People spent $57 billion on adhesive tape last year, and that number continues to grow.
The truth is, people need tape in their lives. You probably use tape more than you realize, from crafts and fixes to wrapping gifts and packages.
If you need tape to safely store or ship your items, then you first need to learn which type of adhesive tape is best for your needs.
Read on to learn about adhesive tapes and the different tape solutions available to you.
What Is Adhesive Tape
Adhesive tape adheres, or sticks, to a surface. It's made out of strips of material, called a backing or carrier, that has a sticky substance, the adhesive, attached to it.
Different adhesive tapes have different backings and adhesives that serve different purposes. Common backings include paper, plastic film, cloth, and foam. Adhesives are often acrylic, epoxy, rubber-based, silicone, polyurethane, or isocyanate.
You can use adhesive tape to enhance gripping, mark floors, or even for therapeutic benefits, but the most common use of tape is for packaging. Depending on what the packaging is made out of or what you're shipping, you might need a certain type of packaging tape. Tape also comes in different sizes, colors, and strengths.
Here are the 8 best types of adhesive tape for your packaging needs:
1. Bag-Sealing Tape
Bag-sealing tape is a tough tape made for sealing poly bags. Common uses include binding produce bags or ice bags. You can also get more creative with this tape and use it for mailers and ID bands.
This kind of tape comes in a variety of colors. Some can even be written on for labeling purposes.
The most common size for bag-sealing tape is 3/8".
2. Box-Sealing Tape
Similar to bag-sealing tape, box tape is specifically for boxes. Box-sealing tape is also called parcel tape or packaging tape and is a popular choice among pressure-sensitive tapes. Pressure-sensitive tape is a tape that sticks to a surface when you press it against that surface.
Although box tape is made for fiberboard boxes, it works on almost any type of surface. For varying purposes, there are economical, all-purpose, and extra strength options available. It generally comes in transparent or tan colors.
Another reason box-sealing tape is best for most packaging needs is that it's made to resist peeling, cracking, and weathering.
3. Gummed Tape
Gummed tape is unique because it's a paper tape that uses water-activated adhesive. This is why it's sometimes called water-activated tape. If you've ever licked an envelope to close it, this tape follows a similar science.
It may sound complicated, but all you have to do to activate the adhesive is wet it with a sponge. You can also get a gummed tape dispenser that wets the tape for you.
What makes gummed tape special is that it's made with glass fibers that make it stronger than regular tape. It's also eco-friendly.
Gummed tape is great for when you have to package a large number of boxes.
4. Specialty Reinforced Gummed Tape
When buying gummed tape, you can also get specialty reinforced gummed tape. This is gummed tape that has been reinforced for extra strength and durability. It's best to get reinforced gummed tape when your packages weigh more than 30 pounds.
Among strong adhesive tapes, reinforced gummed tape is the best because it doubles as tamper-proof tape. It's so strong that it can only be cut with blades, making it difficult for anyone to tamper with your package.
You can buy this tape in multiple colors to help with inventory control, product identification, or for aesthetic reasons.
5. Custom Printed Adhesive Tapes
On the topic of color, custom printed adhesive tapes are a great option for any business owner.
Custom printed tapes are printed with imagery of your choice on the backing. You can use them to promote a product, showcase your logo, or match your brand colors. Studies show that consistent branding can result in a 33% increase in ROI.
Custom printed tape is cheaper than custom printed boxes, and everyone who handles the package will learn about your brand.
6. Double-Sided Tape
Double-sided tape is unique in that it has adhesive on both sides of the tape. This is because the double-sided tape is placed between two items to stick them together. As a result, you don't usually see the tape, and the tape color doesn't matter.
Although this tape has many purposes from scrapbooking to hanging pictures, it can also be used to gift wrap your packages around the holidays.
Double-sided tape comes in various thicknesses and strengths depending on your needs.
7. Security Tape
While other tapes are strong enough to help prevent tampering, security tape is specially made for the job. If you're storing or shipping expensive or important items, you should consider using security tape.
Security tape comes in many forms and helps make it apparent when a package is messed with or opened in transit. It can do this with printing that's hard to realign when torn, through hidden printed layers, and with perforations that make removing entire strips of tape difficult. Security tape usually looks like regular tape to prevent it from drawing unwanted attention.
8. Filament Tape
If you need strong adhesive tapes, filament tape is one of the strongest there is. It's made specifically for bundling items together, boxes that are heavy, and reinforcing weak packaging. Similar to gummed tape, it's reinforced with fiberglass filaments.
Filament tape comes in different sizes and strengths to meet your needs. Some have as much as 600 pounds of tensile strength per square inch.
Find the Adhesive Tapes Right for You
Adhesive tapes hold the world together, and keep your life running smoothly. Without the right packing tape, your goods have a higher chance of getting damaged, stolen, or lost.
Make sure when storing or shipping items that you get the right packaging and tape for your needs. Consider the tape's strength, size, adhesive type, and purpose.
If you found this article helpful and are in need of packing or shipping supplies, be sure to view our collection of product solutions.