Finger & Thumb Print Taking Protocol

1. Select The Best Print

Study the deceased’s thumb for the most distinctive and clearest lines. If the thumb does not offer a good print, feel free to use a finger.
*Important Note*
Take prints before embalming.
Print Taking Protocol
Print Taking Protocol

2. Ink

If you are using the print supplies that we provide peel the protective coating from the ink strip, lightly tap the selected area on the newly exposed ink side of the strip.
You can also use your own supplies, or order our free supplies here.

3. Create Print

Practice making one or two impressions by lightly touching the inked area onto a piece of paper. When you are satisfied with the clear print lines captured, re-tap the inked area onto the ink and duplicate the technique onto the “Imprint” boxes on the supplied order form, or on clean white paper.
Repeat this step in all boxes (or at least 5 times on your own white paper), striving to provide an image that presents clear lines, no smudges, and high contrast between the dark and light spaces.
Print Taking Protocol
Print Taking Protocol

4. Clean The Affected Area

After creating your impressions, clean the imprinted area of the deceased with one of the cleaning pads provided, or use any alcohol-based cleaning pad.

Print too light.

A result of too little ink or pressure.

Print Taking Protocol

Good Print.

A result of proper ink and pressure.

Print Taking Protocol

Print too dark.

A result of too much ink or pressure.

Print Taking Protocol

Capturing Infant Prints

The very young seldom have significantly developed ridges on their fingers – in virtually all cases, it is better to use either a footprint or handprint of the very young.
Very often, hospitals will take high-quality handprints and/or footprints of infants following delivery. If this has been the case, a copy of this document should be made by either scanning the prints yourself or having parents scan or copy them. A copy of the prints should be uploaded on our order form.
If you cannot obtain a copy of the hospital documents, you can create a print from either a foot or hand in a fashion similar to the steps taken for capturing a fingerprint. Use the larger child ink strips provided, or your own tools in a similar fashion, to ensure complete ink coverage of the hand or foot and follow the same steps listed above.
PLEASE, NO FINGERPRINTS OF CHILDREN UNDER 4 YEARS OF AGE.