When Should You Use Waterproof Labels?

When Should You Use Waterproof Labels?

In the realm of product labeling, the choice between waterproof, water-resistant and weatherproof labels can significantly impact the durability and effectiveness of your labeling solution. While all types offer protection against environmental elements, understanding their distinctions is key to selecting the right type for your specific needs.

Waterproof, weatherproof and water-resistant

What’s the difference between water-resistant, waterproof and weatherproof labels? They might sound similar, but in practice, they’re very different.

Water-resistant labels are designed to withstand brief exposure to moisture without significant damage. These labels are typically made by applying a waterproof coating on top of standard adhesive label stock. The waterproof coating serves as a protective barrier, repelling water and preventing it from penetrating the label material. Water-resistant labels may not be suitable for applications where the labels will be submerged in water or subjected to high levels of humidity. However, they are a practical solution for products that may encounter occasional moisture exposure, such as items stored in refrigerators or used in damp environments.

Waterproof labels are made to endure prolonged exposure to moisture. Unlike water-resistant labels, which can succumb to moisture over time, waterproof labels shield every component from the adhesive to the top coat. This construction makes them ideal for products that may be submerged in water or stored in damp environments, such as water bottle labels or bath products.

Finally, weatherproof labels are engineered to withstand a broad spectrum of environmental challenges beyond mere moisture exposure. While they share some characteristics with waterproof labels, including durable adhesives and protective coatings, weatherproof labels go a step further by addressing additional hazards like UV light exposure, extreme temperatures and abrasion.

Which should you choose?

When determining whether to use waterproof, water-resistant or weatherproof labels for your business, consider these factors:

  • Environmental conditions: Consider the conditions to which your products will be exposed. If your products are primarily subjected to moisture, waterproof or water-resistant labels may suffice. However, if they face a wider array of environmental hazards such as sunlight, temperature fluctuations or rough handling, weatherproof labels are a better solution.
  • Label longevity: Think about the expected service life of your labels in relation to your product’s shelf life and usage. For products requiring long-term durability, such as outdoor equipment or chemical containers subject to HazCom regulations, weatherproof labels with high-quality top coatings offer superior performance.
  • Specific application requirements: Consider any unique requirements or regulatory standards applicable to your industry or product category. For instance, if your labels need to maintain readability throughout years of outdoor storage or exposure to harsh chemicals, opt for materials like vinyl or polyester with strong top coatings.
  • Budget considerations: While weatherproof labels typically offer enhanced durability and versatility, they may come at a slightly higher cost compared to waterproof labels. Factor in your budget constraints alongside your performance requirements to strike the right balance between cost-effectiveness and durability.

Labeling systems for every need

Choosing your label type requires careful consideration of your product’s environmental exposure, longevity needs application requirements and budget considerations—but fortunately, no matter which label type you choose, Quadrel has high-quality labeling systems to ensure fast and accurate application. Reach out to our team today to find the right system for you.