The A-Z of Label printing (Q-V)



A number of sheets of paper, either 480 or 500, according to grade. For purposes of physical testing, a ream is considered as 500 sheets.

The exact, corresponding placement of successively printed images and/or successively die cut pressure sensitive labels.

Relative Humidity
The ratio of the amount of moisture in the air at any temperature to the amount required at that temperature to saturate the air.

The act of freeing or separating a pressure sensitive label from its liner.
The force required to free or separate a pressure sensitive label from its liner.

Release Coat
The (silicone) coating on a liner that allows pressure sensitive labels to be easily removed or dispensed.

Release Coat Transfer
A defect resulting from the transfer of release coat from the liner to the pressure sensitive adhesive during release.

Release Coating: Patterned
Selectively applying release coat beside non-coated areas, in strips that run parallel to the machine direction. This results in a permanent face material/release liner bond in the non-coated areas.

Release Liner
The component of the pressure sensitive label material which functions as a carrier for the pressure sensitive label. Usually silicone coated, it readily separates from the label when the label is removed for application.

A relative term applied to pressure sensitive labels to describe the force or condition under which they can be removed from a substrate. A removable label would be one in which little or no damage occurs to the substrate or the label upon removal.

Removable Adhesive
See: Adhesive: Removable.

Resin ribbons
The principal component of the binder in the ribbons is resin. With superior heat resistance, abrasion resistance and chemical resistance, materials printed with resin type ribbons can be stored for long periods of time. These ribbons, which are principally used with film labels, are well suited for use with factory automation labels, name plates, and caution labels.

Retail Labels
See: Price Mark Labels.

Roll Labels
Pressure sensitive labels that are packaged in continuous roll form.

Rotogravure Printing
See: Gravure Printing.

Rubber Based Adhesive
See Adhesive: Rubber Based.


The layered construction of pressure sensitive material. See also: Pressure Sensitive Material.

Saturated Paper
See: Latex Paper/Latex-Impregnated Paper.

The quality of a material that allows for precise printing of bar codes, so as to ensure accurate reading or scanning of the bar code data. Readings (called percent decode ratings) are usually measured as a percentage indicating the number of successful scans out of a total of 100.

Self-Imaging Liner
A specially-coated, pressure-activated liner that reproduces an exact image of information printed or imprinted on its corresponding face label. Requires an impact printing method.

Self-Imaging Piggyback:
A piggy back label material that can be imprinted, creating a duplicate label from the second ply of this double-ply construction. Requires an impact printing method.

Sheeted Labels
Finished labels furnished in cut singular sheets. This format is most popular for laser printing.

Shelf Life
The period of time during which a product can be stored under specified conditions and still remain suitable for use.

Smudge Resistance
The quality or characteristic of a paper (or plastic) to resist the smearing of ink immediately following printing or imprinting; directly related to the absorption level of the paper.

Solvent Resistance
The resistance of a material to the action of specific solvents.

Specific Adhesion
The force required to remove a pressure sensitive label from a specific substrate under specified conditions.

A method of joining paper or plastic webs within a pressure sensitive roll to produce an operational continuous web.

Split Face
Slits in face material of a pressure sensitive product usually for the purpose of facilitating removal.

Split Back/Split Liner
Slits in the release liner of a pressure sensitive label to facilitate its removal by hand.

Starburst Holes
Pin-feed holes which are characterized by jagged edges.

Static Cling Label
A label that adheres to a substrate by static electricity -- no adhesive is necessary.

Step Ladder
A bar code symbology characterized by horizontal bars and spaces.

Storage Life
See: Shelf Life.

The surface to which a pressure sensitive label is applied or adhered.

Sunlight Resistance
The ability of a material to resist the deteriorating effects of sunlight, especially ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths. Also referred to as being "lightfast."


The property of a pressure sensitive label which causes it to adhere to a surface instantly with a minimum of pressure and contact time (as measured by TLMI Tester or equivalent equipment).

Tamper-Resistant Label
A pressure sensitive construction made with a weak face material so that (attempted) removal of the label usually results in its destruction.

Tear Strength/Tearing Strength
The force required to tear a label specimen under standardized conditions using an instrument designed to simulate the tearing encountered under general use conditions.

Tear Tab
An additional area of face material, next to the release liner of a pressure sensitive label produced in single form to facilitate removal of the release liner.

Tensile Strength
The force parallel to the plane of an applied label required to break a given width and length of paper under specified conditions.

Thermal Transfer Printing
An imprinting method that uses heat and pressure to melt a wax-based ink onto a label.

Tipped-On Labels
A method of label application in which the carrier is peeled back and the labels fall or "tip" onto the substrate.

Top Coat/Top Coating
A substance coated onto a label material that will enhance the printing or the appearance of the finished label. For example, some films are top coated to ensure better ink anchorage to the surface of the material.

Touch Tack
See: Quick Adhesion, Tack.

TPI/Ties Per Inch
In perforations, the number of material ties that exist between each hole. See also: Perforation.

Transfer Tape
A coating of pressure sensitive adhesive applied to a liner that is release-coated on both sides. This allows a user to apply the tape to a surface and remove the liner, leaving only the adhesive on the surface.

That property of a material which transmits light rays so that objects can be clearly seen through the material.

Transparent Label
A pressure sensitive label of which the face material, adhesive, and protective coatings transmit light so that objects can be seen through it.

The brand name of DuPont's imprintable material originally developed for automobile seat belt labels. It is virtually indestructible and highly moisture-resistant.



A heat-cured coating of one or more materials applied to a face material for protection and/or decoration.

Vegetable Parchment
A grease-resistant, water-resistant paper resembling animal parchment. It is made by passing unsized paper through sulphuric acid in order to gelantinize its surface; then, it is washed and dried.