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Awesome Metal Packaging Trends


When it comes to choosing what kind of packaging is most suitable for specific products, there’s a lot to take into consideration. The top metal packaging trends go far beyond the food and beverage industries, with beauty, apparel, and even the pharmaceutical industries all increasing their demand for metal packaging.

Table of Contents
Global market value of metal packaging
Top metal packaging trends
Metal packaging and sustainability

Global market value of metal packaging

Metal packaging is one of the best packaging options for sellers who want to protect their goods, and in the case of food and beverages metal packaging helps to ensure longer shelf life. But it’s also being heavily utilized in industries such as self-care, pharmaceutical, and household. The fact that metal can be recycled time and time again is a big draw to this type of packaging as it fits in well with the eco-friendly lifestyles that consumers are now living.

By 2020, the global market value of metal packaging had reached USD 138.11 billion. The period between 2020 and 2027 is forecast to have a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4%, which will bring the market value to at least USD 193.24 billion by 2027. A shift away from the use of plastic packaging towards eco-friendly and reusable materials has caused a big spike in demand for metal packaging, especially metal cans.

Person holding a small metal can used for fish

Top metal packaging trends

Metal packaging can come in all shapes and sizes, and although metal cans are heavily used, other styles are starting to gain popularity and are a great alternative to less sustainable packaging. The top metal packaging trends to watch include steel cans, metal canisters, metal boxes, cosmetic tins, aluminum squeeze tubes, and metal gas cylinders.

Steel cans

When compared to aluminum cans, steel cans are slightly heavier, but with that additional weight comes more durability and safety for the contents inside. They are used interchangeably with tin cans to hold food such as soup or pasta, but the stainless steel material is also perfect for holding liquids such as cooking oils with its useful screw cap and double-lined interior to ensure longevity and no leakage. Steel cans have also started to be used to store vodka and other spirits as steel is much more durable than glass when being transported and stored.

Outside of the food and beverage sector, steel cans are very popular in the automotive industry for storing oil and other flammable liquids. Paint cans are also known to be made of steel and, with more consumers spending their income on home improvements, the demand for metal packaging in this industry is growing at a steady pace.

Different sizes of metal can lids that haven't been opened

Metal canisters

In recent years, metal canisters have become one of the most sought-after types of metal packaging in the market. This airtight container is built to protect its contents from outside conditions in order to keep the interior dry. What makes this canister a big metal packaging trend is that there are so many different versions available to consumers today that there are almost endless possibilities for how it can be used.

Metal canisters are often used to hold dry goods such as tea, coffee, herbs, or biscuits, so it’s very common to see them with an eye-catching design on the exterior to draw in consumers who are looking for an elegant gift. Apart from food, metal canisters are being used to store clothing such as socks and t-shirts as the packaging is much more appealing than plastic.

A big bonus of the metal canister is that it can easily be reused or put on display after the contents have been taken out of it, so it’s great eco-friendly packaging to use.

Black metal tea canister next to glass teacup and pot

Metal boxes

The metal box is one of the most common types of metal packaging seen on shelves today. It’s a timeless piece of packaging that consumers love to purchase because, like the metal canister, it can easily be reused or restocked when it’s empty. This is a popular type of packaging for food items such as cookies and other sweet treats, especially if the box has a beautiful design on it to attract potential buyers.

Aside from cookies though, metal boxes have a lot of other uses. Having a hinged lid incorporated into the metal box makes it ideal for the cosmetic and beauty industry as the contents will not only be kept safe but will also be easy to access. Even the fishing industry uses metal boxes to hold fishing lures and other accessories. This is one metal packaging trend that can be found across numerous industries around the globe.

Large metal cookie tin with cookies inside of it

Cosmetic tins

As demand for metal packaging continues to increase, the market has seen a rise in demand from the cosmetic industry. Cosmetic tins are proving to be a great alternative to plastic containers to hold powders, lip balm, and other types of makeup. Eyeshadow palettes with colorful designs are also beginning to be manufactured using tin rather than other materials as the industry looks to create less waste and be more sustainable.

The smaller-sized cosmetic tins are also ideal for companies who want to send samples to potential consumers as they’re lightweight and will hold just enough inside to peak interest in a product. After the tins have been used for their original purpose, they can store other small household items, such as pins or paperclips, and even work well to store gum or herbs for cooking.

Small black metal cosmetic jar with cream inside

Aluminum squeeze tubes

Metal packaging isn’t necessarily known for its flexibility, but the aluminum squeeze tube is the exception. This type of metal packaging is especially popular with creams, ointments, toothpaste, and even liquid makeup. It often comes in a small size to make it portable and can be fully recycled after use.

The squeeze tube is made of a thin aluminum material that’s completely airtight, and the nozzle at the top can have various designs depending on the need of the seller, but it often comes in the form of a twist cap. Many consumers are now focused on taking more personal hygiene measures, so sanitizers and sanitizing creams are often found in this type of packaging as well.

Woman squeezing aluminum tube with cream coming out

Metal gas cylinders

Gas cylinders are most commonly used for holding oxygen and nitrous oxide, and they’re popular across a number of industries that require safe and reliable storage. The medical industry is one of the biggest purchasers of metal gas cylinders, and in many cases, oxygen cylinders can be found within the household if the consumer has a medical problem.

In the food industry, gas cylinders are predominantly used for spraying cream as they’re easy to use and store. These whipped cream chargers are filled with nitrous oxide that is then injected into the cream to create the whipped texture.

Boy having whipped cream sprayed directly into his mouth

Metal packaging and sustainability

In recent years, packaging has started to turn away from plastic and other non-sustainable materials, and as a result, there’s been a resurgence in demand for metal packaging outside of the food and beverage industry. The top metal packaging trends include steel cans, metal canisters, metal boxes, cosmetic tins, aluminum squeeze tubes, and metal gas cylinders.

Many countries around the world have a good recycling policy in place, which means any type of metal packaging can be repurposed after use. Metal is a permanent material that can easily be reused for future generations, and it’s the most recycled packaging in the world to date. The future of packaging is clear — metal will continue to be the most in demand.

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