The longevity of your print will suffer if it is matted in such a way that it touches, or is even close to, any material containing acid. The only
papers and boards that can be acid-free are cotton based - commonly called “cotton rag.” Wood is naturally acidic, so avoid wood pulp based materials. Wood-based board can be buffered
with calcium carbonate so that it tests “acid-neutral.” This retards the aging process caused by acid, but not as well as acid-free cotton rag board. Acid free conservation board
tends to be more limited in color range, but, for example, Bainbridge produces a good selection in its Alpharag Artcare Museum Series. In addition to the mat board used, it is also important to use
no glues, labels or mounting devices that can be harmful to the print.
If you are going to take the print to a framing shop, please make certain that they know what “archival” or
“conservation” framing means. Most will be able to help you. Good matting will cost a little more, but not grossly so.
The danger of incorrect matting is not just that the print may fade after 10 years.
Deterioration can be more rapid. For example, if you use the wrong mounting devices and the wrong glues, spotting and staining can occur in a short time.