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Grade with CGC Cards!

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Card collecting as a hobby has exploded in recent years, with card values skyrocketing in secondary marketplaces as collectors and dealers vie for the rarest collectibles. More than ever, it’s important to maximize the value of your card collection by protecting your cards with the best holders on the market while ensuring that your cards are authentic. But how do you do that in a marketplace where opinions of a card’s condition can be subjective and counterfeits run rampant?

The answer is simple: Get your collection graded by the experts at CGC Cards™!

What is CGC Cards?

CGC Cards is a division of Certified Guaranty Company® (CGC®) that is dedicated to the expert authentication, grading and encapsulation of trading cards, sports cards and non-sports cards. Every CGC-certified card is backed by the CGC Guarantee of authenticity and grade, which stays with the card and protects buyers and sellers.

When you submit a card to CGC Cards, their experts put it through an 8-step process in which the card is authenticated using the latest technology, analyzed by a team of expert graders, encapsulated in a crystal-clear holder for the highest level of protection, imaged, re-examined for quality control and sent back to you! The length of this process varies, but most turnaround times average about two to three weeks.

CGC Cards began grading TCGs and non-sports cards in 2020 and started grading sports cards in 2021. Since then, CGC Cards has certified and encapsulated more than 5 million cards and expanded into international markets, including Europe and China. Meanwhile, CGC Cards constantly improves itself as a company by adapting its services to a growing market and improving its holder and label to suit collectors’ tastes.

OK, but what is grading and how does it help me?

By getting your collection graded by CGC Cards, you’re able to prove that every card in your collection is a real, bona-fide card from whatever set you collect. That way, if you ever try to sell — or even just show off — your collection, you can say without a doubt that your cards are authentic.

Cards graded by CGC Cards are scored based on an industry-standard 10-point grading scale, with a number that corresponds to your card’s overall condition. The higher your card’s grade, the more valuable it becomes. CGC-certified cards have sold in auction for tens of thousands of dollars, including this Pokémon Illustrator graded CGC 9.5 that realized $672,000 in a Goldin sale in 2022, and this Mickey Mantle graded CGC 8 that realized more than a million dollars in a December 2022 SCP Auctions sale!

Card grading not only helps you maximize the value of your collection but also protects them from dust, debris and other forms of wear and tear by encapsulating them in protective holders. In addition, a card’s numerical grade reflects its overall condition, as judged by industry experts working with the best technology in the industry.

What does CGC Cards look for when grading cards?

When assigning a grade to submitted cards, CGC Cards’ expert grading team examines four specific variables on a card to determine its condition:

  • Corners: Are the corners on the card rounded, missing paper, bent, whitened or scuffed?
  • Edges: Are all of the edges of the card straight, or do they have bends or creases?
  • Surface: Is there any discoloration or scratches across the card, or is it creased? Is there any discoloration or evidence of debris or dust clinging to the card? Or does the card have any sort of printing error on it?

Centering: How centered is the card’s artwork? Based on CGC Cards’ Centering Chart, a card’s centering must be 50/50 to get a CGC Pristine 10, the highest grade possible on the CGC Cards Grading Scale.

In certain circumstances, CGC Cards will assign designations to cards based on authenticity and/or alterations. CGC Cards also assigns a special Autograph grade if a card was issued with an autograph.

In conclusion, if you’re serious about collecting cards for any reason — whether it be a long-term investment or as a hobby — grading is a helpful service for protecting and ensuring the authenticity of your cards. CGC Cards is an industry leader in authentication, grading and encapsulation of TCGs, non-sports cards and sports cards, so you can’t go wrong with their grading services. Once you’re done cataloging and organizing your collection with the Ludex App, head to to create a membership account and start submitting! Paid members get discounts on grading and other benefits, but you can always submit with a free account.

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