Groen packaging by IPL


Creating the desired emotional connection with the consumer is one of the critical goals brands need to achieve in order to attract consumers for initial and, more importantly, repeat purchases. For beauty and cosmetic purchases, key attributes that engage the consumer are perceived value, performance and style. But how can these factors be supported and advanced by effective packaging solutions?

Enhanced value through packaging 

“Along with the quality and reputation of the beauty or cosmetics product itself, packaging is critical to the perceived value of the product and the buyer’s brand perception,” says Jason Roberts, Business Development Manager, UK at IPL Packaging. “Very often the initial engagement with the product (enhanced by the packaging and its visual appearance) is critical to determining whether a consumer makes a purchase or not.” 

“This means that the outer, secondary packaging needs to be ‘on brand’ and reinforce confidence in the core product. When our packaging designers are able to work with detailed brand guidelines, it allows for more creativity in the packaging design process with the packaging more likely to enhance the core product as intended and attract the intended consumers at the point of sale, or digitally - as is now often the case,” says LB Odendaal, Head of Design at IPL. “If the guidelines are not as detailed as they could be, it might be prudent to relook at these before launching into the actual packaging design process.”

One major consideration for many cosmetics brands is how to create value through enhancing the brand’s sustainability credentials. “Sustainable or eco-friendly packaging will become increasingly important for cosmetic brands as we enter the second decade of this century,” says Roberts. “Value perception for many brands will be improved if care and attention are given to this growing consumer requirement,” he says. “This has led many packaging designers to look at options for dual-purpose, refillable and recyclable components and to re-evaluate what were common material choices.” 

La Mer packaging by IPL

“It isn’t just about how the products are displayed to clients, it is also about the story that the brand is telling their clients. As a supplier we’re consistently being challenged to deliver the ‘wow factor’, as well as a sustainable story,” says Odendaal, Head of Design “But that doesn’t mean doing this without an air of luxury: transparent cellophane made of biodegradable wood pulp, for instance, can add some shiny metallic glamour to the packaging.” 

The environmentally friendly mega-trend has caused a significant shift in packaging design and a move, in many cases, toward simpler, streamlined forms that use eco-materials, mono materials - or fewer materials,“ he says. “Packaging shapes are also resembling more organic, natural forms playing with unique tangible and tactile textures.” 

“Whilst beauty brands will continue to explore refillable/reusable options and post-consumer use materials until these options find long-term positions in brand houses - the simplest path to lessen the environmental impact will be options that utilise less plastic,” continues Odendaal. “At IPL, for example, we’ve investigated and utilsied options such as thermoformed paper pulp and starch-based paper injection moulding.”

“The need to reduce plastic content is easily recognised, understood and celebrated by all levels of the eco-conscious consumer.”

IPL Packaging paper based box

Packaging and product performance 

One can look at the performance perspective from two aspects:

Firstly, in order to be successful, the product itself needs to perform as intended, this goes without saying. However, the packaging also needs to take into account the different environments in which the product will be used. On-the-go consumers require cosmetics packaging to be both easy to use and transport. As global travel resumes and online delivery grows, solid product protection will become ever more important.

Secondly, when it comes to performance in this fast-paced world, one of the highest priorities is to launch products as quickly as possible. “In the fast-moving beauty industry, concept to shelf-ready delivery is increasing in demand in order to capture the latest trends and consumer needs,” explains Roberts. “Speed-to-market has become one of the overarching trends in the beauty world when it comes to product launches and is a major influencer in product and packaging design and development.” 

“Achieving optimal pace of performance requires smartly planned packaging that allows for flexible production and delivery. To achieve this, it is vital to have close collaboration between suppliers, manufacturers and those who handle the packaging,” he continues. “Dealing with a supplier who can vertically integrate all processes from design to delivery is very helpful in making the process more efficient”.

“The speed-to-market factor has definitely altered how brands develop their products and packaging,” agrees Odendaal. Packaging development and innovation processes are moving at the speed of light in today’s market.” 

“This demand for speed is causing brands to think outside the box when it comes to packaging decoration, particularly in the cosmetics industry,” says Odendaal. “A wide range of decorative techniques and customised components can help to effectively express a brand’s personal DNA. But these processes should be effected quickly and efficiently.”

IPL Packaging cosmetic box

Style and substance

On the one hand, brands are exploring a distinctly sustainable directive, on the other hand, the luxury market is booming with unique custom designs and highly decorative packaging that tick the other consumer requirement: style.

“Sustainability in the luxury packaging sector is about quality and truth to material, and less about embellishment - a more minimalist ideal. The idea is that the high value of the packaging comes over in a more subtle way, and the branding is less opulent.” 

“Increasingly, luxury brands are also using iridescent surfaces that shimmer in different colours depending on the viewer’s position and where the light falls,” says Odendaal. “Unique packaging with visual and tactile features such as also offer beauty brands an easy way to create buzz and excitement online via social media. This can be really important for a new brand entering the saturated market we see today.”

