What is ‘Hi-Lite’ & how does it work? – Eco-Friendly Decorative Print Finish

by | 26 Jun, 2020

Hi-Lite is a decorative print finish which delivers vibrant textures and light reflection to your packaging or possibly any printed material. 

For many years the industry has used laminates (Gloss, Matt, Soft Touch) and sometimes adding a spot gloss UV Varnish. Both of which are costly and laminates, with the best will in the world, are not great for the environment!

Plastic films applied to the paper add protection but are not recyclable in nearly all cases, there are some that biodegrade but they must be left in sunlight to do so, quite a task laying out all these sheets of paper in the sun….

Experimenting with ‘Hi-Lite’ when developing our suite of social distancing floor stickers.

So What is ‘Hi-Lite’? 

Essentially it is a form of clear ink, but thanks to our unique Lightcure process, we use a low energy UV light to ‘cure’ the clear ink and achieve incredibly high gloss. This process is carried out inline when printing so there are no setup costs, reduced lead times and of course no plastics.

The real bonus is that we can also introduce a varnish plate to create spot gloss areas, patterns, vignettes, textures and more, the possibilities are endless. This works but reticulation (a reaction)  between the varnish plate and the clear ink to give you either a crystal texture or high-gloss, plus gradients in-between.

If you want your marketing to stand out from your competitors, this is a leap ahead of 99% of companies out there, very few printer have worked to develop this finite process, we are very proud to have done so with Komori, one of the world biggest printing press manufacturers.

At the start of this year we were very excited to tell you about our key developments for 2020, and as a part of that, we invested in a new Komori press which has enabled us to produce this ‘Hi-Lite’ technology. If you would like to see this in action, along with explanation, please see the video below: 

See more about this here.

Quick Overview:
  • Unlimited designs – one cost
  • Recyclable
  • Low Energy
  • Shorter Lead Times
  • Instantly dry and usable
  • Lower costs than traditional laminate & spot UV
Too good to be true?

Well no not really, this process does require development, expertise and investment, we took the decision to invest in this technology for our clients, as well as our company ethos to make a measurable difference to reduce the environmental impact of print. 

Once you have the technology and process developed the there are no downsides, we have done the hard work so you can reap the benefits.

Have you considered doubling up? If you want to lose the laminate to enhance your green credentials – have you considered our carbon capture scheme?

You can proudly display this carbon capture logo on your printed material to appeal to your more environmentally conscious customers.

Carbon Captured Packaging Paper – Enhanced!

Now over 12 months on from our initial offering of Carbon Captured packaging paper used to create your printed marketing, I am pleased to share the news we can now offer both UK and WorldWide Carbon Capture Schemes!

We have seen a strong change of direction from the ever decreasing range of recycled paper to carbon captured paper, which we believe to be the right direction for paper production.

We only use paper made from forests specifically grown for that purpose, mostly northern European, which is completely sustainable. In fact the preconception that paper is bad for the environment is still reinforced by the ‘do you really need to print this email’ message we see all too often. The reality being the explosion in electronic devices of the last 20 years is a recycling crisis waiting in the wings, with precious metals being mined (using questionable labour) to create these devices.

The reality of the UK & European paper usage and manufacture is a very positive story, forestry is growing by an area the size of 1500 football pitches a day!

Between 2005 & 2015 European Forestry are by an area the size of Switzerland, which is a fantastic statistic.

So what more can we do? 

Carbon Capture. 

By capturing the carbon created in the production of the paper, we can not only see forestry continue to grow but also with zero carbon impact on the planet.

Carbon is captured by planting more trees, building the lush green forests which are so critical in converting Co2 into Oxygen.

We Launched with the Forest Carbon trust in March 2019 but we are now able to offer a Worldwide scheme, with patrons such as Sir David Attenborough, Steve Backshall and Chris Packham The World Land Trust as the name suggests works around the globe. It buys land, plants forests protects species and reserves in many of the countries where the the world’s ecosystem is often ignored.

So you can literally impact climate change in an incredibly positive way, either through our UK scheme the Forest Carbon Trust or World Land Trust where your trees will be planted worldwide!

Both schemes provide this for an incredibly low investment.

How does it work?

Simply request your paper is carbon offset at the point of quote and we will do the rest, we can issue certificates and license numbers should you wish to add this to your artwork too!

Looking for a decorative print finish without the use of potentially harmful, un-recyclable laminates? We have recently developed our very own ‘hi-lite’ technology that offers a unique, eye-catching finish whilst remaining entirely eco-friendly. Click here to read more about it or click here to contact us.