Many companies use blister packaging, sometimes called blister packs, to safely store and improve the visual appeal of their products. Since blister packaging offers many benefits, the best companies regularly use it to contain their merchandise. You can see blister packaging used by various companies ranging from the pharmaceutical industry all the way to the toy industry. This diversity of use makes it the ideal packaging option for many products. What is a blister pack? What are common applications of blister packs? What are the advantages of blister packaging?
Find out more about what blister packaging is and the main advantages it provides companies in this in-depth guide. You may also be interested in learning more about the most common kinds of products paired with blister packaging.
What Is Blister Packaging?
Blister packaging refers to a type of pre-formed, rigid packaging used for retail goods, pharmaceutical items and food products. You can often find blister packs housing products like medication, hardware, toys and consumer goods. Typically, blister packs are made of two main components: the cavity — also called the pocket — and the backing.
The cavity is the main component of blister packaging, as it holds products inside it, preventing them from leaving the pack. Manufacturers typically create the cavity with thermoformed plastic. These pockets can feature several different designs to best suit your needs. Many companies choose symmetrical designs, like rectangles or circles. Others design their cavity to fit a product's shape.
The backing is the other main part of blister packaging. The cavity attaches to the backing, keeping the product secure between them. The backing can be made out of different materials, such as foil, plastic or paperboard.
When the backing is made out of foil, it's called lidding. Foil is one of the most popular materials for backings. You can often see these backings housing pills and other pharmaceutical products. The aluminum foil backing makes it easy for consumers to push through the aluminum foil to reach the product lying in the cavity. Another popular form of backing is a paperboard card, otherwise known as a blister card, that attaches to the cavity.
Why Is Blister Packaging Used?
Many companies use blister packaging as it's usually see-through, allowing customers to view the product behind it. This greater visibility is especially attractive to customers, as it lets them see what they're purchasing and be more informed in their purchasing decisions. Additionally, the glossy nature of many blister packs can increase the perceived value of the product, making it easier for consumers to justify purchasing it.
Additionally, the outer shell of blister packaging can be a theft deterrent since it's difficult for thieves to open it quickly and swipe the contents inside. Companies also use blister cards to promote their products. Essentially, these blister cards offer "billboard" space for the product, allowing companies to place product descriptions, how-to-use information and brand logos on them. Blister cards can also feature eye-catching graphics, brand-friendly designs and attractive colors, attracting customers to the product as a result.
Companies also employ blister packaging to protect their products from damage. Many manufacturers create cavities that guard products against contamination and humid air, along with other external threats. These blister packs hold up for a long time, ensuring products maintain their quality while they await purchase. Additionally, some specialized opaque blister packs can also keep products sensitive to UV rays and light safe from damage.
What Materials Are Used in Blister Packaging?
The most common material used in blister packaging is polyvinyl chloride (PVC). This material is popular for how easy it is to manipulate during thermoforming and its low cost. Another common material is polyvinylidene chloride (PVDC), as it can be applied to a PVC film to create a stronger barrier against oxygen and moisture. Companies sometimes prefer to laminate PVC with polychlorotrifluoroethylene (PCTFE), which has an incredibly high moisture barrier. Some manufacturers also use cyclic olefin copolymers (COC) to provide their blister packs with extra moisture protection.
Blister packs with lidding foils often feature hard tamper aluminum, with a print primer placed on the outside of the foil and an interior heat-seal lacquer. You can also find cold form foil, which is constructed out of a three-layer laminate of polyamide, aluminum and PVC.
What Are the Advantages of Blister Packaging?
Blister packaging is one of the most common forms of packaging for a reason. By using it with your products, you can receive several benefits that set your products apart from the competition. For instance, blister packaging can keep a product fresher for longer or keep a product safe from damage during transit. Blister packaging comes with many other advantages that raise your product's value, and any companies interested in using blister packs should be aware of how they can help.
To decide if blister packaging is right for you, check out the six main benefits of blister packaging:
If a company produces items designed for individual dispensing, blister packaging is crucial. Since blister packaging can be manufactured with individual compartments, the customer can remove only the items they need, leaving the rest securely inside the packaging. As a result, products prone to go bad when exposed to environmental factors can stay fresh longer.
For instance, the food industry regularly stores herbs in blister packs to keep them fresh. Customers can pick up the herbs in these packs, store them in their fridge and remove only the quantity they need without having to worry about the rest of the batch going bad. This freshness is attractive to many as it ensures they save money by not having to replace spoiled herbs.