Roja Maison box by IPL Packaging


Consumer demands in 2021 are now, more than ever, based on value, performance, style - and packaging that benefits the wider environment. These trends will only continue to gain strength leading to a re-think in design and material choices for cosmetics packaging to be more sustainable, recyclable and refillable; designed and manufactured in ways that fit perfectly into both the sustainable beauty movement and the speed-to-market movement.

Looking into and revising further; we can help major brands to pursue their sustainability goals in terms of their packaging solutions. IPL can assist with guided discussions on how to improve packaging to meet corporate goals.

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IPL‌ ‌Packaging‌‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌ ‌global‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌supplier‌ ‌with‌ ‌offices‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌USA,‌ ‌Europe,‌ ‌Mexico,‌ Asia‌ ‌and‌ ‌Africa.‌ ‌Approved‌ manufacturing‌ ‌is‌ ‌available‌ ‌in‌ ‌several‌ ‌Asian‌ ‌countries,‌ ‌as‌ ‌well‌ ‌as‌ ‌sites‌ ‌in‌ ‌Eastern‌ ‌Europe.‌ ‌We‌ ‌create‌ ‌bespoke,‌ ‌tailored‌ ‌and‌ ‌exclusive‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌for‌ ‌any‌ premium‌ ‌or‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌brand‌ ‌and‌ ‌manage‌ ‌the‌ ‌entire‌ ‌process,‌ ‌from‌ ‌conceptualisation‌ ‌and‌ ‌design‌ ‌to‌ ‌production‌ ‌and‌ ‌delivery.‌ ‌ ‌

For‌ ‌more‌ ‌information‌ ‌on‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌solutions‌ ‌or‌ ‌to‌ ‌get‌ ‌an‌ ‌insight‌ ‌into‌ ‌our‌ ‌latest‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌trends,‌ ‌follow‌ ‌us‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌LinkedIn‌,‌ Facebook‌,‌ ‌‌YouTube‌‌ ‌or‌ ‌‌Pinterest‌.‌ ‌Keep‌ ‌an‌ ‌eye‌ ‌on‌ ‌our‌ ‌‌news‌ ‌section‌‌ ‌for‌ ‌insightful‌ ‌articles‌ ‌and‌ ‌innovative‌ ‌ideas‌ ‌around‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌materials,‌ ‌product‌ ‌development‌ ‌and‌ ‌design.‌

Angostura 1919 premium rum gift box and glass tumblers

Angostura in a Glass of its Own

“Reviewing production facilities and investigating and testing new, cutting-edge supply channels is a key aspect of ensuring that, as a full-service global packaging supplier, you’re addressing your client’s needs around budget, materials, transportation and the like,” says Christiana Delahaye, IPL Packaging Senior Purchasing Manager Europe.

“Strategic sourcing can really assist clients in best meeting their procurement objectives without compromising product quality or supplier service levels,” she says. “It can help to create distinctive value and also, maintain a competitive edge. A recent example of this is a packaging solution designed and produced by IPL Packaging for Angostura,” says Delahaye. 

Supply chain cargo ship in port

Angostura premium rum

Located in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, Angostura, the world’s market leader for bitters, is also one of the Caribbean’s leading rum producers with a superb collection of rum brands.  With quality and distinction long being the cornerstone of the Angostura business, the company approached IPL Packaging to design and produce a high-quality gift box containing a bottle of Angostura 1919 Premium Rum and two high-quality glass tumblers.

“The rigid board packaging solution was designed by our IPL Design team and manufactured by our longstanding manufacturing partners in Asia,” she states. “When it came to sourcing the best quality glass tumblers, quality and personalisation were also therefore two of our key objectives, this along with working with a glass supplier who supports sustainable and environmentally-friendly production processes.”

Angostura premium rum and glass tumblers in packaging

Bespoke crafted glasses

“With IPL having established several strategic contacts in the Polish glass-making industry, we approached a well-established and traditional glassmaking facility, famous for its meticulous quality and know-how,” says Delahaye. “Carefully crafting glass and stemware for nearly a century, the factory maintains a distinct focus on sustainable, eco-friendly artisanship.”

The glass is smelted while maintaining rigorous European standards for environmental emissions. The complete absence of lead and other heavy metals harmful to health and the environment ensure that these glasses can be 100% recycled and also allow them to showcase a high level of transparency and brilliance. 

“In close collaboration with the client, we ultimately selected a glass tumbler with a distinct ‘wavy’ base that provided an interesting textural element, ” explains Delahaye. "The tumbler was further personalised with a white and gold printed logo, adapted to the client needs.” 

Complete Angostura gift pack

“The result is an Angostura gift pack as distinctive as it is practical; glassware and packaging that perfectly complements the product it accompanies and further entrenches the quality of the prestigious rum itself,” she states. “What is key is that, through close collaboration with our client and our key manufacturing partners (though which we are able to effect complex logistics and manufacturing procurement), we’ve produced a gift pack that is both impactful and highly functional,” she says.  

“In today’s competitive economy, and when servicing global industry players such as Angostura, we need to consistently engage in new and creative collaborations that assure and improve the quality of the final product, attain differentiation and achieve a faster time to market.”

