotating Mat
5. Best foldable: Olfa Folding
6. Best quilters: Fiskars Self Healing
7. Dependable: Dahle Vantage
8. Versatile & durable: ArtAt
How to choose a cutting mat
How we test cutting mats
The best cutting mats make it easier to make precise cuts in all kinds of materials. That makes them a must-buy for a wide range of people. Photographers use them to trim prints and card frame mounts; artists and designers to create scrapbooks, collages and mood boards; arts and crafters for sewing, quilting and other projects.
A cutting mat won't just protect your surface, but also prolong the life of your blade and help it stay sharp. The best cutting mats also come with grid lines, angles and measurements to help you make precise cuts. And these days, they're also self-healing, which means that if they get cut by your blade, they'll spring straight back into place.
How big a mat should you buy? In simple terms: as big as the biggest piece of paper, card, or print you'll want to cut. Read on to discover the best self-healing cutting mats available today, in a variety of colors and sizes.
Our top picks
Our number one pick: constructed from five layers, this self-healing, rotary cutting mat is lovely and thick at 3mm, making it a nice surface to cut on, and very durable, too.
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On a budget? Like our number one pick, this affordable mat is also self-healing, double-sided, and comes in a range of sizes. It features 15°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 75° angles.
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Here's the cheapest cutting mat we can recommend. This self-healing, rotary cutting mat is made of five-layer PVC and is suitable for cropping photos, and craft and sewing projects.
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If you're looking for a square cutting mat, here's our top recommendation. Coming in two sizes (12 x 12 inches or 17 x 17 inches), this self-healing cutting mat rotates through 360°.
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This cutting mat is foldable, making it super-portable. And although there's a crease, it's barely noticeable when you unfold it, and it doesn't interfere with your cutting at all.
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The best cutting mat in 2024
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The best cutting mat overall
Constructed from five layers, this self-healing, rotary cutting mat from US Art Supply is lovely and thick at 3mm, making it a nice surface to cut on, and very durable. Suitable for all sorts of arts and crafts projects, including scrapbooking, quilting and sewing, it features clearly printed grid lines, numbers and angles, and comes in a range of sizes and color combinations. It's reversible, too, with grid markings on each side. In short, we can find little to criticise here, and a lot to like, making this our pick as the best cutting mat overall.
The best cutting mat for value
Like our number one pick from US Art Supply, this mat from art supplier Arteza is also self-healing, double-sided, and comes in a range of sizes. It's printed with a handy grid that's easy to read thanks to its anti-glare coating, and features 15°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 75° angles. At an impressive 3mm thick, it's very durable, and boasts a non-slip surface too. This cutting mat is suitable for cutting fabric, paper, vinyl and plastic. On the downside, you don't get any alternative color options, but as this is even cheaper than the US Art Supply mat, it does represent excellent value.
The best cheap cutting mat
Low on funds? Here's the cheapest cutting mat we can recommend. This self-healing, rotary cutting mat is made of five-layer PVC and is suitable for cropping photos, and small, medium and large craft and sewing projects. It's double sided, with measurements printed clearly with both inches and metric, and comes with grid lines and angles that help you make precise cuts.
The best square cutting mat
If you're looking for a square cutting mat, here's our top recommendation. Coming in two sizes (12 x 12 inches or 17 x 17 inches), this self-healing cutting mat teams a non-slip, stationary base with an interlocking green top rotary mat, which rotates through the full 360°. The yellow grid lines and markings are clearly printed, allowing for precision cutting, and feature 30°, 45°, 60° and 90° angles.
The best foldable cutting mat
This cutting mat is foldable, making it super-portable. And although there's a crease, it's barely noticeable when you unfold it, and it doesn't interfere with your cutting at all. That makes it our choice as the best cutting mat for travel. At 2.5mm thick, it's also nice and durable, and suitable for heavy cutting, such as quilt and patchwork projects. This self-healing mat features easy-to-read numbers and metric grids, and can be used with Olfa rotary cutters or any Olfa cutting knives. The main negative is that it's considerably more expensive than other cutting mats on our list.
The best cutting mat for quilters
Quilters and other crafters will be drawn to this square, self-healing mat, which makes squaring large quilting blocks up to 12.5 inches easier and quicker. It rotates to allow you to cut pieces of fabric at lighter angles. Plus it features an easy-to-read measuring grid with 30°, 45° and 60° bevel lines, making it easy to create triangle and star shapes. Note that the total board size is 14 x 14 inches but the measurement grid is 12 x 12 inches.
Dependable cutting mat
Here's another well-made cutting mat that's self-healing, made from five layers and 3mm thick, making it very durable. It contains both imperial and metric measurements on the top surface as well as 1/2-inch grid lines, which include scale lines for making diagonal cuts. Double-sided, this cutting mat is suitable for both adults and children, and can be used for tasks such as cropping photos, cutting, drawing, sewing, and tracing. Note, though, that it is a little on the pricey side.
Versatile and durable cutting mat
Purpose-built for crafting and sewing, this self-healing cutting mat is made of five-layer hard PVC with a white hard spine, making it long-lasting no matter how you much use it. It works great with various kinds of rotary cutters, and there's a nice weight to it, so it doesn't slip and slide around the place.
Available in a range of sizes, this green mat is fully reversible, with grid markings, different angles and diagonals on each side. It doesn't come in any other colours, and to be frank there's nothing particularly special about it, but it does the job well and at a decent price.
What is a self-healing cutting mat?
A self-healing cutting mat is a type of cutting mat that is made from a special material that closes up the cuts made by a rotary cutter or other sharp tool. This means that the mat stays smooth and usable for longer, even after being cut many times.
What is a rotary cutting mat?
A rotary cutting mat is a specific type of mat used for cutting fabrics. It's designed to be used in tandem with a rotary cutter: a circular blade tool used in crafts such as quilting, sewing, scrapbooking, and paper crafting.
What size cutting mat should I buy?
Ideally, your cutting matt needs to be larger than the piece of card or paper that you want to cut. Many cutting matts are sold using standard European paper sizes - with A4 being similar to the size of American Letter. The table below gives some standard dimensions of cutting matts you will find on sale:
|594 x 841 mm
|23.4 x 33.1 in
|420 x 594 mm
|16.5 x 23.4 in
|297 x 420 mm
|11.7 x 16.5 in
|210 x 297 mm
|8.3 x 11.7 in
|148 x 210 mm
|5.8 x 8.3 in
How to choose the best cutting mat
To choose the right cutting mat for your needs, there are a number of factors to take into account. Firstly, think about what size mat will accommodate your project dimensions without overcrowding your workspace. Secondly, think about material: self-healing mat constructed from durable PVC is usually best in terms of longevity and resilience against cuts. Thirdly, consider thickness; a thicker mat provides better protection for your work surface and cutting tools. Fourthly, pay attention to the grid lines and angle markings, and think about whether these will serve your needs. Finally, factor in cost: there's little point for most people in paying over the odds, as most cutting mats serve pretty much the same purpose.
How we test the best cutting mats
When we test cutting mats, we essentially put ourselves into the minds of the average user, and carry out the kind of standard tasks a cutting matter is used for, from cutting paper to fabric, to see how well they deliver in practice. We also assess the material's quality and thickness, scrutinize the grid lines and angle markings, and pay attention to wear and tear over time.
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