We have many customers who use our labels on bottles and jars of all shapes and sizes.
Their contents range from homemade beers and condiments, to cosmetics products such as essential oils and creams.
While choosing a label for your bottles and jars might be the last thing on your to-do list, it can become quite a time consuming problem, with customers struggling to work out which label size, material, and adhesive are the best for their particular needs.
This blog post aims to provide a few tips and tricks that we’ve picked up over the years to help you find the perfect bottle label and/or jar label!
Why Is It So Difficult To Find A Suitable Label?
The main hurdle in finding the perfect label for a bottle or jar is the fact that these types of containers tend to be unusual in shape – ranging from simple cylinders to shapes with a myriad of curves and angles. This means that you may end up with a very limited space that is suitable for adding a label to – especially as it is more difficult for labels to adhere properly to a curved surface compared to a flat surface.
You also need to bear in mind the fact that bottles and jars are commonly stored or used in environments that bring with them conditions that some labels may struggle with. For example, most of our bottle labels and jar labels are used as product labels for food, drink, and cosmetics products that will be stored and/or used in the kitchen or bathroom, where the labels may be exposed to water and heat (and may even be exposed to the contents of the bottle or jar they have been used to label).
You will therefore need to choose an appropriate label size for the space available on your containers, choose an adhesive that is strong enough to bond successfully with the surface of your containers (especially if they are curved), and choose a material is suitable for the environment in which your bottles or jars will be stored and/or used.
What Label Size Should I Choose?
We often receive enquiries from customers who need to source bottle labels or jar labels, but the only measurements they provide us with are the width, height, and/or volume of their containers – which are useless measurements when it comes to choosing the right label size.
Instead you need to determine how much of the surface area of your bottles or jars are suitable for labels – you need an area that is as flat and even as possible, so that the adhesive has the best possible chance of creating a secure bond with your containers. From this you can work out which label size(s) would fit into that particular surface area of your bottles or jars.
Some customers decide that they want one label to wrap around their containers but quickly discover that there aren’t many long and thin label sizes to choose from. While it CAN be useful to overlap a label (so that the adhesive can’t peel up from a curved surface), it is difficult to apply these labels accurately and only part of the label can be seen at any one time (which means only part of your design and/or text will be visible unless you turn the container around).
A much better solution is to divide your design and/or text over multiple, smaller labels, which can allow you to be much more creative with your design AND to use the shape of your containers much more effectively. For example, you can use multiple labels to create a “front” and “back” for each container (with the most visually important information, such as your product name, on the “front” label and more detailed information, such as the ingredients and/or instructions for use, on the “back” label) – you may also want to use the lid or cap of your container as a further space to decorate (providing it is large enough for this purpose).
What Material Should I Choose?
When choosing bottle labels and jar labels, you should consider a number of factors to make sure that the material you choose is the right one for your label application.
First, consider any environmental or application factors that may require a more specialised material or adhesive; for example, you should choose Freezer Labels if your containers will be stored in deep freeze conditions, select from our Waterproof Labels if your containers will be used outdoors or indoors where they may be exposed to water, or opt for one of our Removable Labels if you want to be able to remove your labels without damaging your bottles or jars.
Most of our customers want to label bottles and jars containing food and drink products or cosmetics, which means the labels need to survive contact with water (or the contents of the container they have been applied to); the best materials to use for these applications are our Waterproof Labels BUT these materials are more expensive than paper labels – as a budget-friendly option, you may wish to try our Splashproof Labels, which provide limited protection against water so that they can be wiped clean and dry if they are lightly splashed.
Once you have considered the practical requirements of your label application, you can then take into account any personal preference you have for the overall appearance and finish of your bottles and jars (and their labels). For example, customers who want a more decorative appearance will usually choose a gloss finish over a matt finish, or choose a transparent or coloured label over a plain white label.
Request A Sample To Try Before You Buy
It can be very difficult to discern from a website listing whether or not a particular label size (and material) is suitable for your bottles or jars, which is why we highly recommend narrowing down your options to a couple of choices and then requesting a sample of each so you can apply them and see for yourself whether or not they are appropriate for the job in hand.
Simply fill in our online Sample Request Form or contact our Customer Service Team to discuss the samples you would like to try and we’ll put a few samples in the post. You can then double check if the label size works, choose the material or finish that looks just right, and make sure that your labels will survive if they get a bit wet or come into contact with the contents of your containers.
To find the perfect bottle labels and jar labels, we recommend taking a look at our List Of Label Materials page (to view all of the material options available), our List of Label Widths and List of Label Heights pages (to view all of the label size options available), or having a go with our Label Finder (to enter the things you want your labels to be to generate a shortlist of options).