Best Packaging Designs of 2023

Discover our editors' monthly winners for the best packaging design awards.

Latest Best Packaging Designs

Methodology for Selecting the Best Designs

Our expert panel of designers refers to a clear-cut set of metrics for evaluating multiple factors, including creativity, execution, visual identity, brand image, recall, functionality and overall user engagement, to identify the best designs for each month.

Brands and agencies who wish to be considered for the best design of the month awards must submit their designs for evaluation. The design jury then rates each submission on a scale of 1 to 10 — the average of which counts as the final grade. The entire vetting process takes two weeks, after which the winning designs are published on DesignRush and promoted on other DesignRush channels, including social media.

Design Awards 2023

5 Key Elements to Great Packaging Designs

Clarity and Simplicity

Fifty-six percent of consumers say that an exciting and eye-catching label draws them to a product immediately. This is important information when it comes to package design, especially food package design. Because it’s likely your product will be sitting next to one that is extremely similar.

When it comes to design, simplicity is key. You don’t want to overwhelm or confuse your audience. This might sound counterintuitive considering you want your design to stand out, but often times simplicity and clarity are key elements that the human eye will look for when on a shelf full of the competition.

Package Design Features Clarity and Simplicity Fiasco Gelato


67% of consumers say they would stop buying a product from a company they don't trust even if the company has a good reputation. That means that consumers want to see brands talking about their products, and showing their products as honestly as possible.

Honesty is the best policy, of course. And consumers aren’t as dumb as you might think. Honesty matters. Transparency matters. Therefore, your packaging needs to be transparent and honest. You can’t claim your product does something it just doesn’t do.

More often than not, aesthetic appeal is a given but honesty is what gets you a packaging design award.

Package Design Branding Honesty Brink's Free-Range Chicken


For 86% of consumers, brand authenticity is the key factor when they decide what brands they like and support. They want brands to be true to themselves and their product. They’re not here to be fooled.

When it comes to packaging design, consumers want to know all the facts and want these designs to be in line with the brand as a whole. As we’ve said, consumers are far smarter than some people give them credit for. They want you as a brand to know your brand identity, stick with it and provide them with the products you’ve always provided them with.

Package Design Features Authentic Brand Identity Jose Cuervo

Shelf Impact

Thirty-six percent of the global cosmetic market is made up of skincare products. That means that skincare brands need to have a package design that sells and helps them stand out — a package design with a lot of shelf impact.

A product is never truly seen on its own — not when it’s up on a shelf next to dozens of competitor brands. It is always looked at compared to something else. This happens with food packaging like it does with cosmetics. When you go into a store, you see dozens of brands but the best package designs usually stand out.

Glossier Shelf Impact Packaging


Most brands start out with one concept. One product. This is their bread and butter. Then slowly, they cultivate their audience, grow their brand, and expand their offerings. Brands don’t start out offering the moon and stars until they’ve perfected how they can sell a spaceship.

This means that your design needs to be versatile and adaptable. Just because you sell milk doesn’t mean your design should be in the shape of a cow. What if you then want to start selling coffee or dairy alternatives? A cow just won’t work. That’s why extensibility is key to a good, future-proof design. There needs to be fluidity and flow to it.

Scalable Brands Package Design Clutch

5 Statement-Making Packaging Design Trends Taking Over 2023


“Minimalism is a perfect marriage of form and function. Its greatest strength is clarity of form — clean lines, generous white space, and minimal graphical elements bring simplicity to even the most confounding subject matter. That is, of course, if it’s used effectively.” —  Nick Babich

Packaging awards or a lifestyle choice, minimalism is a growing design trend that has taken over in recent years, and in 2022 it will continue to expand. With simple colors, clean lines and plenty of open space, this simplicity has a way of drawing consumers in and making them invested in the product at hand.

Minimalism Packaging Design Smuld House

Pastel Colors

A research shows that color has a major effect on mood, perception and consumer behavior. All colors can make you feel an emotion, which is why you’ll notice most social media brands use the color blue which is one of the most impactful colors that promotes trust.

Similarly, if you want to make your audience feel a certain way, you have to be careful about colors. A type of color that increases a sense of calmness and comfortability are pastels.

Pastels are light and airy way to add some femininity and subtlety to your design. These colors are simple, elegant and refined — styles that are on the rise this year. This soft and engaging palette of colors opens up your design and gives it space and sophistication.

