What Is Clamshell Packaging – Types, Pros And Cons

Posted November 17, 2023 Types of Clamshell Packaging

Do you want to make your packaging super special with something unique that your customers will love? If yes, this blog will give you all the information you need about clamshell packaging for your packages.

This blog will also cover what makes these so special for marketing your brand and products. At the same time, you will learn about the history and future of such packaging.

What is Clamshell Packaging?

When it comes to this type of packaging, by the name, it may appear to be something coming from under the water, but it is not. It is a type of packaging with shells, normally one on the top and the other under it. You can pack products like electronics, hardware, and food in such package boxes.

A common feature of this packaging is carrying product visibility. At the same time, it allows you to know about tamper resistance. Also, it allows you a coordinated display and security for your production.

Main Features Of Clamshell Packaging

There are some common things you should know about as the main features of clamshell boxes. For instance, normally, such packaging designs consist of two plastic shells that are quite hard. They are together, one on the top and the other giving the base structure.

Another feature is the visibility factor, which allows you to look at the product packed inside. This way, you can showcase your products and let customers know about their features without opening the package. It offers perfect protection against moisture, dust, tampering, and physical damage.

Another thing to remember when using these kinds of packages is that they are reclosable, so you can close them after use as a consumer.

Pros Of Clamshell Packaging

When it comes to the pros of such packaging, there is a long list you would love to know about:

  • It offers you visibility to help improve your marketing as it is transparent.
  • At the same time, it offers you eco-friendly solutions with biodegradable materials.
  • Also, your customers can be sure there was no tampering with the product, as it has a tamper-evident design.
  • Your consumers will also love the convenience they get with such packaging and the easy access to the product.
  • Its design is also optimized for branding, as it can carry designs, graphics, and other elements.
  • Using this packaging also helps you improve the shelf life of your products for perishable goods.

Cons Of Clamshell Packaging

  • Such packaging can sometimes be difficult to open, leading to customer frustration.
  • The cost spent on such packaging can be higher than that of other boxes, leading to the most spending on them.
  • At the same time, if you want to convey a lot of information in your boxes, it can hinder that. The clear nature of this packaging does not allow a lot of space on the surface to add labels and stickers. That means there are fewer chances of adding branding elements to these boxes.

Types of Clamshell Packaging

Clamshell Packaging has multiple types, and all of them have their pros and cons. Here is a complete list of them:

  • Single-Hinge
  • Tri-Fold
  • Double-Blister Clamshell
  • Slide-Blister
  • Rotating Blister
  • Mock types
  • Trapped Blister types
  • Child-Resistant
  • Tamper-Evident
  • Custom-Designed
  • Cardboard Clamshell Boxes

Here are some features of the most common ones:

  • Single-hinge clamshell packaging is one of the commons that has two halves. The first one is on the top, and the other has the product on it.
  • Then, there are trifold clamshell boxes that carry three different sections. You can open them like a book, and they have a central compartment where you can put the product in two additional sections.
  • You have a box with blister clamshell packaging covering the product in this packaging. Its common use is for products that need high visibility to attract customers.

Examples Of Products Packed In Clamshell Packaging

There’s a long list of products you can pack inside such packaging. Here’s a list of products so we can get back inside this type of packaging:

  • Memory cards and USB drives
  • Action figures and toy cars
  • Earphones and headphone devices
  • Phone chargers and cables
  • Cosmetics and personal care products
  • Travel-size toiletries
  • Screws and bolts
  • Drill bits
  • Small hand tools
  • Toys and games
  • Nail clippers
  • Razors and razor blades

What Is The Use of This Packaging In Different Industries?

When it comes to different industries that use this type of packaging, there’s a long list of them and the products used in them:

  • Electronics, toys, personal gear, and food products frequently use such packaging. It not only provides protection but also helps against environmental factors.
  • At the same time, you can use it for nuts, small tools, and other such accessories. These products need something strong to hold on to, which they easily get with these boxes.
  • Their uses are common in the food services industry, bakeries, and fresh products.
  • You can also find them useful for gadgets like memory cards, adapters, and screen protectors.

