Shining from the Shelf

Tube makers are employing metallic effects in a variety of ways to help brands “pop.”

An ongoing trend in cosmetic and personal care packaging continues to influence tubes—metallic effects. Several product launches in tubes over the last year have relied on metallic highlights and sheens to shine from the shelves. “Metallic pops,” Bruno Lebeault, marketing director, North America, for Viva Healthcare Packaging, told Tube News. “It reflects, it shines. You notice it first.”

Image courtesy Essel Propack

Doug Jackson, Albéa’s market manager, North America, agrees. “Metallic effects are eye-catching, and they make products stand out on the shelf,” he told Tube News. “People associate metallic finishes with value and prestige.”
And “the metallic effect, with its high luster, imparts a high-end look,” Wendi Caraballo, marketing manager for Essel Propack, told Tube News.

Thanks to ever-advancing tube-decorating technologies, tube makers can achieve the metallic look spectacularly and often cost effectively. “You can produce metallic-looking tubes in a variety of ways,” notes Lebeault.

Viva Healthcare Packaging’s tube for Bodycology Blackberry, for instance, which has won a 2014 Ameristar award, uses a foil-based in-mold label built into the injection-molded polypropylene tube in one inline process, Lebeault explains. Using such a label gives the tube a full-body metallic look, which he says results in “rich graphics and shelf impact.”

For Ocean Potion, Viva provided an in-mold-labeled, injection-molded polypropylene tube using cold foil on an in-mold label and matching it with a metallic hot-stamped cap. “We are presenting cold foil on in-mold-labeled tubes as alternatives to hot-stamped tubes,” Lebeault says. “It is just like using an additional ink station on our printing press. And we can print on this cold foil for an exact match to any color.”

Albéa is able to achieve metallic effects on both aluminum barrier laminate (ABL) and plastic barrier laminate (PBL) tubes, says Jackson. For L’Oréal’s “Ever Brand” tube family of hair care products, Albéa recently developed metallic effects into a PBL tube using reverse-printed adhesive lamination and 360° print.

Foil laminate tubes can also be overprinted 360° for additional effects, Jackson says. For Crabtree & Evelyn, Albéa used a silver ABL tube printed with a pastel color and a front panel floral design to compliment the formula’s ingredients. “ABL tubes can also provide an old-fashioned or retro look, because it looks like aluminum,” says Jackson.

Unilever recently launched its Tresemmé Keratin Smooth shampoo and conditioner using Essel Propack’s Egnite laminate. “This tube is a new-generation pinnacle of technology, innovation, and sustainability,” Caraballo told Tube News. “This tube’s decoration creates a masterpiece package with high luster and reflective index, which commands an excellent shelf appeal. The high-end look allows for this package to sell on its own without a need for outer packaging.”

Image courtesy Viva Healthcare Packaging

As mentioned earlier, Viva is now developing caps with metallic effects. “Caps can be typically vacuum metallized, but they can be expensive,” says Lebeault. “As an alternative, we can hot stamp a thin ring around a cap, such as 6 mm of a 25-mm-high cap, and get a metallic look at a fraction of the cost of metallization.” Viva exhibited the new capability at Luxe Pack, asking whether attendees “need more pop.”

Lebeault also points out another big trend—the growing importance of sustainability. Viva’s Desert Essence tube was a finalist for the green award at Luxe Pack. “The tube is 100% polypropylene and is fully recyclable without having to separate the cap from the tube,” he says. “Natural organic brands like Desert Essence are now communicating the fact that their tubes are 100% PP. All components of the tube are manufactured and printed under one roof in our plant in Toronto, avoiding extra logistics for the supply of the various components. This also plays a strong part in reducing leadtimes. Getting tubes faster and faster is also a strong requirement from retail and brands, now clearly supporting domestic manufacturing.” 

Visit Viva Healthcare Packaging at Booth #H505, Essel Propack Ltd. at Booth #H401C, and The Tube Council at #H503 at HBA Expo.

By Daphne Allen
Editor, Tube News

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