The 8 Best PLA 3D Printer Filament Brands

Hatchbox PLAEvery 3D printer filament brand claims to be the best PLA filament brand in the world.

But here’s the cold, hard, truth: a lot of them are scams.

There are no regulations or quality control standards in the filament industry. That means that filament brands can sell low quality PLA while claiming that it is the best PLA filament ever.

The problem is that printing with low quality PLA is a waste of time and money. It jams or warps, and sometimes the diameters are so inconsistent that entire spools are unusable.

Check our top recommendation: Hatchbox PLA

We’ve put together this buyer’s guide for you, complete with list a of 3D printer filament brands that are internationally recognized for their quality and reliability. We also included some tips for using each of them and some information about PLA filament in general.

This guide is good for beginners and veterans of 3D printing alike, and we are constantly updating it, so check back here often.

Looking for ABS? Check out the best ABS filaments here

Best Value
HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament, Dimensional Accuracy...
colorFabb nGen Filament, 2.85 mm Diameter/750 g, Black
IC3D Black 1.75mm ABS 3D Printer Filament - 1kg Spool -...
Proto-pasta CFP11705 The Original Carbon Fiber Spool ,...
HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament, Dimensional Accuracy...
colorFabb nGen Filament, 2.85 mm Diameter/750 g, Black
IC3D Black 1.75mm ABS 3D Printer Filament - 1kg Spool -...
Proto-pasta CFP11705 The Original Carbon Fiber Spool ,...
3,036 Reviews
27 Reviews
80 Reviews
93 Reviews
Price not available
Best Value
HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament, Dimensional Accuracy...
HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament, Dimensional Accuracy...
3,036 Reviews
colorFabb nGen Filament, 2.85 mm Diameter/750 g, Black
colorFabb nGen Filament, 2.85 mm Diameter/750 g, Black
27 Reviews
IC3D Black 1.75mm ABS 3D Printer Filament - 1kg Spool -...
IC3D Black 1.75mm ABS 3D Printer Filament - 1kg Spool -...
80 Reviews
Price not available
Proto-pasta CFP11705 The Original Carbon Fiber Spool ,...
Proto-pasta CFP11705 The Original Carbon Fiber Spool ,...
93 Reviews

The 8 Best PLA 3D Printer Filament Brands


PLA is one of the most popular types of filament because it is cheap and easy to use. As we discussed in our review of the cheapest filament brands, PLA filaments can often be found for less than $15 per spool.

PLA plastic is often touted as an environmentally friendly plastic because it is biodegradable and made from renewable resources. In North America, PLA is often made from corn starch, in Asia it is made for starches such as cassava roots, and in the rest of the world, PLA is often made from sugarcane.

Like other plastics used in 3D printing, PLA is a thermoplastic, which means that it becomes soft and deforms when it is heated and then hardens again when cooled. That means it can be molded like clay or extruded through an extruder.

The reason that PLA is so popular is that it is super easy to print with, so if you are a beginner, this is the right type of filament for you to start with. It isn’t as strong as other types of filament, such as PETG or ABS, but PLA is very forgiving of variations in temperature and printing speed.

What Is PLA Filament Used For?

PLA can be used to print any kind of small figurine or plastic toy. The best PLA filaments can even be used to print functional parts, especially if they are enhanced with an additive like carbon fiber or PHA.

There is also some confusion about whether PLA is food safe given that it is biodegradable. Adding to the confusion, PLA has been used in some medical applications such as stents and plates that are eventually broken down by the body into harmless lactic acid.

3D printed Eiffel tower best PLA filament

But unlike ABS and other 3D printer filaments like PETG, PLA filament is not generally considered food safe by most filament manufactures because of the way consumer 3D printers manufacture objects via filament deposition.

Whereas industrial plastic products are manufactured so that their surfaces are smooth on a microscopic level, most objects produced by consumer level 3D printers have microscopic crevices and cracks.

Bacteria and microbes can live inside these small microscopic crevices on the surface of the plastic are are very hard to clean and sterilize, so it’s not good to use spoons or forks printed with PLA for a long time.

1. Hatchbox PLA Filament

best PLA filament


Check Price

Print Settings: Print Hatchbox PLA at 200°C for the first 1 to 3 layers, then drop the temperature down to 190 – 195°C for the rest of the print. Heated printer bed 60 – 80°C, Fan: ON, Infill: 50 – 80% depending on application, Print Speed: 50 – 60mm/sec for PLA

Hatchbox PLA is one of the best filaments available. As we discussed in our full review of Hatchbox filaments, Hatchbox has a huge fanbase and thousands of positive customer reviews.

