I really wanted to make a guide to Fujifilm instax mini film because it’s the only instant film on the the market for modern devices and it keeps getting more and more popular. Plus I’m a little obsessed with my own Instax Mini 90 at the moment. This guide will cover where to buy, the best prices and what’s available for you if you wanted to get into modern instant photography.
*Quick note this guide is made by someone in Canada so the prices are in Canadian dollars and some of the stores are Canadian ( I’ve included plenty of online sites with international shipping).
What’s compatible with Fujifilm Instax Mini Film:
Instax Mini 7, 7s, 8, 10, 20, 25, 30, 50, 50s, 55, and 90 Neo Classic by Fujifilm. It can also be used for other non-Fujifilm cameras like Lomo’Instant and Belair Instant. As well it works with several camera backs like Diana Instant Back and LC-A Instant Back and the new Fuji Instax Share Printer.
The first option available and most common type of film to find is the white version. It comes in either a single pack of 10, or a double pack of 20 exposures however the single pack is not very common so going forward prices refer to the double pack. Locally it can be found at camera stores or drug stores but it seems to be rarer these days to see it anywhere beside lomography focused camera stores and Urban Outfitters (who charge extra on all their film) In person the price is $20-$25 depending on the store so this film is best to pick up online. Online store fronts like Amazon, electronic stores, not to mention Walmart and other similar stores carry this film. The catch is of course finding a store that offers free shipping, which is pretty easy nowadays. The price online is almost always $20 but like any store there can be sales once and awhile. The film is also available at online camera stores like B&H, Amazon, Black’s….
Amazon / B&H Amazon is the clear winner for me, not only do they offer bundles (50exposures+) but I’ve noticed the film goes on sale every few weeks without fail down to $14. Unlike other online stores Amazon seems to follow predictable sales patterns when it comes to instax film and the free shipping for orders over $25 usually means I get my film in 2 days. B&H does win the price war at $14 regular price, and holds the title for the only store I’ve found instax film lower than $19 when not on sale so for Americans this is really a great place to buy. Sadly if you aren’t in America that price drop doesn’t matter much after shipping frees but they do ship internationally so for anyone who can’t get instax film in your country for $20 it is a great option.
Instax Mini Rainbow film is the 2nd most common type of instax film to find in person or online, it’s found almost everywhere that sells the regular film. It comes in a individual pack of 10 exposures and costs around $12. Besides Rainbow the other North American theme packs include: Halloween/Christmas. B&H sells the Halloween theme pack year around but only offers the Christmas around Fall. Other stores may occasional have the other theme packs but usually do not keep stock.
For Rainbow – anywhere you can find it! This film is almost universally the same price give or take $1. If you want the holiday theme packs, the best place is B&H who keep them in stock and offer the great price of $12. As well they usually are the first place to offer any new types of theme packs that come out.
Other theme packs available for instax film? Well there is close to a hundred different varieties. The catch…not in North America. Fujifilm Instax Mini cameras are HUGE over in Japan and other countries in Asia. People there love their instant cameras and because of this instax film there is SOOO much better than in North America. While we get boring things like Halloween, they get all these interesting designs and a lot of charactors. The theme packs come in individual packs of 10 exposures.The two choices online are to buy off of a re-seller on Ebay or buy them imported from Amazon for insane prices ($30+). In person check out your local Chinatown for a ‘box store’ and you might be able to find there but usually again at an increased price ($20+).
A list of designs: Wedding, Happy Birthday, Candy Pop, Stained Glass, Shiny Star, Pink Dot, Pandora, Rainbow, Dalmatian, Stripe, Air Mail, Comic, Cath Kidston, Spring, Rainbow (different from our Rainbow)
A list of charactors: Marvel, Winnie the Pooh, Hello Kitty / Hellow Kitty Shiny / Hello Kitty Paris / Hello Kitty Leopard / 40th Anniversary, Disney Mickey & Friends, Little Twin Stars, Sponge Bob Beach/Music, Monsters University, Stitch, Toy Story, Adventure Time, Disney Princess, Rilakkuma, Gumball, Disney Alice, Kiki and Lala, Shanghai Girl, One Piece, Sesamestreet, Tuzki, Hello Kitty Leopard, Chibi, Princess, Rilakkuma Paris,Shiny Hello Kitty, Sanrio Gum Yellow / Characters, Fairies, Mickey & Minnie,, YooHoo, Doraemon Time Machine/Travel Door, MocMoc , HamiCat
Ebay! If you want a store, this is where I buy mine…Why that store? Well the price is one of the lowest at $11-13 and the free delivery usually only takes 2-3 weeks. They also sell almost every single variety and they can offer bundles of 1, 3, 5, and 10 (plus the more you buy the cheaper it is per pack). I’ve bought from them 5 times and never had an issue. There is plenty of other stores available beside that one, just read reviews and the item description. Amazon is considered ‘safer’ but unless it’s being sold by Amazon directly a lot of the items there are being sold by the same people with Ebay store fronts.
Film Skins are another plus of the Japanese instant film market, these are called Polaroid Film Skins even though they are made to fit instax mini film only. On Ebay you can get these from a variety of stores for as little as $2 for a pack of 20 various designs. They are meant to stick over the regular white film to give unique designs. I bought a whole bunch as they are so cheap and unlike the themed film you can decided what picture gets a particular design. There is usually a few duds in each pack but pretty cute if you don’t want boring white photos.
Where to buy online: Ebay
Where to buy in person: Japan, or your local Japanese box store.
Another thing you can buy to decorate your instax film from Japan is these cute Polaroid Deco Stickers. There are a few various packs of these available that come with either transparent or white base and usually have 4-5 sheets of stickers. The stickers are meant to be put over the film or on the white tab area and look like Japanese photo booths. Some are banners to write on, stickers of objects like balloons, rainbows…and props like cat ears to put on people. The one catch with the transparent stickers is they contain several Japanese kanji characters which will not be very usual if you don’t speak Japanese. Also keep in mind any transparent stickers would look good over top the film so you aren’t limited to the ones specifically made for instant film.
Well that’s it for my guide. Hope you found it useful and if you know of any great store either in person or online to pick up any of theses items let me know in the comments and I’ll update the guide to reflect your information!