Blister Vs Clamshell Packaging: Which Is Right Packaging For Your Product?

Blister Vs Clamshell Packaging: Which Is Right Packaging For Your Product?

Protecting your product is paramount, but packaging should do more than just shield. It should be an extension of your brand and entice customers. This guide explores the two most popular packaging choices - blister vs clamshell packaging. By understanding their unique characteristics and key differences, you'll be able to select the perfect fit to showcase your product and drive sales.

Blister Packaging Characteristics and Benefits

Blister packs are a versatile and cost-effective packaging solution widely used across various industries.

Blister packs utilize a two-part system. The primary component is a formed plastic tray ("blister") typically constructed from PETG (glycol-modified polyethylene terephthalate) or PVC (polyvinyl chloride). This section securely molds around the product, providing a clear view. The secondary element is a backing card, usually crafted from paperboard or cardboard. This card offers rigidity and serves as a platform for essential product information and branding opportunities.

Blister offers different benefits, including:

  • Cost-Effectiveness: Blister packs are relatively inexpensive to produce, making them an ideal choice for high-volume products.
  • Enhanced Security: Tamper-evident seals can be incorporated, deterring theft and product tampering. Single-use options offer an additional layer of security.
  • Portion Control: Blister packs are well-suited for packaging individual units or pre-measured doses, making them ideal for pharmaceuticals and other applications requiring precise control.
  • Clear Product Visibility: Consumers can easily assess the product's appearance and branding directly through the transparent plastic, potentially influencing purchasing decisions.
  • Compact Design: Blister packs take up minimal shelf space, maximizing retail display efficiency and shelf utilization.
  • Branding Opportunity: The backing card provides valuable real estate for logos, product information, and impactful marketing messages.

    Clamshell Packaging Characteristics and Benefits

    Clamshell packaging offers a premium aesthetic and superior protection, making it ideal for a broader range of products. Let's explore its characteristics and the benefits it delivers:

    Clamshell packaging employs two rigid plastic pieces hinged together, typically at the side or top. These components can be manufactured from plastic, biodegradable materials,… making them divided into different types of clamshell packaging, depending on the desired level of sustainability.

    Clamshell packaging have numerous benefits, including:

    • Premium Presentation: The clamshell design creates a visually appealing and high-quality presentation, enhancing product value and brand image on store shelves.
    • Unmatched Protection: Clamshells provide exceptional protection against dust, moisture, scratches, and even impact, making them ideal for delicate or fragile items.
    • Multiple Use Potential: Some clamshells incorporate resealable features, allowing for extended product life and potential reuse by the customer.
    • Versatility: Clamshells can accommodate a wider range of product shapes and sizes compared to blister packs.
    • Enhanced Branding Opportunities: Both the plastic shells and inserts within clamshell packaging offer valuable real estate for showcasing branding elements and detailed product information.
    • Improved Customer Experience: Customers can fully examine the product from all angles before making a purchase decision.

      Overall, blister vs clamshell packaging has their own characteristics and benefits setting them apart. In the next section, let’s find out the key differences of these two types of packaging.

      Key Differences Between Bister vs Clamshell Packaging

      From the analysis of blister vs clamshell above, to clarify more about the differences of them, here is a table comparing them by the various factors:


      Blister Pack

      Clamshell Pack


      Two-part system: plastic tray + backing card

      Two hinged rigid plastic pieces



      Plastic, biodegradable materials

      Product Visibility

      Primarily front view

      360-degree view


      Tamper-evident seals, single-use options

      Secure closures, resealable options


      Moderate (dust, moisture, minor scratches)

      Superior (dust, moisture, scratches, impact)


      Generally, less plastic used than clamshell packaging

      Generally, more plastic used, potential recycling challenges


      More cost-effective

      Typically, higher cost


      Branding on backing card

      Branding on shells and inserts

      When understanding the differences between blister vs clamshell packaging, choosing the right fit for your business become easier. However, there are still some considerations before deciding.

      Here are main considerations that your business should aware:

      • Product Characteristics:
        • Size and Shape: Blister packs are ideal for smaller, flatter items. Clamshells can accommodate a wider range of shapes and sizes.
        • Fragility: Clamshells offer superior protection for delicate items. Blister packs might be sufficient for more durable products.
        • Security Needs: Blister packs can be tamper-evident for single-use applications. Clamshells can be resealable for multiple uses.
      • Target Audience and Branding:
        • Visibility: Blister packs showcase the front of your product. Clamshells provide a 360-degree view, ideal for complex products.
        • Branding and Marketing: Both options allow for logo placement and product information. Consider the real estate available for your message.
        • Retail Presentation: Blister packs offer a space-saving solution. Clamshells can create a more premium look.
      • Sustainability Goals:
        • Material Usage: Blister packs typically use less plastic. Clamshells may combine plastic and cardboard, impacting recycling. For the best sustainable pratices, choosing sugarcane clamshell or clamshell made from recycled materials.
        • Recyclability: Ensure your chosen packaging utilizes recyclable materials, or explore options made from recycled content (RPET clamshells).

      What Products Are Best For Blister Packs?

      • Electronic accessories like USB drives, cables, headphones
      • Various toys
      • Stationery items such as pens and paper clips
      • Batteries
      • Dental care items like toothbrushes and floss
      • DIY hardware like screws and nails
      • tablets and capsules
      • products that can break easily

      What Products Are Best For Clamshell Packaging?

      • Fresh fruit and vegetables
      • Gift sets
      • Tool sets
      • Cosmetic
      • Lightbulbs
      • Baby items

      Overall, by considering these factors and your specific product needs, you can make an informed decision on which packaging type best optimizes your product presentation, drives sales, and aligns with your brand identity.


      In conclusion, selecting between blister and clamshell packaging hinges on your product's needs. Blister packs excel in cost-effectiveness and showcasing fronts, while clamshells offer superior protection and full visibility. Consider these factors and your brand identity to make the best choice. The right packaging can silently elevate your product and drive sales.

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