custom poly mailers for brands

Are Poly Mailers the Right Choice for Your Brand?

Most packages indeed come in boxes. But are every product fit for boxes? The U.S. statistics on food packaging shows that 35.5% of consumers prefer reduced packaging on their food. To add some icing to the cake, imagine using reusable packaging to send items across? About 29% of consumers will pay more for this.     

Maybe you're stuck on a particular packaging option and want to switch to one that will endear more customers to you. You can start by trying the poly mailer packaging. They are making quite the wave in the world of eCommerce shipping. 

custom poly mailer by arka

Photo credit: Arka

They are affordable, lightweight, well built, and also an alternative to cardboard boxes. They seldom take up space in carrier trucks and this reduces shipping costs. A recent market study shows that polyethylene mailers will increase from 2021 to 2028 at a rate of 5% per year with an expected sum of $1.7billion   

Using the right packaging for your brand narrows down to its shipping cost and the safety of the products. You will not want to lose out on your customer returns for spending heavily on shipping. Neither will they want to use your services again if they find out their products didn't get to them safely after unboxing. 

In this article, we will show you why poly mailers may be the right choice for your brand.

What To Know about Poly Mailers?

Custom poly mailers, also known as polyethylene mailers, are lightweight, weather-proof, and well-built plastic bags that are designed for shipping products easily. They are durable, self-sealing, effective, and can be affixed with customized company logos. 

They are made of synthetic resin that protects items against dirt, dust, moisture, or even tampering. This way, the customer's item gets to be intact, secure, and meets them safely. Poly mailers barely take up space in a truck because of their thin nature. 

In addition to their durability, poly mailers are easy to send, eco-friendly, and readily affordable. They are used for shipping apparel, textiles, books, toys, and non-fragile items.  They offer great services to the eCommerce business and come in different types and sizes. 

Types of Poly Mailers

There are different varieties of poly mailers that are suitable for various kinds of shipping products. They come in different sizes, lengths and have different material compositions. These poly mailers are designed for different purposes. 

Knowing the one for your product needs and brand's aim will earn you good reviews from your customers. Here are the different types of poly mailers to look out for:

1. Lay-Flat Poly Mailers

Lay-Flat Poly Mailers
Photo Credit: Arka


This poly mailer comes in gray or white color. They are one of the basic types and most times referred to as the industry standard. The name, lay-flat originated from its flat nature with no bubble padding. 

They are one of the cheapest options available and well suited for durable or well-protected items that do not need any cushioning. The bubble wrap is only used to cover the product but does not offer much protection. 

Lay-flat poly bags can ship items ranging from textiles to shoes, books, magazines, and other lightweight products that won't cause any damage while on transit. 

2. Expansion Poly Mailers

These are heavy-duty poly mailers that come with an expandable, durable seam along the sides that allows for bulkier items to be shipped easily. This standard poly mailer is made of strong polyethylene which makes it tear-resistant. 

Due to its high strength, the expansion poly mailer can help secure large products even when they are fully stuffed. Just like the other counterparts, the expansion poly mailer is highly resistant to dirt, dust, and moisture. 

They are best suited for shipping large items like hoodies, catalogs, binders, jackets, sweatshirts, books, etc. 

3. Clear View Poly Mailers

These types of poly mailers are transparent and allow for excellent display of the product immediately it reaches your customer's doorstep. The back of the mailer is fit for labeling, adding shipping information, and even customizing your brand on it.

They come with self-sealable, stick strips that are easy to use. They are more used for shipping printable materials like brochures, magazines, journals, and catalogs. 

4. Bubble-lined Poly Mailers 

Bubble-lined Poly Mailers
Photo credit: Arka


These poly mailers are almost like lay-flat poly mailers but have layers of bubble wrap inside which requires extra protection for the items. They do not allow for a fully packed box and are quite expensive than lay-flat bags. 

They are more suitable for high-quality goods that need to be protected from scratches, dents, and damages. Bubble-line poly mailers are excellent for shipping items like small electronic devices or components, CDs, jewelry pieces, delicate books, dresses adorned with ornaments, and other semi-fragile items. 

5. Recycled Poly Mailers

If your brand is looking to build a more eco-friendly, sustainable business, then the recycled poly mailer is the best catch. They are a 100% mixture of post-industrial and post-consumer materials which are significantly lower in carbon footprint than their other counterparts. 

They are equally very durable and moisture-resistant like every other poly mailer. Recycled poly mailers are known for their different colors and sizes. 

6. Biodegradable Poly Mailers

Biodegradable poly mailers are made of ethanol, gotten from plant-based sources like cornstarch and sugarcane. They contain no polyethylene. Just like recycled poly mailers, biodegradable poly mailers are eco-friendly as well. They can be decomposed either at home or commercially.  

7. Returnable Poly Mailers

The most cost-effective way in the eCommerce business is making use of returnable products. They are quite popular with shipping products that give you more time to plan ahead of returns. The returns are included in shipment instructions. 

