Which is the best Cricut machine to buy?

Which is the best Cricut machine to buy

Craftmanship is a fun activity that allows us to create the most amazing projects using simple materials. For beginners, getting to develop their ideas may be tricky, but the whole experience gets easier and better over time if you use the right tools.

One of those essential tools is the best Cricut machine for beginners, which we’ll find through the next reviews.

The Cricut machines included here delivered exceptional results. With reliable hardware and state of the art software, these devices will make your ideas a reality.

So, are you ready to find out what you can do with these machines? Then let’s not waste any time!

Reviews of the Cricut Machine for Beginners 2021 – (Editors’ Choice)

The following products proved to be the most reliable Cricut machines out there. Reliability, efficiency, and versatility are some of the benefits you can expect from these devices. Let’s see what else they have to offer!

1. Cricut Maker, Champagne 

Cricut Maker, Champagne

To understand the incredible performance, we have to take a closer look at the parts featured.

The Cricut Maker wouldn’t be as efficient as it is without its outstanding rotary blade, for starters. This particular piece is capable of cutting through almost every fabric. Not only that, but the cuts are quick and accurate, with no backing material needed.

The knife blade is another highlight. It operates like an X-ACTO once the machine is active, and its performance is far from dull. Whether you cut thin or thick materials, the result is pretty much what you expect it to be every time.

Other useful items included with the machine are the Fine Point Pen and two 12×12-inch cutting mats. You’ll have everything needed to complete your first project.

Besides giving you the tools for your success, this purchase helps with the creative process too. The machine comes with design apps for several devices like Windows or Mac, and iOS or Android phones. Additionally, you get 50 ready-to-make project designs and 25 sewing patterns.

With this Cricut machine and the accessories included, you’ll be ready to go. The process to use the device isn’t hard either, since you only have to choose the pattern, print, and sew afterward. Both beginners and professionals will be able to enjoy this device.

As two minor nitpicks, we have to mention the following issues. First, the fabric left behind after the cutting is difficult to clean. Secondly, if you want to use the woodcutter, you’d have to buy it separately.

Other than that, this product delivers in every front.

Pros:

  • Easy to set up and use, with step by step tutorial
  • Rotary blade plus drive housing
  • Many accessories included, such as two mats.
  • Pre-made projects and sewing patterns included.

Cons:

  • Woodcutter not included.
  • After cutting, the fabric left behind is tough to clean.

2. Cricut Maker, Lilac

Cricut Maker, Lilac

The Cricut Marker Lilac is a variation to the Champagne, which we reviewed previously. This model features a beautiful black and purple design that easily blends with the room’s decoration. Another difference is the price since the Lilac is slightly more affordable than the Champagne.

Like its predecessor, this Cricut Maker model handles fabric, leather, paper, and even balsa wood with high precision. With only a few clicks, you’ll be able to cut sewing patterns perfectly. If you were looking for a smart cutting machine, then this product may be it.

The performance put up by this machine is quite similar to the rest. Internally, the mechanism features perforation tools such as the knife blade, which is more than capable of cutting thin and thick materials.

However, customers have pointed out that the rotary blade, for some reason, didn’t come in their packages. This issue is not a regular problem, but make sure to clear any doubt with the manufacturer before purchasing it.

Thanks to the adaptive tool system, the machine offers outstanding technology that controls the blade’s direction, adding more force if needed. With 50 ready-to-make projects and a virtual sewing pattern library, you’ll have plenty of possibilities to complete each one of your projects.

The Design Space software also improves the experience. It’s quite easy to learn, and it offers the users options to print, cut, and more. You can use this feature on devices like Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac.

In all honesty, there aren’t many differences between the Lilac and Champagne Cricut Makers. Other than some aesthetic changes and a lower price, everything else is the same.

Pros:

  • Beautiful color design
  • Available at a price lower than the alternatives
  • Quality perforation tools for thin and thick materials
  • Adaptive tool system
  • Digital pattern library
  • Compatible with iOS, Android, PC, and Mac

Cons:

  • Customers have reported missing pieces.

3. Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine Bundle 

Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine Bundle

As stated in the name, this purchase includes the Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine Bundle. Once you get the package, you will receive a remarkable cutting machine and many tools for your projects.

We’ll talk a little more in-depth about the Cricut machine later on, but for now, let’s discuss some of the accessories included in the package.

