Advantages of Spot UV Compared With Other Add-Ons

Posted March 6, 2023 Spot UV Printing

Are you into printing and know about Spot UV? Well, it is worth a try! So, when will it work best for your printing, and what types does it have? You do not have to reinvent the wheel to make things look good with Spot UV. That is why it is an easy process that you can use for a host of printing and packaging types. So, what are the types of UV you can use except spot UV?

This blog contains all that, its types, how we do it, and its benefits! So, let’s dive right into it!

What is Spot UV?

Spot UV is a type of printing and finishing technique that can be used on printing materials. The most common products for which this method can be used are business cards, show material brochures and packaging. This feature improves the catchiness of printing material by adding glossiness.

For instance, you can add it to text and images. At the same time, you add texture and depth, which helps protect certain areas.

Types Of Spot UV

Now, there is a sea of options when it comes to add-ons for custom packaging, so which ones are worth it? Well, spot UV is one of them. Some top types you need to try out are:

  • Spot UV on matte varnish
  • Matte lamination and UV spot
  • Spot UV with a soft-touch matte finish
  • Matte finish and Spot UV
  • Blind spot UV

So, these are some add-ons we will compare.

Blind Spot UV Benefits

One type of UV Spot printing is blind spot UV. So, here are some benefits you get with blind spot UV:

  • It is an ideal type of add-on for a darker background.
  • You can reduce the effects of a gloss with the help of it.
  • This add-on allows you to look great for more than just logos.

Then, you can also try it to make your printing look amazing:

  • Again, it works for better readability.
  • You can use it for its eco-friendliness and the ability to give a wide range of materials.
  • Also, you can use it with excellent readability, but it still does not cause any issues with the glossy feel.
  • It offers an excellent and eye-catching feel with more beauty.
  • It can help without having any smudges on your printing.

Shine, Clarity And Add-Ons

  • Spot UV gives you fantastic shine, allowing clarity in your images and text.
  • Using this add-on allows you to protect your surface from smudges, which can significantly help you.
  • It can offer glossy and reflective appearances according to your needs.
  • You can make your products more interesting with a better feel of touch. This way, you make your packaging look more high-end.
  • Also, it allows you to make your ink look more impressive.
  • Using Spot Gloss allows you protection against dirt and moisture.

So, these two types come up most commonly when it comes to what is spot UV printing.

Raised Varnish

If you want things to look even more unique, you can try raised varnish with it. You can try it to add texture to the text of your product, and it would work for anything you want. So, it can be for a retail box or even an eCommerce packaging box. So, here is how you can compare it with spot UV printing.

When your printing has a raised feeling, you can ensure it works perfectly for the touchy feel. At the same time, you capture your audience’s visual sense. Also, you can add patterns that make your printing even more special.

Matte UV and Benefits

Matte UV would look amazing with its sobber feel, while spot UV offers a glossy feel to your boxes. You can combine the two to ensure a glossy and sobber feeling. In addition, it gives your boxes a great elegant feel without gloss.

Matt Lamination

So, matt lamination offers unique features that work for your boxes. You can get a tremendously soft look with it with less contrast. On the other hand, it may not provide the same protective layer type as other laminations.

Spot UV provides more protection and a different feel and look for your boxes.

Soft-Touch Lamination

This add-on can improve your color quality and offer a cost-effective solution for your boxes. It is similar to Spot UV in providing better vividness for your boxes.

Combining Spot UV With Other Finishes

Although you do not want to use this technique with the ones that may not complement or even worsen the looks of it, there are some combinations you can have with them:

  • Foil stamping can be used when you want to highlight some areas, but the use should be done while keeping in mind that you make the best optimization for the desired results.
  • Also, you can use subtle embossing and debossing alongside this technique.
  • You can also use matte varnish on the entire surface alongside specific areas with a glossy finish of Spot UV.
  • At the same time, you can try patterns and overlays that offer selective varnishing or metallic inks to impact your products uniquely.

We will also discuss some challenges you must face when incorporating these together.

Uses Of Spot UV

We have a list of products for which you can use Spot UV, and they can get a lot of benefits from this technique when we use it for these:

  • This technique can make a better and more lasting impression on your postcards.
  • You can also use these on your brochures and flyers to draw customers’ attention to logos, headlines, and calls to action.
  • Using this technique on business cards can help improve the shine of your products.
  • You can get better brand elements and product features with spot UV on product packaging.
  • Using them for brochures can help improve certain sections you want to highlight for your sections and images.
  • Also, you can try it with invitation cards alongside improving the names and decorative elements.
  • Using it for flyers can help improve the key details and graphics you use to send messages to your customers.

