Polypropylene vs Polyethylene Which Label Material

When should you use PP labels? Which synthetic material should you choose for warning and product labels? This guide will help you make an informed choice as to whether you should use Polypropylene or Polyethylene substrates.

We are often asked the PP or PE question and whilst all synthetic label materials might be described as being closely related they have quite different applications and uses in mind, but what are they?

clear on clear packaging

Clear Polypropylene Labels

To create that no look label you use a transparent Polypropylene (PP) material. This allows a label to give all of the vital information required whilst showcasing the product. The material has all the water-resistant qualities of other PP versions used in conjunction with a clear bottle making the clear on clear packaging you see often on high-end cosmetics and shampoo labels.

White Polypropylene Labels

A slightly more rigid material suitable for most applications and as its highly durable its used often where chemicals and scratch resistance is required. When the intended use is long-term outside this is often the material of choice too. Although it’s more rigid it can still be used for peel and reseal labels.

Metallised Polypropylene Labels

With the same oil and water resistance qualities as the white PP and clear PP it differentiates itself with light reflecting qualities. With finishes possible from gold to silver to brushed chrome and holographic, it can create some of the most premium looking labels.

Holographic Polypropylene Labels

Holographic PP has all the characteristics of the others but instead of the silver shimmer, you get a multicoloured shimmer. Sorry, we’ve got no photos, it’s rarely used and the only client using it is… a little shy.

Polyethylene Labels:

Ideal for flexible packaging as it allows flex and stretch. Ideal for squeezable bottles and for labelling plain pouches. Its downside is that it won’t last long in outdoor applications, although for something like shampoo it would be ideal. As it can tear more easily than a PP label it is often used as a tamper evident label on jar lids.

Would you like more information let us know and we can talk you through the options, contact us on 01440 712 273.