One of the ways that companies stay top-of-mind with consumers, year after year, is by staying in touch with the latest design trends that could affect their product label designs. This article offers up leading trends such as eco-conscious designs, retro designs, minimalist aesthetics, and pronounced typography. Attentive use of design and branding details on product labels (also called prime labels) can elevate a brand’s perceived value and keep products moving off the shelf.

Key Takeaways in the Latest Product Label Design Trends

  • For some products, nostalgic design elements are gaining traction, eliciting positive emotions in consumers through retro color palettes, fonts, and art.
  • Brands are experimenting at both ends of the design spectrum using either minimalist or bold design features.
  • Sustainability remains a hot button for consumers and is a driver of sales and premium pricing.
  • The continuing evolution of digital label printing technology makes the development and testing of product labels easier and more affordable than ever.

Eco-Friendly Design Elements

eco friendly label design elements

Consideration for eco-conscious label design elements continues to be an important trend. Brands prioritize packaging that is both visually appealing and sustainable.

The emphasis lies on minimizing environmental impact and championing eco-responsibility. Labels crafted from recycled materials, plant-derived inks, and designs that minimize waste are becoming prevalent.

This eco-conscious shift benefits both the environment and businesses. An increasing number of consumers make purchase decisions based on their values, with environmental responsibility ranking high.

The Business of Sustainability Study found that 78% of consumers want to buy from environmentally friendly companies but have trouble identifying them.

They reported that 72% of consumers read product labels or use certifications to identify sustainable benefits of any given product.

Minimalist Design Aesthetics

Minimalist aesthetics are gaining prominence in labeling and packaging. Design minimalism champions simplicity and ample space, allowing the product’s primary attributes to shine.

Key Features of Minimalist Design

Simplicity: Minimalist designs highlight the fundamental elements, presenting a neat and streamlined look.

Clarity: With limited elements, the product’s primary attributes gain prominence.

Advantages of Minimalist Design

Distinctiveness: Amidst consumer information overload, minimalist designs can set a product apart on the shelf and online.

Precise Messaging: A streamlined design can more effectively convey a product’s value proposition.

Bold Label Color Schemes and Their Impact

bold color scheme for product labels

On the opposite end of the spectrum, pronounced color palettes can significantly amplify brand visibility, creating an immediate impression that captivates consumers. When conceptualizing a product label, understanding the psychological implications of label color is vital. Specific shades can trigger particular emotions, influencing consumer perception.


Emotion it Evokes


Passion, excitement, strong emotion


Calm, trust, reliability


Imaginative, spiritual, wealth, royalty


Innocence, cleanliness, purity


Love, romance


Excitement, enthusiasm, refreshing


Cheerfulness or frustration


Natural, health, sustainability, growth, harmony


Death, mourning, negativity, power, elegance

When selecting a color scheme, it’s not merely about aesthetics; it’s about curating an emotional journey for consumers. One caveat with vibrant colors is that you want to avoid overwhelming the audience to such an extent that it distracts from the brands messaging and identity.

Interactive Features in Product Labels

Embedding interactive elements in product labeling gives you a cutting-edge approach to captivate customers and enhance brand recall. It transcends mere aesthetics, offering a richer experience that extends beyond the point of purchase.

Some of the methods to incorporate interactivity include:

QR Codes

A QR code, short for quick response code, is a barcode that when scanned, usually with a smartphone, takes the viewer to a specific webpage, video, image, or other piece of content. Some typical uses of QR codes on prime labels (product labels) include:

  • Redirect customers to a website or social platforms.
  • Offer detailed product information or instructional guides.
  • Send customers to other related products.

Augmented Reality

Augmented reality (AR) is a feature that lets consumers point their phones at a label to see extra content. Instead of going to a specific piece of content, it goes a step further than QR codes and superimposes a digital, virtual image on the product label in real time.

  • Companies can enliven their products with 3D models, animations, or videos that makes it seem as if the label itself is coming to life. Or it can show additional in-depth content about the product.
  • AR lets companies produce interactive games or quizzes for customer entertainment.

Cultural and Regional Influences in Design

bimbo brands design

Image source: Grupo Bimbo

Cultural and regional nuances in label design can give brands a distinctive competitive edge that’s hard to beat. Product packaging, just like a language’s regional dialects, has nuances to consider, especially for brands that sell internationally.

Diverse cultures harbor unique preferences and associations, which can be instrumental in captivating a specific demographic or expanding global reach.


Cultural Aesthetic

Brand Example


Minimalist, clean



Vibrant, colorful



Functional, simple



Ornate, detailed



Bold, direct


Retro Design Trends

At any given time, there are always designers borrowing from the past to appeal to the nostalgic feelings everyone experiences at one time or another.

