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The ultimate business guide to Christmas packaging

Ultimate guide to Christmas packaging

Christmas is a time of fun, festivities, food, family and, of course, a few gifts. And for your brand, it presents a remarkable opportunity to weave that magic into your brand's narrative, all through the power of packaging. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the importance of Christmas packaging, the key elements that make it truly compelling, an array of festive packaging ideas, and essential tips to strategically plan for the festive season.

Why Christmas packaging is important for your brand

Christmas packaging isn't just decoration. It's a strategic tool for your business. It creates an emotional connection between your brand and your customers. And the effort you invest in creating thoughtful packaging sends a clear message that you're thinking about them this Christmas period. Not only can this create customer loyalty, but it can also lead to positive word-of-mouth. And that can mean new customers.

Sustainability and Christmas packaging

Sustainability has become a cornerstone of modern packaging. And consumers are increasingly choosing to buy from brands that demonstrate a clear sustainability agenda. The holiday season is no different, especially with the colossal amount of waste that's generated every Christmas.

For your brand, this is another opportunity to reflect your customer's needs and values in your festive packaging, and do some good for the planet. We'll cover how to make sure your Christmas packaging more sustainable below, but for now, that's the headline: sustainability is important and it should be a priority.

What makes compelling Christmas packaging?

Compelling Christmas packaging isn't achieved by one thing. Here are five elements to creating an irresistible package.


Deep reds, vibrant greens, glistening golds and shimmering silvers are all classic Christmas colours. And using them in your packaging can help to invoke the holiday season. So if you want to make it clear that Christmas is here for your brand (and your customers), it could be a good idea to include them in your festive design.

That said, you don't have to follow the crowd — just know your packaging may not have that quintessential feel.


Compelling Christmas packaging often uses script fonts for an elegant touch that also looks and feels like a traditional handwritten holiday card — and it works. But if you're worried about losing brand recognition, consider pairing two fonts together: your normal font and a festive font. Just make sure they don't clash before you go to production.

Alternatively, bold and playful fonts feel cheerful and exciting, both of which may tie into the experience of opening Christmas presents. Whatever you pick, choose fonts that both feel festive and reflect your brand. Or in other words, be intentional. Strong typography can make or break your packaging.

Need help with typography and design? Let us know


Images can transport your customers to a winter wonderland. Snowflakes, Christmas trees, snow-covered landscapes, flying reindeer and beyond can all create a tangible feeling of Christmas.

If your customer base isn't in the northern hemisphere though, pick imagery that reflects their Christmas. Whether your imagery is of snow or beaches, always invest in high-quality imagery and illustrations.


While looks are important, function is still paramount. In fact, it's a non-negotiable. If your product is damaged during transit, your customers won't be happy, especially if it's their daughter's Christmas present. This could lead to complaints and returns, both of which are costly. In short: compelling Christmas packaging works.


As we've mentioned, modern consumers seek brands that align with their values. To achieve this with your packaging, choose recyclable materials, opt for paper packaging, design for reuse (like storage or decoration) and communicate your commitment to sustainability on the packaging itself.

Not sure where to start with sustainability? Let us know

10 Christmas packaging ideas

Let's explore the Christmas packaging ideas that can transform your brand's holiday presence:

1. Christmas boxes

Mailer boxes

Mailer boxes are one of the most popular types of Christmas gift packaging. And they have two big benefits for the festive season. First, they're versatile, and you can use them to ship gifts of every kind, from clothing to cosmetics. So if you have a wide range of products, mailer boxes may cover most of your needs, reducing the number of SKUs you have to manage during one of the busiest times of the year.

Second, they're completely customisable. In fact, you can customise nearly everything about them, including typography, imagery and colour. And as we know, they're all key components to creating compelling Christmas packaging.

The icing on the yule log is that mailer boxes are 100% recyclable, making it easy for your customers to play their part in combatting climate change.

Shipping boxes

For bigger, heavier, bulkier Christmas gifts, shipping boxes are the perfect packaging. And whilst they're more durable than mailer boxes, they're still quick to assemble and 100% recyclable. A bigger surface area also means you can be even more creative (and festive).

2. Christmas box print finishes

Print finishes offer a unique way to elevate your Christmas gift boxes, helping you to stand out this festive season.

Embossing: Embossing creates a distinctive raised effect to highlight features or add a luxurious finish. For your Christmas packaging, this could mean an elevated snow-covered mountain or an enhanced festive message.

