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Versions & Quantity

How to Measure for Your Labels

To determine the size of the label you need, there are certain considerations to keep in mind:

  • The size of the container you're labeling: The best way to determine the size of your container is to measure its flattest surface area. Don't measure from top to bottom, as many containers have curved edges, which can throw off measurements.
  • How much text you're including: Ingredient listings, directions and warnings will take up space on your label. It's important to know ahead of time how much information your custom labels will feature.
  • The label type that suits your product and container: If you require extra space to include important information or for an elaborate design, consider a front-and-back or wrap-around label.

Once you've determined the label dimensions you need, visit our quote page to select the size that's perfect for your products.

Artwork Specifications

Please note that it makes good sense to check your print labels design (and spelling) before sending them to us - corrections or modifications made after the proofing stage will incur extra charges, as we need to repeat the entire pre-press process to incorporate the new files.

Software Supported (Mac and PC versions)

  • Adobe Photoshop - versions up to and including CS6
  • Adobe Illustrator - versions up to and including CS6

For all customized labels, our strongly preferred format is an Adobe Illustrator EPS file with all fonts converted to outlines, as this is the format we print directly from on our digital presses. Click here for an explanation of the font outlining process.

Note:

If you are creating multiple print label and sticker designs, please send each design (or version) individually in its own file to optimize the pre-press process and avoid manipulation errors.

Media

You may upload your artwork when placing an order online or send us files via email. We can receive email attachments up to about 10 Megabytes, but keep in mind that your outbound email server may have smaller limits. If you're sending many files and/or email proves to be unreliable, you can also upload files to our secure FTP site – please contact us for details.  If you prefer you may also burn a CD-ROM and send it to us.

Full Bleeds and Layout Requirements

A full bleed is when the color “bleeds” off the label. If your label design or background color is intended to cover the entire surface of the label, we will need a 1/16" (0.0625") bleed around each edge of the label. For example, if you have a 2” x 1” label where the color bleeds off the edges, you should size your design to 2.125" x 1.125" as this ensures a 1/16” bleed around the entire label. Click here for a detailed example of bleeds.

It is also wise to leave at least 1/16" (0.0625") of clear space (i.e. no significant design elements or text) inside the die-line to allow for slight shifts during die-cutting.
Click here for a detailed example of clear space layouts.

Other Considerations

Image mode and resolution are extremely important to ensure correct color and clarity. All raster (image-based) files need to have a resolution of 300 dpi. at actual size. Our presses handle CMYK mode only - all RGB images will be converted to CMYK, which can cause extreme shifts in color. If in doubt, please take advantage of our free press proof offer (shipping charges apply), which allows you to see how the finished print labels will look before going into production.

Additional Resources

Die Lines for Special Label Shapes
How Die Cutting Works
Top 10 Label Artwork Mistakes

Custom Food Labels

Custom Food Labels

With advanced printing capabilities and high-quality materials, custom food labels from Lightning Labels gives your product packaging design an enticing, professional look that reflects the quality of your products.

Lightning Labels' custom food labels may be the missing ingredient in your product packaging. Creating unique and attractive designs for food labels is crucial to your products' success among shoppers. Our cutting-edge printing process and top-quality label materials ensure your design is captured perfectly and professionally on every custom food label. Whether you sell baked goods, jarred preserves, sauces, spices or salsa, Lightning Labels can provide custom food labels that suit your products perfectly.

Our printing process for custom food labels is the most advanced in the industry and can print labels featuring even the most intricate of designs or the finest of print. If your custom bottle labels require finely printed text for directions or warning information, Lightning Labels can print in small, clean and legible fonts of all kinds. Additionally, our advanced technology can print photo-quality images and graphics. Every detail you put into your design for custom food labels will be preserved to ensure you can effectively get your message across.

Lightning Labels Offers Versatile and Durable Materials, Shapes and Sizes for Custom Food Labels

National food retailers, boutique treat or beverage makers, and everything in between can benefit from attractive and affordable custom food labels. Our variety of options for label materials, shapes, sizes and finishes offer several levels of customization, guaranteeing you find the perfect label solution for your products.

Lightning Labels offers many durable labeling materials, the most popular of which is our BOPP. BOPP labels are water- and oil-resistant, and they stand up to condensation from refrigerators and freezers. Your custom food label will continue looking as bold as the day it was placed on the bottle.

Foods packaged in jars, cans, bottles, boxes or containers of all kinds can be embellished with custom food labels, as Lightning Labels offers many shapes and sizes. For gourmet foods, that require a more stylish, sophisticated label, our Estate #9 is a strong option, as it features a creamy, textured finish that gives custom food labels a unique look.

Lightning Labels combines state-of-the-art printing technology with a variety of label materials for every purpose to create the perfect custom food label. Our printing process allows us the flexibility to print multiple designs on the same label material at no extra cost. It also means no set-up fees, no plate fees, no added fees for unlimited color, minimum quantities as low as 50 labels, and a lightning fast 48-72 hour turnaround time after proof approval. To top it off, we offer free ground shipping for online orders in the US and Canada. Each customer also gets personalized customer service with a dedicated, human representative assigned to each account. If you're not satisfied, then we haven't done our job –and that's why we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Get an instant quote with the click of a button. Buy custom labels now, or continue shopping!

Material Descriptions

Materials

BIOSTONE

One of our eco-friendly options that is actually made of stone—no trees are used. This material should not laminated.

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

Artwork Specifications

Laminates

High Gloss

High gloss is our most popular laminate. It is the least expensive option and provides protection for the label and a high gloss shiny finish.

Matte

The Matte Laminate provides your label with a dull, non-glossy finish. Some customers consider this achieves a more "natural" look.

Thermal Transfer

This is a gloss laminate that is designed to work with most over-printing thermal transfer printers. We do recommend you get samples first to test through your own printer before placing an order with this laminate.

UV Outdoor Gloss

As the name implies this is best used for labels that will be used outdoors. It has a high gloss finish with excellent UV resistance. It is best paired with our vinyl material for the most durable outdoor label.