Inside Sustainable and Branded Packaging

Industry News and Perspectives

18 Feb 2016 NEW: Rigid Mailers in White and Kraft

custom printing with low 2,500 MOQIn our never ending effort to offer our customers better, greener, and more affordable custom printed and branded packaging products, we are thrilled to be adding a new line of rigid mailers in both white and Kraft board.

Seven NEW RIGID MAILER Sizes with More to Come

The new sizes currently range from 6” X 6” to 12-3/4” X 15” and we plan to add several other sizes and designs in the next few weeks.

Each size is available in Kraft TBC or white CCNB paper board. Every mailer features an easy to use, peel and seal adhesive strip for fast, secure closure and an easy to open, tamper evident tear strip.

They are all currently in stock and available for immediate shipment on our Globe Guard ® green packaging store!

Another GREAT Green Packaging Solution FROM Globe Guard®

One of the things we most love about this new product line is how eco-friendly it is. All of these products are:

  • 100% recycled content
  • High post-consumer waste (PCW) content from 35% minimum on white to as much as 98% on Kraft.
  • 100% recyclable just about anywhere including curbside paper recycling programs.

White and Kraft rigid mailers now in stockAlso Available Custom Printed in a Low 2,500 MOQ!

Anyone who knows us knows we are all about branding, and this product line offers one of the lowest minimums anywhere for custom printing on rigid mailers. One or two colors are standard and quickly priced for you. Flood coats and higher color counts are also available upon request.

Standard colors or PMS (Pantone) specific colors are also available, as are screen designs for that unique look you want. If you prefer a window rather than a label, that too is easily accomplished in house with an open or film covered window.

We feel this product line is a perfect fit and compliments all of our other custom printed packaging products that include: RSC style shipping boxes, die cut mailer boxes, unpadded paper mailer envelopes, padded poly (bubble) mailer envelopes, unpadded poly mailers, rigid paperboard boxes, and paperboard folding cartons.

Please do not hesitate to contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 to discuss your specific application and needs. We are confident we can help you create packaging that communicates and tells your customer the story you want to tell.

Related posts:

Read More

11 Feb 2016 Steamm Espresso Selects Salazar Packaging for New, First Ever, Bottled Espresso Product Line.

Steamm 12 pack exteriorWe love what we do and helping companies make great looking packaging for their e-commerce products is as much a passion as it is a career for us. One of the things that makes it fun for us is working with new companies and helping them to launch brand new products into the market place.

Steamm Espresso – unique packaging for a unique product

This is one of those companies who was not looking for ordinary or off the shelf packaging. They have created a first ever bottled espresso that is 100% natural and can be enjoyed a wide variety of different ways. The packaging took a long time to develop because presentation was very important to the customer. Many versions later, after several design tweaks, and when combined with their excellent graphics, the end result is well worth all of the time and effort.

Shot@ Life Campaign

Steamm six pack interiorThe other thing that makes this company extraordinary is their participation in this program that provides vaccines for children who are not able to otherwise access or afford them. Their “shot for shot” program provides one needy child a vaccine for every shot of Steamm Espresso sold. Great product and a great cause, how can you beat that?

What is the objective for your e-commerce packaging?

It is a challenge to try to satisfy all, possibly conflicting design requirements, because sometimes the greenest packaging materials, are not the most attractive. Or in other applications, product visibility and presentation has to be balanced with product protection.

The key is to establish your priorities and design toward that goal. Remember, we will help you create whatever packaging you want us to create for you, but market testing and ship testing is recommended, especially for expensive or fragile products being shipped.

If you want to try a unique brand of Espresso, check out If you want guidance on how to design your e-commerce or subscription box for optimal results, contact Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700.for a no cost, confidential application review.

Related posts:

Read More

29 Jan 2016 What Drives E-Commerce and Subscription Box Redesign and Rebranding?

Hundreds of color optionsWe have been making great looking, great performing e-commerce and subscription boxes for a long time. At our company, we measure experience in decades, not years, so it is fair to say we have had many conversations with a great variety of potential customers. We have found that most of the people seeking help with a packaging redesign or rebrand, typically do so for four basic reasons:

Reducing Shipping Costs

Shipping rates have changed (increased of course) and sometimes so do the items being shipped. A very larger shipper of personal care products redesigned some of their primary product containers and the changes were just enough to take their overall package weight from just under, to just over the critical one pound weight limit for USPS. This change of weight was minimal but it increased their shipping costs by an additional $2.00 cost PER BOX so a quick weight loss program was needed.

