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Windows Present Prime Opportunities

Window stickers, decals, and clings are popular and convenient for applying graphics and messages to glass. Car dealerships and mechanic shops often use window clings to remind drivers of their next tune-up. We might place window decals on our rear windshields as alternatives to bumper stickers. Retailers use window stickers on their glass doors and windows to advertise sales, promote new products, and list their hours.

Windows draw the eye naturally — we want to see what’s inside or outside. As light streams in or out, it brings window-based labels and signs to life. From windshields to storefronts, windows present prime opportunities for labels, stickers, and signs.

Labels that adhere to smooth surfaces without adhesive are often called “window clings” or “static clings”. But static has little — if anything — to do with keeping window clings in place. Surface tension is actually doing most of the heavy lifting. Think of a window cling as a very flat suction cup. Window clings are made from thin, flexible vinyl. Clings might be translucent (you can see through them), opaque (they block light), or a combination of both.

A wide array of available adhesives can be used to hold labels (or stickers, or decals) to glass. You may think of an item as a cling and perhaps you even have some examples in mind of clings that you admire. You might be surprised to learn that they are not clings at all, but instead are adhesive-backed labels that just happen to have been applied to glass.

Window clings are low-impact. Without adhesive, they don’t leave behind sticky residue, and they’re easy to reposition. But they’re not the only option for installing signs and stickers on glass, and they may not be the best option for your use case. Some types of adhesive labels offer many of the same characteristics as window clings, such as translucency and front and back imagery. These might be a better choice if permanency or semi-permanency is important to you.

Window clings may not be the best fit for environments where they will be exposed to outdoor environments or contaminants. Adhesive-backed labels may have better durability in more demanding environments. But, if the application requires that the window decal be removed and replaced or re-applied, especially if that is expected frequently, then some adhesives will be out of the question and maybe a cling will be the best solution.