Clamshell Packaging And The Branding Factor

We all know that branding is the soul of any packaging in any industry. Commercial packaging also needs a foolproof solution to add the branding factor. We have a list of elements you must add to such packaging to enhance the branding and customization factor:

  • Printing plays a key role in branding a box, so you must ensure high-quality printing on such boxes.
  • At the same time, try using a brand name and logo with prominence on these boxes.
  • Also, try to be consistent with every branding element to make sure your customization is up to par.
  • The use of unique shapes and sizes can be a perfect way to make things more memorable for your customers, so try them out.
  • Try to add labels and stickers that enhance your branding and can come with product features and benefits.

When To Use Clamshell Packaging?

When it comes to when to use this type of packaging, there are some features you should keep in mind. If you are looking for strong and protective packaging that also provides visibility for your products, it’s the best choice. The security factor must also be kept in mind, as such packaging can help provide that.

At the same time, you can use them as hanging display boxes. You should also try them out when you are looking for packaging that offers customization options.

How Sustainable Is It?

The answer to how sustainable clamshell packaging is depends on multiple factors that usually vary. Clamshell packaging material selection for your product matters in this factor. At the same time, practices that reduce material usage play a role.

So, the material you use for its production should be recyclable, and the product must come with labels to aid the recycling process. Make sure that your boxes are reusable, making them less prone to producing waste after use. Try to use inks and labels that are sustainable to reduce their impact on the environment.

Also, make sure that you comply with the rules and regulations that apply to such packaging in terms of environmental protection. Make sure that you educate your consumers on the importance of eco-friendly packaging and how to dispose of clamshell boxes. So, this is the answer if you are looking to learn whether clamshell packaging is recyclable.

Clamshell Success Stories From Industries

When it comes to any packaging, it is useless if it does not create success stories. The same goes for clamshell boxes, and there is a need to understand how it has changed industries. In this section, you can read about some success stories from different industries that have used it.

Apple Inc. has used it for products like the original iPod, and it has helped them showcase the product perfectly. At the same time, it protects the product. Many medical companies use them as blister boxes to protect their products from environmental factors.

Companies like Belkin use this packaging for their electronics products. The toy industry also uses this packaging for small toys, collectibles, and action figures. These success stories make it a perfect packaging box for multiple industries and purposes.

Future Trends Of The Industry

  • The trend of reducing material usage for such boxes is also common in this industry.
  • Improving the tamper-evident features of these boxes is also on the rise.
  • Adding new elements to the design aesthetics
  • New ways to customize this packaging
  • A trend of its adaptation for the ecommerce market
  • The trend of adding advanced barrier properties in their material
  • Regulatory compliance with laws and regulations
  • Improving the consumers’ knowledge
  • Use of new materials and their production
  • Sustainable Printing Inks


What is usually shipped in clamshell boxes?

The most common products shipped in these boxes are:

  • Cosmetic products
  • Collectibles and action figures for young kids
  • Small toys for kids
  • Hardware and other tools
  • Salads and Pre-cut fruits
  • Medications
  • Pet products

Why is clamshell packaging popular in retail industry?

Certain factors make clamshell packaging quite important for the retail industry. For instance, it offers product visibility, improving the marketing factor with tamper evidence and protection for the products. It also helps improve the shelf life of products with easy display and customization options.

How to ensure that clamshell packaging meets sustainability goals?

  • Always be sure that you are choosing recyclable materials
  • Make sure you check for local recycling guidelines for your products
  • Try to avoid mixed materials as they can be more difficult to recycle.
  • Use labels and symbols that ensure better recyclability information for the recycling process.
  • Try to collaborate with recycling programs to reduce waste production
  • Make sure you always invest in sustainable inks
  • Try to prioritize minimalist designs if that applies
  • Consider alternative materials rather than ones that are harmful to the environment.

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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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