What Is a Poly Mailer?

Impak’s poly mailers are a superb choice for custom ecommerce packaging. Lower shipping costs, meet sustainability goals and create memorable delivery experiences with poly mailers.

Polyethylene mailers, or “poly mailers,” are light, weather-proof envelopes frequently used as an alternative to the typical corrugated cardboard box. Poly mailers are a popular choice for shipping apparel and non-fragile items, protecting them from dirt, moisture, and tampering. Impak Retail’s OceanPoly® and RethinkPoly™ mailers also come with the advantage of being ecologically sustainable. Made from at least 50% certified recycled content, our poly mailers help support your own business’ efforts at minimizing environmental impact.

Choosing what to mail your products in is a critical step for any e-commerce business. You want something that will protect your goods during shipping and handling, but still present them in an enticing manner when the customer receives them. You also want something environmentally sustainable – something that reduces waste without sacrificing quality. For many businesses, the perfect custom packaging solution to these demands comes in the form of a poly mailer.

Ubiquitous and Affordable

Polyethylene is the world’s most produced plastic, used in everything from food packaging to water bottles to children’s toys. Because polyethylene is so widely produced, poly mailers are extremely affordable when it comes to choosing custom packaging for ecommerce.

This affordability carries over when paying for shipping and handling. Because poly mailers are so light and small compared to conventional cardboard packaging, they take up less space on shipping trucks. A poly mailer, when not containing any items, looks like a large envelope and can contain multiple adhesive strips to facilitate reuse. This means that shipping and handling costs less for every package shipped in a poly mailer, cutting back on one of the most important expenses for an ecommerce company.

Easily Customized

Another advantage of poly mailers is that they come in various sizes and can include gussets to accommodate the products being shipped and are easy to brand and customize. The large, flat surfaces of a poly mailer are perfect to display your company’s logo or imagery, making the delivery experience far more memorable when your customers get their purchases.


OceanPoly film in production

A major concern in the packaging and shipping industry is ecological sustainability and there is a big push to use eco-friendly packaging solutions that minimize their impact on our planet. That’s why Impak Retail offers our customers OceanPoly® and RethinkPoly™ mailers. Both are made from 50% recycled materials, cutting the need for new polyethylene plastic in half. Half of OceanPoly®’s recycled material (25% of its mass total) comes from post-consumer plastic collected from coastal pollution areas, while the other half comes from pre-consumer/post-industrial waste and is SCS-certified.

RethinkPoly™ is an SCS-certified option with a minimum of 50% recycled content gathered from post-industrial recycled materials. Every piece of plastic recycled into our poly mailers is a piece of plastic that isn’t left littering a waterway or sitting in a landfill.

Both of these options allow you to meet sustainability goals for your company, without having to compromise on aesthetic design or the safety of your products.

Who Should Use Poly Mailers?

Poly mailers are particularly popular in the apparel industry, where items like shirts, pants, or scarves can easily fit inside the mailer and lay flat. Items made out of cloth can bend and flex just like the mailer itself, ensuring they do not suffer damage during shipping. Books, non-perishable food like candy, home décor textiles, and non-fragile ornaments are also popular choices for poly mailers.

Beauty items as well as health and wellness products (including prescriptions, protein packs and supplements) are well-suited to be shipped via poly mailer as long as they’re packaged in plastic tubes or high-density film pouches. Even cleaning supplies and refillables can be sent via poly mailer, provided their containers are resilient enough.

Poly Mailer sizing guide

Who Shouldn’t Use Poly Mailers?

As versatile as they are, there are some goods that may not be the right fit for poly mailers. Because they lack air padding between the product and packaging, poly mailers are a poor choice for products made of fragile material such as glass or porcelain. These products should be shipped in a conventional corrugated cardboard box to prevent damage.

If you’d like to explore your options for poly mailers or other custom packaging products, don’t hesitate to contact us. We offer a full range of customizable mailers, boxes, bags, and more for ecommerce and retail brands. Protect your products during shipping, become more ecologically sustainable, and tell the story of your brand through custom packaging services from Impak Retail.