How is it Used?

Once you know what makes Spot Varnish special, you can read about using this add-on in your printing.

Several tools can be used to add UV printing to your design. One of these is Photoshop, which can help you get an excellent feel for your printing.

  • Start by combining all layers in one folder, and then you can pull all the supposed layers in Spot lamination. Then, you should duplicate the top of these and duplicate it.
  • Next, you can give the folder a name and ensure it is outside the front folder.
  • Then, you can add an overlay of 100 percent black. Again, you can do this after you double-click your Spot UV folder.
  • Next, you can turn off your spot UV folder and save your files.
  • You can turn off your Front folder and save the file as a jpg or pdf.

So, the better you use the design, the more impressive your UV spot coating and other add-ons will look.

Visual Appeal And Protection

The look of your spot UV can greatly impact your boxes and help you sell more. For instance:

  • This effect can improve the product’s ability to grab attention.
  • At the same time, you can use them to make a great premium look that can enhance your brand’s value.
  • Also, you can use them to make certain design elements look great, improving your results.
  • Its use would also improve resistance against scratches and minor wear, improving durability. This way, you also ensure that you do not have to worry about the durability issue of your boxes.


Customization is a trait that is always required by customers these days, which is why using it can make things look great. At the same time, you need to make sure you provide every visual or other type of element that your customers would be looking to have. Here are some benefits of using them:

  • Using this element can help improve your ability to make your customers pay attention to a specific part of your packaging.
  • At the same time, you ensure that you can use design flexibility according to the requirements of your boxes. You can utilize it for specific designs, textures, and patterns that fit your needs.
  • Also, you can use them due to the versatility they can offer alongside matte lamination.
  • This element saves you money compared to full gloss varnish and other methods.


UV Spot allows you to get a better shelf life. At the same time, it provides better moisture resistance and protection against water damage to your boxes or other print products. Its use also protects your prints by avoiding discoloration and fading.

Tactile Feeling

The use of Spot UV allows your brand to be remembered better. The shine gives your brand an inviting feeling, improving the sophistication of your products and brand.

Brand Differentiation

Spot UV’s uniqueness can make a real difference in your boxes. At the same time, you get a wide range of versatility that can change the entire look of your boxes. You also get benefits like the customization that UV Spot coating can offer.


Another great thing about Spot UV is that you get multiple benefits with it, like the following:

  • You can use it for multiple materials like paper, cardstock, and metal. You can also utilize them for fancy plastics and classic paper.
  • At the same time, their versatility allows you to work on matte and uncoated surfaces. These raised effects can make a striking contrast to the colors and depth you can add.
  • Their use also ensures you do not have to worry about the eco-friendliness of your designs and printing.


You get impressive results regarding the sustainability factor regarding spot UV. For instance:

  • The Spot UV process uses solvent-free methods, ensuring varnishes do not need volatile organic compounds to cure. Instead, they use varnishes that can be healed with ultraviolet light.
  • They also offer a targeted varnish application, eliminating the need for waste-causing coatings, materials, and overspray incidents.
  • You do not need extra energy when it is the production of Spot UV.
  • At the same time, you may not have to worry about the durability you get with the protective layer and the longevity of printed items with this technique. This longevity prevents you from producing new products when you can get the older ones to work for longer.

Quick Drying in Comparison

When we compare the quick drying of UV with varnishes, you do not have to worry about the turnaround time. Compared with other types of varnishes, you get better turnaround times. You must do air or heat processes in such varnishes to find solutions. This benefit offers you faster delivery, which saves you money as well.

At the same time, you may not have to face errors that can occur during traditional coatings.


The precision of Spot UV allows you to get better results with better application than other such issues. At the same time, it is a printing technique that will enable you to achieve better consistency after printing. In comparison, you may have to face inconsistencies in lamination. At the same time, you may have similar issues with foil stamping.

Also, you face such issues when you are doing embossing and debossing.

