Waterproof Labels

Waterproof vs Water-resistant Labels

One of the most frequently asked questions we get at LaserInkjetLabels is, "Do you carry any waterproof labels?" and "What is the difference between waterproof and water-resistant labels?". Many online label sites use these terms to describe labels that they sell, but is it accurate?

The most important point that needs to be made is that the only true waterproof label are ones that are either laminated, varnished or screen printed. Screen printing is a totally different printing method than laser and inkjet printing so it does not apply to this conversation. Lamination is a process in which a thin clear film is secured over the label after it has been printed, therefore keeping the ink secured from the elements. Varnish is a liquid material that is added after printing that protects the label and ink from the elements. Laminates and varnished can be added to paper or synthetic materials.

A true waterproof label would need to be printed on a synthetic material like vinyl or polypropylene and either be varnished or laminated. If a paper label is varnished or laminated, it would still be very water-resistant but if water was to come in contact with the paper, the paper will washboard up and start to decay. Since synthetic materials are already waterproof, water coming in contact with the product is not a problem.

The problem in the past with inkjet printing is that the ink cannot be absorbed into synthetic materials and will just sit and pool on top, never really drying. That is until recently. Laser Inkjet Labels.com now provides an inkjet printable synthetic material that comes close to being waterproof but still needs to be called water-resistant. We call it our White PolyGloss Labels. Think of this product like it has a lamination that absorbs inkjet inks yet repels water (pigment based inks are required). The only difference between this product and one that is actually laminated, is that if the label is rubbed vigorously when wet, that ink will displace. See the product under water here:

Pics of PolyGloss Labels or Video of PolyGloss Labels

While we have every confidence in these new labels, we always strongly recommend and encourage that you request samples and test them on your printer and application.

 

Request Waterproof Labels Samples Here