Why Are Shrink Sleeve Labels Important?

As you walk down store aisles, you see more and more shrink sleeve labels then ever before.  Shrink sleeve labels are a fast-growing part of packaging for consumer products.

If you’ve been living under a rock, just go down the dairy and juice aisles of your local grocery store and you’ll see shrink sleeves wrapped around milk, juices, soda, drinkable yogurts and protein shake containers.  Then go to the beer and spirit aisles, and you’ll see shrink sleeve labels on aluminum cans and glass spirit bottles.  It doesn’t matter which aisle you walk down from household items to vitamins and nutraceuticals, tool and fasteners to yard and garden supplies, you will see shrink sleeve labels provide brand awareness and greater packaging functionality.

Packaging market research firm AWA estimates that shrink sleeve labeling will grow in excess of 5% a year through 2025.

How is a shrink label made?

Shrink Sleeve Cans

First, each product’s artwork is expertly manipulated and distorted electronically to properly proportion the artwork to the container’s shape and contours.  Shrink sleeve label film is then printed on using flexographic or digital technology.  Then the printed film is seamed into a tube, inspected, and finished into the proper size roll.

After the shrink sleeve labels are applied over a bottle or package and cut to the proper length, the container is sent through either a steam or electric heat tunnel to conform the label precisely to the container.

Benefits of Shrink Sleeve Labels

As brands look for new ways to create shelf awareness and packaging with greater functionality, shrink sleeves offer many important benefits:

360-Degree Coverage — Going beyond the capabilities of a pressure sensitive label, shrink sleeves completely encapsulate the bottle.  This gives packaging designers an even broader “billboard” for eye-catching artwork, brand storytelling, and product information.

Complex Shapes — Shrink sleeves can easily conform to even the most complex shapes, including curves, cutouts, bottle caps, and even the grip portion of a trigger spray bottle.

Versatility — Applying artwork to a container via shrink sleeve can produce the same effect as screen printing.  This means that brands can easily change out that artwork.  Instead of tying up a lot of capital with pre-printed containers, they can stock a generic container and adjust their shrink sleeve artwork to suit various changes.  This is ideal for brands that offer seasonal and limited release items.

Tamper Evidence and Security — Shrink sleeves labels offer a way for brands to add tamper-evidence functionality to a container.  This stands to be increasingly important in the era following the pandemic, as shoppers have developed an intensified interest in the safety and purity of their foods.

Informational Space — If your label needs a lot of space for nutritional claims and dietary benefits, plus regulatory and ingredient information, the 360 degree label format can provide the needed space for all necessary information.

Sustainability — In the past, shrink sleeves were not recyclable in standard recycling processes, even if the bottles they encapsulated were.  That meant conscientious consumers had to peel shrink sleeves off their bottles, recycle the bottles, and throw out the sleeves.  Now, however, recyclability is a key focus within the packaging and printing industries.  New developments in the type of shrink sleeve label films produced let sleeves stay on PET plastic bottles and get fully recycled.  This new PET shrink sleeve label material meets the Association of Plastic Recyclers Critical Guidance Protocol for Clear PET Packaging with label and closure requirements.

Shrink Sleeve Bottles

Another key development in shrink sleeve label material is the continued development of film with a significant post-consumer waste content.

Contact Us

For more information about shrink sleeve labels, to receive samples or talk with our sales and service group about a specific project, please contact us at info@lauterbachgroup.com
or call us at 262-820-8130.



Specialty Inks

Specialty Inks


As our digital platform expands, so do our capabilities. In July, we added the HP Indigo 6K press to our facility, growing the Lauterbach Group portfolio. This technology allows us endless opportunities to provide unique and value-add security decorations and embellishment which will help our clients’ brand standout on a crowded shelf.

Specifically for the 6K, these new capabilities include the addition of invisible, neon and metallic ink sets.

Invisible ink in shades of yellow and blue will only be visible under a UV light.
Neon ink in shades of pink, yellow, orange and green will make any print stand out in daylight and especially under a black light or UV light.
Metallic ink gives the look of foil and can be shaded to any hue of metallic shimmer that you require.

Our digital presses allow us to make each label different using true variable print image technology.  We can print variable design like mosaic and collage effects, print special messages uniquely in a batch (think of having every 500 labels a winner for a promotion or unique words of wisdom on your labels) as well as serialization or sequential numbering. Pair this with our invisible inks and you have a unique security feature on your label that keeps your product validity safe.

At Lauterbach Group, we are growing our portfolio to keep your brand unique and your packaging secure. We are excited about helping our clients with their packaging needs and perfecting labels together.  Find out more by contacting us today!


Why Total Labeling Design Matters!

When it comes to retail sales, first impressions really matter. Consumers decide within seconds whether they will purchase a product. It is reported by Nielsen that “consumers are considering multiple options leaving huge opportunities for labels to make an impact” and “that upward of 70% of purchasing decisions are made at the shelf.”

A label design is not just what great graphic design is presented; it is the entire design of the pressure sensitive or shrink sleeve label. This includes label sizing, materials used and decoration enhancements used to highlight your products on a crowded retail shelf. The total design of a label carries the pertinent information your customer needs to develop an opinion about the quality of your product and tells a story about your product and the people behind the creation of the product.

There are simple characteristics which help create a total design that properly tells your product’s story and creates recognition.

1. Does the label size fit the product correctly in shape and fit the package properly? Are there gaps or does the label overhang the product, does the label have wrinkles when it is applied the products bottle or package?
2. Has the correct material and adhesive been selected to perform in the correct environmental setting of heat, cold or moisture?
3. Does the products package require 360 degrees of presentation to help the products presentation on the shelf which is provided by a shrink sleeve label?
4. Can simple decoration enhancement like spot gloss or matte varnishes, raised or tactile varnishes, foils and embossing help make your product stand out on the shelf?

We are obsessed with perfecting labels with our clients! Call us at 262-820-8130 or email us at info@lauterbachgroup.com for help or questions.


Lauterbach Group Expands Shrink Sleeve Capabilities

The Lauterbach Group is excited to expand our shrink sleeve capabilities and capacity with the addition of AccraSeam Shrink Sleeve Seamer and Shrink Sleeve Inspection machines.

The AccraSeam is the fastest on the market and precisely seams material while holding lay-flat tolerances at 2,000 feet per minute. The fully automated lay-flat adjustments, and servo-based positioning allows operator access and greatly improved setup times.

The lay-flat quality check system provides automatic inspections for seam integrity, solvent presence, and splice detection, as well as on-machine reports for each roll produced to ensure exceptional product quality.

We continue to expand our product offering and expertise in shrink sleeves labels. We are excited about supporting our clients’ needs for highly creative designs with intricate decorations and embellishments including foil, raised, matte and spot varnish sleeves to highlight our client’s products on a crowded retail shelf.

We are obsessed with perfecting labels with our clients! Call us at 262-820-8130 or email us at info@lauterbachgroup.com for help or questions!