Spot Gloss UV Coating

Spot Gloss UV coating is often applied to specific areas of printed materials to enhance their aesthetic appeal, such as accentuating certain texts or designs. This technique is commonly used in packaging design to create high-impact visuals on the shelf.

Why use it

  • Enhances color quality
  • Creates shelf impact
  • Ideal for highlighting logos and images

Why not use it

  • Requires more energy to dry than aqueous coatings.
  • Resists additional imprinting (i.e. writing with pen or pencil).
  • More expensive than aqueous coatings.
  • Can crack more easily when scored or folded (since the coating is thicker/harder).
  • Oil-based ink.
  • Can emit an unpleasant smell, but low odor options are available.
spot uv effects


Spot Gloss UV coatings, also called spot UV printing or spot gloss UV, are applied to specific areas such as brand names, logos, and other essential information on packaging to enhance the overall design. These coatings are cured using ultraviolet light, creating a high gloss solid shine layer that is an excellent way to tell a compelling brand story through packaging that immediately grabs the customers' attention.

The differences between blind and registered spot UV printing

Blind and registered spot UV printing are two printing methods that use the same technology. Blind UV printing involves printing the desired content on a dark, blank background without covering any other texts, logos, or graphics using UV printing technology. On the other hand, registered spot UV printing involves applying a layer of transparent coating on specific texts, logos, or graphics to draw attention to these elements. Registered UV coating doesn’t affect the readability of the contents; on the contrary, it adds a subtle shine to the contents, making them look more appealing.

What is raised spot UV, and what are the differences between raised spot UV and spot UV

Raised spot UV is a printing technique that adds a clear coating to a specific printed design area. This creates a raised, three-dimensional effect that is visually and tactilely appealing. The powder is applied to some areas of the design or text to give it a raised ink look. When heated, a chemical reaction transforms the ink into a hardened gel, giving it depth and contour. The raised texture looks impressive and adds a unique tactile element to your design, making it stand out even more.

Spot UV coating is a similar technique that adds a glossy, reflective finish to selected printed parts, creating a more subtle but effective visual impact. Both methods are great options for enhancing the overall quality and appeal of your custom packaging.

Spot UV + matte finish is the best practice

Spot UV is a technique commonly used together with matte lamination or varnish. The matte coating is applied to the entire package to create a background with a matte finish. This allows the spot UV areas, such as text and logos, to stand out with a shiny, glossy finish.

For instance, a matte lamination is applied to the entire box for iPhone packaging. The Apple logo is then given a subtle spot UV printing to create a minimalist, simple, and technological look. This is in line with the aesthetic that Apple is known for.

Advantages of applying spot UV to packaging

Using a spot gloss finish on your packaging box can provide numerous benefits.

Firstly, strategically applying spot UV on your packaging can not only significantly enhance the visual appeal of your product by creating a high-quality, luxurious look and feel but also assist in conveying specific branding messages or visual images.

Secondly, a spot gloss finish is an excellent choice for highlighting critical information such as logos, product names, or any other important information on the packaging. This helps draw attention to the essential features of your product and makes it more memorable to potential customers.

Lastly, a spot gloss finish is a protective layer that can prevent smudging or rubbing off the printed text or images on the box. This way, the packaging remains readable and visually appealing for longer, ensuring the customer can enjoy the whole product experience.

In summary, a spot gloss finish is an excellent investment for packaging design. It enhances the product's visual appeal and serves practical purposes like highlighting important information and protecting the packaging.

What materials can be applied for spot UV?

Regarding spot UV printing, the choice of material is crucial and can significantly impact the final result. It's important to note that not all materials are suitable for this technique. For example, uncoated paper and certain types of plastics may not yield the desired result and may require special preparation beforehand. When selecting a material, it's essential to consider its texture, absorbency, and ability to hold ink. Additionally, it's worth noting that some materials may require a different type of UV coating to achieve the desired effect. By choosing the suitable material and adequately preparing it, you can ensure that your spot UV printing turns out as intended. Some practicable materials are suggested here. C1S, C2S, CCNB, Kraft paper board, CCKB

How to make a design applying spot UV

If you want to create a design with spot UV, remember that it requires two layers in your design file. You should include your graphic design in the first layer, whereas the second layer should be the spot UV layer. This layer can be considered a mask that you will use to apply the spot UV coating on specific areas of your design.

For the spot UV layer, you can use any graphics software, and it should be filled with red, indicating where the spot UV coating will be applied. The red should highlight the areas you want to stand out, such as logos, text, or other design elements.
original artwork
Original artworks
artworks applied spot UV to logo
Artwork applied spot UV to the logo
It's worth noting that the areas where the spot UV coating will be applied will have a glossy and raised texture, creating a unique and eye-catching effect. Following these steps, you can create a stunning design with spot UV to make your brand or product stand out.