Global supply chain graphic depiction

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IPL‌ ‌Packaging‌‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌ ‌global‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌supplier‌ ‌with‌ ‌offices‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌USA,‌ ‌Europe,‌ ‌Mexico,‌ Asia‌ ‌and‌ ‌Africa.‌ ‌Approved‌ ‌manufacturing‌ ‌is‌ ‌available‌ ‌in‌ ‌several‌ ‌Asian‌ ‌countries,‌ ‌as‌ ‌well‌ ‌as‌ sites‌ ‌in‌ ‌Eastern‌ ‌Europe.‌ ‌We‌ ‌create‌ ‌bespoke,‌ ‌tailored‌ ‌and‌ ‌exclusive‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌for‌ ‌any‌ premium‌ ‌or‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌brand‌ ‌and‌ ‌manage‌ ‌the‌ ‌entire‌ ‌process,‌ ‌from‌ ‌conceptualisation‌ ‌and‌ ‌design‌ to‌ ‌production‌ ‌and‌ ‌delivery.‌ ‌

For‌ ‌more‌ ‌information‌ ‌on‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌solutions‌ ‌or‌ ‌to‌ ‌get‌ ‌an‌ ‌insight‌ ‌into‌ ‌our‌ ‌latest‌ ‌packaging‌ trends,‌ ‌follow‌ ‌us‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌LinkedIn‌,‌ ‌‌Facebook‌,‌ ‌‌YouTube‌‌ ‌or‌ ‌‌Pinterest‌.‌ ‌Keep‌ ‌an‌ ‌eye‌ ‌on‌ ‌our‌ ‌‌news‌ ‌section‌‌ ‌for‌ ‌insightful‌ ‌articles‌ ‌and‌ ‌innovative‌ ‌ideas‌ ‌around‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌materials,‌ ‌product‌ development‌ ‌and‌ ‌design.‌

IPL Packaging news USA address

A New USA Address

IPL Packaging is happy to move into our new office and showroom on the East Coast of the USA. It's in Westchester County, adjacent to New York City (a 45 minute commute from Manhattan) and convenient to virtually anywhere. 

“In the face of profound change in work and commuting patterns, we see the new offices as a way to offer greater accessibility and flexibility to so many of our clients,” says Michael De Carvalho, IPL Senior Business Development Director. 

“In discussions with existing clients we understand that many employees will return to the office, though not necessarily ‘as before’,” he says. “The pandemic has highlighted how people in many industries can work remotely in a productive manner. Despite this, there is growing recognition that being able to spend face time together adds much benefit to a project, especially at the ideation and innovation stage,” he says. 

“As a global packaging supplier, this means adapting to and adopting new ways of working and servicing these clients, including the ability to sit down and physically review samples together in a great environment."

New address in the USA offers more convenience

“We need to remain physically present and available to those clients still working at home in the suburbs (many from areas such as Westchester County) and yet also remain in close proximity to NYC where, effectively, almost every major company has an established presence,” states De Carvalho. “City-based clients value a quick commute that enables them to gain further insight into our processes and review briefs and prototypes face-to-face and in real-time.” 

“Events, expos and conferences are being booked up from Fall, we’re working on some exciting holiday and ‘counter’ projects for the beauty and cosmetics industry and the tech side of our packaging business is also thriving,” he says. “We’re witnessing the economy opening up and vaccination roll-out progressing and, at IPL, we’re happy to tap into this more optimistic new energy.”

“Together with our presence on the West Coast and our teams in the Mid-West we look forward to continuing to successfully support and grow our US-based market and their global affiliates with exceptional end-to-end packaging solutions.”


340 US-202

Suite D

Somers, NY. 10589


M |  +1 914 334 0972

T |  +1 914 902 0319

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IPL‌ ‌Packaging‌‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌ ‌global‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌supplier‌ ‌with‌ ‌offices‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌USA,‌ ‌Europe,‌ ‌Mexico,‌ ‌Asia‌ ‌and‌ ‌Africa.‌ ‌Approved ‌manufacturing‌ ‌is‌ ‌available‌ ‌in‌ ‌several‌ ‌Asian‌ ‌countries,‌ ‌as‌ ‌well‌ ‌as‌ ‌sites‌ ‌in‌ ‌Eastern‌ ‌Europe.‌ ‌We‌ ‌create‌ ‌bespoke,‌ ‌tailored‌ ‌and‌ ‌exclusive‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌for‌ ‌any‌ premium‌ ‌or‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌brand‌ ‌and‌ ‌manage‌ ‌the‌ ‌entire‌ ‌process,‌ ‌from‌ ‌conceptualisation‌ ‌and‌ ‌design to‌ ‌production‌ ‌and‌ ‌delivery.‌ ‌

For‌ ‌more‌ ‌information‌ ‌on‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌solutions‌ ‌or‌ ‌to‌ ‌get‌ ‌an‌ ‌insight‌ ‌into‌ ‌our‌ ‌latest‌ ‌packaging trends,‌ ‌follow‌ ‌us‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌LinkedIn‌,‌ ‌‌Facebook,‌ ‌‌YouTube‌‌ ‌or‌ ‌‌Pinterest‌.‌ ‌Keep‌ ‌an‌ ‌eye‌ ‌on‌ ‌our‌ ‌‌news‌ section‌‌ ‌for‌ ‌insightful‌ ‌articles‌ ‌and‌ ‌innovative‌ ‌ideas‌ ‌around‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌materials,‌ ‌product‌ ‌development‌ ‌and‌ ‌design.‌

Five Stars for the Three Rs

Five Stars for the Three Rs

Despite the massive changes and shifts in focus brought to so many industries by the Coronavirus pandemic, the three Rs of sustainable packaging continue to remain high on the agenda of global manufacturing and distribution companies. 

