How do you know if the Cricut Explore Air 2 is the right cutting machine for you? Learn all about the functionality and cost to help you decide if the Cricut Explore Air 2 is right for you!
I originally shared my Cricut Buying Guide in my “Which Cricut Cutting Machine is Right for You” blog post to help you determine just which Cricut Cutting Machine might be the best match for your crafting style and dreams.
The blog post was rather lengthy, so I thought it might be helpful to break it up into bite sized pieces. In this post, we’ll take a look at the Cricut Explore Air 2 in an effort to help you determine if it’s the right cutting machine for you!
Download the Cricut Buying Guide
I created this 16 page e-book that you can download for free. It contains all the information that is contained in the original blog post in an easy to read format. To download your free e-book, simply subscribe below:
Once you confirm your subscription by clicking on the link in your confirmation email, you will be redirected to the download in the Subscribers Resource Library. The Library is really a shared Google Drive folder and is full of free printable documents, cut files, patterns and more that are available exclusively to subscribers – just like you!
As a subscriber, you’ll have access to not only this Cricut Cutting Machine Buying Guide, but to the entire Subscribers Resource Library. The Library has about 200 free printable documents: everything from gift tags, wall art and holiday prints to sewing patterns, crochet patterns and more!
Features & Functionality – Cricut Explore Air 2
The Cricut Explore Air™ 2 is an amazing cutting machine. And, compared to the Cricut Maker, comes at a great price. So, depending on your crafting needs, that might be reason enough to choose an Explore.
The Explore Air 2 can cut out pretty much anything you can imagine, including vinyl labels, decals for shirts, paper crafts, and more! It cuts more than 100 different materials and twice as fast as the predecessor Explore Air.
Plus, the Explore Air 2 comes in so many colors. You can easily color coordinate your machine to your craft room or personal preference.
What’s included in the box with the Cricut Explore Air 2?
Inside the box, you’ll find everything you need to get started using your new Cricut Explore Air 2:
- Cricut Explore Air 2 machine
- Power Cord
- USB Cord
- Blade and housing (pre-installed)
- Quick Start Guide
- 12 x 12 StandardGrip [or] LightGrip cutting mat
- Materials for the first project
- Pen and accessory adapter (adapter pre-installed)
If you have purchased a machine bundle, the accessories included in that bundle will be different from what’s listed above.
Mats for the Cricut Explore Air 2
The Explore Air 2 has four kinds of mats:
- LightGrip Mat – Blue: Use for lightweight materials, including copy paper, light cardstock, vellum, adhesive vinyl, and iron-on.
- StrandardGrip Mat – Green: Use for medium weight materials including Adhesive-Backed Deluxe Paper, and Infusible Ink™ Transfer Sheets
- StrongGrip Mat – Purple: Use with specialty cardstock, matboard, and backed fabric
- FabricGrip Mat – Rose: Use to cut most fabrics with Rotary Blade or Bonded-Fabric Blade
What can you make with the Cricut Explore Air 2?
The Cricut Explore Air 2 is an electronic cutting machine that sort of resembles a printer. And although you can write on paper using your Explore, it’s specialty is cutting. The Explore uses a precision blade to cut out pretty much anything you can imagine, including:
- iron-on vinyl for t-shirts, tote bags, etc.
- paper gift boxes
- gift tags
- stencils for wood signs
- vinyl quotes and designs for coffee mugs
- greeting cards
- monogrammed water bottles, towels and more
- paper flowers
- pantry labels
- Christmas ornaments
- leather earrings
The Cricut Explore Air 2 might be best for you if:
- you have space available for a bigger machine than the Cricut Joy
- you’ll be doing more advanced crafts
- you’ll be crafting a lot
- you want to craft with more than the limited products available with the Cricut Joy
- looking for a budget friendly option – but, yet is powerful and fast
- you make and sell crafts
If you really plan to stick to cardstock paper projects, iron-on and vinyl, the Explore Air 2 is a great option for you.
Here are some resources to help you determine which Cricut Cutting Machine might be best for your crafting needs:
- Is the Cricut Joy the Right Cutting Machine for You?
- Is the Cricut Maker the Right Cutting Machine for You?
- Which Cricut Machine is Right for You?
Here are a few Cricut Explore Air 2 craft projects to inspire you:
Cricut YouTube Videos
I put together an entire collection of Cricut tutorials that you will find in my Cricut YouTube Playlist.
Buy Cricut Explore Air 2 on Amazon
Remember, the keys to selecting the Cricut Cutting Machine that’s right for you is for you to:
- Learn about the features and functionality of each machine.
- Determine how you think you will use the machine.
- Take your budget into consideration (Joy – $180, Explore – $250, Maker – $400)
Then, once you’ve made a selection, learn everything you can about your Cricut.