shrink sleeves

Everything You Need to Know About Shrink Sleeves

Are you looking for the most effective way of promoting your nutraceutical products? Shrink sleeve labels are a proven success when it comes to factors you should consider when promoting products in this growing market. Shrink sleeves bring numerous benefits to your nutraceutical marketing. 

Brand Integrity 

The best way to protect a brand is through sleek, smooth packaging and labeling free of any errors. The flexibility of shrink sleeves maintains the integrity of the brand by shrinking tightly to the shape of any container. Brand owners have the freedom to choose any container design without worrying about the label producing wrinkles or air bubbles. Additionally, shrink sleeves provide full coverage of the container, which allows for a variety of creative and persuasive designs. The label space allows for greater communication with the consumer, including product information compliant with the FDA, a crucial requirement for nutraceuticals.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Importance of Packaging: Why it’s Necessary to Take Branding Seriously 

On-Shelf Effect 

Studies have shown that the use of shrink sleeve labeling increases customer appeal while the a product is on the shelf. AC Nielsen ran a study in 2011 requested by the Eastman Chemical Company to measure the preference of label format among 800 customers in a variety of products. According to the results, shrink sleeve labels created the greatest persuasive impact on customers. In particular, the combination of shrink sleeves and highly contoured bottles ranked the highest in all five measured categories: 

  1. Impact

  2. Attention

  3. Empathy

  4. Uniqueness

  5. Appeal 

Shrink sleeve labels are an overall preferable option compared to other types of labeling. 

Cost-Effective Advantages 

Shrink sleeves produce cost-cutting benefits beyond just creating an emotional response in potential clients and maintaining brand integrity. For instance, the full coverage nature of shrink sleeves offers sealing benefits to container caps. This reduces the manufacturer’s need to spend on separate, tamper-evident bands and caps, while offering an effective way of protecting the customers from altered or tampered nutraceutical products. In addition, costs can be reduced by eliminating the need for labels for front and back coverage, colors in the container itself, and UV protection for the package.

Add to that the proven consumer appeal of shrink sleeves and you can see how shrink sleeves can help you reduce costs and increase profits. Century Label is always in touch with the latest in packaging and labeling solutions. Improve the visibility of your brand with shrink sleeves or other options by contacting us for a prompt quote for your chosen products. 

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Shrink Sleeves 101

Shrink sleeves are an innovative, cost-effective labeling and packaging solution. In its simplest form, a shrink sleeve consists of a heat-sensitive material that is seamed on one side with an opening on the top and bottom to form a sleeve. The sleeve is placed on the product either by hand or machine and heat is applied to shrink the sleeve onto the item. But what else should you know about shrink sleeves? Here are five things to consider when deciding if a shrink sleeve solution will work for you.

1. Sizing

When designing and ordering a shrink sleeve, a number of important measurements are taken. The slit width is the total width of the sleeve before it is seamed. Slightly smaller than the slit width, the critical art width is the area of the sleeve that is printed. A shrink sleeve’s layflat width is the width of the seamed sleeve or the width of the finished product. The cut length is the total height of the sleeve and the critical art height is the height of the printed area on the sleeve. Generally, the critical art height is 4 mm less than the cut length, leaving 2 mm on the top and the bottom of the sleeve without printing.

2. Printing & Varnishing

After the size of the shrink sleeve has been determined, art for the sleeve is sized appropriately and prepared for the printing process. In order to improve the scratch resistance, the imprint is applied to the inside of the material. Depending on how the sleeve is being applied to the container, a varnish may need to be applied over the printing to further ensure that the imprint does not scratch and the sleeves run smoothly on the application equipment. 

3. Perforations

Perforations are often used on shrink sleeves that will be applied to bottles with screw off tops to provide tamper resistance. They can also be applied to the side of a sleeve to allow easy removal. There can be up to two perforations per sleeve.

4. Seam & Fold Areas

When designing a shrink sleeve, the seam and fold areas must be considered. Important design components, such as ingredient information or UPC codes, should not be on a fold, as the fold can render these unreadable. Seams can fall in the center of the sleeve or off center.

5. Shrink Sleeve Finishing

Shrink sleeves can either be individually cut or finished on a roll depending on the application method. For many machine-applied shrink sleeves, the sleeves are finished on a roll; in this instance, the outer diameter of the roll, core size, and rewind position of the roll are critical to ensure it will work on the application equipment. 

Century Label Wins Pewter Awards In the Annual Gold Ink Awards Competition

Both winning shrink sleeves were printed using the HP Indigo 8000.

Printing Impressions, the publication that produces the annual Gold Ink Awards, announced that Century Label has won two Pewter Awards in the Digital Printing, Labels & Packaging category. Both winning entries were shrink sleeves for craft beer cans.

The shrink sleeve for Great North Aleworks Tie Dyed pale ale is an eye catching piece that contrasts a variety of colors with a stark white. The sleeves accommodate the customer's intricate white plating without registration issues, and a frosted look on the clear areas was created using the HP Indigo varnish.

Sun King Brewing created The Eighteenth Sun imperial wheat IPA in collaboration with 18th Street Brewery for the CANvitational, a special annual event that Sun King holds along with dozens of breweries across the country in celebration of canned beer. The sleeve couples an intricate design with vibrant colors to create a visually stunning look.

The Gold Ink Awards competition is open to all creators and producers of printed materials, and encompasses nearly 50 categories within commercial printing, magazines, books, catalogs, digital printing and packaging. This year’s Gold Ink Award winners were chosen from nearly 1000 entries; winning pieces were chosen based on print quality, technical difficulty and overall visual effect.

A full list of this year’s winners can be found here.

Century Label Wins PEAK Award from PSDA

The Print Services & Distribution Association (PSDA) has selected Century Label as a Silver Award winner in the 2016 PEAK Awards. 

PSDA’s PEAK Awards program recognizes excellence in the print industry promoting projects that display innovation, excellent quality, and produce high return on investment. The judging panel assessed several entries to determine which ones exhibited Print Excellence and Knowledge

Held in partnership with the Print Education & Research Foundation (PERF), the PEAK Awards recognize industry firms that innovate and help customers grow. Since 1995, the program has awarded teams that make bold decisions, connect with customers in new ways, and deliver benefits to end users.

Century Label won this prestigious industry award for its shrink sleeve created for Hoosier Brewing’s Red Flyer Ale. The sleeve featured tight registration detail despite a multitude of raster elements and maintained vibrant reds and yellows using 4-color process as opposed to spot PMS colors.

This is Century Label’s second PEAK Award in as many years. In 2015, its shrink sleeve for Tin Man Brewing Company’s Herald Imperial Pumpkin Ale won 1st Place under the category “Best Digital Solution for Customer”. This year’s awards eliminated category distinctions for entries. 

“Having our work recognized by the Print Services & Distribution Association is an honor,” said Heidi Chambers, Executive Director of Century Label. “We are proud of how our processes and adherence to G7 standards allow us to meet—and exceed—the demands of our customers. Winning this award is an affirmation of our commitment to producing excellent work.”

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