Comparing Spot UV Boldness With Other Techniques

The boldness of Spot UV stands out when compared with other techniques. For instance:

  • Using foiling allows you a good eye-catching result, but spot UV offers you better glossiness.
  • Also, embossing and debossing may not give you the same shine. On the other hand, they have their benefits, such as tactile dimensions and raised effects.
  • You can also try using regular varnishes, but they offer a subtle sheen in comparison to the boldness spot UV can offer with glossiness.

High Clarity and Readability

When we compare this technique with others, we can find many advantages and some limitations of this one. For instance:

  • This allows you to see the difference between the treated and untreated areas, improving clarity and readability.
  • On the other hand, it may not be the best choice for covering larger areas.
  • Foiling and varnish may be challenging to read when used with metallic types.
  • Debossing and embossing also do not offer you better readability.
  • On the other hand, while using high-gloss UV coating may provide clarity for graphics, it may not be the best option for text areas.
  • Matte lamination may offer great glare but not the same amount of readability.

Protective Against Smudges

Spot UV offers a thin, clear varnish coating that protects your fingers and ink. The glossy finish of your boxes with Spot UV also ensures you get rid of smudges that can occur. On the other hand, lamination may offer a more visually interesting look.

Also, the common types of varnishes may not provide the same level of protection for your boxes. Remember that untreated printing is the least smudge-resistant option.

Things To Consider Before Using Spot UV

Now, before you can use this amazing effect on your boxes, you also need to know when the best option to use Spot UV will be.

Know What You Want To Achieve

You cannot deny the importance of being sure about what you want to get from a certain technique you are using on your boxes. You also need to know whether you want to add a glossy feel to your printed products. You can use it for logos, text, and other points where you want your products to look special.

You can also use it to add a good amount of depth and dimension in the form of 3D effects. You can utilize it for a great velvety feel alongside a high-gloss and metallic feel. This effect also works to create a better contrast for your boxes.


Knowing your budget can completely change whether you should or should not use Spot UV. The main question we must answer here is if you want a better impact or to save costs. At the same time, you can find alternatives that offer the impact you want compared to Spot UV.

Other options:

  • You can try varnishes if you want a cheaper alternative.
  • Also, you can try aqueous coating that is less costly than similar options.
  • Using foil stamping can make your work easier with similar costs and a great look.
  • If you want other embellishments, you can use digital printers that offer a tactile feel and a visually appealing look.

Design Complexity

Design complexity can be a game-maker or breaker; you must always consider it. Here is why:

  • When spotting UV, you need a special printing press for this type.
  • On the other hand, if you want to foil, you need a specialized heat press to arrange it to ensure you get the best results.
  • If you want to use embossing or debossing, you will need a special die for this design.
  • Also, if you want to use varnish, it can be an easier process with less preparation.

Packaging Materials Choices For Spot UV

There is a long list of the best choices you can make when using Spot UV. Here are some packaging materials that we can use to use this technique in our printing:

  • This one works perfectly with cardboard, as it offers versatility. It can be perfect for making contrasts between glossy and matte cardboard.
  • You can also try using paperboard when looking for lightweight solutions.
  • Using kraft paper can help you get a rustic feeling and look.
  • Also, you can try certain plastics to get results for promotional purposes.
  • You can also try them for use on metal, which can help you get a unique and luxurious feel.
  • Using this technique on top of soft-touch laminate can also help you get a great look.

Where Not To Use It?

Apart from the scenarios in which you should use Spot UV, there are some when you should avoid using this technique.

On Small Intricate Details

Here are some reasons why you should avoid using this technique for small, intricate details on your packaging:

  • This technique leads to a blurry and undefined design in such a scenario, as a minimum thickness is required for proper application.
  • You must use certain film masks in this process, which have limitations. In such details, the mask may not offer a great final product with less definition.

On Large And Solid Areas

Using this technique in larger areas can be expensive; however, its alternatives may offer better coverage. For instance, you can use varnishing, which comes in multiple types, like high gloss, matte, and finishes. Also, foil stamping can be beneficial because it has a striking look and consistency.

Avoid On Text-Heavy Areas

Sometimes, the use of Spot UV can create a great glossy finish that, on the other hand, can cause readability issues. So, if you are working with smaller fonts, seek to learn about the feasibility of making your text more legible. When you use it for larger areas, uneven surfaces may not make the print look crisp and impressive.

In such cases, your ink may look uneven, which can be a problem for your boxes.

