First impressions are important especially when you try to stand out from the competition. Having the right label will speak about your brand identity and get your message across to your customers. Make sure you finalize on your brand’s logo, writing style, brand voice, and color before venturing into label production.
The color of your bottle can tell your customers a lot about the flavor and spice level. If you have an extremely hot sauce, red is the popular choice. With a more mild flavor, you can choose a more mild color like Green or Yellow.
To establish a brand personality and showcase it with your product labels, it’s important to have the colors consistent all throughout your brand.
Depending on your initial label production, you will want to decide if you will print your labels through paper sheet labels or off label rolls. Printing labels off regular sheet labels may seem cheaper initially, but have certain restrictions like ink cost and hand labeling. Labels printed off a label printer with label rolls make it a lot easier to apply labels to the bottle and have more flexibility by printing on demand.
Type of Label
It’s also important to decide the type of label you will be printing on. Paper labels come in two forms, matte and glossy. Matte paper labels are popular due to their versatility. Glossy paper labels reflect light and aid colors pop. Gloss labels are popular for their polished and professional look.
If you’re looking for something a bit more durable, PP labels are made with polypropylene material and have a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for hot sauce labels.
Entry Level Label Printers
Below we will go over some of the entry level printers that are great for small business looking to start their labeling production in house.
The Epson TM-C3500 is a great entry-level printer for printing hot sauce labels. It prints pigment ink making it great for all types of matte labels. Another thing about the ColorWorks C3500 is that it uses separate ink cartridges for each color. If your primary label design is the majority one color (like red for example), the ink-saving alone makes it worth it.
Epson‘s TM-C3500 built-in cutter for this machine makes it easy to use with continuous labels. Instead of ordering a few rolls of a specific size, you’re able to cut on demand and maximize the usage of the label rolls leaving behind no overstock. The Epson TM-C3500 only prints up to 4.1″ wide. Any labels wider than that you will not be able to print on this printer.
The TM-C3500 accepts label rolls up to 4 inches in outer diameter. There are no core holders in the printer, so there are no restrictions for label core. If you have label rolls with outer diameters larger than 4 Inches, you can purchase an external label holder and feed the label through the back of the printer.
|Print Speed||4 Inches Per Second|
|Print Width||4.1″ Print Width|
|Ink Costs||Starts at $19.50 USD|
Afinia Label: L301
The Afinia L301 is a high-resolution printer that prints high-quality labels. It prints the best quality out of the three reviewed. It is also able to print up to 6 inches wide making it ideal for large color labels.
The Afinia L301 color label printer utilizes two separate ink cartridges (tricolor and a black pigment ink cartridge) to produce vivid colors. Using a two-cartridge system reduces your ink price per label when compared to one tri-color ink cartridge.
One disadvantage of this printer is that it prints at a significantly slower compared to the other two printers. The quality is outstanding, but the trade-off of print speed may hold back your projects.
|Printer||Afinia Label L301|
|Print Speed||1.8 Inches Per Second|
|Print Width||6″ Print Width|
|Ink Costs||Starting at $49.95|
The Primera LX500 is the cheapest selling printer on the market. The low price makes it affordable and attractive for many small businesses to make the jump to inkjet label printers. The LX500 only prints up to 4.25″ wide and won’t be able to print any larger than that.
It uses a tri-color ink cartridge, which means the ink cartridge will need to be changed if any of the colors run out. This doesn’t make it very ideal if your labels are high coverage (uses a lot of one color) with primary color inks.
With this label printer, you can purchase large label rolls with an external rewinder and feed it through the back. You can get bulk savings on your label purchases instead of limiting your project only to the small label capacity for this printer.
|Print Speed||2″ Per Second|
|Print Width||Up to 4.25 Inches|
|Ink Costs||Starting at $54.95|
If you need less than a few hundred labels a month, the Primera LX500 is a good option to produce color labels. Color labels with lots of ink coverage with about 500+ labels a month, the Epson TM-C3500 is the best value. If you require extremely high-quality labels at an entry-level price point or have labels with more than 6 inches in width, the Afinia Label L301 is a good choice.