What is corrugated cardboard?
Corrugated cardboard is made up of three layers: two outside layers and an inner fluted layer. It’s lightweight but very strong, making it the perfect choice for shipping boxes like Regular Slotted Cartons, Autolock Bottom Shipping Boxes, and Mailers. Unlike paperboard, which is usually used for retail packaging, corrugated cardboard is usually used for exterior shipping boxes: not only is it stronger than paperboard, but it is also better suited to bigger packages than paperboard is. Additionally, it’s texture, construction, and thickness makes it harder for it to be folded up into super-small geometries like paperboard can.
To print on our corrugated cardboard boxes, we use a method called lithographic lamination. This involves first printing your design onto either a kraft or standard printing base. Then, we laminate the paperboard directly onto the base cardboard. This allows for brighter colors and more complex designs than printing directly on the corrugated cardboard would allow. If you’d like a more industrial look for your packaging but don’t want to print on kraft paper (which can make some colors look dull), you can modify your design so it looks like it has a cardboard background, even though it’s printed on white paperboard. There are lots of tutorials out there for creating this type of texture, like this one that creates a simulated cardboard texture using Photoshop.
If you’re looking for boxes for in-store products, you’ll want to check out our paperboard option – while thinner than corrugated cardboard, it looks sleeker and is more flexible than corrugated cardboard. Ready to get a head start on your project? Be sure to check out our budgetary packaging calculator to get a ballpark estimate of what your packaging project will cost.