Which Cricut smart cutting machines are right for you?

If you’re wondering which Cricut machine is right for you, you’ve come to the right place.
This is an overview comparing Cricut Joy, Cricut Maker, and Cricut Explore to help you decide.

Compare Cricut smart cutting machines
and find out which one suits you best.

Cricut Joy™
Cricut Explore Air™ 2
Cricut Explore™ 3
Cricut Maker™
Cricut Maker™ 3
Perfect for Quick, everyday, fun projects A wide range of DIY hobbies A wide range of DIY hobbies Pro-level DIY performance & versatility Pro-level DIY performance & versatility
Max material width 5,5 in 12 in 12 in 12 in 12 in
Max material length 20 ft 24 in 20 ft 24 in 20 ft
Material compatibility 50+ 100+ 100+ 300+ 300+
Tools 3 (for cutting, writing & foiling) 6 (for cutting, writing, scoring & foiling) 6 (for cutting, writing, scoring & foiling) 13 (for cutting, writing, scoring, foiling, debossing, engraving & more) 13 (for cutting, writing, scoring, foiling, debossing, engraving & more)
What's the extra in the box? Cricut Joy Blade & housing
Cricut Joy Blade
Cricut Joy Pen
Premium Fine Point Blade & housing
Premium Fine Point Blade
Cricut Pen for Explore / Maker
Premium Fine Point Blade & housing
Premium Fine Point Blade
Cricut Pen for Explore / Maker
Premium Fine Point Blade
Cricut Pen for Maker / Explore
Cricut Rotary Blade (to cut Fabric)
Premium Fine Point Blade
Smart Materials (Smart Vinyl, Smart Sticker Cardstock, Smart Iron-on)
Speed (in per second on one axis) 4 4 8 4 8
Works with Smart Materials
Works with Card Mat for quick custom cards
Works with home printer to print, then cut out printed image perfectly
Free design app for iOS, Android™ Windows®, and Mac®
Connectivity Bluetooth® Bluetooth®, USB Bluetooth®, USB Bluetooth®, USB Bluetooth®, USB
More Information More Information More Information More Information More Information

Cricut Joy

Just like full-size Cricut machines, Cricut Joy™ cuts and writes for you. It can cut 50+ materials, including materials you probably already have at home (copy paper, construction paper, etc.), popular crafting materials (iron-on, vinyl, Infusible Ink™, etc.), and new Smart Materials™, for super-easy, super-long cuts without a cutting mat. It’s the perfect companion to any Cricut machine and a great way to dip your toe into DIY.

For space savers and people on the move

If you live in an apartment, a tiny house, or just love the simplicity of small, Cricut Joy will fit right in. Literally. It fits in a cubby, looks great on a counter, packs away easily, and sets up instantly.

For extra-long project people

Cricut Joy may be small enough to hold in the palm of one hand, but with Smart Materials, it can cut continuous shapes up to 4 inches wide and 4 feet long or make repeated cuts up to 20 ft long.

For last-minute makers

We mentioned that Cricut Joy sets up instantly, which is particularly helpful when you’re busy. It also works with new pre-scored Insert Cards, so you can bust out a custom card right before an event, a birthday bash, or a baby shower without breaking a sweat. You’ll also find lots of new projects in Design Space made specifically for Cricut Joy that take just about 15 minutes. If you’re tight on time, this little beauty’s for you.

For avid and not-so-avid organizers

Some of our favorite Smart Materials for Cricut Joy are Smart Label™ Paper and Smart Label Vinyl. They make organizing quick, easy, and fun. Cricut Joy writes directly on Smart Label in any font, cuts it into any shape you say, and all that’s left to do is for you to peel and stick. We can see it already – neat rows of spices, ordered pantry shelves, and tidy storage bins that you don’t need to open to see the contents.

For more information, here’s everything you need to know about Cricut Joy.

