Abstract The effect of angle of incidence of C 60 ion beam for low damage polymer depth profiling on TOF-SIMS and XPS has been investigated. In this study, TOF-SIMS and XPS depth profiles were taken at several angles of incidence of C 60 ion beam and the results were compared with each other. By using a higher angle of incidence, in XPS analysis, the changes of atomic concentration for polyethyleneterephthalate (PET) were suppressed. In TOF-SIMS analysis, the degradations of fragment ion intensity for PET and polystyrene (PS) were also suppressed at a higher angle of incidence. Although the information depth of TOF-SIMS is different from that of XPS, both results suggested that a higher angle of incidence is a better condition for low damage polymer depth profiling.