Unforgetable inside printsWe analyzed everything from the size, the shape, the board weight and even the ink weight and reached the goal, without compromising the integrity or the appearance of the product being shipped. In fact the customer was thrilled to see the weight reduced without making the packaging inconsistent with the high quality products they ship. Amazingly, the new design was implemented within two weeks from finished art.

Eliminating Shipping Damage

We recently met a new client who was using an outer shipper to protect the inner, branded box containing their products. This was not to preserve the esthetics of the primary box, it was simply because the products were being beat up in shipment due to the poor, weak, primary box design.  The outer, inexpensive “stock box” they used to protect the branded box was anything but low cost. It added labor and overall weight while increasing their shipping costs.

Even though the new design we helped create required new tooling (cutting die) and new print plates, those onetime costs were recovered in a matter of weeks, while customer complaints and packaging costs were reduced.

internal packaging solutionsImproving Productivity

Imagine doing the vast majority of your annual business in a few short weeks! That is exactly what happened annually for one of our new customers. The seasonal nature of their business means that every second counts and packaging time impacts how many orders will make it out the door and to their customers in time for Christmas.

Many customers like using plain or decorative paper products such as tissue, or kraft paper for void fill and to provide minimal protection. While these products tend to be inexpensive to purchase, they are typically expensive to use because they have to be measured, cut and manipulated (scrunched) into the right shape and size. This is very time consuming and in the hands of the wrong, new or seasonal packer, it can also result in an ineffective and unattractive presentation.

We have proven time and time again that even though a well-designed insert (foam, molded pulp, or die cut corrugated) can be more expensive per piece, the many benefits, especially labor reduction, can create savings in the end. In this case, our client was able to get many more orders out the door, at an overall lower cost per unit.

“Enhancing the Customer Experience”

Whether your team calls it that, or “increasing the WOW factor”, the objective is the same: creating e-commerce packaging that impresses the customer receiving it.  A quick visit to our gallery will show that there are a number of different ways to accomplish that from the soft and subtle to bold and outrageous. Needs change over time and are influenced by our customers as well as our competitors, so branding or rebranding can be a great way to communicate and keep your message current.

Whatever your motivation or goal, do not hesitate to contact us for a free and frank discussion about your e-commerce or subscription box branding. Call us at 630-551-1700 or contact us at Salazar Packaging.

We look forward to working with you on your project.

Related posts:

Read More

22 Jan 2016 The Number One Resource for Branded Shipping Containers

Capture2Whether you need a mailer envelope, a mailer box, or even custom printed tape, the one site you have to check out is the new and improved There is no better place to see examples of printed packaging for e-commerce or subscription boxes and you will find tons of information there as well.

Unforgetable inside printsSeveral Packaging Resources on One Web Site!

Our newly expanded photo gallery has dozen of new photos of great looking custom printed boxes, mailer envelopes and tapes. If you want to see some eye catching inside prints, there is probably no better place on the web to see a selection.

We have made it easier to find what you need on our blog that has several hundred posts, answering many of the most common questions. Is printing boxes or using printed tape better for your application? What standard colors are available for corrugated boxes?  What is the difference between an RSC box and a die cut mailer? Is white board more expensive than brown board? When are mailer envelopes a better option compared to mailer boxes? All of these questions and more are answered within the library of blog posts. Use the search box to find what you need, quickly and easily.

You will also find additional packaging products and answers with pages focused on sustainable packaging, internal/protective packaging, retail bags and cartons and many other packaging options.

internal packaging solutionsWhat You Will NOT Find on the new Salazar Packaging Site?

You will not find a price list. All of our printing is custom and there are way too many variables to be able to provide pricing accurately. We do not offer “stock prints” so your brand and your design can truly be yours and yours alone.

Additional Help Is Just an Email or Phone Call Away

If you do not find what you need, we always welcome emails and phone calls. The packaging experience of our designers and consultants is measured in decades, not years and our goal is to help YOU make an informed decision. We offer such a wide variety of custom printed, branded packaging for e-commerce, we will guide you towards what is truly best for you, because we are not a one product or one solution company.

Please email Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700. We would love to help you with your branding or re-branding project.

