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Types of Cue Tips and their Variants (Quick Facts and Pro Tips Included)

Your pool game heavily depends on the quality of your pool cue tip. If you don’t choose the right tip, then you are likely to pay in the form of less accuracy. Finding the right cue tip for yourself can be difficult.

There are different types of cue tips available, and which type of you may buy depends on your preferences and level of your expertise.

In this article, I’ll discuss different types of pool cues. After learning about each type, you’d be able to decide which type of cue tip is best for you.

Different Types of Cue Tips

There are three types of pool cue tips: Soft, Hard and Medium-hard.

1. Soft Cue Tip

The theory behind soft tips is they compress during the impact with the cue ball and stay on the ball for an extra bit of time that is important to have when you are up against a competitive player.

Advantages of Soft Cue Tips

  • Most of the professional and top snooker players prefer to play with cue sticks topped by soft tips.
  • These tips are known for providing excellent control over the ball and spin and maximum accuracy is reached

Disadvantage of Soft Cue Tips

  • But there is a downside as well. They require frequent maintenance – but then, every professional equipment of any game requires constant maintenance.
  • Moreover, with a soft tip, you are bound to hit the ball with more force to balance the cushioning effect.

It’s like a trade-off, you have to give more time to your cue tip to achieve great control and spin on the ball.

Expert’s Choice

No matter, whatever your choice is, but have a look at our expert’s choice. They have chosen some of the best soft cue tips to simplify your quest for the best pool cue tip.

KAMUI Clear Black Laminated Pool Billiard CUE TIP is our experts’ choice, for its durability and performance.

Pros of KAMUI Cue Tip

  • Kamui tips are made of vegetable tanned leather and it goes through a superior process in durability compared to chrome tanned leather.
  • It has the tendency to absorb moisture which degrades the performance of elasticity. It is easy to install and saves you from the dreary work required in installing a typical cue tip.

2. Hard Cue Tip

Now comes the hard tip category.

Advantage of Hard Cue Tips

  • Hard tips are considered more suitable for specialized purposes like jumping or breaking as it transfers maximum force on to the ball.

Disadvantage of Hard Cue Tips

  • Unlike in soft cue tips, the hard tip remains on the ball for less time and for this reason, the level of control and accuracy is not as good as in soft tips.

You’ll see many professional players playing with hard tips but they have mastered the art after years of practice until they get used to the precision.

Before switching to the hard tip, you need confidence that you can only get by taking more hits with the soft tip.

Pro Tip: If you are a beginner, play with soft tips as they give more control and the more you hit the more your confidence increases.

3. Medium-Hard Cue Tip

Medium hard tips are pretty good performance wise. These are the tips which the majority of pool players play with. Also, the majority of jump break cues feature medium-hard tips.

Advantages of Medium-Hard Cue Tip

  • You get the perks of both, better performance and less maintenance. Also, the cue sticks being manufactured in factories mostly feature these tips as they offer a fine balance between controllability, consistency and speed.
  • They provide decent control on the ball while allowing you to hit solid and clean shots.
  • Another benefit of medium-hard tips is they rarely get flat which is a huge relief.

The most common problem that occurs in ordinary tips is they mushroom quickly, but not in medium-hard ones.

Disadvantage of Medium-Hard Cue Tip

  • Hitting the cue ball off-center with a medium-hard will yield less spin control when compared to the same shot with a soft tip.

Pro Tip: If you are an amateur, then medium-hard tips can be a good option for you. They’ll help you to develop your game until you are ready to switch to a hard or soft one, whatever you want.

4. Some Other Types of Pool Cue Tips

The basic types of pool cue tips have been discussed above, but there are a few more.

Basically the rest of the tips are driven from the basic types we have discussed above. But they take the specific characteristic of a tip to an extreme level – like:

  • Super soft tip
  • Super hard tip
  • Medium soft

When you have different needs and preferences, these unorthodox materials come to your aid.

Recommended Cue Tips According to Preferences

  • A professional who loves to play with extra hard tips, he can choose the hardest one commonly known as super hard or extra hard.
  • The one who prefers extra soft tips or just in case, even the soft tip feels hard to him, he can move to the soft one.
  • And the same can be said for medium hard and medium soft.

All in all, these are the tip material driven from the basic ones.

Some Quick Facts Regarding Different Types of Tips

To make it easy for you to comprehend things, here are some quick facts regarding the different types of tips.

  • The shorter a tip is shaped, the harder it will play.
  • The hardness of the tip (within the typical range) should not have a direct effect on the amount of spin.
  • In general, a hard tip lasts longer and holds its shape for a long time Even soft tips become harder with use.
  • Soft and hard tips have their own sounds. Some people even get fond of the particular sound these tips make upon hitting the ball.
  • If you don’t scuff your tip, it will not hold chalk very well.

How Are Cue Tips Made?

Though cue tips are a tiny object, which in many instances would go unnoticeable but they hold cardinal importance if one wants to uplift his pool/snooker skills.

The durability of a cue tip depends on the quality of material used in it, and since they are going to play a massive role in the entire billiards game, they need to be strong.

Leather is the most common material used in the production of cue tips. Or, pig skin as well.

Leather has been used in tips for decades, but in the last couple of years, we have seen non-organic hard plastic tips like phenolic also catching up.

Even leather has different types, and based on these types, hard soft and medium tips are manufactured.

1. Tips Made of Solid Leather

Tips with solid leather consists of a single piece of leather piece (cow,pig or elm). It is an inexpensive material and relatively harder but it can be difficult to maintain.

If you are a pro, you won’t like to play with such tips made of this because they generally misshape or mushroom and constant shaping and grooming is required in order to get them going.

2. Tips Made of Laminated Leather

These are the tips made of multiple layers of leather – each layer is sandwiched together.

In general, it is considered the most common and popular cue material that has been used for ages and is still doing pretty well till this day.

The reason for its common use is that it gives a more consistent gameplay experience, holds the chalk well and is medium-hard (medium hard tips are easy to maintain).

How Long a Pool Cue Tip Lasts?

Once again, it depends on the quality of material it is made of and how well you have protected it.

Moreover, your style of play also matters.

In general, the odds are your tip will dry out in some 6-8 months or so – talking about pig skin or cow skin tip.

Phenolic tips are considered long-lasting than skin tips, they can survive one complete year.

Another important thing to note down regarding the lifespan of a cue tip is soft tips wear out quickly, and hard tips survive longer and hold their shape for a good number of games.


Finding a decent cue tip can be tricky, especially when one is on a tight budget. But when you know all about different types of cue tips available and their material, including their type of use, one can make the right choice that is going to help him improve his pool skills.

Moreover, by choosing the right cue tip, you can also ensure that your chosen tips are durable and going to last longer, because replacing a cue tip can take a significant amount of time and effort.

About Maryam Shaw

Hello Everyone! I am Maryam, the reason behind creating this website is to help people with the detailed information and reviews about sports products