Much emphasis is also being placed on the most familiar and widespread form of sustainable packaging: ‘recyclables.’ However it’s important to remember that recyclability is just one of the factors behind sustainable packaging solutions and that sustainability has always been built on three pillars or three Rs - “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.”

“When it comes to designing and producing sustainable packaging as part of a full-service packaging supply system, it’s essential not to forget the other two Rs: reduce and reuse,” says IPL Head of Design, LB Odendaal. 

The three Rs of sustainability

“By ‘reducing’ we’re seeking to avoid waste, to streamline our client’s packaging by making it leaner and requiring less material; and thereby saving money, energy and resources,” he states. “By creating packaging for ‘reuse’ we’re enabling the packaging to live on beyond the point of purchase, giving it a purpose beyond the original primary use.”

“For the drink and spirits sector, in particular, many of our packaging solutions have been designed to incorporate a secondary function and promote longevity and reuse. As with other industries such as the numismatic and fragrance sectors, for example, these packs are also often constructed for display purposes,” explains Odendaal. 

“Whilst secondary use is not always the core focus when designing luxury packaging, the notion of incorporating a secondary function into package design can also deliver a significant added value component,” he states.  

IPL creates reusable packaging

Glengoyne sustainable luxury packaging

Scotch whisky brand and IPL Packaging customer, Glengoyne, recently won the 2020 Green Packaging Award for the spirits category at The Drinks Business Green Awards. The judges remarked that Glengoyne is “taking a novel environmental approach to luxury packaging” and focused on the second-use ability feature (boxes featured personalisable plaques, peelable labels and removable inner fitments) of the prestige 25YO and 30YO packaging as something never seen before.

 “IPL has also supplied and, in several instances, also designed, a variety of packs that convert to extended use: for Buchanan’s whisky - a tin packaging solution was designed to be further utilised as an ice-bucket, for Titleist the packaging can be further used as a sunglasses case, and for Jessica McCormack and French fragrance brand, Ex Nihlio the custom-designed cases can be utilised as bespoke jewellery boxes.”

Buchanan's whiskey reusable tin

Titleist reusable packaging

“Whatever the sector we are packaging for – our approach to process and design is built around efficiency,” continues Odendaal. “It boils down to the following: simplify wherever possible; utilise the most effective materials; minimise the impact on the environment; always strive to be true to the brand values; and never forget the benefit to the end-user.”

The more Rs, the better

“Packaging should incorporate at least one of the three Rs – but the more it incorporates – the better! “To ‘reduce’ we look to simplify components, streamline production processes and transportation, amongst others,” he says. “In much of our packaging, we strive to remove protective polybags where testing proves that the product is not adversely affected. We’ve replaced these with paper or tissue bags in several instances,” he says. 

“Similarly, when it comes to transport we always attempt to optimise container utilisation by favouring flat-packaging or part assembly wherever we can. We can also ship directly to any market in the world, produce closest to the destination and select the transport option with the smallest carbon footprint for each delivery.”

Flat pack packaging for transport

“For us though, product, material and process innovation is one of the highest priorities in our business - driving our design and production processes and ‘ticking off the Rs’ in order to allow clients to choose packaging they know falls within their own sustainability goals and promises to consumers.”

___‌ ‌ ‌

IPL‌ ‌Packaging‌‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌ ‌global‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌supplier‌ ‌with‌ ‌offices‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌USA,‌ ‌Europe,‌ ‌Mexico,‌ ‌Asia‌ ‌and‌ ‌Africa.‌ ‌Approved‌ ‌manufacturing‌ ‌is‌ ‌available‌ ‌in‌ ‌several‌ ‌Asian‌ countries,‌ ‌as‌ ‌well‌ ‌as‌ ‌sites‌ ‌in‌ ‌Eastern‌ ‌Europe.‌ ‌We‌ ‌create‌ ‌bespoke,‌ ‌tailored‌ ‌and‌ ‌exclusive‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌for‌ ‌any‌ ‌premium‌ ‌or‌ ‌luxury‌ ‌brand‌ ‌and‌ ‌manage‌ ‌the‌ ‌entire‌ ‌process,‌ ‌from‌ ‌conceptualisation‌ ‌and‌ ‌design‌ ‌to‌ ‌production‌ ‌and‌ ‌delivery.‌ ‌