Foiling: Foiling adds a metallic finish that highlights features in a different way but still creates a premium feel. It's also often available in different colours including gold and silver — two classic Christmas colours.

UV Varnish: UV varnish adds a glossy finish to specific elements in your festive design. Think shiny snowflakes, dazzling gifts and gleaming Christmas trees.

3. Paper mailer bags

Custom paper mailer bags are the go-to Christmas gift bags, at least for non-fragile items like clothing. For these types of products that don't need a lot of protection, paper mailer bags are the real deal. They're lightweight, recyclable, flexible and the best are even expandable. And like all good Christmas packaging, they're customisable. Add a double peel & seal to make fulfilment fast ahead of the festive frenzy.

4. Custom inserts

Custom inserts are pieces of durable corrugated cardboard that are then die-cut to fit your product (or products). They then sit inside your packaging (often a mailer box), allowing you to protect, secure and showcase your gifts. This also gives you more control over the unboxing experience. And after use, they're kerbside recyclable.

To make your custom inserts even more in tune with the holiday season, you can die-cut festive shapes and designs into the insert.

5. Christmas stickers

A simple, effective and cost-effective option, stickers with custom designs transform plain packaging into a holiday delight. Use stickers to hold tissue paper in place, seal Christmas gift boxes, add a decorative element to a mailer box or give customers a brand freebie.

6. Christmas cards

Chrismas cards are great for adding a personal touch to your packaging, full of holiday wishes, handwritten notes and festive promotions. To extend this extra thought even further, you can include a QR code on the card that leads to other holiday-themed content.

7. Tissue paper

Like stickers and cards, tissue paper is a cost-effective packaging option. Not only does it offer extra protection for delicate Christmas gifts like jewellery, but with the wide range of colours available you can double-down on some of those classic festive colours.

8. Gummed tape

Gummed tape is a plastic-free and kerbside recyclable type of tape, making it a more sustainable choice than plastic sticky tape. Which, as we know, should be an important consideration for your Christmas packaging this year. It's also stronger — a win-win. What's more, you can customise gummed tape in all of the important ways, including colour, artwork, width and weight.

One of the very few downsides of gummed tape is that it only sticks to paper-based packaging. But if you're shipping your Christmas gifts in corrugated gift boxes (as you probably will) this won't be an issue.

9. QR codes

Modern Christmas packaging sometimes calls for modern technology. And QR codes are the perfect example, allowing you to turn your packaging into an engaging experience that can exceed customer expectations. From an interactive advent calendar and a holiday competition to a festival playlist, the possibilities are endless.

Whilst the content itself may take time and resources, adding a QR code is no different than printing any other type of artwork. If you're already doing that, the QR code is effectively free. Merry Christmas!

10. Ribbons

If you're shipping luxury Christmas gifts this year, ribbons may be the final touch that turns a new customer into a loyal fan. Consider satin or velvet ribbons in holiday colours like red, green, silver or gold, and tie them in intricate bows for an extra touch of sophistication.

Planning for the festive season

When to buy Christmas packaging

Always plan ahead to avoid last-minute chaos. It's essential. Early planning will not only save you a headache, but it will allow you to secure the best packaging at the right quantities.

We recommend starting your festive packaging preparations at least three months in advance, if not more. This will give you enough time for design, production, and shipping.

Collaborating with a packaging supplier

Finding the right packaging supplier is vital to a smooth festive season. Your packaging supplier should be able to cover the basics, like the right packaging with all the features you need.

But the best supplier will also go above and beyond and may offer services like artwork design, stock management, warehousing and more. Whilst not essential, these things will make your life much easier and will allow you to focus on the most important thing — your business.

Tip: If you're a small business, look out for suppliers who offer low minimum order quantities.

Planning for next year

After the festivities, reflect on what went well and what went not so well. If you can talk to customers using surveys, Instagram polls and the like — even better. Use these insights to refine your Christmas packaging strategy for the following year. And then discuss how to make that strategy a reality with your packaging supplier.


Packaging is never just wrapping; it's an extension of your product, your brand and your values. And at Christmas, it can become as much a part of the holiday season for your customers as crackers or a Christmas tree. So embrace a festive design, prioritise sustainability and stand out from the competition with innovative ideas like QR codes.

If you need more ideas to get started, or want someone to take the entire process off your hands, we can help. Contact Sales

P.S. We offer free delivery for all UK orders — Merry Christmas!

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