The reason that Hatchbox is so popular has mostly to do with the fact that it has a large community that can vouch for its quality. Almost everyone who has purchased it has been satisfied with it’s tolerances, color range, and print quality.

In terms of performance, the difference between Hatchbox PLAs and some of the more expensive PLAs on this list, such as ColorFabb and Proto-Pasta is only noticable when it’s used to make functional parts, like gears or cases for electrical devices. But for everything else, whether you are printing jewelry or bobble heads, Hatchbox will be just fine.

The last thing to keep in mind about Hatchbox is that does come from a large manufacturer in China, so it’s not a “designer” filament like ColorFabb or Proto-Pasta. But if price and quality are what you are looking for, Hatchbox is a good brand to start with.

2. ColorFabb PLA Filament

best PLA filament


Check Price

ColorFabb is a premium Dutch filament manufacturer. It really is one of the best brands in the world. And their PLA is directly responsible for that. ColorFabb PLA Filament has a not-so-secret ingredient that makes it super strong: PHA.

PHA, which stands for Polyhydroxyalkanoates, is a polyester that is created by bacteria during the natural process of fermentation of sugars. As a result of the added PHA, ColorFabb PLA is stronger and more durable than other PLAs but also still biodegradable and very easy to print with.

As far as technical specs and quality control goes, ColorFabb PLA filaments are top-notch. They have awesome tolerances. They never clog or jam. And the spools are always perfectly wound. It really doesn’t get much better than this.

The price point is one downside to ColorFabb. Colorfabb is definitely at the top of the price range. But as you will see, most of the other premium quality PLA filament brands are also expensive.

One trick to getting a discount on ColorFabb is to check out their customizable 16 spool pack. If you are willing to buy in bulk, you can get 16 ColorFabb PLAs for a group rate that is half of what you would pay for each individual spool, shipping included.

That’s not a bad deal for some of the best PLA filament on the planet. Read more about ColorFabb filaments here.

3. Faberdashery PLA Filament

pla by faberdashery best PLA filament


Faberdashery is a classic filament brand. The founders have close ties to the reprap project and are located in the same part of England. Claire Cunningham, the CEO, even claims that the father of the reprap project himself approves of Faberdashery filament. Nice.

Faberdashery PLA filament is an incredible product. And it better be, because Faberdashery only makes PLA! Why do they only make PLA?

Well, according to Claire, it all has to do with environmental sustainability. Like many in the 3D printing world, Claire strongly believes that PLA is the best material to print simply because it is biodegradable.

Faberdashery nails all of the key indicators of a high quality PLA. The tolerances are fantastic, which means no clogging.

The melt temperatures are within the normal range of 190ºC to 210ºC, which means that purity is high. And it is strong, with a nice matte surface finish.

One of the more unusual aspects of the Faberdashery business model is that they sell their filaments mostly by the meter. That means you can buy exactly the amount of filament you need and no more.

It also means that you will have to check directly on the Faberdashery website or their US supplier for exact prices.

But to give you some idea, a 100-meter coil of PLA costs as much as an entire 1 kg. spool of regular quality PLA. 100-meters of PLA is about 310 grams, so that’s not much PLA for the price.

But remember, Faberdashery is the best of the best, so it is bound to be expensive. You can read more about Faberdashery in our full brand review.

4. Ultimaker

best PLA filament(5/5)

Check Price

Here is yet another high-end Dutch filament company for you to consider. Ultimaker PLA filament is easily in the same quality class as the other PLAs on this list. It has fantastic tolerances and great strength.

In fact, Ultimaker PLA is almost too strong. It has been known to stick to printer beds and support materials so well that you might have to apply serious force to get the stuff off. But this strength also means that you can expect a high detail resolution from your prints.

Ultimaker PLA also has a fairly mild odor, which is an added perk. The one thing to keep in mind is that it is a bit more expensive than the other brands and sells in .75 gram spools on

But if you look around a little, you can get Ultimaker filaments from other third party vendors for much lower prices. It just takes a little bit of hunting. And PLA isn’t the only product that Ultimaker makes well. Check out our full review of Ultimaker products.

5. MakerBot

best PLA filament


Check Price

Finally, a US brand! MakerBot is somewhat infamous in the 3D printing community and definitely one of the most controversial companies to come out of the 3D printing boom in the last 10 years.

They make fantastic printers that are generally considered a little over priced. But they can charge what they want because they are the best.

MakerBot PLA filament is also some of the best PLA filament available today. Yes, it costs twice as much as a regular 1 kg. spool, just like the rest of the high-end filaments on this list.

