FAQ – What’s The Difference Between A “Standard” Adhesive & A “Special” Adhesive?

All of our products are self-adhesive labels that are made with “pressure sensitive adhesives”; this simply means that the adhesives on our labels are tacky (sticky) under normal conditions and therefore only require the pressure of a finger or hand to create a successful adhesive bond.

Pressure sensitive adhesives can be broadly divided into “permanent adhesives” (designed to hold a label firmly in place and making it as difficult as possible to remove the label) and “removable adhesives” (designed to hold a label in place while it is needed before removing cleanly and easily from a surface without doing any damage or leaving behind any adhesive residue in the process). You may have noticed that we have a variety of labels that we describe as having either a “standard permanent adhesive” or a “standard removable adhesive” – you may also have noticed that we have other products that we describe as having “special” adhesives and you may have wondered what the difference is between these categories.

Essentially, a “standard” adhesive is a general purpose adhesive that has been designed to create a good adhesive bond between two surfaces under “normal” conditions. “Special” adhesives, meanwhile, are designed to create an adhesive bond that is suitable for a particular label application (and the specific set of environmental conditions or requirements that the application entails) – usually because a standard adhesive wouldn’t be able to produce and/or sustain a successful adhesive bond under those conditions.

At Label Planet, we have a variety of “special” adhesives, each of which has been manufactured to produce specific characteristics that make that adhesive well-suited to a particular label application or set of environmental conditions.

SUPER TACK ADHESIVE
This adhesive has been specially developed to create an extremely strong adhesive bond between a wide range of materials; the adhesive has extremely strong initial and ultimate tack, which means that it instantly creates an extremely strong adhesive bond at the moment a label is applied, which will then go on to strengthen and set into a stronger bond. Super tack adhesives are designed for label applications where a standard permanent adhesive simply cannot create and/or sustain a bond between two materials (usually because the materials are unusual in texture and/or the surface is curved or shaped in some manner) OR where there is an important need to make sure that the label is extremely difficult to remove (for example, because the label carries vital identifying information, health and safety warnings, and/or instructions for use).

Our Super Tack Labels (product code: ST) are paper labels with a super tack adhesive and can be printed using an inkjet printer or a laser printer OR they can be handwritten. These labels are made with our strongest permanent adhesive to date and are suitable for label applications that involve unusual materials and/or surfaces, that involve cold temperatures, or that require labels that will remain firmly in place over a long period of time and prove to be extremely difficult to remove.

HIGH TACK ADHESIVE
Similar to a super tack adhesive, a high tack adhesive offers a stronger adhesive bond than that which is created by standard permanent adhesives (although it is not as strong as a super tack adhesive). High tack adhesives have strong initial and ultimate tack and are capable of creating strong adhesive bonds between a wide range of materials and surface types.

Our High Tack Labels (product code: HT) are paper labels with a high tack adhesive and can be printed using an inkjet printer or a laser printer OR they can be handwritten. These labels are well-suited to label applications where a standard adhesive isn’t capable of creating and sustaining an adhesive bond OR where there is a need to make absolutely sure that the labels will remain firmly in place for an extended period of time.

MARINE ADHESIVE
The term “marine adhesive” is applied to adhesives that have been designed to create and sustain an adhesive bond in marine environments. Our marine adhesive conforms to the BS5609 part 2 standard for marine immersions to qualify for this certification, the adhesive undergoes a number of rigorous tests to ensure that it will work in tough marine conditions, including submersion in salt water for three months. This adhesive was developed specifically for labelling chemical drums that are shipped overseas (where the drums MUST remain clearly labelled even if they fall overboard).

We supply THREE product ranges with a marine adhesive; our Matt White Polyester Labels (product code: MWP) are made with matt white polyester and a marine adhesive, our Polyethylene Labels (product code: MWPE) are made with matt white polyethylene and a marine adhesive, and our Polyolefin Labels (product code: MWPO) are made with matt white polyolefin and a marine adhesive. All of these labels can be printed with a laser printer OR can be handwritten; our MWPE and MWPO labels can also be printed with an inkjet printer although this will not create waterproof print as inkjet inks tend to be water-based and so will run or smudge if the print gets wet. These waterproof labels are ideal for a wide range of applications that need tough and durable labels – especially any indoor or outdoor applications that may involve exposure to or immersion in water.

VOID ADHESIVE
This adhesive is used to make security labels in the form of tamper evident labels that leave behind the word “VOID” when a label is removed from an item. There are a variety of void adhesives, which provide visual evidence of tampering in this way – some will leave behind the word “VOID” (or another message) on the labelled item only, on the label itself only, or the adhesive layer will split to leave the message on both the labelled item and the label itself (this is how our VOID labels works).

Our VOID Labels (product code: SVP) are silver polyester labels with a VOID adhesive and can be printed using a laser printer (or handwritten). These labels are ideal for use as security labels on high value items, security seals on packaging or document folders, or as warranty labels on high or added value goods. They improve the security of these items by acting as a visual deterrent against tampering and by providing visual evidence that an item has, in fact, been tampered with or not.

DEEP FREEZE ADHESIVE
As the name suggests, this adhesive was designed to produce a permanent adhesive bond even when the labelled item is exposed to deep freeze conditions. Standard adhesives will usually struggle to produce and/or sustain an adhesive bond in extremely low temperatures, which makes a deep freeze adhesive an ideal alternative for any label application that involves exposure to or storage in colder temperatures.

Our Freezer Labels (product code: DF) are paper labels with a deep freeze adhesive and can be printed using a laser printer OR they can be handwritten (we do not recommend printing these labels with an inkjet printer as inkjet inks tend to be water-based, which means that your print will run or smudge when it comes into contact with condensation). These labels are ideal for any label application that involves deep freeze conditions, including food and drink labels or identification labels on research and/or medical samples. The labels can be applied onto items that are already frozen or that will be frozen at a later date and will maintain a good adhesive bond at temperatures between -40°C to +60°C.

WATER WASH OFF ADHESIVE
This adhesive provides a brilliant solution to the problem of labelling items safely and securely (as with a permanent adhesive) before removing the labels without damaging the items (as with a removable adhesive) so that they can be reused (and relabelled). Water wash off adhesives create a strong adhesive bond that breaks down when exposed to water; this means that a label will remain firmly in place while needed BUT will remove cleanly and easily when the labelled item is washed.

Our Water Wash Off Labels (product code: WW) are paper labels with a water wash off adhesive and can be printed using an inkjet printer or a laser printer OR they can be handwritten. These labels are ideal for use on reusable containers and particularly those used in the food and drink industry (either to hold ingredients or as product containers, such as jars and bottles) – the contents of a container can be safely and clearly identified before the label is washed away when the container is cleaned before being reused.

SUPER REMOVABLE ADHESIVE
Also known as a “glass removable” adhesive, this removable adhesive was developed specifically for use on delicate surfaces – such as glass and paper – which are likely to be damaged when a label is removed. The adhesive makes use of modern manufacturing methods and materials to create a light adhesive bond that will gently hold a label in place while it is needed before allowing that label to be removed without doing any damage in the process.

Our Super Removable Labels (product code: GREM) are paper labels with a super removable adhesive and can be printed using an inkjet printer or a laser printer OR they can be handwritten. These labels are ideal for temporarily labelling delicate items (especially those made of glass or paper) and are brilliant product labels that can be used to display pricing information on (gift) items such as vases and books.

You can view a full list of all of the different adhesives that are used to make our self-adhesive labels on our All Adhesives page; this page gives a brief description of each adhesive, along with information about the product range that it is used to make, and a link to the range page for that particular product, so you can find out more about or place an order for those particular labels.

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