Materials, label sizes, and text play a very important role in the appearance of a label. Another factor of equal importance, which is also responsible for the look and feel of a label is the color. Various types of printing techniques are used to print information on these labels. These methods are also responsible to impart desired color to the label. This post discusses two of the popular printing techniques – Full Color Process Printing and Spot Color Printing.

What is Four Color Process Printing?

CMYK or Four Color Process is one of the extensively used color printing methods. For reproducing a color image, a file is divided into four colors, namely, Cyan (C), Magenta (M), Yellow (Y) and Black (K). During this process, screen tints that consist of small dots are applied at various angles to each of the four colors. These screened separations are transferred to four printing plates of different colors. After this, it is run on a printing press with one color overprinting the other.

The Four Color Process Printing is the most economical choice if your print requires more than 3 colors. The CMYK prints provide realistic touch to images.

This type of label printing is ideal for a number of applications and industries, including health and beauty labels, marketing, packaging, food labels, and more. Be it any industry, choosing four color process labels is the right solution.

What is Spot Color Printing?

Spot color graphics are created by printing one color at a time. This process is mostly used in the screen printing. The inks that are used in this type of printing are opaque. Unlimited number of spot colors can be printed to create a final image. The single constraint in this type of printing is the printing process itself and the product to which it is applied. As each color is printed individually, there is a possibility of shift in color from one medium to another. This is called as registration, and it differs based on the products that are being printed.

Images that are created using the spot color printing are usually vibrant and bright. Although effects such as gradients can be done by adjusting the opacity of design elements, the images are limited in their use of color. The spot color printing process is also cost effective, thus making it the first choice for printing simple illustrations, logos, and text.

When considering the advantages and disadvantages of four color process and spot color printing, it is always wise to consider how much color selection you need in the design. If cost is the concern, then it might be advisable to go with the spot color process. This means fine-tuning a logo so that it only makes use of three or less spot colors. On the other hand, some will choose the flexibility that four color process offers. You should always stick with the process that is best suited for your design. If you are unable to make up your mind, you can always approach a printing expert.