Depending on the target market, retro design elements will vary.  In recent years, a retro design style from the 1960’s is making a comeback in interior design. It has an eco-friendly appeal, and its bright colors imply optimism and hope.

Similarly, products that are targeted to consumers who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s might resonate by using simple, bold, or neon colors, free-form graphics, or pop art from that era.

Retro design elements are powerful because they have a deep emotional connection. And emotion is what moves people to action.

Digitally Printed Labels for Easy Versioning

The continuing development of digital label printing technology means that labels are more affordable than ever. With today’s digital tech, labels are practical and price-competitive for quantities ranging from as low as 1,000 into the millions, depending on the label size.

Digitally printed labels also allows brands to segment product labels according to numerous characteristics.

Segmenting, also called versioning, can be used for:

  • regional and cultural variations
  • QR and AR codes
  • barcodes
  • flavors
  • colors
  • SKU’s
  • varieties or
  • ultra-specific campaign codes.

Digital label printing technology makes labels accessible to even the smallest of companies. Versioning means that products can be tested faster than ever, in more variations than ever. Ultimately, a smart digital label strategy can drive product development and revenue.

To find out how digital labels can help your company, send Clear Print the specs on your custom product labeling job here.

Or email Clear Print here or call 818-709-1220.

Frequently Asked Questions – Label Design Trends

How Is Sustainability Reflected in the Material Choices for Product Labels?

Sustainable product labels harmoniously integrate with nature. They use eco-friendly materials, diminish environmental impact, and resonate with eco-conscious consumers.

What Are the Main Characteristics of Minimalist Label Design Trends

Minimalist label designs of today feature clean lines, understated color palettes, and streamlined designs. The focus is on highlighting the core attributes, allowing the product’s quality to be the focal point.

How Do Bold Color Palettes Influence Consumer Behavior and Product Perception?

Vibrant hues are not mere decorative elements—they command attention, elicit emotional reactions, and mold product perception. They leave an indelible mark, shaping a brand image that influences purchasing decisions. Care should be taken to work with experienced designers such as Clear Print to achieve a good design balance without overwhelming consumers with color.

How Are Interactive Elements Integrated into Product Labels, and How Do They Engage Consumers?

Interactive elements are increasingly featured in labels, especially QR codes and AR codes. These codes facilitate direct interaction with the product and enhance the overall consumer experience and satisfaction levels.

How Do Cultural and Regional Factors Influence the Design Trends of Product Labels?

Cultures and geographic regions each have their locally inspired design aesthetics that resonate specifically with that group. Color choices, typography, and imagery in a label design should appeal to that demographic.

How Do Holographic and Metallic Finishes Impact Product Label Design?

Holographic and metallic finishes are emerging as popular choices for brands that want to add a touch of luxury and modernity to their packaging. These finishes reflect light in unique ways, creating a dynamic and eye-catching effect that can elevate the perceived value of a product.

What Role Do Textures Play in Enhancing the Tactile Experience of Product Labels?

Textured labels provide a tactile dimension to the consumer experience. Whether it’s a matte finish, embossing, or a fabric-like texture, tactile elements can make a product more memorable and can influence purchasing decisions by appealing to the sense of touch.

How Are Brands Ensuring Inclusivity in Their Label Designs?

Inclusivity is becoming a priority in design. Brands are adopting universal design principles to ensure their labels are accessible to everyone, including those with visual or cognitive impairments. This includes considerations like high-contrast color schemes, larger font sizes, and braille integration.

Are There Trends in Label Design Specifically Catering to Online Sales and E-commerce?

With the continued strength of e-commerce, labels are being designed with online shoppers in mind. This includes using designs that are easily recognizable in digital thumbnails, incorporating scannable elements for easy reordering, and ensuring that the label design aligns with the brand’s digital presence for a cohesive shopping experience.

Conclusion – Current Product Label Design Trends

Companies can think about how to use popular design trends in their new product labels. Pay attention to design trends in other industries that have universal appeal and borrow those that resonate with the target audience.

Today’s product labels can narrate tales of sustainability, radiate with vibrant colors, or exude minimalist elegance. Interactive elements are important to consumer satisfaction, as is an understanding of cultural undertones. In the dynamic retail and B2B marketplaces, a label represents a brand’s voice, and it needs to resonate with clients today.

Related Helpful Articles About Custom Product Labels

Product Labels (Prime Labels) – a Guide to Labeling for Bottles, Jars and Components

Print Finishes for Labels – How to Decorate Your Product Labels

Troubleshooting Product Labels (Prime Labels) – A Print and Packaging Buyer’s Guide

Published On: October 6th, 2023 / Categories: Labels /