Cricut Explore Air 2

With the flexibility to cut a wide range of craft materials and the precision to deliver exactly what you need, the best-selling Cricut Explore Air™ 2 cutting machines make DIY easy, fun, and – dare we say – amazing.

For popular material lovers

Cricut Explore Air 2 is our best-selling machine for a reason! It cuts 100+ materials, including vinyl, iron-on, cardstock, and backed fabric.

For full-width project DIYers

The “biggest” difference between Cricut Joy and full-size machines is … size. Reach for Cricut Explore Air 2 or Cricut Maker when you need to cut anything wider than 4.25 inches, up to 12 inches.

For more information about the Cricut Explore Air 2, click here.

Cricut Explore 3

See your creativity skyrocket with the all-new DIY dream machine, Cricut Explore 3. You can cut, draw, score, and more with jaw-dropping speed and incredible precision.

For the fast DIY enthusiast

Embellish your projects with flawless text, detailed illustrations, or easy-to-fold creases for cards, and 3D projects. And now that Cricut Explore 3 is compatible with Cricut Smart Materials, super-long cuts are easier than ever and super convenient for speedy makers.

For home decorators and cutting large decorations

With Cricut Explore 3 you can make big banners or create an entire solar system of stars in one go – the sky is the limit! You can now use Smart Materials to cut up to 12 ft. It’s such a time saver not having to babysit your machine to swap out mats.

For the ones who like to print & cut

Updated sensors in Cricut Explore 3 mean you can print images on your home printer on colored or white paper to cut on your Cricut Explore 3 machine. Making stickers has never been this easy!

For more information on the Cricut Explore 3, click here.

Cricut Maker

Cricut Maker has all of the same amazing features as Cricut Explore Air 2, plus 10X the cutting power, making it our most versatile smart cutting machine.

For next-level makers

Cricut Maker offers more tools, more materials, and more possibilities. It cuts 300+ materials (more than any other Cricut machine), from the most delicate paper to the tough stuff like leather and basswood. Check out this video that overview of what is possible.

For creative crafters who crave more

With its expandable suite of tools, including Knife Blade (for thicker, denser materials), Rotary Blade (for backed AND unbacked fabric), and the QuickSwap™ family of tools (for scoring, engraving, debossing, and adding decorative effects), Cricut Maker lets you take on practically any project.

For dimensional DIYers

Because it can cut thicker, denser materials, Cricut Maker is perfect for creating structural elements for 3D projects, including models, decor, and more.

For sewing enthusiasts.

If you sew or think you might ever want to learn, Cricut Maker can help with one of the most difficult and tedious parts, marking and cutting pattern pieces. You can even upload your own sewing patterns.

For savvy quilters.

Quilters love Cricut Maker for cutting out appliqué and quilt pieces with precision so they can focus on the fun stuff.

For the sleek & stylish.

Cricut Maker has a streamlined look that comes in 2 sophisticated hues (Champagne and Rose) with a shimmery metallic finish.

For more information about the Cricut Maker, click here.

Cricut Maker 3

Unleash your creativity with the powerful, versatile, and pro-level performance of Cricut Maker 3, the ultimate smart cutting machine — now smarter and faster than ever.

For the speedy makers

Vinyl and iron-on are two of our most popular materials used in Design Space, so we set out to make cutting them faster and easier than ever. Under the hoods, you’ll find bigger, stronger motors, improved gears to handle faster speeds, and new sensors. All to say, the Maker 3 can cut Smart Vinyl and Smart Iron-On up to 2X faster than their predecessors.

For full-color designers

You can print images on your home printer on colored or white paper to cut on your Cricut Maker 3. This is an incredible update for all of you sticker makers out there.

For hassle-free creations

With Smart Materials, you can load Smart Iron-on, Smart Vinyl, or Smart Paper Sticker Cardstock straight into your Maker 3 and cut without using an adhesive mat. Just load and go!

For more information on the Cricut Maker 3, click here.