The pharmaceutical industry also relies on blister packaging to protect their environmentally sensitive products. Many pharmaceutical companies package medicines in lidding foils to keep them safe from external factors. Since pharmaceutical products can be sensitive to environmental factors and lose their potency when left unprotected, blister packaging is a crucial investment for many pharmaceutical products. Blister packs help keep essential medicines effective for longer, ensuring people can always get the relief or treatment they need.
2. Dosage and Serving Size
When you want to control doses or indicate serving sizes for customers, blister packaging is an excellent choice. A company can store products in the right serving and dose sizes by using blister packaging with multiple pockets in it. When you need to control a user's product usage, blister packaging is one of the best ways to ensure a customer knows how much of a product they should use or take.
Blister packs are popular among companies in the pharmaceutical industry, as they make dosing easier for consumers. Since these companies want their customers to take their products in the appropriate amounts, creating packaging that reflects the right amount is incredibly valuable. Blister packs can divide pills and other ingestible products into individual compartments that showcase the proper dosing amount, keeping users safe as a result. Additionally, a manufacturer can outfit their packaging with foil backing featuring text describing dosing requirements.
Companies also regularly store foodstuff in blister packaging. When you sell powdered products and seasoning blends, blister packaging helps keep them sorted in the appropriate portion size. These pre-portioned products can make it much easier for buyers to prepare food and use the right amount of seasoning to make delicious recipes. For companies that offer deliverable meal kits and services, blister packaging is beneficial when separating the ingredients for a recipe.
3. Design Versatility
Another great benefit of using blister packaging is its design versatility. Blister packs allow companies to make products more visually appealing. Generally, the blister pack's backing offers the most design options, with many companies placing attractive graphics and text on it to catch customers' eyes. The options are endless, so select imagery that attracts the eye and showcases your product's value to customers.
You can also outfit your packaging with informational graphics or text. This kind of info can help users follow specific instructions to use the product properly, whether it be a toy or a pharmaceutical product. Additionally, the information can be as simple as telling buyers what the product is and what it does. The ability to combine both informational and eye-catching designs can help you get a buyer's attention, sell the product to them and give them a great experience after purchase.
Alongside adding information and visually appealing designs, you can also use different materials to construct the right type of blister packaging. For instance, companies use cardboard and plastic to construct blister packaging for commercial applications. Other companies will use aluminum and plastic for pharmaceutical applications, as this construction helps to keep the product fresh. Since you can change a blister pack's material during the design stage, you can ensure you always have the right design for your product's needs.
4. Visibility and Accessibility
Since blister packages usually feature a clear, plastic front, potential customers can look at a product before purchasing. This increased visibility reassures customers that the product they're purchasing matches its advertising. Customers can also ensure a product has all of its components. As a result, your customers are better informed and more likely to trust your brand.
If you're selling visually appealing products, such as toys, electronics or cosmetics, the extra visibility also acts as a form of marketing. When an attractive product has a clear barrier, it's much more likely to catch a customer's eye and convince them to make a purchase. The ability to see the product helps potential customers envision themselves using it and raises the chances they buy it.
While a plastic front allows consumers to see into a product, the sturdy package reduces a product's accessibility by blocking potential customers from directly touching a product. The plastic barrier protects the product's quality by ensuring no one else touches a product before a customer purchases it. Additionally, the barrier makes it harder for someone to tamper with or steal the product. As a result, companies can expect to reduce expenses related to replacing stolen goods.
One of the most practical benefits of blister packaging is its ability to keep products secure and free from damage. When you're transporting delicate materials, leaving too much room for the product to shift around can damage it. A damaged product is unlikely to sell well in stores and is more likely to increase customer dissatisfaction with your product, hurting your bottom line and brand as a result.
A blister product reduces the chances of transport and handling harming your products. When an item is delicate or prone to damage, a blister back's small and individualized compartments prevent the items from shifting or moving around. Without this movement, it's less likely a product becomes damaged in transit. The plastic shell also prevents other transported products from damaging the item or any environmental factors from harming the item's quality.
Once in the store, blister packaging prevents staff and customers from damaging the product while handling it. Since a blister packaged product usually has a durable plastic barrier, it's challenging for a customer or staff member to harm it. For delicate items, this protection is critical as the product will likely exchange many hands on its way to a store's shelves and be touched by a few customers before someone decides to buy it.
