I was recently contacted by Shawn from beerclings.com who has a product specifically designed for homebrewers who want reusable labels for their beer. He sent us a sample and asked if we could review it… so here we go, our very first product review!
The actual beer clings come on a sheet of 12, as you can see in the picture. They’re vinyl, and the first thing I thought of when I saw them was Colorforms (yes, I’m that old). There are other vinyl clings that stick to windows and such… this is a similar type of material.
The instructions tell you to apply the labels to clean, dry beer bottle surfaces. I removed one of the clings from the sheet and applied it to a bottle, and it stuck right away with no problem. The instructions also recommend putting the bottles in the fridge after applying the clings, because the moisture from the fridge will strengthen the bond. I put the bottle in the fridge and took it out a day later, and it did stick better, just as the instructions said.
The labels stuck extremely well and didn’t come off just handling the bottle. If you want them to come off, though, it’s very easy to do just using your fingernail to lift up an edge and peel it off. The label peels off easily and is ready to be used again. I tried it on another bottle and it worked just as well. Basically, these clings do everything they say they will.
I’ve labeled a few of my beers and always used the milk label method. One thing that doesn’t work well with milk labels is when the beer bottles get wet. This happens if the bottles are cold and then sit in warmer temperatures and build up condensation, or when they sit in an ice bath or a cooler. When milk labels get wet, they tear and fall of easily (as they’re supposed to, that’s the idea). One thing that I really liked about these clings is that they stay on very well when the bottles are wet, and only come off when you make an effort to peel them off.
One thing that I didn’t care for, though, was the way they looked. They look kind of like a college logo and there’s only one design. However, Shawn said that these are a first run, and that more designs are on the way, maybe one per beer style which would be nice. What would really be ideal here is if you could upload some kind of graphic and have that printed on a cling. It’s a stretch, but if I could do this I’d order these for every beer I made.
Pros: They are easy to apply, they stick great (especially when the bottle is wet), and they’re easy to remove. They also don’t leave any kind of sticky residue like Avery labels.
Cons: The design and variety could be better.
If you’re interested, they are offering a free sample on the Beer Clings website, and I highly recommend giving them a try. Beer clings are a great way to label your homebrew that works over and over without requiring you to scrub sticky junk off your bottles.