Returnable poly mailers come with two self-sealing adhesive closures which allow customers the ability to return an order directly to the given address in a more convenient way. 

Where To Shop for Poly Mailers

While you may shop for poly mailers at retail stores that sell shipping items, it's relatively convenient to order them from reputable online vendors, such as Arka

Arka supplies poly mailers without color restrictions with a minimum order quantity (MOQ) of 1,000 units. Further, it supplies unbranded poly mailers and bubble mailers for an MOQ of 10,000 units. 

Three Sizes of Poly Mailers

Poly mailers are known for shipping lightweight, semi-fragile items. They have these self-sealing adhesive strips that make the packaging envelope air-tight secured. The plastic bags give you a space to attach your company logo and other shipping details. 

Here are the shipping items and the three sizes of poly mailers to note:

1. Small Poly Mailer (7.5x10.5”) 

This small size poly mailer can ship soft items like; 

  • A folded towel or scarf
  • 2-3 rolled up shirts
  • 1-2 winter hats
  • 3-4 pairs of socks

It can also ship small cardboard boxed goods like;

  • Jewelry (earrings, necklaces, bracelets, etc)
  • Ornaments (non-fragile) and toys
  • Collectibles(coins)

2. Medium Poly Mailer (10x13”)

The medium size poly mailer can ship soft items like; 

  • Multiple scarves
  • Multiple shirts
  • Multiple winter hats
  • A pair of shorts or pants

It can also ship medium cardboard boxed goods like;

  • Artwork and print work (small to medium size)
  • Boxed Foods like candy (non-persibalshables)
  • Books and other print materials

3. Large Poly Mailer (14.5x19”)

The large size poly mailer can ship soft items like; 

  • 2-3 pairs of shorts
  • 1-2 jackets
  • 5-8 shirts

It can also ship large cardboard goods like;

  • Well-arranged artwork
  • Large Bulky apparel items like beddings
  • A pair of shoes.

Does USPS Accept Poly Mailers?

Yes! USPS ships poly mailers using their different mailing options. They are classified into three, namely; 

  • USPS First Class Mail: These are best for shipping lightweight items and are quite cheap as well. The USPS first class mail only applies to shipping items lesser or greater than 13 ounces. 
  • USPS Priority Mail: This one contains items weighing up to 70lbs. In the USPS mailing policy, they are obligated to open up a package and verify its content. Their shipping cost is calculated based on distance and product deliveries are from 1-3 business working days. 
  • USPS Media Mail: This particular USPS mail is suitable to ship print materials like books, CDs, and DVDs. They are also cost-effective for shipping. 

Merits and Demerits of Using Poly Mailers

Using poly mailers has its advantages and disadvantages. It is beneficial for some types of items but fatal to others. Here are the merits and demerits of poly mailers:


1. They are Cost-Effective

One of the best reasons why online vendors use poly mailers, both in purchasing and shipping, is because it is affordable. Coupled with its lightweight and how well-fitted it can be stored in warehouses due to its size.  

Another thing about poly mailers compared to boxes is that it takes up less space on the vehicle and makes its transportation rate cheaper. 

2. They are Durable

The unique thing about poly mailers is how weather-proof and dust resistant it is. They hardly experience tear and can withstand whatever conditions they're in without tampering with the product. 

3. They Offer Extra Protection

Examples of poly mailers that offer extra protection are expansion mailers and bubble-lined mailers. They both are durable materials with a bubble wrap feature that helps semi-fragile items from getting damaged while on transit. 

4. They are Good for Storage

Rather than having cardboard boxes cluttering the packaging process and making it look unkempt, why not opt for a poly mailer that is simple to bring out and easy to assemble its content. 

5. They are Reusable

The reusable poly mailer has these airtight adhesive strips that show it can be reused. They are quite the perfect match for a returnable item and eco-friendly. Your eco-conscious customers will go for reusable poly mailers, at least, to reuse their package.

6. You Can Attach Your Brand 

Branding is an excellent way to stand out amidst the competition. To give your brand an image that will stick to the customer's subconscious is to order a custom poly mailer carrying your brand logo and colors. 


1. Fragile Contents

Fragile contents are delicate or breakable products like glass that can be easily damaged. They shouldn't be shipped with standard poly mailers. Bubble-lined or padded poly mailers can go with it. 

2. Multiple Item in One Package

Poly mailers aren't ideal for shipping several items at once. Except, of course, they are soft apparel. The best solution for multiple fragile items is a box with air padding. 

3. Tear Can Occur in Transit

A poorly fitted item in a poly mailer can be disastrous and might end up back to its sender. Avoid using the wrong poly mailer to force items in it. It may either be damaged while on transit or during processing at the post office. 


Just following the trend sometimes without checking to know if it suits your brand isn't the best option. Making a thorough investigation about your supposed choice and seeing if the gain is more than the loss is what will set you and your brand on the right path. 

Poly mailers are blazing hot in the eCommerce world but you also need to be acquainted with the types and items needed. 

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