Fact Checked

What Is Cellophane Tape?

Sherry Holetzky
Sherry Holetzky

Cellophane, a transparent, moisture proof material, was created by Du Pont in the early 1900s as a packaging wrap. The 3-M company was intrigued and began experimenting to create a pressure sensitive cellophane tape product by applying adhesive. It began as an effort to help a specific client, and although it did not meet that need, it had great potential for many other uses.

There were problems in the creation of cellophane tape, especially when it came to the application of the adhesive. After a great deal of time and effort, the 3-M company, owner of Scotch brands, found a way. Priming the cellophane first remedied the problem and allowed the adhesive to be applied evenly without damaging it.

Cellophane tape was first marketed under the Scotch brand by 3M in 1930.
Cellophane tape was first marketed under the Scotch brand by 3M in 1930.

It was in 1930 that Scotch Cellophane Tape was tested by prospective customers, with favorable results and a recommendation to market the product. It became one of 3-M’s best selling products and the trademarked Scotch name made the tape famous. Scotch is still a household name, and it can be found along with other brands of cellophane tape in nearly any home or office. In Europe, Sellotape is the most recognized, top selling brand.

Cellophane tape and wrapping paper are often used to wrap gifts.
Cellophane tape and wrapping paper are often used to wrap gifts.

Another common name for this product is sticky tape. This term is used in the U.S. as well as in Europe. It is also the name commonly used by children, especially those who watch Dora the Explorer. Dora offers quite a few original uses for sticky tape.

The typical roll of cellophane tape comes in its own dispenser, making it easy to tear into appropriately sized strips as needed. It has a variety of uses, from repairing torn papers and wrapping gifts to making simple craft projects. This material is available in transparent and semi-transparent varieties, as well as different widths and strengths. Stronger versions with greater ability to stretch are generally used commercially for packaging.

While cellophane tape sales continue to grow and consumers continue to invent new uses for this product, one notable use is found on along with more history and good information. Apparently, farmers who raised turkeys discovered that cellophane tape was a useful implement for holding together cracked turkey eggs. That’s pretty creative, as are many other uses for this handy product. See the link provided for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is cellophane tape?

Cellophane tape is an adhesive tape constructed from a thin and flexible plastic film called cellophane. This form of tape is known as "cellophane tape." Because it has an adhesive coating on one side, it is typically used to adhere labels and posters, seal packages, keep goods together, cover and protect surfaces, and hold items together. 

What are the advantages of utilizing cellophane tape?

Because it is low-cost, adaptable, and simple to work with, cellophane tape is an adhesive product that sees widespread use in a diverse range of applications. Cellophane tape is often used in a variety of applications. It is sturdy and long-lasting, and it may be utilized to establish a seal, cover and protect surfaces, as well as hold goods together. Because it is also clear and does not leave any residue behind, it is an excellent choice for usage in a variety of applications like packing, labeling, and others.

What is the difference between cellophane tape and duct tape?

Although both cellophane tape and duct tape belong to the category of "sticky tape," there are important distinctions between the two. Cellophane tape is normally clear and does not leave behind any residue because it is manufactured from a thin, flexible plastic film. It finds utility in a variety of contexts, including packing, labeling, and sealing, among other things. On the other hand, duct tape is constructed from a more substantial cloth-backed adhesive and typically comes in a variety of colors. Because of its long-lasting nature, it is frequently put to use in construction, renovation, and even artistic endeavors.

How do you remove cellophane tape?

Cellophane tape on an A4 sheet can be removed from the surface by pulling it off carefully. Adding a few drops of oil or rubbing alcohol to the situation will help soften the adhesive if it is too sticky. If the tape is still tough to remove, you can try warming the glue with a heat gun or a hairdryer. This may help the tape come off more easily. This should make it simpler to peel off. When removing cellophane tape, it is essential to exercise caution because, if the process is not carried out correctly, the tape might cause surface damage.

Where can I get cellophane tape?

The vast majority of retail outlets, home improvement stores, and even online vendors carry cellophane tape, making it simple to get. Because it is available in a number of different lengths and widths to choose from, it is straightforward to pick the dimension that best caters to your needs.

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Discussion Comments


@alex94: Yes. Scotch tape is the brand name. I have heard that the company 3M chose the name “Scotch Tape” after a customer complained that the tape didn’t have enough adhesive on it. The customer referred to it as “Scotch” to refer to the executives of 3M being stingy.


Is Scotch tape the same as cellophane tape?

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    • Cellophane tape was first marketed under the Scotch brand by 3M in 1930.
      By: Marjan Veljanoski
      Cellophane tape was first marketed under the Scotch brand by 3M in 1930.
    • Cellophane tape and wrapping paper are often used to wrap gifts.
      By: Ivonne Wierink
      Cellophane tape and wrapping paper are often used to wrap gifts.