How To Handle Your Comic Books
Do Not Roll The Cover or Pages Around the Back.
Do Not Grasp Your Comic Tightly.
Hold the comic flat in the palm of your hand, lift the pages gently, letting the pages fall down naturally. This does not put any pressure on the comic or the spine.
Most comics are displayed standing up on the shelves in the comic store, sometimes the rows overlap the previous row. Do not bend the comics down over the next row, bending the spines to find your perfect condition comic. You damaged the spines for the next customer or worse yet, the previous customer damaged the spines of the comics you are now looking at. Please handle all comics with respect.
Reading trade paperbacks or graphic novels. Hold the spine of the book and open the book enough to read the pages. Do not grasp the covers and read in the air, you will end up denting the covers and the pages.
You can condition your graphic novels or hard covers the same way the library conditions their books so the spines do not crack and the pages will lie flat when opened.
You start with the book standing up on its spine with the pages in the air. You start opening the book starting at the covers and working your way inwards. You lay down one side of the cover and lightly run your finger down the inside of the spine, and then alternate to the back cover and do the same, repeating for each page front and back until you reach the middle. Conditioning your book allows the book to remain open flat on a counter.
Do not open paperbacks or graphic novels to read after they have been in the cold for extended periods of time (winter) or the spine may crack or the cover may pop off as the glue becomes brittle. Allow the books to warm up to room temperature.
Do not bend down the corners of the pages to keep your place marked.
Do not eat at the same time as reading your comics, crumbs contain oil and will end up staining the pages or making lumps when pressure is applied if comics are stacked.
Keep your hands clean. Your hands excrete oils and holding the comics tightly, you may notice greasy marks on the covers where you were holding your comic.
Store your comic in a dark cool space. Storing comics in bags and boards will keep your comics clean, flat and dust free. There are specially made comic boxes in a variety of sizes to store your collection.
Do not place cardboard boxes directly on basement floors, as over time, the boxes may absorb moisture from the concrete or carpet and can affect your comics if not in bags or can weaken the box and the bottom may fall out, along with your comics. All boxes should be stored on shelves.
Keeping your comics away from bright lights will keep your comic pages white and not yellow with age.
There are mylars for comics, which are stiffer than comic bags. You must take care when inserting your comic into the mylars, so as not to slice off the cover. Hold the mylar open and start with the spine in first and carefully put the rest of the comic inside the lips before sliding the comic down.
A tip for mylars with a flaplock, flip one side of the flaplock inside, insert the comic and then pull out the flap to close the mylar, squeezing out any extra air.
Comics can be stored in bags & boards, Use only white comic shiny boards. After 5 or 10 years you may need to replace the comic bags and boards if they start discoloring. This happens because the paper that the comics are printed on are not acid free, they do contain their own acids and over time, they may react with the bags & boards.
Do not write on your comics, or use them as padding to write on paper on top of them - this will put the writing impressions into the cover of the comic and you will see the impressions in the light.
Do not cut out coupons in your comic book.