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Picking the Right Label for Writing On

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There are a range of options for any application and use-case, with some providing a more bespoke solution, but typically we recommend one of two options. Not all labels are created equal when it comes to writing information on them, as different finishing options and materials used to achieve certain properties can have a negative impact on how print-receptive they are.

If your label needs to be durable, we suggest a write and seal matt synthetic label. This label combines the durability of synthetic materials with the ability to use regular pens, but even more durability is added through the ability to further protect the print with a part lamination. This is a great label option for electrical and mechanical testing, or even just for labelling items which could be subject to friction and rubbing.

If your label isn’t being exposed to any sort of harsh conditions and is just being applied to a normal surface such as a box or paper sheet, then a standard matt paper is likely to meet your needs well. These labels can cope with typical office use, and are quick, easy, and cost effective.

As with standard paper sheets, uncoated paper is very print-receptive and works with anything from pencils to pens and markers. One thing to watch out for paper labels is whether the label has a varnish or not, as a flood varnish coating (whether it’s gloss or matt) will cover the entire label with a layer between the actual paper and where you’re trying to write. This can be particularly problematic when using pencils. Coated papers can also be tricky to write on for the same reason.

Ballpoint ink pens can often be more successful for writing onto labels than pencils, but still encounter similar issues with a flood coat varnish – the main difference is that with additional pressure, some ink can still be seen scratched onto the surface. Like with pencils, a matt label is much better than a gloss label.

This material is not receptive to ink, with it smudging off and hardly leaving any remnants of written text. However, matt synthetics such as matt polypropylene or matt polyethylene are great options for durable labels, as they have all the benefits of synthetic labels while still being compatible with ballpoint pens.

Just because a label needs to be written onto, doesn’t mean that it can’t be durable. A very popular option for adding extra durability to a label, particularly in a way which protects writing, is by using a write and seal laminate. Call us today so our team at Labelservice can help find the best label to suit your needs.