Related posts:

Read More

07 Dec 2015 Save Big Money by NOT Buying Stock Size RSC Shipping Boxes!

unprinted-custom-size-stock-boxesWe often meet people who buy stock boxes over the internet, from an office supply company, or even a local moving and storage operation. These RSC style STOCK boxes are typically available in Kraft 32 ECT board and available in the most common and popular standard sizes.

Have you outgrown your stock box supplier?

Buying a standard size box in small quantities is indeed the right thing to do when you are first getting started and perhaps buying as few as twenty-five or fifty boxes at one time. However, as your usage increases and you begin purchasing hundreds of boxes, you may be paying a great deal more than necessary for the convenience and small order capability you no longer need.

To put it plainly, if you are buying hundreds of boxes at one time, you no longer have to buy off the shelf and a short, custom run can be a much better deal for you.

Made to order RSC boxes!

Why would you want to go through the “trouble” of custom boxes? Here are a few great reasons:

  • You can decide on the board grade being used. If you need something a little different than standard 32 ECT or 200# test board most stock box makers use, your boxes can be made using a heavier (or lighter) board.
  • Most stock boxes are Kraft (brown) but you can also order white if that is your preference.
  • You can have the EXACT size you need. Perhaps 12x12x12 is a good fit for you but what if the true correct size is really 11” X 10-1/2” X 9-1/2”? You can get the size you need without any tooling costs.
  • Right sizing a box saves money on the box as well as inbound (to you) and outbound (to your customer) shipping costs.
  • Right sizing can also prevent damage and eliminate expensive filler or cushioning material.
  • Adding branding will only add a few cents of cost in most cases. Boxes with your logo and brand are affordable and only require a small one time investment in print plates.



The custom box minimum is lower than you think

If the box you need is smaller than one cubic foot (12”x12”x12”) the MOQ is 1,000 boxes. If it is larger, the MOQ is 500. Obviously the key cost factor is set up time so the price per box is greatly reduced as your order quantity increases. People ordering thousands of stock, unprinted boxes can easily afford a custom size and a custom brand and in most cases their cost per box is actually reduced.

Is a custom box run in your best interest? Is a mailer envelope or a die cut mailer box a better shipping container for your product and customers? We can help you determine that with quick, no cost, no obligation, application review.

You can contact us through our Globe Guard Products web site or call us at 630-551-1700

Related posts:

Read More

12 Nov 2015 Custom Printed Unpadded Paper Mailer Envelopes – FREE print plates through December 31, 2015

37Our Kraft (brown) and white mailer envelopes are a customer favorite for shipping out a wide variety of products, including and especially clothing such as tee shirts, sweat shirts and other soft goods. They are available flat or gusseted, in a wide variety of sizes; are inexpensively custom printed and branded with one or two colors, on one or both sides.


Print plates are typically a very affordable onetime expense of up to $125 per color and per side but for a limited period of time (until 12/31/15) we will provide your one color print plates for you at no charge. The only restrictions are that the order has to be for two or more cases for one sided/one color print or five or more cases for a two sided/one color print.

Great Time to Step Up to Branded Mailer Envelopes

If you have been using one of our many unprinted stock sizes from our green packaging store,, this is the ideal time to make the move to custom printed mailers and eliminating the cost of labels or hand stamping.

Or if you have changed your logo or rebranded, you can update your look at minimal expense.

Other Custom Printed Packaging Options

In addition to these unpadded, paper mailers, we also can custom print padded and unpadded poly mailers, paperboard rigid mailers and of course our Globe Guard corrugated RSC style shipping boxes and mailer boxes.

Which option is best for you and your product? One of our experienced people will be glad to help you through that decision process as well as estimate all costs for you. Contact us via email or call us at 630-551-1700 for a free consultation.

We make packaging that communicates. What is your packaging saying about you?

Related posts:

Read More

03 Nov 2015 Earth Turns Finds Value in Globe Guard® Custom Printed RSC Boxes

Earth Turns 2 colors on Kraft RSC boxEarth Turns is one of our oldest and dearest customers in the natural products and supplement space. They continue succeeding and growing in a market that has seen many others come and go.

What Makes Them Successful?

The people at know once a potential customer finds you on the internet, the second challenge is to keep them. So in addition to great prices and selection, they provide customers with outstanding customer service.

Their packaging is consistent with their approach and products and is kept simple, eco-friendly and easy to recycle.

Why RSC boxes?

