How to Buy Envelopes: A Complete Guide

Your Guide to buying the best envelopes


The envelope is one of the most essential pieces of stationery for both businesses and individuals alike. Whether you're sending an important letter, a thank-you card, or a package, the right envelope can make a big difference. This comprehensive buying guide will help you find the perfect envelope for any occasion. We'll discuss what types of envelopes are available, the size and shape considerations, and the various features that can make a particular envelope stand out. With this guide, you'll be able to find the perfect envelope to meet all of your needs.

Key features

  1. Size: Consider the size of the envelope and how it will fit the contents needs.
  2. Closure: Choose an envelope with an appropriate closure, such as a peel-and-seal, gummed flap, or press and seal.
  3. Material: Envelopes can be made from paper, Tyvek, fabric, or plastic. Consider the needs of the contents.
  4. Color: Envelopes come in many colors and shades to match the content.
  5. Design: Choose an envelope with a design or texture that suits the contents.
  6. Special Features: Some envelopes come with extra features such as windows, moisture seals, and padded interiors.
  7. Bulk Purchase: When buying in bulk, be sure to consider the cost savings.

See the most popular envelopes on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Durability: Envelopes are usually made of durable materials such as paper, plastic or metal, making them more resistant to wear and tear.
  • Security: Envelopes provide a secure seal for the contents to prevent them from falling out or getting lost.
  • Variety: Envelopes come in a variety of sizes, shapes, colors, and styles to suit different needs and preferences.
  • Cost-effective: Envelopes are generally inexpensive, making them affordable for most budgets.
  • Convenience: Envelopes are easy to store, transport, and send, allowing for efficient mailing and delivery.


  • Price: Envelopes can be a more expensive option than other types of packaging.
  • Size Limitation: Envelopes typically have a specific size and shape. This may limit the size and shape of the item you can use them to package.
  • Design Limitation: Envelopes come in a limited range of colors, shapes, and sizes, so you may not be able to find the exact design you are looking for.
  • Durability: Envelopes are not as durable as other forms of packaging, so they may not be suitable for items that require extra protection.

Best alternatives

  1. Cardboard Mailers - Sturdy, lightweight mailing envelopes made from cardboard often used for shipping items.
  2. Padded Mailers - Protective option made with bubble wrap or foam lining to securely ship sensitive items.
  3. Tyvek Mailers - Durable option that is strong enough to resist water and withstand the rigors of shipping.
  4. Poly Mailers - Lightweight and waterproof envelopes made of plastic that are often used to ship clothing.
  5. Mailing Tubes - Rigid, cardboard containers used to mail items like artwork, posters, or documents.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Envelopes - Pre-made paper envelopes that come in a variety of sizes.
  • Stamps - Required for mailing envelopes and come in a variety of designs, values, and denominations.
  • Pen - Pen needed to write an address on the envelope.
  • Mailing Labels - Pre-printed labels that can be affixed to an envelope for an easier way to address it.
  • Adhesive Seals - Seals used to close envelopes.
  • Envelope Sealing Machine - Automatic machine that seals envelopes quickly and uniformly.
  • Envelope Corner Rounder - Tool used to round the corners of envelopes for a professional finish.

Common questions

  1. What size should I buy? Envelopes come in many sizes, from standard letter size to larger sizes like A2 and 6x9. The size you buy should depend on the size of the item(s) you plan to insert in the envelope.
  2. What type should I buy? There are several types of envelopes, such as commercial or window envelopes, padded mailing envelopes, and specialty envelopes. Consider the purpose of the envelope and the items you plan to insert into it when deciding what type to buy.
  3. What material should I buy? Envelopes are typically made of paper or plastic. Paper envelopes are usually cheaper but are more prone to tearing or getting damaged. Plastic envelopes are more durable, but they usually cost more.
  4. What color should I buy? Colors vary depending on the type and manufacturer of the envelope. If you want to add a personal touch to your envelopes, consider buying ones with unique colors or patterns.
  5. What kind of closure should I buy? Envelopes come with various types of closures, including adhesive, clasp, and Velcro. Consider the items you plan to insert in the envelope and the environment in which it will be used when selecting a closure type.


During World War I, many letters and postcards were sent in envelopes that contained bits of chocolate. This was due to a shortage of paper and the postal authorities turned to this unconventional solution in order to ensure that people could still send mail. The chocolate was then eaten by the recipients when the letters were opened. This practice continued until after World War II. Source: Wikipedia

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.