Category Archive: Label Solutions

Challenges in Label Design – Shampoo Bottles

One of the most challenging products to label is, believe it or not, a shampoo bottle. The beginning considerations are pretty basic: What kind of plastic is the bottle made of? Is it a fully squeezable bottle? Semi-squeezable? Fully rigid? This lets us know how flexible the label needs to be.

The real challenge comes from silicone. You know those sticker sheets you used to get as a kid where the stickers would peel easily off of that smooth, white paper? The reason the stickers came off so easily is because the paper was silicone treated. Plastic shampoo bottles are typically made through a process known as plastic injection molding, where liquid plastic is injected into a mold hollowed into the desired shampoo bottle shape. To get the finished bottles to release from the molds faster, shops often coat the molds with a silicon release agent, similar to the one used on sticker sheets. This release agent winds up coating the bottles as well.

As you can imagine, a coating designed for easy release makes it difficult for a label to adhere. Some bottles are flame treated, a process that burns off the silicone without melting the bottle. Flame treated bottles are much easier to label. Sometimes however, the silicone release agent is actually mixed into the plastic itself, so flame treating it away simply isn’t an option.

Don’t get us wrong, we can supply a label for each of these scenarios. It’s simply a matter of knowing what we’re up against so we can provide a label that’s up to the task. That’s why we ask the questions we do. Most companies don’t know how their bottles are made, but a quick inquiry to their manufacturer can save rounds of failed label designs.

The Tough Questions

In our last blog we walked you through the basics, the questions we ask to get things moving. But on the way to crafting the perfect label solution, there are more questions to be asked, questions that change with the application. Here are some examples:

How is the product packaged? This can entail many aspects of a project. Are we providing a label for a bottle? If so, what type of line is it filled on? If it’s wet and messy and liquid is likely to spill over onto the area where the label will be applied, that calls for a different solution than a label that goes on in a dry environment. What is the application temperature? The service temperature? A label could be applied in a 35°F environment, but then the product could go on to be used in a -20°F environment. That has to be taken into consideration. Will the label be applied by hand or by an automated machine? If the label will be applied by a machine, more factors come into play. Orientation becomes critical. We have to know exactly how the label feeds off the roll. Does the side, top, or bottom of the label have to roll off first? What are the requirements of the machine? If the machine can handle a roll with a 20 in. outer diameter, and we provide a 10 in. diameter roll you’ll be stopping your line twice as often as you need to.

What conditions will the product be subjected to? The label solutions we provide need to withstand the same conditions as the products they’re being applied to. In the case of outdoor recessed lighting for example, UL safety labels are required that need to last the life of the product. Knowing the conditions allows us to provide solutions that are up to the task.

Are there any concerns with current labels? If past labels have failed, we need to make sure we provide solutions that won’t. We once worked with a customer who sold packs of baseball cards. People would peel price labels from cheaper card sets and place them over the price labels of more expensive sets. We were able to provide a tamper-resistant solution that put an end to this.

Does the label need to be removed? If you’re supplying fine crystal ware, you want your end users to be able to remove the labels from your products, but you don’t want them to remove those labels in the store. We can employ special label adhesives that break down when exposed to a certain temperature of water. This way customers can’t peel off the labels in the store, but with a wash cloth and some hot water at home the adhesive dissolves and the labels are easily removed.

The goal is to understand what an end user experiences once they have the product in their hands and to work backwards from there. We put those considerations together with the concerns of our customers, and provide a custom label solution that takes care of everyone’s needs.

The Fastest Service in the Industry

At Star Label Products, we’re focused on providing the highest quality label solutions for your product. To start that process, we ask our customers the basics of their application:

What are you labeling? This is the most important question, for obvious reasons. We work with multiple adhesives and processes, allowing us to tailor solutions to the exact needs of a project. That all starts with finding out the “what.”

Do you have artwork? If so, can you share it with us? We have a highly skilled Graphics Department here at Star Label. They can prepare your artwork for label printing and converting, or help craft a design that will make your product jump off the shelf.

How do you need these labels supplied? Should they be on a roll? Do you want individual labels? Should there be multiple labels on one sheet? Once again, we are committed to providing exactly what you need.

Are there different versions? If you’re looking to label a line of products, such as fragrances, we can provide variations on the same label design. We can give each label a unique look, while preserving a theme that lets customers know these products are all part of the same line.

How many labels do you need? This helps us determine what printing method to employ to provide you with the most cost effective solution.

What’s the time frame? We’re proud of all aspects of the service we provide here, but we are most proud of our turnaround time.  You won’t find anyone faster in the industry. And that’s a good thing, as many of our clients need their labels yesterday. We understand this, which is why at Star Label you don’t pay extra for emergency service. The most important part of getting you the solutions you need is getting them to you when you need them. And we’re happy to oblige.