For‌ ‌more‌ ‌information‌ ‌on‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌solutions‌ ‌or‌ ‌to‌ ‌get‌ ‌an‌ ‌insight‌ ‌into‌ ‌our‌ ‌latest‌ packaging‌ ‌trends,‌ ‌follow‌ ‌us‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌LinkedIn,‌ ‌‌Facebook‌,‌ ‌‌YouTube‌‌ ‌or‌ ‌‌Pinterest.‌ ‌Keep‌ ‌an‌ ‌eye‌ ‌on‌ ‌our‌ ‌‌news‌ ‌section‌‌ ‌for‌ ‌insightful‌ ‌articles‌ ‌and‌ ‌innovative‌ ‌ideas‌ ‌around‌ ‌packaging‌ ‌materials,‌ ‌product‌ ‌development‌ ‌and‌ ‌design.‌

Maserati box by IPL Packaging

Reselling luxury packaging: A developing market

A recent trend has emerged where entrepreneurial individuals have started to sell used boxes and packaging from luxury brands and designer labels. That’s right; the empty boxes from these premium companies have value to other people who are willing to spend money on second-hand packaging. 

How reselling premium packaging works

Many luxury products come in iconic branded boxes or novelty packaging when they are purchased. Think Tiffany & Co., Gucci, Michael Kors or Prada as examples - the branded packaging is distinctive and seemingly still desirable without the primary product inside. People have listed these empty packaging products on e-commerce sites, such as eBay and on Facebook groups, and have made a fair amount selling them to willing buyers. 

Reselling luxury packaging on Instagram


Influencer culture has played a large role in this trend. Followers and fans are willing to buy empty boxes once owned by celebrities and influencers, for various reasons. Some buyers like the fact that they can own an empty box once held by an idol; others like the status of owning and displaying these packaging products in their homes. It enables them to show off their ‘collection’ of designer labels on their own social media channels.

Influencer culture in reselling luxury packaging

©Pinterest and WeHeartIt

Legal implications of reselling luxury packaging

While some sellers can make anything between US$20 and US$60 per branded packaging product1, the reselling market is not a guaranteed way to make money. There can be certain legal implications to this trend, especially in cases where sellers infringe upon trademark restrictions and present themselves as brand representatives2.

People or small businesses reselling branded boxes need to be careful not to market these packaging items as their own products. They must also be clear that they do not represent the company whose logo is on the box. Any unclear practices, such as these, can land the seller in hot water over copyright, trademark and intellectual property infringements.

Another major area of legal violations involves selling knock-off products in these branded boxes. Some sellers are putting cheap products in premium, branded packaging and selling them under the guise of the luxury brand. This is a serious offense counterfeiting is dealt with harshly by most big brands.

©IPL Packaging

Trademark law can be complicated

Trademarks have a set of laws that govern how they are used and these may differ around the world, depending on the country in which the brand is registered. However, once a brand releases its product to the marketplace, it loses the right to prevent the product’s resale in most instances3

This means that branded packaging and boxes can be resold if they are marketed as such - empty packaging with a genuine logo or design. These products cannot be altered in any way or use fake replicas inside and passed off as originals. Any person looking to resell their branded boxes and packaging must be careful not to mislead the buyer in any way, nor claim the trademarked product as their own. 

Ardbeg tin by IPL Packaging

Malone box by IPL Packaging

©IPL Packaging

Reselling luxury boxes online is a fast-growing commercial venture that lends itself to creating a stream of income on the side. As packaging providers, this is an interesting development. Helping to create an iconic pack that has value outside of the primary product will always be a thrilling moment in the life of a packaging designer

  1. MoneyMagpie
  2. Lexology
  3. Seattle Trademark Lawyer and CigarBoxGuitar

Header image: ©IPL Packaging


IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our News section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.

Tin is a luxurious and sustainable packaging material

Tin is a luxurious and sustainable packaging material

There are many sustainable packaging materials available nowadays; recycled papers, bamboo, FSC-certified wood and pulp among them. However, these substrates are not always associated with both luxury and sustainability (although that is starting to change). There is one packaging material that has been ticking both boxes; tin is both luxurious and sustainable.

Tin has many advantages as a substrate. It is lightweight and highly resistant to corrosion or rust (if properly coated) and can be quite malleable in certain applications. This verastile metal can be used to create beautiful secondary packs for premium brands. These are often eye-catching with enormous print options available on the tin plate and can then be adorned with emboss, deboss and various other finishes. 

Tin is a highly customisable choice for high-end products and why many luxury brands have opted for tin packaging in the past, due to its visual appeal and good tactile benefits too. But importantly, in today's need for sustainable products, it is a strong consideration.

What makes tin sustainable?

Gloved hand holding scrap tin shavings

Tin is considered to be a sustainable packaging substrate because it is completely recyclable, meaning that it can be processed and returned to the production cycle without a loss of quality. Many countries around the world now have tin recycling rates of over 90%, which is a testament to the metal’s reusability1.

When used as a coating over other metals, tin can still be melted down and reformed multiple times at the end of the recycling process. In addition, it is a magnetic metal. This means that tin can be quickly and easily extracted from the waste stream.

