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Plastic Vs Glass Packaging

plastic vs glass

It’s a question that has been debated by manufacturer’s for decades. Which is better for packaging: plastic or glass? Both materials have advantages and disadvantages, but is one really better than the other? Here at Ampulla, we’ve taken a thorough look at each material and compiled this plastic vs glass factsheet to help you make your mind up…


The quality of plastic and glass materials varies massively depending on the manufacturer. Obviously there are health and safety issues that come with using glass, as most jars and bottles will shatter easily when dropped onto hard surfaces and can even cause serious injuries if you end up cutting yourself on the sharp shards. In contrast, plastic is very durable and unlikely to break when dropped, making it safer for use around children.

On the other hand, glass does add an air of glamour and quality to your product, doesn’t affect the taste of your products and has zero rate of chemical interactions to keep your product pure and intact.


Both plastic and glass bottle and jars come in many different shapes, sizes and colour variations, as well as differentiations in the chemical make-up of the material.

Types Of Plastic

  • HDPE (High Density Polythylene) – One of the most widely used plastics due to being strong, fully recyclable, creating no harmful emissions during production and leaking no toxic chemicals into the soil or water. Widely used in food packaging such as butter tubs, cereal box liners, milk bottles, as well as household items such as cleaning products and detergents.
  • PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) – Used in 70% of all soft drinks packaging. More flexible and lightweight than HDPE and can be moulded into lots of different shapes and sizes.
  • PP (Polypropene) – Great for food packaging that could be exposed to microwaves and dishwashers, thanks to its high melting temperature. It doesn’t absorb water, is lightweight, flexible and unlikely to shatter.
  • PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) – One of the most widely used plastics after PET and PP. It comes in two forms: as a rigid polymer or as a flexible plastic. Fully recyclable and keep your food free from contamination.
  • PVDC (Polyvinylidene Chloride) – Typically used as a coating for other plastics such as PET, to increase the barrier resistance of a product. PVDC is often known as Saran, a name that was trademarked by S.C. Johnson & Son for their brand of plastic wrap.

You can also find different coloured plastics in the HDPE, PET and PP collections which can are available in white, black, red, brown and more, with both opaque and semi-transparent options.

Types Of Glass

Our glass also comes in a selection of great colours other than the standard clear glass models. Here at Ampulla, we offer green, amber and cobalt glass bottles, which we think adds a rustic flair to your products.


Both plastic and glass are recyclable, but are reused in different ways. Whilst glass can only be recycled into other glass products, plastic can be turned into many different products. These include new bottles and jars, plastic bags, lawn furniture, playground equipment, recycling bins, fabrics and so much more!

But that’s not to say that recycling glass is less important. Just one recycled glass bottle can produce enough energy to power a TV for 90 minutes and 1000 tons of recycled glass saves 314 tons of CO2 every year!

Plastic Vs Glass Packaging: In Summary

The conclusion that we’ve come to in our plastic vs glass debate is that it really depends on the product you will be packaging as to whether plastic and glass is the right material for you. Here are a few pointers we have to make sure you pick the right packaging for your brand:

  • Glass is great for: brands that want to add a perceived value on their products, higher quality/higher priced products and products that are aimed at adults.
  • Plastic is great for: products that children will be using or in contact with to prevent possible injuries with glass, eco-friendly brands and brands that like a variety of materials to choose from.

There is also another packaging material that you can try out if neither plastic or glass are doing it for you: aluminium! Here at Amphorea, we have a great range of aluminium packaging options that include bottles and jars that are perfect for cosmetics such as body lotions and lip balms.

Looking for fantastic quality glass jars on a budget? Look no further – we’ve got great prices on wholesale jars for your business right here!