Different Protective Coats You Can Use on Your Metal Nameplates

Metal Nameplates and labels with Protective CoatDomed Label

When you talk about protective coating, you are talking about coating that is used to add another layer of protection to an item. A lot of products use protective coating on them, and metal nameplates as well as labels are included in such a list. These tags require the use of a protective coat to help the print underneath, as well as the material used for the tag itself, to last longer.

Not all protective coats are equal, although all of these are made to protect the surface of the item underneath from abrasions, chemicals, moisture, and damage from other factors. Some of these protective coats do more than just protect the tag underneath, giving the tag either a matte or glossy look, and some adding an extra layer of waterproofing to the tag. There are also a few that help give the tag a 3-dimensional look, aside from the fact that the protective layer also keeps the tag from deteriorating quickly.

What are the most commonly used protective coats for metal nameplates, labels, and other tags? Here are four of them:

Laminate coat – when you say that a tag has a laminate overcoat, it means that a film layer is added to the top of the tag to give it a thick protective coat. This helps give the tag an added layer of protection from moisture, UV rays, abrasion, and some mild chemicals. This particular overcoat comes in many varieties, and can be had in matte or gloss finish.

UV coat – this particular protective surface is one of the more expensive but also one of the more durable topcoats for labels and tags. A UV coat is applied immediately after printing and is dried or cured with the use of a UV lamp or ultraviolet light. This protects the print on the label or metal nameplate underneath from UV rays, moisture, mild chemicals, and dust. This usually comes in a glossy finish and can be spot applied for a unique look.

Varnish – when a tag has a varnish protective coat, it has a layer that protects the tag underneath from moisture, some abrasion and dirt, but does not necessarily protect the tag from harsh conditions and UV rays. This topcoat is the cheapest of the options, but is not as durable. This can be applied over the whole tag or can be applied in what is called spot coating, which only offers protection for specific parts of the tag and gives it an interesting diverse look. It also comes with a matte and a gloss option.

Urethane dome coating – some people consider this top coat more of an aesthetic addition than a protective one, but it is actually the most durable option. The domed top gives the metal nameplate or label underneath a 3-dimensional look, and gives it an extra layer of protection that keeps the print from deteriorating due to exposure to sunlight, moisture, grease, grime, and even some chemicals. This topcoat is also self-healing, which means when abrasions occur, the domes surface “heals” over time to return the tag to its former clear, domed label look.

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