Packaging Design Trends for 2018.

Carton and Sleeve Design Trends in 2018

window carton with pastel shades

In this article by graphic designer Martis Lupus on, the author discusses the 10 predicted packaging design trends for 2018. We have summarised the key points from article below.


cartons with minimalist design

health supplement bottle with minimlaist design

The first trend is simplicity or a minimalist design type. The author suggests that if you can find symbols or signs to communicate your message without the use of too many words, it can put you ahead of your competition in our fast-paced society. consumers want to scan packaging as fast as possible without the need to slow down and read text.


carton with pastel shades

cartons with a simple pastel design


Pastels are set to return in 2018 – the author sees it as a reaction to the bright, vivid colours that have been used in packaging design recently. Pastel shades create a warm and candid aura around the product which projects a welcoming message to the potential customer, Lupus states.



sleeve with doodle design

The author states that everybody has doodled at some point in their lives, particularly when they were children. When doodles are used in packaging design, this creates a fun way to describe what’s inside the box and remind adults of a time when they were carefree kids who drew doodles like this.

Movie Poster Design

beer label with movie poster design


Another trend is the use of movie posters styles in packaging design. This again is a way of creating a fun atmosphere and telling a story. his design style has already been popular in brewing packaging.

Big Words  

carton with big words design

bags with big words in the design

Big words used on packaging design can work really well because of the speed at which they communicate what is inside the package. This packaging design style would need also to look attractive as the words can sometimes take up most of the space available and there may not be room for other attractive design elements such as images and background designs.

Unusual Shapes and Materials

juice carton in unusual bamboo style shape

An unusual shape can help a product stand out on the shelves but the design and production processes may be longer and more complicated. However, the author advises that if you get the shape right it can help establish your brand identity and the unique aspect of your product. She shows examples of a healthy juice contained in a packet shaped like a bamboo cane.



vintage design labels on bottles

While the author suggests that this is a trend for 2018, it is a design style that is visible on our retail shelves already. She suggests that vintage is a good way of projecting an image of high quality, respect for tradition and perhaps a brand that was founded many years ago and is still thriving. She says “ vintage design is also an effective way of demonstrating dedication to a certain level of quality, perhaps unaltered since the inception of the product, decades or centuries back. Vintage tells a story of tradition, respect and passion, elements that remain alive”



carton with photo

Photography needs very little explanation and is an ongoing trend in packaging design.

Holographic effects

cartons with holographic design

Holographic effects can add depth and variations in colour as the package is moved under the light. It is popular in luxury packaging design. The metallic effect adds brightness and a feeling of luxury, glamour and glitz.


Vibrant gradients


cartons with gradient design

The use of gradients in packaging design has increased as a reaction perhaps to the prevalence of flat design to date. Vibrant gradients can add interest, depth and form to a package design.

You can read the full article here