I am excited to share another new product with you today and I think it's going to take off like a rocket when people find out it exists.
Avery has come out with a line of self-laminating labels. They're called Easy Align Self-Laminating ID Labels (printable) or Durable Self-Laminating ID Labels (hand write). These labels are the solution for the times that you need a durable label or a weather-resistant label. We've all done the tape thing; you know - covering the label with tape to try to protect it. (Yes you have.) This product creates perfectly laminated labels with no laminating machine needed and they are super easy to use.
Take a look at this quick video and then I'll tell you about my trial run.
How to Print
All you do is print the labels with your laser or inkjet printer, peel off the protective covering, fold the lamination over the label and run your finger across it to seal it. Then peel it off the sheet and apply it. It's super easy. There are 3 ways to print these: 1) Online on Avery's website, using their Print & Design feature, 2) Download the template from Avery.com to your computer so you can use it with your software or 3) Download the Avery Print & Design software to your computer (it's free).
I tested these over the weekend and I tried all 3 methods. Now I will tell you that if you've never used the Print & Design software before, it may not be a smooth run at first. The first time I ever used it online I didn't find it very friendly. I got a bit frustrated - and I consider myself to be moderately computer savvy. It took a little educating to get everything to work the way I wanted it to, but I did finally figure it out, so when I wanted to test these labels it was a breeze. The only complaint I have about the online version of the software is that the centering tool doesn't work correctly. Other than that, it was great.
Phase 2 - I downloaded the template and used it in Word. A quick note - when you open the template it will look like a blank white sheet because the program doesn't turn on the grid lines, so just go to the Table Tools and turn them on. Then you'll be able to see where the labels are. Again, super easy. If you know how to use Word, it's a piece of cake. The templates work with Adobe software also, like Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop.
Phase 3 - I downloaded the Print & Design software to my computer. It looks and acts exactly the same as the online version, so if you know how to work it online, you're all set. EXCEPT for one little detail - these labels don't exist in that software yet. Epic fail Avery! I uninstalled it about 30 seconds later.
Fabulous! Super easy to do.
I like to put products through the ringer when I test them because I want you to be able to trust what I'm telling you. So, with that in mind, I wanted to test not only the process of printing them, but also the adhesive. Now I think we all know that the only time you can remove a label with permanent adhesive is right after you put it on the surface. If you goofed and you don't get it off right away, you're out of luck. I created the labels, applied one and smoothed it down the way the instructions tell you to and then I immediately tried to peel it off. Well, let me tell you - that baby was stuck on but good! It was not coming off no matter what I did. I tried to get the edge of my fingernail under it - no luck.
The laminate is high gloss and extends about 1/8" past the label all the way around, so just make note that you do need that extra space wherever you're applying it. The labels are UV and water-resistant, they don't smudge or tear. And believe me - I tried!
There are 4 different sizes of the printable version and 6 sizes of the handwrite version. Think about labeling janitorial supplies, tools, small products, warehouse shelves, doors, lab specimens, equipment tags or storage compartments.
I think these are ingenious and I wish I had thought of it. I give it 4 paperclips! The product itself is worth 5 paperclips, but the software issues detract from its rating because using the software is part of using the product, so after Avery fixes those issues, I'd give it a 5.
If you would like a sample, send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your information and I'll send one out to you.