But it is made in the US and comes with the absurdly high quality control standards of all MakerBot products. The thing that really makes it outstanding is that there is no warping with this PLA. None.

If you aren’t interested in spending so much on a spool, you can still try MakerBot filaments for smaller .2 kg. spools. But if you are sure that MakerBot filaments are the filaments for you, definitely check out the jumbo XXL 10 lb. spools of PLA that MakerBot sells for discounted prices.

With these bad boys, you won’t have to swap out spools for a long time. Learn more about them in our full MakerBot review.

6. Proto-pasta

best PLA filament


Check Price

Proto-pasta’s  superb PLA filament is produced at the ProtoPlant in Vancouver, Washington, USA. Founded by a bunch of materials scientists in 2013 who set out to make the best filament in the world, Proto-pasta has gained wide popularity for it’s super high quality and reliable tolerances.

In fact, the Proto-pasta team has been focused on material quality so heavily over the last few years that they only recently released aesthetically pleasing filament: it smells good, looks good, and performs perfectly.

Proto-pasta is filament by makers, for makers. They are super focussed on making new materials for 3D printing in order to keep things fun and exciting.

If you want to try out a regular Proto-pasta PLA filament, a spool will be quite pricey. But there are many specialty spools of filament available that will make up for the high prices.

Have a look around to see what weird materials you might like to try next.

7. IC3D

best PLA filament


Check Price

IC3D PLA filament is a premium filament manufactured in Ohio, USA. The quality control standards at IC3D are super high.

That means that there are almost never any tolerance issues and no warping. Some printers have even been able to print without using a bed adhesion material, which is pretty rare for PLA.

The best part is that it is cheaper than the other premium brands. You can get a 2 lb. spool for good prices compared to higher end filaments from brands like ColorFabb.

IC3D also sells 5 and 10 lb jumbo sized spools so that you don’t have to constantly swap out smaller spools and recalibrate between prints.

8. Polymaker PLA Filament

best PLA filament


Check Price

Polymaker is a large Chinese filament manufacturer with offices in Europe, Japan, and the USA.

Like MakerBot, Polymaker is one of the privileged few filament brands that were listed in the Natureworks 2016 filament brochure. That is a big deal.

Natureworks LLC is the worlds largest distributer of high quality PLA. By listing Polymaker as their preferred Chinese filament distributer, Natureworks essentially said to the other 3D filament brands, “Hey, check these guys out, they are better than all of you.”

And it’s true. Polymaker makes amazing PLA filaments and specialty filaments. Their Polymax PLA filaments are 9 times stronger than regular PLA (measured by impact resistance tests) and have better overall mechanics than ABS.

However, like the other filaments on this list, Polymaker isn’t cheap. Expect to pay twice as much as the normal stuff for a single spool.

But if you buy in bulk you can get a few dollars off the spool price. Buying in bulk might not be a bad idea either considering that you are probably going to want to print a lot with these filaments.

Final Thoughts: Best PLA Filament

So there you have it. These are the best pla filament brands because they are strong and have fantastic tolerances.

Notice how there are only two Chinese brand on the list? Most Chinese filaments just can’t compete with the quality control standards that European and US brands have.

Except for Hatchbox and Polymaker, Chinese brands tend to clog your printer because of bad tolerances. But the tolerances of the brands on this list are impeccable, especially the Dutch brands.

The only thing that you have to keep in mind is that premium quality is often more expensive. As a result, the filaments on this list aren’t super cheap.

But the extra few dollars you spend on higher quality filament will save you time and frustration that comes with unclogging extruder jams. And these filaments won’t break your bank either. Check prices here.

We’ve tried to give you some hints about finding deals, though. And the last filament on the list, IC3D, sells high quality PLA for lower prices.

If you feel that we’ve missed any premium brands that should be on the list, leave a comment below. Happy printing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Posts

How 3D print Covid-19 mask
How To 3D Print Masks: Coronavirus Mask 3D Printing Quick Start Guide

The Coronavirus pandemic has overwhelmed healthcare systems around the world. Hospitals are experiencing shortages…

Buying A 3D Printer: 2020 Decision Guide

Buying a 3D printer is a tricky task. “Which 3D printer should I buy?”…

Empty spool weight
Empty Spool Weight Database 2020

Here’s a nifty trick: if you know the weight of your spool when it…

Gizmo Dorks print
3D Printing Post Processing Techniques

One of the advantages of making objects yourself with 3D printers is that you…

Stainless Steel Vernier
3D Printer Accessories – Buyer’s Guide (2020)

There are a ton of 3D printer accessories you can buy to make 3D…

PLA Filament storage
How To Store 3D Printing Filament

Filament storage is a small but vital part of the 3D printing experience, but…

Filament colors
3D Printer Filament Buyer’s Guide 2020

Welcome to the most in depth 3D printer filament buyer’s guide on the internet….

