Comparing Pressure Sensitive and Shrink-Sleeve Labeling

Comparing Pressure Sensitive and Shrink-Sleeve Labeling

Every manufacturer and packager needs high quality labeling systems—but which of Quadrel’s machines should you choose? Depending on the type of product you’re labeling, there are usually multiple options available. Choosing the right machine for your budget and production quota can be overwhelming, even for seasoned professionals.

Two options—pressure sensitive and shrink-sleeve labeling systems—can handle a variety of containers. Read on to learn more about these system types, and how Quadrel’s labeling systems can improve your packaging line.

Pressure sensitive labeling

Pressure sensitive labels use pressure to apply a label to a product. The technique is similar to applying a label by hand.

This traditional labeling system is what most people picture when they think about industrial product labeling: the labels have an adhesive coating, which affixes it to the container. The machines use light to moderate pressure to apply the label. Our pressure sensitive labeling machines can label hundreds of products per hour, depending on your specific machine and labeling needs.

These labeling systems can work with both flat and cylindrical surfaces. Whether you’re labeling jars, bottles, cans or boxes and food trays, there’s a pressure sensitive solution available.

Shrink-sleeve labeling

Shrink-sleeve labeling has been around for decades, but it’s become increasingly popular in recent years. Originally, they were used to create tamper-evident seals at the top of bottles and jars. Product designers realized shrink-sleeves offer much more design “real estate”—and they can be used to efficiently label irregular containers.

A shrink-sleeve labeling machine slips a flexible “sleeve” around a container. Heat is applied, which shrinks the label around the container. The label seamlessly conforms to the container’s shape, creating a durable and eye-catching package.

Shrink-sleeve labeling systems are often used on beverages, medication bottles and irregularly shaped containers.

Which system is right for your packaging line?

When considering which type of labeling system to choose, consider the following:

  • Container shape: If you’re labeling standard bottles, boxes, cans, jars and more, a pressure sensitive labeling system may be your best option. Shrink-sleeve labels are better suited to irregular shapes, although they can handle traditional packaging, too.
  • Label design: If you want your label design to make a big impact, shrink-sleeve labeling systems offer more design options. However, designers must keep in mind that images can distort during the shrinking process.
  • Durability: Shrink-sleeve labeling machines are a great option when you switch to lighter packaging. The labels add strength and durability to the container.
  • Budget: On average, shrink-sleeve labels cost about 25 percent more than pressure sensitive labels. Don’t let this deter you—designers and marketers have found that the design opportunities can increase sales.
  • Need for tamper-evident seals: If your product requires a tamper-evident seal, shrink-sleeve labels are the perfect way to label and seal your product at the same time.

For more information to learn about Quadrel’s quality labeling systems, reach out to us today. We’re happy to educate you about our myriad options—we’re sure to have something for every product line and budget.