What is the Difference Between Shrink Film And Stretch Film?

What is the Difference Between Shrink Film And Stretch Film

Shrink and stretch film are two of the most common types of plastic films used in food packaging. They have many similarities but also some important differences. Knowing these differences can help you determine which type is best for your application.

Shrink Film

Shrink wrap, also known as shrink film or shrink wrap, is a flexible polymer material utilized for packaging finished goods. When heat is applied to the film, either through a conveyor heat tunnel or an electric or gas heat gun, it causes the film to tightly shrink around the item enclosed. Consequently, this procedure creates a transparent and long-lasting protective barrier around the product.

Types of Shrink Film

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is a strong and durable plastic film material that can be used for many applications. PVC films are produced by combining vinyl chloride monomers with other additives to form a homogeneous, heat-shrinkable product. This type of shrink film is often used for packaging products such as electronics, food, toys, automotive parts, furniture, and more.

Polyolefin (POF)

Polyolefin shrink film has a wide range of uses, making it an ideal choice for product packaging. It is strong, reliable and cost-effective for almost any application. Its properties make it one of the most popular shrink films on the market today.

Polyolefin shrink film is formed from a blend of polypropylene and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). This blend creates a film with excellent tear strength and good heat resistance, making it suitable for applications that require high temperatures. It is also resistant to oil, grease and moisture, making it ideal for packaging food products or other items that need protection from the elements.

Polyethylene (PE)

PE is a type of thermoplastic polymer used in shrink film. It is the most common and popular type of plastic film, with a wide range of properties from low-density to high-density polyethylene. PE has excellent clarity and tensile strength, making it ideal for use in packaging applications. 

Stretch Film

Stretch film is a polyethylene-based material that stretches when stressed, allowing it to be easily applied by hand or with wrapping machines. It provides excellent product protection and tamper resistance while also offering superior strength and tear resistance compared to other films. Stretch film comes in two types: cast stretch film, which offers very high clarity and is better for products that require clarity, and blown stretch wrap, which offers greater puncture resistance but may cloud the product.

Benefits of Stretch Film

One of the main benefits of stretch film is its versatility. It can be used to wrap a variety of products, including boxes and pallets. Its ability to conform to irregular shapes makes it ideal for wrapping odd-shaped objects. The application process is also fast and easy; you simply need to attach the roll around the object or bundle and then apply tension as needed.

Types of Stretch Wrap

Hand Stretch Film

Hand stretch film is designed for manual application and is available in both clear and colored varieties. This type of film is lightweight, yet strong enough to securely package products. It also offers excellent tear resistance, making it ideal for wrapping heavier products that require additional protection.

Machine Stretch Film

Machine stretch wrap provides superior strength and puncture resistance compared to hand stretch film. This type of wrap is available in a variety of sizes, thicknesses and colors to suit any packaging need. Machine stretch film is also designed to work with wrapping machines, which reduce labor costs and increase productivity.

Benefits of Stretch Wrap

Stretch wrap is an economical and versatile packaging solution that offers a variety of benefits. It helps protect products from dust, dirt and moisture while also providing tamper-resistant seals. Additionally, it reduces labor costs since it can be applied quickly with wrapping machines or by hand. Stretch wrap also offers superior strength and tear resistance compared to other films, making it ideal for heavier products. Finally, it is easy to recycle and can be reused multiple times before disposal.

Need help finding the right packaging solution?

At Tilak Polypack, we understand the needs of our customers and offer a variety of stretch wrap options to suit any packaging requirement. Contact us today to learn more about our range of products and get expert advice on choosing the best solution for your business. We look forward to helping you find the perfect packaging solution!


Stretch wrap is an effective and versatile packaging solution that offers a variety of benefits. From dust and dirt protection to tamper-resistance seals, stretch wrap can help ensure your products stay safe during shipping and storage. Additionally, it reduces labor costs while providing superior strength and tear resistance compared to other films. With its numerous advantages, stretch wrap is an ideal option for any packaging needs.

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