For luxury and premium brands looking to improve their sustainability credentials without losing the quality look and feel of their packs, tin is an ideal choice. Take a look at some examples of tin packaging below:

Ludlow Blunt tin

Ludlow Blunt tin lid
©Ludlow Blunt and
  1. Engineered


IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our news section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.

Pulp packaging for Nike

Pulp as a substrate for premium packaging

Consumers are demanding more environmentally-friendly packaging and the luxury market is no exception. Current research shows that over 65% of consumers would opt for green packaging and products over non-sustainable options1. More and more luxury goods are starting to use eco-friendly packaging materials, such as pulp, meaning that packs are designed to be recyclable, protective and have a lower carbon footprint.

Whilst eco-friendly packaging is an objective for most brands it is important for them to note that sustainability no longer equates to boring. In addition, alternatives in the market today ensure that luxury brands do not need to compromise on quality either. Pulp is one such sustainable substrate that holds numerous benefits and performs well as a packaging material.

Cosmetic pulp packaging

©Golden Arrow

Pulp has many benefits

There is a major misconception that recycled paper and pulp are low-quality and fibrous. Nowadays, pulp is a strong, durable and highly-customisable solution for luxury packaging. It has excellent cushioning properties, remains unaffected by extreme temperatures and can be moisture-resistant. 

What’s more, pulp is economical. It is relatively inexpensive to produce over large production runs, which means that companies can potentially save on new packaging development costs. Its shape and size can be completely tailored to fit the valuable product within with the added benefit of improving product integrity.

Pulp is made from 100% recyclable raw materials. This makes it biodegradable and recyclable. There is little wastewater and harmful byproducts from the process of manufacturing pulp packaging, all benefits which enhance a brand's reputation in the “sustainable era”.

Pulp packaging for Absolut and Johnny Walker

©Bioplastics News and Mugibson

Types of pulp packaging

Pulp packaging is made from a number of fibrous materials, including recycled paper, cardboard and natural plant fibres. These raw materials determine the colour, texture and strength of the pack. Moulded pulp is formed to shape, so it fits perfectly into a box or holds a premium product tightly. There are four basic types of pulp packaging2:

  1. Thick-walled - The customised pack is manufactured in a single mould. The thickness ranges between 5 mm and 10 mm.
  2. Transfer moulded - Produced with one forming and one transfer mould. The thickness ranges between 3 mm and 5 mm.
  3. Thermoformed - Manufactured using multiple heated moulds. The wall thickness ranges from 2 mm to 4 mm.
  4. Processed - Produced with a secondary treatment process that gives additional qualities to the pack.

These packs are all designed with complex three-dimensional shapes, making the possibilities almost endless. Thanks to advancements in pulp technology, these sustainable packs can also be created with smooth surfaces for a more sophisticated look and feel; ideal for luxury goods and premium brands.

Pulp packaging for cosmetics

©James Cropper and The Dieline

Inner fitments

For some brands, incremental changes towards sustainability are more viable than a complete packaging “makeover”. In these instances, moulded pulp inserts are gaining popularity as a viable alternative to plastic inner components. Outer packaging aesthetics can be kept the same or different sustainable options other than pulp maybe sort. But the characteristics  of pulp allow for very flexible fitment options

The growing need for sustainable packaging options has helped to make pulp a suitable choice for luxury brands. Not only is it made from recyclable materials, but it can also be highly customised and easily processed at recycling facilities once it is discarded. Pulp packaging should be a consideration for premium brands looking to improve their sustainability.

  1. Straits Research
  2. Sustainable Packaging Industries

Header image: ©Behance


IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our News section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.

Millimetres matter when it comes to packaging design

Millimetres matter when it comes to packaging design

When it comes to packaging design and the physical packs made for luxury brands, size matters for two opposing reasons. One has cost implications for transport; the other has an impact on quality control and standards. Packaging designers need to be precise and thoughtful in order to strike the perfect balance between these two factors. We’ll outline their importance below.

Millimetres can save money on shipping

Size has a definite effect on shipping efficiency and cost. This should start right from the design table - Once design ideas are approved, the design/NPD teams will create technical drawings and possibly working prototypes of the pack. They then need to consider the shipping cartons that transport the packs. In costing the goods, calculations are made as to how many boxes can fit on a pallet and how many pallets fit into a container. All of these factors affect the transport cost calculations.

The size of the packaging and cartons may have less impact on smaller volumes, however, when you consider multiple containers, then shaving millimetres off each pack, carton and box can definitely make a difference in transport costs. Apart from reducing material costs, looking at these sorts of shipping efficiencies should be looked at during the design/NPD stage although, this should be done without compromising the protective function of the pack and without affecting its quality.

Millimetres matter when it comes to packaging design

Luxury brands should consider these sorts of hidden aspects of the packaging and shipping process as not only can costs be minimised but by reducing the number of ships, trains, trucks or planes needed to move the product around the world there are added benefits for the environment by cutting down carbon emissions.