7 Most Common 3D Printing Terms (Glossary)

3D Printing is complicated and the terminology can often be technical and obscure. Here…

Black Magic 3D Filament Review

Black Magic 3D is a cutting-edge manufacturer of experimental 3D printer filaments.

Their flagship product,…

gizmo dorks review
Gizmo Dorks Filament Review: Fantastic Customer Service For A Good Price

Gizmo Dorks filament has a unique backstory.

Have you ever wondered what it would be…

filabot owner
Filabot Filament Review: DIY Filament Extruder

If you care about the environmental impact of 3D printing, you should know about…

Best PVA Filament: Ultimate PVA Buyer’s Guide

Finding the best PVA filament is important since it can be expensive. But when…

Pellets, Powders, And Resins: Non-filament Plastic Used In 3D Printing

There are a few different forms of plastic that can be used in 3D…

Hatchbox wood XBOX controller
5 Tips About How To Print With Wood Filaments

Now that we’ve told you about some of the best wood filaments available, let’s…

How To Recycle 3D Printer Filament

Learning how to recycle 3D printer filament with a 3D printer filament recycler is…

SainSmart Packaging
SainSmart Filament Review: Top Quality, Good Price

SainSmart filament is made by an electronics supplier from China. The company sells many…

3D solutech logo
3D Solutech Filament Review: Fantastic PLA

3D Solutech filament is good quality and their PLA is 100% made in the…

3D Printer Filament Comparison Guide

This 3D printer filament comparison guide covers 15 materials used in 3D printing. While…

3D Printed Plastic Objects 3D Printing Terms
Glossary of 3D Printing Terms

3D printing terminology is often technical and obscure. Use this Glossary of 3D printing…

HIPS Filament: Complete HIPS 3D Printing Guide

HIPS filament (High Impact Polystyrene) is a support material for stabilizing prints that cannot…

MakerGeeks Filament Review: OFFICIALLY SHUTDOWN


UPDATE: As of February 2019, MakerGeeks is out…

Best Flexible 3D Printer Filaments
The Best Flexible 3D Printer Filament Brands

The best flexible 3D printer filament can be used to print some very cool…

3D Printer Filament Brands Database

Below is a database list of 3D printer filament brands complete with general information…

Best Nylon Filament Brands And Print Settings

The best nylon filament brand is undoubtably Taulman 3D. Not only did Taulman invent…

ColorFabb logo
ColorFabb Filament Review: High-Quality Producer

Welcome to the ColorFabb Filament Review. This is a review of the entire company,…

Eco-filament filament review
Eco-friendly 3D Printer Filaments Reviewed

Eco-friendly 3D printer filaments are on the rise. One of the great benefits of…

(Less than $20) Cheapest ABS Filament That Is Usable

Cheap ABS filaments are everywhere. All across the internet, from Ebay to Amazon, filament resellers…

Best 3D Pen Filament
Best 3D Pen Filament Refills: ABS and PLA

Running low on 3d pen filament, this is the list for you. We’ve compiled…

Glow In the Dark Filament Review

Choosing the best glow in the dark filament can be tricky because it’s hard…

Push Plastic masterspool
Push Plastic Filament Review: 3D Printer Filament

This is a decidedly positive Push Plastic filament review. Push Plastic is an Arkansas…

PLA vs ABS: PLA And ABS Comparison Guide

Many different materials are used in the 3D printing, but the most common plastics…

Best Metal Filaments: Real Metal 3D Printer Filament

Metal filaments have a tough job. The best metal filaments can trick the eye…

(Less than $15) Cheapest Filaments: Cheap Filament You Can Actually Use

The cheapest 3D printer filaments are often very poor quality. A few years ago,…

Inland pla Inland filament review
Inland Filament Review: The Best Cheap Filament Ever

Inland filament is one of the best 3D filament brands on Amazon today. And yes, Inland is…

Hatchbox benchy
Hatchbox Filament Review: Best 3D Printer Filament

Hatchbox is the most popular filament brand on the market today. And for good…

Corkfill wood filament
Wood Filament Guide: 10 Best Wood Filament Brands

It’s super important to use the best wood filament you can find when printing…

ABS Solvents: Best Solvents For ABS Post-Processing

The look and feel of ABS filaments can be improved dramatically with a little…

The Best ABS Filament: 3D Printer Filament Guide

The best ABS filament brands are a pleasure to work with. ABS it is…