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Metallized Paper (How Is It Produced And How Do You Use It On Your Labels?)

May. 19, 2021

Metallized Paper Suppliers share with you about the production of metallized paper and its use, hope it will be helpful to you

Metallized paper is a special type of paper with a metallic layer deposited on its surface for decorative effects. Metallized paper is a product that is coated with a layer of aluminum and has a matte or glossy surface that provides decorative and protective features to the product.

Metallized Paper

Metallized Paper

There are two different systems available for manufacturing metallized paper:

Lamination method

This process consists of gluing the paper to a sheet of aluminum with a thickness between 9 and 12 microns. Due to the high consumption of aluminum, this system is being used less and less.

Vacuum Metallization

This system is the most commonly used and consists of heating aluminum or other materials in a vacuum chamber to vaporize or sublimate them and deposit a thin layer of coating on the surface of the coated substrate. In this case, the main advantage is that 300 times less aluminum is used than in the previous case.

In both cases, this type of substrate provides a solution to achieve a unique metallic appearance on packaging with a fraction of the aluminum content of conventional aluminum foil.

What is the vacuum production method and what does it involve?

As mentioned earlier, the best method for producing metallized paper is through vacuum metallization. The process of producing Metallized Paper by the direct high vacuum method consists of three separate processes, namely the following:


A thin layer of varnish is applied to the coated substrate to prepare the surface for the subsequent metallization. The paper is pre-coated with varnish, which serves to smooth the surface of the paper in order to act as a barrier between the paper and the metallized layer and to improve the adhesion of the vaporized metal. The varnish is applied in the varnisher by a process similar to intaglio printing. Once the varnish is applied, the paper is passed through a hot air drying unit to remove the solvent from the varnish, thus drying the paper until it has a moisture level between 2-3%. Next, in the same varnisher, the paper passes through a set of freezing rollers to prevent the paper from sticking in the winder.


This stage is probably the most critical point in the production process. Once the sheets have been varnished, they are sent to the metallization area where they are introduced one by one in order to apply the aluminum layer to the paper. The pre-coated paper is then metallized directly. The varnished paper is placed in a "metallization chamber" where the aluminum layer is applied through a vaporization or sublimation process.


All metallized papers are subsequently surface coated and re-moisturized as a final process. Once the reel is placed in the lacquering machine, the metallized paper is passed through a corona treatment to promote the fixation of the lacquer on the aluminum. This corona treatment serves to increase the surface tension of the metallized surface. Once the corona treatment has been applied, the lacquer is applied using a gravure printing system just like in a varnish machine and subsequently dried using a hot air tunnel. When the product is colored, it is the lacquer itself that is tinted with the final color of the product. The classic color is gold, but from a technical point of view, other colorants can be used if necessary. After drying, the metallized paper is passed through a cooling roll followed by a water and back treatment. This is to ensure that the paper has the final moisture required for the finished product and remains flat when converted into sheets or labels. The coating protects the aluminum from damage and serves as a print receptive primer for a variety of printing applications. A thin layer of lacquer is applied to give the paper its final characteristics, such as printing characteristics, colors such as gold leaf or a matte/glossy finish. The resulting product can be recycled just like any other specialty paper.

The metallized surface of Wet Strength Metallized Paper is plastic in nature, or in other words, it is water resistant and non-absorbent. It provides a range of barrier properties to the coated paper, creating a barrier to light, water vapor, oxygen and odors.