Too small tolerances can lead to production difficulties

The type of product that is being manufactured will determine the tolerances, or minor shifts in the production versus design, that will be allowed. These tolerances are especially important when using handmade techniques. Bespoke packaging often requires handmade processes, so the designers need to be aware of how these will factor into the tolerances set by the quality assurance team. 

The smaller the tolerances, the better the quality but often more wastage can occur as a result of ‘defective’ packs discarded by quality inspectors. Manufacturers will factor in these tolerances and expected wastage when costing an item. For handmade customized packs, you have to have tolerances that are sufficient to allow you to pass your product through quality control (QC) but tight enough to ensure the Brand’s integrity is protected.

Millimetres matter when it comes to packaging design

Machine-made products can be highly precise, so tolerances can be very small. Handmade processes need to have slightly larger tolerances. While packaging designers may try to shave millimetres off the packs and cartons, they also need to have an understanding of the production processes used and how this can affect the quality of the final pack. Shaving size in the wrong places may make quality tolerances more difficult to meet. 

It is a fine line to walk, but an experienced packaging company will be able to create a solution that strikes a perfect balance between shipping and production costs. These factors can boil down to millimetres in the luxury packaging industry.


IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our News section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.

Header image: ©Shutterstock

Packaging the Future – IPL weighs in

Packaging the Future – IPL weighs in

It’s 2021 and we’re looking at a shift in megatrends facing the world; a ‘new normal’ for many things, the packaging sector but one. Here a few members of IPL’s expert team share their thoughts on the year ahead for luxury packaging and the global retail market:

Ryan Broomberg, Director

In preparation for the next new normal, packaging companies must rethink packaging design and production beyond ‘must-haves’ such as reasonable costs, convenience, and performance. At IPL, we have recognised that the world is at a crossroads and our new mantra for “Reimagining Packaging” will drive our business for the foreseeable future.

Whilst many of our clients are also driving their own initiatives, they do look to us to be ahead of the curve in our advice and offerings. A challenge in this time of Zoom calls and travel difficulties is to ensure that both our teams and key suppliers live up to our internal messaging of “Reimagine”. This concept of driving culture will be even more important to all people in different leadership positions.

Big brands will, in addition, need to ensure a good sustainability narrative; address differences in e-commerce, ship-ready design and direct-to-consumer models versus old school retail and thirdly, think about designs with hygiene in mind, given heightened consumer-safety concerns.

Glen Broomberg, Head Global Business Development Glen Broomberg IPL Packaging

The global retail environment ‘switched off’ and stalled during 2020 but it’s heartening to see that many of those countries ‘almost back to normal’ are experiencing massive increases in retail sales, even compared to 2019 numbers.  I believe we’ll see this trend continue as consumers return to in-store and ‘live’ experiences. Those retailers fortunate to have survived are likely to experience sales booms.

Subscription services fared incredibly well during difficult times and will continue to serve their new database. The digital channel will undoubtedly continue to grow and grow! Those consumers settled into armchair purchasing will also continue to embrace the ease of online shopping combined with the desire to re-experience 'live' in-store opportunities.


Jason Roberts, Business Development Manager Jason Roberts IPL Packaging

Of course, we’ll continue, both as consumers and as a global packaging company, to embrace the much-needed drive towards sustainability. Sustainable sourcing and manufacturing will prove an ever-growing landscape of new ideas and opportunities. In the same way, brand language used on packaging & communications is set to become even more important, allowing consumers to see brands as ‘allies’ rather than just consumables.

Though travel bans significantly impacted worldwide brands and their channel sales through Global Duty-Free (a sector which saw an almost 100% drop-off in 2020) a dearth of real-life experiences for so many during 2020 and 2021 should see a re-emergence of travel and resultant Duty-Free sales too.  The global drive to vaccinate, coupled with peoples’ desperate need to, once again, travel and explore once will impact the demands in this sector enormously. 

Christiana Delahaye, Senior Purchasing Manager Christiana Delahaye IPL Packaging

I believe we’ll witness a considerable increase in the use of raw materials as packaging mediums; rigid board, paper, wood, metal, glass - and other more sustainable options such as bio-plastics and even corn, bamboo, vegetable leather, etc. So too, finishing and decorations look set to develop and progress even further. Expect to see an increase in the demand for affordable luxury to something that translates directly to packaging and material sourcing and production.

All this will require the re-structuring of production models in factories and on production lines, implementing new technologies and machines and of course, challenging the packaging supplier’s ability to connect brand and consumer needs with execution - through vision, creativity and excellence.

Our Asian manufacturing partners at IPL continue to play a vitally important role in our supply model, however, our dealings with partner factories in Europe have shown they are more than equipped to meet the latest trends in the industry and to serve nearby markets in the best possible, and “local”, way.  In this way, packaging suppliers need to establish solid partnerships with manufacturing facilities in central areas, close to both source markets and raw material sourcing. It is important to support new capabilities easily and quickly converting these in order to further raise the industry level.

Patrick Leclezio, Head of Product Development & Innovation Patrick Leclezio IPL Packaging

There’s so much to process about the last year; so much upheaval and so much uncertainty - that it’s difficult to predict what’s going to come next.  I’d venture that our tolerance and appetite for change have been fundamentally altered - and that what scared us before really doesn’t seem as frightening now.