Most of the e-commerce people we work with utilize die cut mailers but Earth Turns chooses RSC boxes because they are:

  • Lower in cost to purchase, ship (inbound) and store because they occupy less space.
  • They may be lower in cost to ship out bound as well (lower shipping weight), depending on what they are being compared to.
  • They are easier and faster to assemble.
  • They are 100% recycled content and can easily be recycled with paper waste by the consumer
  • If custom printed, print plates are generally less expensive

RSC insulated cooler boxes also availableAre custom printed RSC boxes right for you?

They may be the best product solution for you but a good answer requires at least a minimal review of your specific application. There are many factors to be considered including annual usage, what you are shipping, how you ship it and even product weight.

We can quickly help guide you to mailer boxes, RSC boxes or any one of a handful of different mailer envelope options we have to offer. There is no cost or obligation to speak to one of our experienced packaging experts so email us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700.

Related posts:

Read More

29 Oct 2015 Reducing the Cost of Shipping E-Commerce and Subscription Boxes via USPS

shipping costRecently we have received several inquiries regarding USPS tier shipping which is their version of UPS’s “DIM (dimensional) Weight” rate program. Essentially it means that the larger a package is, the more it will cost you to ship it, and that package weight and shipping distance are no longer the only factors determining shipping costs.

We have worked with hundreds of companies shipping an endless variety of products, and the one thing they all have in common is their need to minimize shipping costs. In almost all cases the shipping cost is likely to exceed the cost of the packaging being used and in some cases, it can even exceed the cost of the product being shipped. That is why managing your shipping cost has quickly become the single greatest objective for everyone in the e-commerce or subscription box markets.

How Is USPS Tier Pricing Calculated?

Cubic footage of any box being shipped is determined by multiplying the OUTSIDE (rounded DOWN to nearest ¼”) length x width x height and dividing that total by 1,728. That typically results in a digital number less than 1.

Example: Our stock 7-7-2 box has actual inside dimensions of 7-1/8” X 7” X 2-1/4” and the outside dimensions are 8” X 7.375 X 2.75”. We round them down to 8” X 7.25” X 2.75” and when we multiply them and divide them by 1,728 the result is $.0923. That is a GREAT box size because it is just under the .10 tier limit. You can read more about the brackets and calculations at this USPS web site link where you will find this chart:

Priority Mail Commercial Plus—Cubic

Large Envelopes (flats) & parcels


Cubic Ft. Range Up To Zone1,2
Local, 1 & 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
0.10 $4.58 $4.65 $4.74 $4.99 $5.23 $5.47 $5.82 $6.98
0.20 4.99 5.12 5.28 5.50 5.70 5.91 6.30 7.56
0.30 5.22 5.61 6.12 7.64 8.39 9.09 9.96 11.94
0.40 5.40 6.31 7.24 9.13 10.73 11.77 13.26 15.91
0.50 6.18 7.21 8.35 11.50 13.41 14.82 16.97 20.36

BTW, for your convenience, we have added exterior cubic footage to all of our stock die cut mailer boxes on our store.

Engineered and Designed for minimum shipping cost

designed to be under .1 and .2 cubic feetCheck out the link below to see our new Min-Weight™ boxes we just created for Universal Yums. Not only has the weight been reduced, both were sized and designed to fall under a specific tier limit. Tell us the objective and it is very likely we can help you accomplish it.

How to Beat Tier Priced Shipping Costs

Here are a few suggestions that will enable you to minimize your shipping cost while maximizing its effectiveness:

  1. Understand the way the system works for your specific carrier of choice. Know the rules and make an informed decision on which one you choose and what level of service makes the most sense for you, your customers, and the products you are shipping.
  2. Right size your box. Avoid the “I want a larger box, just in case” approach. We understand for some subscription boxes the items being shipped vary from month to month, but set an affordable size limit and stick to it. If the volume or size requirements change, adding a second or different size box may be the most economical choice.
  3. A custom size MAY make sense for you. A custom size cutting die is usually one time cost of around $800 but if you can save $2.00 per box and you ship more than 400 boxes in one month, the die will pay for itself in one month.
  4. Consider packaging options other than boxes. That may sound strange coming from a company that specializes in branded shipping boxes but we will admit that sometime a mailer envelope is less expensive to buy and ship.

As always, when in doubt, please ASK us because there may be a style, or board grade that can dramatically reduce your shipping costs. Resist the temptation to self-diagnose when our decade’s long expert advice is free for the asking.

Please feel free to visit our gallery to see examples of some of our custom printed packaging. You can contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700.

