United Label deals with all aspects of the label-making and digital label printing process, and we have articles in our library about branding, design, logos, fonts and typography, and much more. In this article, we’re going to discuss an important choice that manufacturers and marketing folks have make when designing their final product and packaging: glossy vs. matte labels.
The Differences Between Glossy and Matte Finishes
The primary difference between these two types of finishes is in their appearance and texture.
- Glossy Labels: These labels have a shiny finish, which gives them a polished and reflective appearance. They tend to have vibrant colors and high contrast, making them visually striking. Glossy labels are often chosen for products where you want the colors to pop or for designs that benefit from a shiny, eye-catching look.
- Matte Labels: Matte labels have a non-reflective, flat finish. They lack the shine of glossy labels, offering a more subtle and subdued appearance. Matte labels are known for their smooth texture and are often preferred for a more elegant or understated look. They can also be easier to read under various lighting conditions because they lack glare.
When choosing between glossy and matte labels, consider the aesthetic you want to achieve, as well as the practical aspects such as readability and durability.
Advantages of Matte Labels Over Glossy Labels
So why would a product marketer choose a matte label over a glossy label for their final design? It depends on what they need. Here are some advantages when choosing your label:
- Readability: Matte labels are often easier to read because they don’t reflect light like glossy labels do. In environments with varying lighting conditions, matte labels can be more legible as they reduce glare.
- Professional Look: Matte labels can give a more sophisticated and understated appearance, which might be desirable for certain products or brands aiming for a more elegant or premium aesthetic.
- Fingerprints and Smudges: Glossy labels tend to show fingerprints and smudges more visibly due to their reflective surface. Matte labels, being non-reflective, are less prone to showing these marks, making them potentially easier to maintain.
- Versatility: Matte labels can suit a broader range of designs and styles, offering a neutral background that complements various color schemes and design elements.
However, glossy labels have their advantages too, such as their vibrant appearance and ability to make colors pop, which can be particularly effective for certain products and designs.
Advantages of Glossy Labels Over Matte Labels
We now know why matte labels are a great choice for some product marketing applications. But glossy labels have their own set of advantages that might make them preferable in certain situations:
- Vibrant Appearance: Glossy labels have a reflective surface that enhances the colors and makes them look more vibrant and eye-catching. This quality can be particularly beneficial for products that rely on bold, striking visuals to stand out on shelves or in marketing materials.
- Water and Stain Resistance: The smooth, glossy surface of these labels can be more resistant to water and certain stains compared to matte labels, making them more durable in some environments or when exposed to moisture.
- Modern Look: For certain products or brands, the high-shine finish of glossy labels can convey a modern, sleek, and modern appearance. This can be appealing, especially for items where a glossy finish aligns with the overall brand image. (Not sure about your brand image? Check out our guide to brainstorming corporate identity to help you figure it out!)
- Enhanced Detail and Contrast: Glossy labels tend to enhance the details and contrast in designs, making them ideal for intricate or detailed artwork that benefits from the added depth and richness.
Keep in mind, however, glossy labels also have their drawbacks, such as being more prone to showing fingerprints, smudges, and scratches due to their reflective surface. They can also be more challenging to read in certain lighting conditions because of the glare.
Choosing Between Glossy Labels and Matte Labels
United Label is here to help you print the best digital label for your needs. Ultimately, the choice between glossy and matte labels depends on the specific requirements of the product, the desired visual effect, and the overall brand or design preferences.
Contact United Label today for a free digital label printing quote using the contact form on this page, or by calling 973.589.6500 today.