With this purchase, you receive plenty of tools such as the USB and the US standard power cord. There’s a beginner’s guide, pens and cardstock sample, and the Cricut tool kit, which features a spatula, scraper, scissors, tweezers, and sharp hook.

Users will also appreciate the exclusive vinyl designs, including project inspiration and a digital book to improve your technique. The four Glitter Heat Transfer sheets are pretty useful too, and their colors may vary.

At this point, you’re probably thinking to yourself, what a great deal. No doubt, all of these tools only improve the machine’s performance, but there are some disadvantages.

For instance, as a beginner, you may not need all of those accessories in the first place. If you were to buy them separately, you would find them at a more affordable price.

Those are only a few of the reasons why this package is more suitable for people that want to go all in. If you’re not sure that these crafting activities are what you want to do, perhaps considering another option would be a better idea.

Still, that doesn’t mean the machine and the accessories are useless. On the contrary, each item works great for each project.

Pros:

  • A ton of accessories to help you get started
  • Includes the powerful Cricut Explore Air 2 machine
  • Guide books included
  • Wireless cutting through Bluetooth
  • Smart Set Dial for easy adjustments

Cons:

  • Beginners may not need all of the accessories included.
  • Buying the accessories may be less expensive if you do it separately.

4. Cricut Maker Machine Sewing Bundle 

Cricut Maker Machine Sewing Bundle

After reviewing the Cricut Maker machine, it’s quite clear why many people prefer it over other devices. It offers great performance, plenty of versatility to work with many materials, and user-friendly features for everyone to enjoy.

If you liked it as much as we, and many other people did, then you should definitely consider this option too.

Other than the Cricut Maker, this purchase includes a bundle featuring plenty of accessories. A couple of those items are the FabricGrip and LightGrip Mat, both measuring 12×12-inch equally. These mats are incredible because they allow you to do so many things with them.

Besides the mats and other useful accessories, the purchase includes a welcome book. The guide is quite convenient, as it provides an insightful tutorial for beginners. Every step and instructions are easy to follow, allowing you to familiarize yourself with how the machine works.

As for the bundle, the lack of weeding tools is a bit disappointing. You’d think that those tools would also come with purchasing the many items offered, but that’s not the case. If you want them, you’ll have to buy them separately.

Pros:

  • Outstanding Cricut Maker machine and many accessories included.
  • An efficient rotary blade offers precision.
  • Includes two useful mats
  • Fine point pen for your drawings
  • Book for beginners

Cons:

  • The package doesn’t include weeding tools for vinyl.

5. Cricut Maker Machine Bundle 4 Iron-on Permanent Vinyl

Cricut Maker Machine Bundle 4 Smooth HeatTransfer

Here we have another bundle that includes a Cricut Maker machine and a variety of accessories. Just like the other similar packages we’ve seen so far, this one includes useful items that you can use in many ways to create the most thoughtful projects.

Some of the items included in this purchase are the Cricut Maker machine, fabric samplers, XL scraper, a washable fabric pen, and a couple of mats.

As mentioned above, the machine offered here is the Cricut Maker model. We reviewed it earlier, and we liked its cutting capacity, the blade’s precision, and the many projects and sewing patterns included.

This machine’s downsides are still the same in the first review; a missing woodcutter and a particularly difficult to clean fabric after you finish the project.

Pros:

  • Includes Cricut Maker machine
  • Helpful bundle with many accessories for beginners
  • Essential maker tools like a washable pen
  • Design Space plus a tutorial of how to use it

Cons:

  • The accessories included are less expensive if you buy them separately.

6. Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint 

Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint

The Explore Air 2 model is a machine that could easily go unnoticed. It’s a simple device without a flamboyant design. However, after trying it, people can quickly tell why it could be the best Cricut machine to buy, depending on your budget and needs.

This machine is capable of cutting incredibly fast, surpassing some of its predecessors. Choosing the speed is up to you, as the device offers two modes: normal and fast. Both modalities are outstanding, allowing you to cut at the most convenient speed for more precision and accuracy.

Particularly, the fast mode is beneficial if you’re working on a tight schedule.

The Air 2 gives you access to more than 50,000 images to print, besides 920 printable patterns are included. If necessary, you can upload your own designs for printing too. Once you upload your preferred design, the machine works on materials like vellum or thicker ones such as leather.

