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How To Choose The Right Label Size

When you’re defining a brand for your small business, recognizable and unique packaging is one of the best ways to make your product stand out among the crowd. Whether you’re selling on shelves in a brick and mortar store, on a site like Etsy, or on your own custom website, there is always going to be competition vying for your customer’s attention.

You’ve already decided on jars as the vessels for your product, whether it be candles, homemade delicacies, beverages, or other goods, it’ll look great in a Jar Store jar! Now, you just have to design and apply unique labels to really position your brand in the consumer’s mind.

Here are our tips for getting the perfect label for your product!

How to Choose the Right Label Size

If you’re putting a label on a jar, you obviously need to know the dimensions that your label needs to be. Thankfully, this is usually really easy to figure out! When you’re looking at your jar’s page on Jar Store, you’ll see the dimensions listed. You can use these dimensions to figure out the proper label size.

Your label’s height should be a bit less than the height of the jar. For instance, if your jar is 6” tall, plan to have your label be between 4.5” and 5.5” tall.

If you don’t already know the circumference of your jar, figuring out the length of the label can be a bit trickier, but we can determine it with a bit of 8th grade math. All we have to do is calculate the jar’s circumference. We can easily figure this out by multiplying the diameter of the jar’s base by Pi.

Label Sizing

If the jar has a base diameter of 4”, the calculation would be 4 x 3.14 = 12.56.

Now that you know the circumference of the jar, you need to determine how much of your jar you want to be covered by the label. If you want the label to wrap around the jar completely, your math is done, your label length will be 12.56”.

If you want the label to cover half of the jar, divide your number in half, so your label length would be 6.28. For a quarter of your jar, divide by four.

The size and shape of your label will depend greatly on your own preference, as well as the size and shape of your jar. So experiment, play around, and have fun with it until you find what works for you!

Logo Design is Key!

Your logo should encapsulate your brand, and a customer should be able to figure out what exactly they’re buying just by looking at your label. You may have heard of Canva, the easy-to-use design tool for beginners. If you’re up to the task, you can try out designing your own logo on Canva or a similar site, and see if you can save some money by making it yourself.

If design isn’t your strong-suit, there are plenty of graphic designers in the world who would absolutely love to work with a small business! You may think that paying for a design seems too expensive, but rest assured, a recognizable brand is a worthwhile investment.

Check your local area, ask some friends and family, and shop around on the internet for a freelance graphic designer. Since you’re a small business without a corporate budget, many designers will take that into consideration when quoting out your price, and you may be surprised at how fair the cost of a professional logo can be!

Once you have your logo, you have the first step towards a recognizable label!

Feature the Important Information Prominently

While it may be tempting to have your shiny new logo take up most of the label, we would recommend finding a nice and noticeable piece of label real estate that doesn’t distract too much from what’s inside the jar.

Customers want to be able to tell what they’re buying at a glance. For instance, if you’re running a small candle business, you may want to consider having the scent featured as the most prominent piece of information on the label.

Here’s an example of what we mean:

Candle Label Example

While the style and design may not work for your particular product, this illustrates the concepts that we’re referring to. This example is for a candle jar, it prominently features the fragrance (which is what most customers will be looking for), and still tells the customer the name of your business and displays your shiny new logo. 

Take this as an example and a starting point, but there are no rigid rules when it comes to design. This is a minimalist label, but you may find that your brand is better suited to more overt designs. You may also want to lean ever further into minimalism, and exclude the business name and keep just the logo and fragrance.

If you hired a designer for your logo, talk it over with them! They may also be willing to consult with you on your label, or make it for you for an additional cost.

Label Shape is Important!

Jar with Label on Lid

Consider where on the jar you want to apply your label. Will you be applying it directly to the jar itself, or will you stick it onto the lid? If you’re putting your labels on the lids, you’ll definitely need a smaller label (circular for the most coverage), whereas if you’re applying it directly to the jar itself, you’ll get more coverage with a rectangle. You can apply a circular label directly to the jar as well, but it will be less prominent and need to be smaller so your customer can see everything on the label without rotating the jar.

As with many considerations that you’ll make, there isn’t necessarily a “correct” answer. It all comes down to personal taste! Try to come up with a few different label designs that fit different shapes, and apply them in different places on your jar or lid so you can see what you like best! Smaller, bigger, rectangular, or circular, you may be surprised by your favorite, so give them all a try!

Buy Labels in Bulk!

You can save a tremendous amount of money by buying your labels in larger quantities. Look into local printing shops and online retailers, and try to pick the best one to suit your operation. A roll of labels can be as cheap as pennies per sticker, but the printing itself can be a bit pricier. 

Call up some local shops for quotes, and compare your options. This is part of the fun of owning your own business, you get to choose your partners and make connections that will last a lifetime!

Consider Different Label Materials

Labels can be made of many different materials, and each one has its own aesthetic and purpose that may or may not suit your brand. Here are some of our ideas, take them as inspiration when choosing your label material:

  • Typical labels are made of a plastic (polypropylene) material, and have a glossy appearance and permanent adhesive backing, but that might not work well with the aesthetic of your brand. 
  • Want your customers to be able to upcycle your jars after using them? Maybe a label with a removable adhesive backing is best, to allow your labels to be removed easily after the product inside the jar is spent. 
  • Paper labels, like you might find on a wine bottle, come in glossy or matte, and are perfect for giving your product a more home-made feel.
  • Does your brand promote green, bio-friendly practices? Labels can be made of hemp, recycled Kraft (for a rustic look!), or recycled Vellum.
Rolls of Labels

You're on Your Way!

After checking out our blog, your label is hopefully well on its way to becoming cemented in your customer’s minds. You’ll be able to conjure images of your brand with your logo, stand out among competition, and most importantly, show off your products and impress your friends! A professional label is an important step in bringing legitimacy to your small business, and we love to see our customers succeed! Share your labels with us on Facebook and Instagram, we’re super excited to see what you create!


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