How 3D Printing Brings Your Packaging to Life


Since the 1970s, filmmakers have used holograms to elevate the magic of characters in action fiction films such as Star Wars, Batman and Iron Man. Holograms have applications beyond Hollywood movies though. Holograms and other 3D printing techniques can enhance your packaging by making it memorable, in turn increasing sales.

What is a hologram?

Holography first originated in 1962 when a group of scientists from the former Soviet Union and the University of Michigan designed laser technology that recorded 3D objects. In short, holography is a photographic technique that makes an object look three-dimensional by recording the light scattered from an object. The most common types of holograms are transmission holograms. When light shines through these holograms, a 3D the image can be viewed from the side of the surface of the object.

What is lenticular printing?

Lenticular printing is like holographic printing; but, with lenticular printing, the image doesn’t reflect light. Instead, digital files are printed onto a plastic lens material. Through this printing technique, a series of multiple images are printed in an interlaced pattern on a special lens material. Then, when the lens material moves depth is created, and a 3D image appears.

What are the benefits of 3D packaging?

Here are the three major benefits of 3D packaging:

It is a security and authenticity feature.

Certain industries have long integrated holography into their designs as safety features. For example, pharmaceutical packaging often has a holographic label to curb counterfeiting. Similarly, credit cards, bills, and identification cards all feature holographic security features. Luxury brands also have holographic crests of authenticity on their packaging.

It gives your packaging added space.

You can use holograms to fit more information on a small area. This is instrumental when you have tight spatial restraints on your packaging or need the packaging to fit a lot of information because of regulations. For example, hair products are required to include detailed instructions and the product’s ingredients based on various national regulations. That means each bottle of shampoo, conditioner, or hair dye tends to be quite text-heavy which isn’t always visually appealing. To circumvent that issue, the luxury hair brand Kevin Murphy created sleek holographic packaging for its products in 2013. Kevin Murphy enlisted the help of design agency Container Made to create packaging that was stylish and fit the unique packaging regulations of each of the countries where their products were sold. To save money, the company needed to create a universal form of packaging — that’s why they opted for packaging that used lenticular printing. This allowed the designers to fit four times more content on the packaging than traditional printing enabling the design to meet international regulations. The design was eye-catching and lead to an increase in sales for Kevin Murphy products.

Holography makes your packaging unique and dynamic.


Holographic foils are a cost-effective way to make your product stand out — literally. Toothpaste companies such as Colgate Palmolive have long adapted rainbow holographic foil to make their products shine. Holographic foil is a premium material that can give your brand prestige and make it memorable.

Holographic designs are a longtime staple on baseball cards and novelty cards such as Pokémon cards. It is a hit with kids, but there’s nothing childish about this marketing technique. Brands such as Colgate and Kevin Murphy have shown that using 3D packaging makes your packaging efficient and memorable.