Undoubtedly, this machine does it all. You’ll have options to create snowflake designs, spider webs, 3D paper crafts, envelopes, and many more. By featuring more than 370 fonts, users have the opportunity to make their projects look just like how they imagined them.

Ideally, you’d want to use the Air 2 for light tasks. Since it measures 12×12 inches, wide and long, the machine won’t offer the largest cutting width.

The lack of an Android app for Design Space is another issue. Yes, there’s an iOS app, but it doesn’t make much sense that there isn’t one Android device. Fortunately, the addition of Bluetooth technology does provide more compatibility with different devices.

Pros:

  • Available in different colors
  • Different cutting speeds
  • Test project included for beginners
  • High-quality mat included
  • Bluetooth compatibility

Cons:

  • Not a large cutting width
  • Lacks an Android app for Design Space

7. Cricut Explore Air Wireless Cutting Machine 

Cricut Explore Air Wireless Cutting Machine

The following machine features modern technology to back you up as you fulfill your projects. For instance, the system includes embedded Bluetooth, allowing you to perform wireless cutting if needed. There’s no need to be nearby the machine to follow through with your designs.

Like most other Cricut machines, this model has a dual carriage design too. You get to do either cutting and writing or cutting and scoring in one step.

Another benefit is uploading your own images, supporting the most popular formats like .jpg or .png, and the less popular such as .dxf and .bmp. Use those images to cut more than 60 materials, varying from vellum to leather, and more.

Regardless of the material, the machine’s cutting is precise. The software used is the Smart Set Dial, which is a traditional feature in most Cricut. There’s no denying how efficient this system is, as it cuts through the materials with no issues.

Other standard features offered by this machine are the Cricut Design Space and the app for your phone. These are two simple yet satisfactory elements that let your creativity run free.

Nonetheless, previous customers have complained about the Cricut Design Space only working if you have an internet connection. The fact that you can’t use it otherwise is a little disappointing. It’s even worse if you have WiFi, but the connection drops regularly.

Had the manufacturer included the option to work with the Design Space offline, there’s no doubt that using this machine would’ve been a flawless experience.

Pros:

  • Embedded Bluetooth allows wireless cutting.
  • Dual carriage design
  • It supports a lot of image formats
  • Smart Set Dial for more versatility
  • Includes storage compartments

Cons:

  • Design Space requires an internet connection, limiting your work freedom.

8. Cricut Explore Air 2, Persimmon  

Cricut Explore Air 2, Persimmon

As long as it works, there’s no need to change it. That seems to be the premise of this machine. It’s slightly different from the rest in terms of design, but this model also shares plenty of similarities we’ve seen in previous devices.

For instance, we have the Smart Set Dial. It’s an intuitive dial that allows you to choose the material of your preference, which then the machine cuts once set. The right cutting depth and speed adjust after choosing the material, providing great accuracy for better results.

You can also adjust the machine’s working speed to a fast mode. In this particular setting, the device can cut thin materials such as vinyl and paper faster than normal. As you can see, the machine is effective and efficient in saving you a lot of time.

Although the machine cuts thin materials easily, you may have trouble with thicker items. Keep an eye out for any issue if you decide to work with fabric.

The accessories included in the purchase are yet another reason to consider buying this product. Some of those items are the colorful Cricut pens, which you can use to write or draw your customized projects. There’s the scoring stylus too, which helps you create 3D paper art, among other tasks.

Very much like most other Cricut machines, this model uses web-based software. It’s beneficial for beginners, but the need for an internet connection to access the software makes it rather unpleasant for many people.

Pros:

  • Gorgeous design
  • Different cutting speed and Smart Set Dial
  • Double tool holder for more convenience
  • Wireless performance through Bluetooth technology
  • High precision while working on vinyl or cardstock

Cons:

  • Not the most suitable machine for thick materials
  • Web-based software requires an internet connection.

9. Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint (Renewed)  

Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint (Renewed)

Many times, when brands renovate old products, people are wary of their capabilities. It isn’t very often that a company can pull it off, but in this case, the renewed Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint does provide plenty of new features to your advantage.

The machine looks, feels, and operates as if it was new. After a thorough inspection, testing, and repackaging, what you get is a competent device for your crafting. However, some of the accessories advertised may not be included, like the booklet or the mats.