One size fits all packaging simply isn't an option for many products. Packaging that's too large or too small can harm an item while it awaits purchase. Additionally, generic packaging can make it so your product isn't very attractive to customers, blending in with all the other products instead of standing out.
Blister packaging guarantees you'll have packaging designed specifically for your products' requirements. Since manufacturers use thermoforming to create blister packaging that fits a product's shape and design, a company can mold the packaging into the exact shape required. Some companies can also design and produce blister packaging unique to your products to ensure they don't have too much space to move around. This snug fit ensures transit and handling don't harm your products.
Since thermoforming can easily mold plastic to the shape and size of your product, you receive greater customizability in your packaging. No matter the number of items you need to package or the size of your products, a manufacturer can craft a blister pack to meet your products' dimensions. This customizability opens many doors for your packaging options, allowing you to fit multiple products into one attractive package.
Why Should You Choose Blister Packaging?
Besides the six main benefits of using blister packaging, there are many other reasons to choose blister packaging. When you select blister packaging, you receive several advantages that take your packaging to the next next level. Here are some of the other reasons to choose blister packaging:
- Cost-effective: After you create a mold for your product, you can expect to see cost-savings from using blister packaging over other kinds of packages. Reproducing blister packaging based on the mold is simple and easy, keeping expenses low. Additionally, blister packaging requires fewer materials than other methods, making it more cost-effective.
- Prominent product display and increased graphics areas: The combination of a plastic cavity revealing the product and backing featuring areas for graphics makes blister packaging incredibly valuable. With graphic areas and product visibility, blister packaging can draw more eyes to your product and advertise it more effectively.
- Safe and easy opening features: Companies can design their blister packaging with easy opening and safety features. When a customer purchases a product, you want them to be able to access it safely and quickly, without any frustration. Blister packaging can offer that exactly.
- Recyclable material options: Since you can select from various materials for blister packaging, you can choose to use only recyclable materials. If your company wants to go green, blister packaging provides you with the options you need.
What Types of Products Can Use Blister Packaging?
Many major retail chains and local stores carry products with blister packaging. The applications of blister packaging are numerous. This packaging helps move products off the shelves and make these stores a go-to destination for shoppers. If your products sit on store shelves, you may want to consider blister packaging.
As you think about adding blister packaging, review some of the most common types of products that use blister packaging:
- Home improvement products, hardware and tools: Whenever you go into a hardware store, you're likely to see blister packaging. It's regularly used to package items like screws, power tools and other pieces of hardware.
- Pharmaceuticals and health supplements: Vitamins, health supplements and pharmaceutical products fit perfectly in blister packs, as they pair well with aluminum backing. Additionally, the packaging can be outfitted with extra graphics to draw customers to the product.
- Health and beauty goods, cosmetics: When you buy cosmetics and health and beauty goods, you're probably most drawn to the most attractive packaging. Beauty companies want their products to be as attractive as possible since this sends the subtle message that the customer can trust them with their beauty needs. The customizability of blister packs makes meeting this goal possible.
- Automotive goods: Many automotive goods can be stored in blister packs, whether they be cleaning supplies, repair tools, parts or other tiny components. The backing of automotive blister packs can help customers know how to use the products and what vehicles they're compatible with.
- Stationery items for office and craft applications: Pens, pencils, glue, paper clips and other stationery products fit well with blister packaging. They're usually paired with attractive backing to draw a viewer's eyes and give them an idea about how they can use the product.
- Electronics: You can use blister packaging to display electronics in see-through plastics, enticing consumers to purchase the product. Blister packaging's extra security also protects delicate electronics from damage while in transit and makes it more difficult for a thief to steal them.
- Sports and recreation products: Sports and recreational products fit well with blister packaging. The clear display can show customers what they're getting when they make a purchase and backing can inform customers about the size or type of the product.
- Toys and games: When you're trying to appeal to parents and their children, blister packaging is one of the best ways you can sell a product. If a child can see your toy through clear plastic, they'll be more likely to want the product and ask their parents for it.
Choose QPSI for Your Blister Packaging Needs
If you're in the market for blister packaging, turn to QPSI. Our expert team can provide you with high-quality blister packaging by producing a great design, finding the right packaging materials and putting it all together for the final assembly. By the end of the process, we aim to have the perfect packaging for your product, making your product more attractive to potential customers and keeping it safe from damage. We'll work with you to craft the perfect blister pack for your budget and brand.
Learn more about our retail packaging solutions today. If you have any questions or want to outfit products with blister packaging, please feel free to contact us.