In last weeks "What I Want Wednesday" post I showed you the Cricut Cuttlebug and talked about its ability to die cut and emboss. What the Cuttlebug does is actually called DRY embossing. There is another type of embossing called HEAT embossing. Both techniques give you somewhat similar results in the end, in that your paper is embossed with an image, however there are some differences that make having the ability to dry AND heat emboss ideal.
To do heat embossing you need a few tools. You need some sort of an embossing medium, usually in the form of either an "ink" pad (a lot of people call it ink, but in my mind it's not really ink because, when I think of ink I think of color, and it usually stamps clear) or in a pen (which is the exact same stuff as what's on the pad, just in pen form). In my travels, I've mostly seen the brand VersaMark used, however I'm sure there are other brands out there.
Again, this is just one brand of powder. There are many other brands of embossing powders out there in lots of colors and textures. Some are matte and some are very sparkly. It just depends on what look you are trying to achieve.
The last thing you need to heat emboss...is the heat! You need a handy dandy little tool that looks somewhat similar to a hair dryer, just a different shape. Actually there are certain versions of them that do look exactly like those little hair dryers that you usually find attached to the wall in a hotel bathroom because, again, there are several brands to chose from.