While working on your projects, you’ll be able to upload your preferred images out of Cricut’s library, which includes pre-made designs. For more convenience, the machine features a double tool holder that you can use to cut and write or to cut and score in one step.

Cricut doesn’t only allow you to access its design software, but the brand also gives you plenty of freedom. Depending on your projects, you can create and design your personal devices such as the computer or tablet and smartphone using the app.

After designing your project, making the cutting is easy and simple. Thanks to the Smart Set Dial, the machine delivers cuts with proper depth and pressure to be as precise as possible. If the material is a little tough, the internal mechanism adjusts the pressure to pierce through it properly.

For a renewed Cricut machine, this device meets most of the expectations. The missing accessories could be a deal-breaker, so keep that issue in mind and contact the seller before purchasing. It’ll help you clear any doubts.

Pros:

  • A renewed machine that works like new
  • Capable of creating vinyl, stickers, home décor, apparel, and more
  • Option to upload images from Cricut’s library
  • Apps available
  • Smart Set Dial for accurate cuts

Cons:

  • In some cases, the package is missing a few accessories.

10. Cricut Expression 2 Electric Cutting Machine  

Cricut Expression 2 Electric Cutting Machine

This machine is as fun as it’s convenient. By ditching the use of a computer, you’ll have the freedom to move it between rooms or take the device with you wherever you go without issues. Although it isn’t the most powerful, it still has enough power to cut materials from 3/4” to 23.5”.

Just because it doesn’t require a computer, it doesn’t mean the machine isn’t interactive. In fact, the LCD touch screen is surprisingly colorful, allowing you to move and manipulate images easily.

Once you connect it online to the Circuit Craft Room Software, you’ll have many images to use for your projects.

As mentioned above, this device can cut 3/4” to 23 1/2 images, with the option to print them too. Additionally, there’s a mat that you can acquire that measures 12×24-inch, though you must buy it separately.

While the machine is compatible with every Cricut cartridge, it’ll only cut them, not print them. Due to the Cricut Sync software, users will have the option to make free updates to their Expression 2 models.

Using Expression 2 isn’t difficult at all. It may take some time to learn, but the controls are quite user-friendly once you get there. You can choose the designs after plugging the cartridge in the machine, and then you can adjust those designs by moving them around or resizing them.

When compared to other models, Expression 2 does have some flaws that you can’t ignore. One of the most noticeable is the working speed. Using the fifth speed setting on this machine resembles only the original expression models’ third speed setting.

Pros:

  • Option to customize the size and number of cuts
  • Option to plug the cartridges directly into the machine
  • Intuitive LCD touch screen
  • Pre-loaded cartridge content

Cons:

  • Not as powerful as the original Expression models
  • Performs noticeably louder than other Cricut Machines

FAQs About Cricut machine

1. What Cricut machine can cut wood?
Ans: The most reliable to cut wood is the Cricut Maker. Previous customers have mentioned they’ve cut balsa wood using other models such as the Cricut Explore and the Deep Cut Blade. However, the Cricut Explore doesn’t have a specific setting to cut that type of wood.
2. Which accessories are essential for Cricut machines?
Ans: The Fine-point blade and the cutting mat are essential for beginners. Luckily, the package already includes those two things, so there’s no need to worry. Nonetheless, if you use the Cricut regularly, you may have to get some replacements.
3. What Cricut machines work with Design Space?
Ans: Most of the Cricut machines offer Design Space compatibility, as seen in our product reviews above.
4. What Cricut machine to buy?
Ans: Your ideal Cricut machine must meet your expectations and working conditions. Make sure the cutting width is right for your projects, and if you enjoy doing the cutting remotely, Bluetooth or apps are a must-have.
5. Is Bluetooth beneficial?
Ans: Bluetooth isn’t something that has any effect on the performance of the machine. It’s a convenient feature more than anything else.

Sometimes, finishing some particular cuts may take a lot of time, and there’s no need for you to sit in front of the machine for the whole process. Instead, using the Bluetooth connection allows you to take a break whenever needed.

Final Words

The best Cricut machine for beginners offers features easy to understand and versatility to create many projects. If you were looking for the right tools to make your ideas a reality, then you’ve come to the right place. Try one of the products reviewed here, and let your creativity flow.

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