Color Label Solutions

Color Label Solutions

Sunday, October 11, 2015

All Black

I have found, one of the most difficult labels to print was full-bleed, all black.  After some testing, I believe we have found two possible solutions to help customers who want to print all black labels.

All black printing, in the past, has print poorly; as every artifact of the print shows up.  Or the durable matte poly labels looked “washed out”.

Matte Black Labels

The problem is for certain products like the Vape label above, black is an important color for marketing.

At the same time, I get calls for gloss poly labels almost weekly.  Many customers want a durable gloss label; one that looks similar to labels with an over-laminate.
Laminated Label
Printing and then laminating/finishing, however, is a much more complicated process.  Plus the hardware is much more costly.  Most customers don’t want to go through the process to get a durable, glossy label using a laminate.

In the past, however, I’ve had difficulty finding a durable gloss poly that actually worked.    You may remember this post where I compared several gloss and clear poly options:

After getting some new 2” x 1” gloss poly labels at the same time as a customer who wanted to print full-bleed black, I decided to give it a try.

First I tested the new C7500 printer.  High resolution, very fast, durable and low ink cost.  Watch me print 100 4” x 6” labels in one minute:

And you may find our post on our first C7500 customer of interest:

So I tested the new gloss poly, die cut labels in the printer running full-bleed, all black labels.  And they printed great I thought.

C7500 Full-Bleed Black Labels
C7500 Full-Bleed Black Labels

Much better than I expected.  And I got the full-bleed printing correct on the first attempt.

After printing, I tested them in water; and the labels were water fast immediately.

But as with all of the gloss poly labels tested with the Epson encapsulated pigment ink, the ink was susceptible to alcohol with rubbing/abrasion.

But for most or many applications, this gloss poly label would seem to work well.

After the positive results using the C7500, I decided to test the new LX2000 printer as well.  This printer works well for printing full-bleed labels.  Read about the LX2000 here: 

The LX2000 prints great; but the print speed is significantly slower, the ink cost is much more expensive and the durability appears much less.

I printed the same label on the LX2000; and got great results.

LX2000 Black Labels
LX2000 Full Bleed Black Labels

And the label printed with the LX2000 was not only water proof, but also seemingly resistant to alcohol:

The HP pigment ink in the LX2000 worked well with this particular gloss poly.

Based on these results, I believe we now have options to print both all black and gloss poly labels.  But be aware; gloss poly is approximately 2X the price of matte poly.  Gloss labels are just more expensive.

So if you need to print a large quantity of water resistant gloss poly labels, the C7500 will work well.  If you need to add durability to alcohol, then you’ll need to use the LX2000.

When you need to print full-bleed or gloss labels, contact us.  We’ll help you select the best printer and label media to meet your needs.

Guy Mikel


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