Keep the Functionality in Mind

There are certain functionalities that packaging products need to offer when it comes to different techniques applied to them. Here are some points to keep in mind:

  • If you use this technique on areas that need to be folded, you may encounter issues such as the raised area’s brittleness.
  • You may also have issues like hindrances when sliding open your boxes. On the other hand, you may not be able to reseal closures that have spot UV.
  • At the same time, if you want your boxes to be available for writing, this technique may not offer the right surface for this purpose.

Avoid On Fine Lines And Fonts

You should avoid this technique if you want to keep your lines and fonts on your packaging. With such thickness, you need to have a minimum thickness that you can not achieve when you use it on fine lines and fonts. In such instances, you can have bleeding, incompleteness, and lack of definition.

Avoid It On Photographs and Detailed Artwork

To ensure the images and artwork on your boxes stand out, you must avoid using Spot UV. With Spot UV, you may be unable to make your photographs and artwork stand out, as it can create a raised effect that makes these elements less attention-grabbing. At the same time, your spot UV will blur the delicate details, which can break the complete vibe you can have.

Don’t Use On Barcodes And QR Codes

When you use this technique on barcodes or QR codes, these features can not be scanned, making them useless. At the same time, using this technique can make changes that can be inaccurate for your requirements. So, it can be a big issue if you cannot ensure you are getting to scan these elements right.

Avoid Multi-layered Spot UV

Multiple coats can make things uneven in texture, which can make it difficult to get the most out of your raised and glossy layers. In such scenarios, the design would be complex, which can easily lead to problems with your printing process and appearance. The additional layers added to such a design would make heavier thickness instead of a textural difference, which you would be looking for.

Spot UV On Uncoated Paper

When you use Spot UV on uncoated paper, it can lead to multiple issues for your printing, like:

  • This paper can easily soak your Spot UV, leading to an insufficient impact on the overall look.
  • In such a condition, you may face the dullness of the finish you get with it that you would not like to have.
  • At the same time, you would have to face uneven application.
  • You may not even get the proper bonding on your texture, making the varnish difficult to apply.

Don’t Combine It With Other Techniques

Using it with other techniques can lead to conflict in the dimensions, which can further cause visual clutter. This way, you may not be able to make things look great with the visual hierarchy you want. At the same time, using this technique alongside embossing and debossing may not work. In such a condition, you may have issues like unevenness in the finish you get.

You may also have damage due to the brittleness of the sharp folds you can have with these.

Don’t Combine It With Other Techniques

You can use them when you want a striking contrast and a glossy feel. The matte background can create a pop feel with a touch of sophistication. They can be great for logo design and text.


What are Spot UV labels?

This technique helps you design the right labels for yourself. With it, you can make a certain area look great while adding a tactile element to your packages. You can use it for various applications, such as product packaging, marketing materials, and premium product labels.

What is the Spot UV layer?

A spot UV layer can be applied to your printing and packaging products, allowing you to achieve high gloss and raised texture on certain parts of your products. There is no difference between the Spot UV layer and Spot UV. It offers better visual appeal, tactile experience, and enhanced durability.

What are raised Spot UV stickers?

This technique is used when you need unique visual and tactile effects. With this effect, you get a raised surface with texture around a matte finish. This effect would offer great visual appeal to logos, graphics, and text.

Are there any drawbacks to using Spot UV?

You should consider some drawbacks when using Spot UV, like the cost you have to spend on the process. Also, you have to face limitations with them, such as they won’t work for intricate details, and there are packaging issues that do not allow proper functionality when writing on a surface or folding something.

How much does spot UV cost?

The answer to this question depends on factors like the total area you cover, the complexity of your design, and the type of Spot UV you want. Also, the product’s printing process and the material used determine the costs you will have to spend. You can hire Packaging Hub to ensure you only pay reasonable prices for the solutions you get.

Let Your Printing Shine Well with Packaging Hub

Spot UV is a great way to make your printing look impressive without breaking the bank. Packaging Hub can help you get satisfying results for your printing. You can rely on our services to ensure your printing looks super impressive with all the add-ons you need. Your packaging will get Spot varnish packaging with perfection.

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Steve Harsh
Steve Harsh, a packaging and printing expert who has been working in the field for over a decade. It has been my privilege to write on this topic, which I have been doing for years to help people learn about this essential field that helps millions achieve their business goals.

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