What's the difference? Speed Cube Plastic Colors Explained
One of the most common questions that we see from new speed cubers is "Does Stickerless mean that there are no stickers on the cube?" The short answer is - no. Speed cubes are usually released in three different "plastic color" variants: Black, Stickerless, and White. In this article we explained the difference between speed cube plastic colors, all of which we offer at SpeedCubeShop.com.
The idea behind Black and White plastic is that the color of the plastic and colored vinyl stickers would be applied onto the pieces so that the cube would be solvable (see example image below).
Most people expect Stickerless cubes to look something like the image below:
In reality, the Stickerless plastic cubes are made up of six different colored plastics and a "split piece design" that enables each side of the cube to be a different color and not require any vinyl stickers to be applied to solve the cube. There are different variations of Stickerless cubes such as: Stickerless (Bright), Stickerless (Pink) and Stickerless. "Stickerless (Bright)" means that the plastic colors are generally brighter and more vibrant while standard "Stickerless" is typically darker and less vibrant. "Stickerless (Pink)" usually comes with pastel shades and the red plastic is switched to a pink color.
See below example of a Black, Stickerless (Bright), and White speedcube side by side:
While the term may be confusing to some, Stickerless plastic speedcubes have rapidly gained popularity in the cubing community, since being made legal in competitive environments by the World Cube Association in 2015. Stickerless puzzles are largely popular since they are easy to maintain and there is no worry of stickers chipping or peeling off which is present on stickered puzzles.
The only downside to the Stickerless plastic is that you are unable to choose your own custom color scheme like you can with our in-house Sticker Picker system which features over 75 unique sticker options.
Also, each manufacturer has a different color palette for their "Stickerless plastic" so you will also want to note that QiYi's blue may be substantially darker than GAN's blue plastic, for example.
Gan 11 M Duo vs QiYi WuWei M 3x3, with the QiYi blue shade significantly darker than Gan's.
Conclusion - Which is better?
The "best" plastic color is completely determined by your preference. If you are looking for a Stickerless plastic speed cube, always refer to the product images to make sure that the colors are to your liking.
If you want to be able to completely customize the colors of your speed cube due to color blindness, low-light solving conditions, or for better color recognition, a black or white plastic speed cube may be best for you.