Labels are usually wound on a cardboard core. They can have different positions on the roll.

Label substrates

In general, substrates for label production can be divided in two groups: paper and synthetic. We are only going to take a closer look at the most commonly used substrates, which are always in stock here at LabelProfi.

Paper substrates include:

  • uncoated paper (used for labels, which require inferior printing quality),
  • coated paper (used for high-quality labels),
  • thermal paper (used for variable data overprinting, e.g., declaration labels),
  • metallized paper (used for special visual effects or as a substitute for hot foil printing),
  • dark adhesive paper (used for covering incorrect packaging or other printed matter contents),
  • special paper (displaying special structure or color shade; used for wine labels, e.g.).

Synthetic substrates include:

  • polypropylene or PP (fairly durable and thermally non-expansive),
  • metallized PP (same characteristics as PP; used for labels with special metallic visual effects),
  • polyethylene or PE (more stretchable/flexible substrate; used for compressible packaging, e.g.),
  • polyester or PET (maximum durability and persistence).

In the process of label production planning, choosing the correct substrate-adhesive combination is of prime importance.


The adhesive, which is transferred onto the substrate, is chosen according to the surface of the label application, as well as according to environmental conditions, in which labeling, storage and consumption of the product take place. Choosing the wrong type of adhesive might cause the labels to roll up or even separate from the surface; on the other hand, it may not be possible to remove them from the surface when needed.

Adhesives fall into the following categories:

  • permanent (standard adhesion to most surfaces),
  • extra permanent (where strong adhesion is required and/or in cases of rough surfaces),
  • easily removable (where easy removal of labels is required, that doesn't leave traces of the adhesive),
  • for adhesion at low temperatures (e.g., frozen food labels),
  • special adhesives (for special labeling circumstances and surfaces, e.g., car tyre labels).