7 Best Eco and Sustainable Print & Packaging Designs That Aren't Simply Environment-Friendly

With the rising threat of global warming, more and more brands are switching to conscious packaging design. The shift from plastic and harmful materials to investing in environmentally friendly product covers is a significant effort in saving Mother Earth.

If you’re a brand wanting to develop eco-approved packaging, then check these seven eco and sustainable print packaging designs that are not just good for the environment, but also effective brand materials that convert!

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1. Ember & Beam by Here and Now Creative

[Source: Here and Now Creative]

Standout Features:

  • Minimalist packaging layout
  • On-brand colors
  • Simple yet distinctive design

Ember & Beam is passionate about creating candles, and this passion exudes through their minimalist packaging design with the help of Here and Now Creative.

The agency went for a box size that perfectly fits the product to avoid too much movement and possible damage when transported. On the outer box, the agency added short but sweet messages along with the product and brand name.

The color choice is also on-brand. Not only does it increase brand recognition, it also highlights important elements and influences how visitors feel about the product. The moss green color paints all sides of the packaging, making the white texts pop. This color encapsulates the brand’s vision of providing a refreshing and calming product.

Moreover, it’s important to note the balance of whitespace in this design. There are fewer elements present here considering the size, but everything works well in the final output. The minimalist approach draws attention more to the product tucked inside rather than the outer cover.

The simple and elegant design promotes usability and utility. And simplicity works well with Ember & Beam. These components contribute to the success of the brand. No elements distract visitors from the main purpose of its content. Also, the clean and fresh design makes it appealing and encouraging. That said, users and potential customers get a welcoming sense and become familiar with what the brand has in store.

2. Incredible Eats by Little Fox Design

[Source: Little Fox Design]

Standout Features:

  • Color-blocked packaging
  • Highlights product flavor
  • Legible texts on all sides

Incredible Eats gets together with Little Fox Design to put up a unique food product packaging that’s fun and eye-catching.

The contemporary brand benefits from a hip user interface design, brilliant colors, appealing fonts and quality content. There’s no question that customers get enticed by its products after the first look.

If there’s one staple color in their sustainable packaging design, it’s white. It spotlights the products putting the packaging front and center. The agency used bright colors that best represent the product inside. Blue, orange, green and red are just some of the options you’ll see.

The enticing photography isn’t something to be ignored. Each image complements the product well and matches the whole theme beautifully. The agency utilizes every little from the food and desserts to the plate toppings. Everything comes together for an aesthetically pleasing sight. And more importantly, the elements do not overpower the edible spoons, which are Incredible Eats’ main product.

Also, the agency made sure not to leave the typography behind. They used a round typeface for easier readability and spaced each piece of content just right without overshadowing the main product shot.

To cap everything off, Little Fox Design assembled a sustainable and eco-friendly packaging design that allows the brand to carry out its purpose with ease. The idea is to eliminate distractions and make way for easy and efficient shopping. It’s not easy to get food packaging right the first time, but this design hits the nail on the head.

3. EarthProof Protein Packaging by R&G Strategic Communications

[Source: R&G Strategic Communications]

Standout Features:

  • On-brand font styles
  • Creative product shots that catch the eye
  • Imaginative illustrations as accents

A brand that renders an eco-friendly message and appealing packaging can be tricky to execute. However, R&G Strategic Communications design agency did an awesome job in executing the EarthProof Protein packaging.

The design elements reflect and communicate EarthProof Protein’s identity from the colors incorporated to the quirky cartoonish illustrations at the front. And the way the agency has managed to balance all these elements is commendable. There’s barely any visual noise to come across here. The colors used for the covering were carefully picked as well, taking away any distractions that readers might come across. That said, the visuals remain high-quality with the use of clear, color-balanced images and graphics with just the right size and resolution.

Also, the agency made sure to inform the customers about the product’s ingredients and claims. On the lower-left corner, consumers can read some of the ingredients along with the flavor. Then, at the center, following the product name right after, is the brand’s claim of sustainability. Written in white text enclosed in a green rectangular block. Color-wise, it exudes a playful tone that reflects the brand’s spirit.

Along with the actual words, the shapes, font and style bear meaning. In this packaging design, the agency only used two different font styles to differentiate the brand. Texts in slight italics are the more important information, while the ones in straight-facing style are the little details about the product.

Whether the market is new to the brand or adept in EarthProof’s products, everything on the packaging is organized, defined and rounds off one another.

