Let’s say you’ve decided to put some of your items into storage. Before you can transfer your items to your storage unit, you’re going to need to pack your things. No matter how far your belongings are going, you want them to stay in one piece while they’re in transit. But how do you ensure that they stay safe? Using the best packing materials will give you the highest chance of success.

When you need to pack up your belongings, you have several options to choose from. Some people use packing paper, others use packing peanuts, and some even use their clothes. While you can use all of these for packing, some options are better than others. Let’s take a look at what the best packing materials are and their pros and cons.

Packing Paper

Packing paper is versatile and cost-effective. You can typically get a large packing paper roll or pack for a low price and have plenty to go around. While many people opt to use leftover newspapers, packing paper is better. Packing paper is thicker than newspaper and can help protect your items from getting scuffed or chipped. Additionally, ink from the newspaper can sometimes transfer if the paper gets wet.


Packing paper comes at a low cost for a large quantity. Plus, you can use packing paper for nearly anything in your home—bowls, records, trophies, you name it. Another advantage is that you can ball up some of the paper to fill in any empty spaces in your boxes. 


The biggest downside to packing paper is that it doesn’t prevent breakage. If your box of fragile china relies only on packing paper to protect it, you’ll likely find some broken pieces. Combine packing paper with bubble wrap or foam to keep your items safe.

Bubble Wrap

Bubble wrap or bubble cushioning has small air bubbles that cushion your items. This packing material comes in sheets and rolls, so you can find the size you need. 


Bubble wrap has two major benefits: it’s lightweight and great at protecting fragile items. Because the material is made with pockets of air, it doesn’t weigh very much. Those air bubbles do a lot to give your items the support they need, which makes bubble wrap perfect for packing antiques and crystal glassware.


When you pack with bubble wrap, you go through more than you might expect. It costs more than other packing materials as well. The best way to use bubble wrap is to use it in addition to packing paper.

Foam & Packing Peanuts

Packing foam is one of the most popular packing materials, especially for shipping. Packing foam comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, including packing peanuts, rolls, pouches, sheets, and corner guards. You can use foam for all sorts of items, anything from jewelry to picture frames and appliances. 


Foam is very easy to use, especially if you go with the pouches. All you have to do is put your item in the pouch, and it’s ready to go. Since foam comes in such a wide range of sizes, you can easily fill empty space in your moving boxes.


Packing foam takes up space, which can be both good and bad. While it will fill in your empty corners, it will also take up the room all around your items, which means you’ll either need bigger boxes or you’ll have to pack fewer things. Foam pieces also don’t offer much cushioning, so you’ll need to use packing foam with other packing materials.

Specialty Packing Kits

Some items are harder to pack than others. You might dread packing your dishes, mirrors, and stemware exactly for this reason. This is where specialty packing kits come in handy. These kits are designed with a specific item in mind and often include dividers to help prevent breaking. 


Since these kits are custom-built for a certain type of item, your belongings will be secured much better than in a regular cardboard box. Specialty kits also help you pack your items in the most efficient way possible.


Specialty packing kits are specialty items, meaning that they cost more than ordinary moving boxes. Generally, you’ll have to put these boxes together on your own, which will take some time and effort. 

Pack for Success

Your packing materials can literally make it or break it for your packed belongings. Don’t risk damaging your items by using ineffective packing materials. Packing paper, bubble wrap, packing foam, and specialty packing kits are your best options for successful packing. To get the best protection for your items, use a combination of these packing materials. When you’ve packed up your items and need somewhere to store them, turn to AAA Mobile Storage for a portable storage container!

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