Related posts:

Read More

16 Oct 2015 Danone’s New Nutrimom Program Selects Salazar Packaging for their Mailer Boxes

Three Nutrimom boxesWe have been fortunate to create hundreds of beautiful shipping containers for a variety of products for e-commerce or in subscription box applications. However, none have the long term positive impact potential as the series of boxes we just made for

Nutrimom is a brand of Nutricia Early Life Nutrition, a part of Danone (Dannon, Evian, etc.) and their new program is designed to provide nutritious products and guidance to expectant mothers and babies, as their needs change from early pregnancy through post-delivery. It is a terrific, new program and they wanted their packaging to be every bit as unique.

The Packaging Challenge

The Nutrimom program requires over twenty different product variations and combinations shipping at different times, to the expectant moms with varying needs. Our objective, as always, was to create as few packaging SKU’s as possible for the client to minimize inventory and maximize the customers’ purchase quantities, dramatically reducing their cost. Remember, buying more of fewer box sizes will always result in greater savings and remarkably we were able to reduce the number of shipping boxes to just four sizes.

The other potential problem was the variety of shapes, sizes and weights of the products being shipped within the boxes. We needed to avoid product to product damage but because of the number of combinations being shipped, we were not able to use traditional die cut inserts. So the best solution was to create simple, low cost dividers that would be easier and quicker to pack, reducing labor costs as well.

Positive and reverse print fine linesThe Graphic Design Challenge

The team at Danone and their graphics people created a beautiful design, but it included a combination of thin lines that are positive printed as well as reverse printed (see photos). With a little tweaking of their initial design and utilizing the right print plates for the job, we improved printability on the exterior of the box. They also wanted bright colors inside the box so we managed the board and ink combination for the perfect end results.

If you are looking for a gift for a mom-to-be you know, a subscription to Nutrimom would be perfect. If you are in need of expert guidance to design, or redesign your e-commerce or subscription box, contact Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 for a no cost application consultation.

Related posts:

Read More

09 Oct 2015 Litho Labels for Exceptionally Attractive E-Commerce Shipping Boxes

SAM_0017A quick visit through our gallery will show how we have helped many customers create great looking e-commerce and subscription boxes. So our people are used to seeing a lot of eye catching, unique boxes. Every once in a while we make that one that makes our entire staff respond with resounding, “WOW”!

Utica Labs Decides to go Litho Label

Utica Dental Laboratory is a terrific sixty year old company in New York who wanted to create a great looking box that they could ship or hand out to a customer. They also had very clear vision of what they wanted it to look like which included a delicate graphic design and a glossy finish that would stay clean when handled.

Probably 95% of the shipping boxes used in this country are “direct” printed on a flexographic press which offers a number of advantages, especially a lower per box cost, but it can be limited in the types of designs we can print with it. It also requires one print plate for each color and that onetime cost can add up.

As I often say, flexographic box printing is an imperfect process on an imperfect substrate which is high recycled content corrugated board. That is why in some situations, the best and perhaps only way to print an intricate or complex design is print the design on a better grade of paper, using a better print process and then laminating that design onto board, rather than attempt “direct” printing.

Great Graphic Design with Some Potential Problems

An initial review of their design shows the following potential issues:

  • They wanted a white, glossy finish and we can’t do glossy or varnished finishes using flexographic presses and inks
  • The design features digitally created color gradients; though we can screen flexo to deliver different intensities of the same color, it is not subtle or smooth enough to accomplish fine changes in a design like this.
  • There is a second color, a gray (also a gradient) that is overlapping the blue in the logo. Flexo printing would create a shadow or ring in the ink trap area that would be objectionable.

Unless major modifications were made to the design, flexographic printing would not create the look our customer wanted, so we recommended a litho label, offset printed that could satisfy all of their requirements. The results are obvious in the photo!

What is the Best Printing Option For You?

Many factors are considered during a free, no cost, and no obligation application review including quantity and if the job will repeat. For example, printing 1,000 boxes for a one time promotion or situation requiring 10,000 boxes per month is likely to result in very different recommendations from a variety of print processes we offer. Call us at 630-551-1700 or contact Salazar Packaging for a confidential analysis of ALL your branded packaging needs. Keep in mind that shipping boxes is just one product we offer so if mailer envelopes, or branded tape are the best solution for you, we will not hesitate to make that recommendation to you.

Related posts:

Read More