Pastel Colors Packaging Pastel Colors

Vintage Appeal

Best vintage package design is powerful — because, as they say, those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it. Vintage designs are timeless because they pull from all the elements that have worked from the past and give them a major facelift for the present.

On top of that, nostalgia is one of the most popular marketing trends, that is equally powerful in 2022 as it was in recent years.

Everyone loves a good throwback, which is why vintage design trends are so effective. They show history, dedication and a commitment to their products and customers. Vintage designs are fun, exciting and bold. They grab attention and instill a level of satisfaction and nostalgia within audiences. Not to mention that these are often laureled as packaging awards winners.

Vintage Package Design Mutti

Black & White Package Design

According to color psychology, the color black makes people feel a sense of power, elegance, mystery and formality. The color white, on the other hands, gives off an air of purity, innocence and integrity.

Black and white designs are sleek, sophisticated and strong. They often incorporate elaborate illustrations and intricate designs. And the stark contrast between the two powerful colors makes a tangible impact. Black and white designs often pave the way for bold typography and noteworthy patterns that immediately pull you in.

Black & White Package Design Sade Schnapps

Eco-Friendly Package Design

67% of consumers think it's important that the products they're buying come in sustainable and recyclable packaging. 54% of them take sustainable packaging into consideration when they choose a product.

With scandal after scandal about environmental mishaps coming to light every day, eco-friendliness has become an increasingly popular trend. Millennials and Gen-Zers, the two most numerous and rising demographics, consider eco-friendly mindset an important consideration. People want products that are sustainable and healthy for the environment. And they’re willing to choose brands based on these green values alone.

Best package design is more than simple looks, but the mission as well.

Eco-Friendly Package Design Stor

How to Create an Award-Winning Packaging Design


Think of your customers’ needs.

What makes a design worthy of our packaging design award? The balance of aesthetics and purpose.

If you’re looking to refresh your product packaging design, it’s important to remember that the purpose of said packaging isn’t only to transport products to your customers but to deliver on your brand’s promise.

First, you need to consider the needs and wants of your ideal customer persona. Depending on the type of product, you may opt for reusable packaging or one that’s so appealing, that consumers wouldn’t want to throw it away, but find an alternative purpose for it.

Packaging's purpose

Quality Materials

Invest in the best!

It’s simple – quality materials are a must in custom, luxury packaging. The best packaging designs do not agree with cutting corners (!) and that winner mentality is what makes packaging awards fall to your lap. While using inexpensive may be tempting at first, it will deter your profits in the long run.

Using the best materials brings the best outcome as customers will instantly be able to see and feel the difference your packaging brings to the table.

Quality materials

Unboxing Experience

Create an unforgettable memory

Your packaging is not simply a means of protecting and transporting your goods. In fact, it should tell your business story. It’s not enough to just slap your logo on it; it should embody your company’s identity to create a stronger bond between you and your customers.

As an extension of your business, the act of unboxing your custom packaging should create suspense or anticipation. Packaging awards winners invest in every single element and layer. They know that the unveiling experience is often more thrilling than the product within. That distinct experience is what makes customers crave more and return to your “door.”

Unboxing Experience

Brand Story

Weave a compelling tale

Your product’s packaging design is the first thing prospective customers see when they come near your product, online or in person. You don’t need marketing experts to tell you that it must be attractive, engaging and captivating. But most importantly it needs to be able to “speak” to customers directly and weave an exciting story of your brand.

When it comes to driving sales, the power of a brand story is becoming more and more evident, especially today when millennials and even younger consumers start making more informed decisions pre-purchasing. Suffice it to say, brands that speak to people directly are already cashing in.

The brand story encompasses far more than a simple logo, tagline, slogan, mission or color palette. However, each element represents a singular building block that when combined becomes more than a sum of its parts – a meaningful and authentic tale.

Brand Story


Equilibrium between all the elements

There are many attributes that make up a great packaging design. Texture, color scheme, used materials, the position of elements and visual hierarchy are just some of them.

An award-winning packaging balances out these four main factors: attention to detail, overall aesthetic appeal, branding mission and purpose.

While nuanced, said balance depends on the market, industry, audience’s preferences and more. There’s no universal equation for successful packaging design. It’s like the feeling of being in love — you know it when you get there. However, setting the right course and knowing what you’re trying to achieve is essential.

Balance in packaging