4. The North Face by BBMG

[Source: BBMG]

Standout Features:

  • Uncomplicated concept
  • Easily recognizable design
  • Bold and eye-catching copy

Adventures never stop with The North Face, and BBMG does the brand justice with a simple yet rugged design that showcases the product effectively. With its powerful and solid branding, one look at the packaging easily communicates the brand’s roots and vision. Not to mention the clutter-free and functional design that is appreciated by the brand’s old and new customers.

In the fashion industry, it’s rare to see sleeve-style packaging designs such as this. Fashion brands usually opt for paper bags, plastics or even boxes to package their products. BBMG has a different idea, though. To ultimately live up to the eco-friendly mindset the brand follows, Renewal Workshop designed and BBMG created the art for a carton sleeve packaging that wraps around the apparel snuggly. Thinking about it, it’s a genius way to market the product, too, because unlike fashion pieces hidden away by packaging, this design flaunts it.

BBMG’s packaging design follows a minimalist approach and heavily relies on properly spaced copy to catch the audience’s attention. The typeface used is far from overwhelming. In fact, they used legible and wide styles that are easy to read even from a safe distance.

Clarity and simplicity thrive. Consumers have nothing against simple packaging, as long as they know what they’re buying. And we all know how broad the scope of The North Face is in the industry. Originality, character and memorability are at the heart of the brand and its great packaging designs.

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5. Alter Eco by Modern Species

[Source: Modern Species]

Standout Features:

  • Nature-inspired visuals
  • Flavor-associated colors
  • Front pocket feature

Modern Species put together a packaging design that complements Alter Eco’s products. Good design doesn’t have to play within the confines of customary blueprints. Once you see Alter Eco chocolates on the shelf, you are greeted with a nature-themed layout. Every element comes together to emphasize the product.

Usually, packaging designs come with a catchy tagline. But the agency understands that sometimes, tiny product labels or exaggerated logos can add to the clutter. In the end, they decided on a simple logo text at the center and the product name on the bottom half. Nothing too salesy, just the brand in simple wrapping.

Another version of the packaging includes swirling patterns in the background that resemble chocolate drizzles. While another version boasts a front pocket feature that consumers can open to easily access the chocolates inside. These variations prove the agency and the brand’s dedication to creating customer-driven packaging that ensures convenience too.

Overall, the impressive composition lures potential customers to pick the product off the shelf and complete the purchase. The packaging draws people in and sparks curiosity in a glance. This is branding, utility and information blending together at its finest.

6. Hydrogen Europe’s 2021 Report by REVOLVE

[Source: REVOLVE]

Standout Features:

  • Modern cartoon theme
  • Light and warm color palette
  • Blends real-life photographs with graphic illustrations

Hydrogen Europe is an organization that represents companies dedicated to moving towards a carbon-neutral economy. Partnering with REVOLVE design agency, they released a 2021 report communicating updates, recent policy changes and discussions on green hydrogen to its community.

This design blends together the images, layout and graphics to make the brand’s message come across.

The powerful design educates readers while easing content readability. Ultimately, this attracts the target audience and persuades readers to take action. The cover is an instant eye-catcher. Sporting a modern cartoon theme with an emphasis on industrial growth and green landscapes, it effectively captures the main intent of the organization.

Inside, all information is readily available for its readers. Coupled with high-resolution images of the technology and machinery used for research, the pages of this report prove to be informative and visually inviting, too.

Going through the pages of this report gives its readers a sense of comprehensibility. Meanwhile, the use of colors green, blue, gray and purple keeps the design on-brand. This color palette is also warm in the eyes, effectively reducing eye strain when reading.

Lastly, with the creative use of cartoon illustrations and color palettes, the agency managed to create an inviting design, urging the audience to read more and possibly engage with the organization’s mission.

7. Sendle Sticker by Republic of Everyone

[Source: Republic of Everyone]

Standout Features:

  • Authentic graphic presentations
  • Discreet logo placement
  • Strong messaging behind the gas mask element

Sendle Sticker produces stickers for parcels, and in partnership with the Republic of Everyone, the duo develops stickers that carry impact.

The agency capitalized on using animal illustrations on the sticker. One permanent element across all these illustrations is the gas mask worn by these animals. It’s a subtle yet very powerful design move that affects any person seeing the design. It encourages the population to look at how mailing services impact our air -- 39g of greenhouse gas emitted per mailing.

It’s also worth noting that although the animals are drawn beautifully and with bright colors, their background doesn’t look enticing at all. They are surrounded by withered leaves, drylands and unhealthy corals. With this, you’ll notice a prominent use of brown color to signify a decrease in life, across the designs.

All designs carry a distinct and familiar look which in turn, boosts name recall. The brand logo is placed strategically on the lower-left corner, careful not to take away the focus from the sticker’s message.

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