How to Print White Ink on Clear Labels

How to Print White Ink on Clear Labels | Simple Steps

White printing on clear labels provided better visibility compared to other label types. Moreover, it produces a unique look, especially against dark surfaces, making it ideal for many different uses.

Clear labels don’t have a base color that the printed image can interact with. Therefore, you’ll see the exact color of your graphic design on the clear label after printing.

Unfortunately, white printing on clear labels isn’t as easy as it seems.

So, how exactly do you print white ink on clear labels? Well, in this article, I’ll show you how to get high visibility and vibrant colors when white printing on clear labels!

What’s White Ink Printing? 

In the past, printing onto clear labels or dark-colored papers has been challenging for printing. Luckily, that’s not the case anymore, especially with the rise of modern laser printers with CMYK and white ability as they allow white printing.

In essence, white printing involves adding ink underneath parts or all of your label design. The use of white ink creates an opacity layer, helping to reduce the transparency of the graphics and text. This opacity ensures improved legibility as well as an accurate color match.

White ink printing is a great option for brands and designers. Besides, it can be done on various substrates including cards, labels, and envelopes. Specifically, white printing on clear labels makes a huge difference in how the design and text are displayed. For instance, clear labels tend to appear transparent without white ink, making the graphics bland and text difficult to read.

Importance of White Ink Printing on Clear labels

Clear labels are suitable for labeling all types of products. Thanks to their ability to allow the natural look of the product to show through the label and packaging. This offers a marketing advantage since it allows consumers to see the product as well as your business branding.

Other benefits offered by white ink printing on clear labels include;


Clear labels are more durable than other printing materials. They'll hold up against chemicals, water, oil, and extreme elements. As a result, they can last for about 3 to 15 years depending on how and where you use them.

However, you still need to take good care of them to extend their lifespan further. Similarly, you should store them in dry places and away from direct sunlight, despite their ability to hold up against sunlight and moisture.

Withstands severe conditions 

As mentioned earlier, clear labels can tolerate extreme conditions like freezing temperatures and chemical exposure. Therefore, they’ll offer a long service life, even when subjected to those conditions.

Water resistance

Unlike most printing materials like papers, clear labels are usually made of waterproof vinyl. For that reason, they’re suitable for outdoor products like car wraps that will be subjected to rainfall from time to time. Also, this makes them ideal for household items that need regular washing like glassware, mugs, etc.

Resistant to UV rays 

Lastly, most clear labels have a UV-resistant film, making the already waterproof printing material practically damage-proof. Besides, UV rays and water are some of the major causes of damage to label prints. To be precise, they affect the print materials and make the texts & images fade over time.

How to Print White Ink on Clear Labels

Start by listing down all the requirements of your white ink print project. Also, prepare the design correctly and have your design do a Prepress check to ensure you’ve received perfect custom clear labels. More importantly, use alcohol to thoroughly clean your working surfaces and let them dry before you apply the labels to promote excellent tack.

Using Adobe illustrator as your preferred file format makes it extremely easy to print white ink on clear labels. Next, lay out your white ink on a different slayer that is separated with a regular spot color.

You can either name this layer ‘white ink’ or name it according to your needs. Whichever the case, the program will understand where to print the white ink clear labels. As an alternative, you can print custom stickers using file formats supported by Photoshop and other image files like png or jpg.

Bottom line, the distinction between black label printing and white ink printing is largely dependent on the selected file format. Also, it will depend on the additional steps that are involved when printing on black labels.

Choosing the right printer for white ink printing

White ink label printing is done using a CMYK + white ink printer. Unlike regular inkjet printers, this printing device is unique since it can print CMYK color as well as white color. This is because it’s equipped with a 5th (white) toner cartridge, allowing it to perform full CMYK color + white printing.

In addition, you can use CMYK + White printers to print white toner onto unique, waterproof materials like dark, metallic and transparent materials. This makes them ideal for various applications. For instance, they’re compatible with various label stocks that produce waterproof professional labels that can withstand severe environments.


Many users find it difficult to print white ink on clear labels. However, with the right printer, white printing on opaque or clear labels becomes extremely easy. 

At the same time, this will give your products and items a professional appearance and make them look more polished. Hopefully, after reading this article, you’ve learned how to print white ink on clear labels to make your labeling and brand project stand out!

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