Remote work was forced on us by the pandemic and is rapidly becoming 'de rigueur,’ even within conservative organisations where it previously wouldn’t have been contemplated. We’re entering an era where attitudes to risk will have shifted! Therefore, I think we can expect brands to be bolder with their packaging, to take bigger steps, and to chase larger ambitions. 

Hopefully, this will mean quicker, more meaningful progress in the area of sustainability, but it’ll also engender a ‘freer hand’ for creative vision and innovative energy, both in packaging and in other sectors.  It’s been a tough period, and we’re not done with it yet, but we shouldn’t discount the positive outcomes. Longer-term, I think we’ll come out of this crisis stronger and more empowered!

LB Odendaal, IPL Head of Design LB Odendaal IPL Packaging

The driving force in packaging design this year will be striking the balance between aesthetic appeal and sustainable credibility.  As brands become more and more aware of the social impact of their messaging and transform and adapt to appeal to new and more diverse audiences, this also requires thought and understanding in brand application and messaging from a design point of view. 

Price continues to impact, so too, socially aware consumers want sustainable, responsible packaging that delivers value, a valuable message or potential second use.  Brands and packaging designers can also no longer simply consider good a product looks on a shelf, but how good it looks in a thumbnail online and how it looks and feels when it arrives directly to your home. In this way, social media platforms (with images and videos shared by others) have become new shop fronts.

Designers are challenged to meet the needs of a changing world, to keep innovating and to find a balance between function, cost, impact, and appeal. As physical brand spaces continue to remain shut in many markets, the latest challenge is how to produce packaging that recreates the theatre of the retail experience during the digital unboxing process.

Phillip Hao, Procurement Director Phillip Hao IPL Packaging

The past has taught us relationships with new suppliers entail a learning process for both parties. Suppliers often need time to fully grasp and understand complex product requirements – and we need to realise that these requirements may become even more complex in the ‘next normal.’

Proper communication and ‘mentoring' are extremely worthwhile. As packaging suppliers, if we challenging manufacturers with new and complex specifications we’re empowering them, pushing them to widen their capabilities and enabling them and of course, our clients, to benefit from high-quality precise manufacturing for new products.

In the future, we need to realise that adopting new methods and techniques will come with challenges but attitude is often the most important ingredient. Willingness to keep at it until it's right is a very important quality we look for in suppliers and working with these sorts of suppliers is better in the long run, even with this means a few bumps in the road.



IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our news section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.

Header image: ©FinancialServicesBlog and WallpaperSafari

ARK wearable tech jewellery by IPL Packaging

Crystal Gazing: the box that heroes the jewellery

“Simple, innovative and interactive - these are the words best associated with memorable, effective jewellery packaging design,” says Skye King, Senior Industrial Designer at IPL Packaging. “Here too, the unboxing experience forms a vital part of the overall impression of a jewellery item and, of course, the brand itself.“ 

“It’s about creating packaging that perfectly aligns with the brand,” she continues, “that prolongs the joy of the unwrapping experience - perhaps with the addition of an extra layer to the process and, of course, utilising a packaging design that best ‘heroes’ the item of jewellery contained within it,” she says. 

“Survey results have shown that increased interactive complexity in packaging and unboxing can lead to higher expectations of the product quality. Elements of a multi-layered, interactive unboxing experience can elicit positive emotions, which can then increase consumers' willingness to share the experience online and offline,” says King.

ARK wearable tech jewellery by IPL Packaging

Ark Crystal jewellery box offers unique unboxing experience

A packaging product, produced by IPL Packaging for Ark Crystal’s ‘wearable technology, consciously designed’ pendants, is an example of a solution that successfully ticks the interactive unboxing experience!

Here the client design was interpreted into a striking hexagonal jewellery box complete with walnut veneered lid and base panels. 

Ark pendants feature new technology

The outer box features a laser-engraved logo on the lid and a protective felt base.  Once opened, the lid of the case reveals sumptuous black suede lining with the Ark logo in silkscreen and an exposed magnet closure system.

A removable fitment cover forms the second layer of the unboxing experience, in which the recipient extracts a 6mm thick MDF hexagonal structure, wrapped in black suede, to reveal the pendant contained beneath.

Close-up details of the Ark jewellery box

The pendant is held within in a removable inner fitment with a wrapped suede recess base featuring a V-shaped finger hole on the one side and a black satin ribbon on the base of the box to assist with extraction. This inner fitment, or 'the third layer’, elegantly transforms into a display mechanism that glorifies the pendant itself.


IPL Packaging is a global luxury packaging supplier with offices in the USA, Europe, Mexico, Asia and Africa. Approved manufacturing is available in several Asian countries, as well as sites in Eastern Europe. We create bespoke, tailored and exclusive packaging for any premium or luxury brand and manage the entire process, from conceptualisation and design to production and delivery.

For more information on packaging solutions or to get an insight into our latest packaging trends, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or Pinterest. Keep an eye on our News section for insightful articles and innovative ideas around packaging materials, product development and design.