Water Resistant vs Waterproof: What's the Difference?

Lauren P
Lauren P
  • Updated

Waterproof vs Water Resistant- what makes these different? Both are common descriptions for products and while they are similar terms, they each mean something different. Let’s take a closer look to help you decide which product is best for your needs!

Waterproof items do not let any water through the material, while water resistant items will protect water from getting through. All our products are water resistant, meaning they will withstand water if they are not submerged for a long period of time. Think of a bumper sticker on the outside of your car or a label on a beer bottle. The sticker will withhold rain and snow as it lives on your car and the beer label will remain intact if surrounded by ice in a cooler. On the flip side, both would not do well if placed on the bottom of a boat or used on scuba gear.

WaterResistantOrWaterProof 2.png

Water-Resistant Custom Stickers

Water-resistant stickers can be attached to almost anything, especially since they are considered weatherproof too! Here are some examples of recommended items our customers use our stickers for:

Stick Here:


Our custom stickers work great when you just need that extra support to withstand water and weather. They’ll survive through the car wash, on a surfboard and even going to outer space!

**While our stickers do hold up to the elements, dishwashers may affect the lamination so we recommend hand washing rather than running through your dishwasher.

When we say almost anything, we mean it. Our stickers are not waterproof which means they shouldn't be used on anything that will be submerged in water for long periods of time. They hold up to water but wouldn’t do well if water was present most of the time. 

Don't Stick Here:

  • The bottom of a submarine
  • To patch a leaky bucket
  • Inside of a fish tank

Water Resistant Labels

Our Glossy White Labels, Matte Labels, and Clear Labels are printed on polypropylene material which is finished with a water and oil resistant laminate for long-lasting applications. These labels will withstand a long time without peeling, curling or fading if exposed to oils and liquids on products.

*Our Glossy White Paper Labels and Matte Recycled Paper Labels are not recommended for any type of product that will encounter water.


Stick Here:

  • Jam or Honey Jars
  • A body scrub or bottle of shampoo
  • Beer cans and/or bottles

When you're looking for something that works well in indoor and/or refrigerated conditions, look no further! Products like honey jars, hummus containers and body scrubs will benefit from the toughness of our water-resistant labels.

On the flip side, our labels don't apply well to oily or dirty surfaces. Make sure to wipe down your surface so it's free of any dirt, residue or potential debris. For more information, check out our tips on applying clear labels to your products. Since they aren’t waterproof, labels don't do well fully submerged in water, like at the bottom of a pool or boat. (Similar to our stickers.)

Don't Stick Here:

  • A dirty surface
  • The bottom of a pool
  • The bottom of a boat
  • On scuba diving equipment

Ready to get started with either water-resistant Stickers or Labels?  Let us know how we can help!

Share Your Story