With the help of a label maker, you can print out tags for storage containers and refrigerator drawers, organize the pantry, and identify all of your cords, tools, and electronics. As a professional organizer, Laura Bostrom of Everyday Order explains, "Label makers help define where items live." In fact, she almost always uses a label maker when organizing clients' homes and recommends them to anyone who's looking to create a streamlined system.
To help you find the right option, we tested 13 label makers in a home setting. After starting them up, inspecting the design, printing tags, and exploring the various functions, we evaluated them on their instructions, assembly, functionality, portability, and overall value. Here we present a thorough list of high-performing options in key categories.
Dymo LabelManager 280 Rechargeable Label Maker
Easy to setup
Can import your own fonts and graphics
Our top pick is the Dymo LabelManager 280 Label Maker. It received a perfect rating for every attribute we tested for: assembly, instructions, portability, functionality, and overall value. Its easy setup was particularly impressive. The instructions were simple to follow, but you might not even have to read them, since it's so intuitive. You just have to insert the battery and tape cartridge, power it up, and you're ready to roll.
Notably, this handheld label maker also has a large screen with two rows of text, along with six font sizes, six preloaded styles, and a built-in library with upwards of 220 clip art images and symbols. The cartridges are pricey, but we appreciate the crisp lettering of the thermal-printed tags. You can also connect it to a Mac or PC via Bluetooth to import your own fonts and graphics, so your experience is very customizable, and you have the flexibility to be creative with the labels you create for your space.
Measuring 8 by 4 by 2 inches and weighing only 1.4 pounds, the LabelManager 280 is conveniently compact, but it's also an excellent choice for at-home use. It runs on a rechargeable battery and can print labels 0.25, 0.375, or 0.5 inches wide. If you're looking for a label maker that is easy to use and offers all of the features you need to tackle any organization project in your home, it's a great pick.
Price at time of publish: $92
Type: Handheld | Dimensions: 8 x 4 x 2 inches | Weight: 1.4 pounds | Storage Capacity: Not listed | Power Source: Rechargeable battery | Max Label Width: 0.5 inches
Dymo Organizer Xpress Pro Embossing Label Maker
No batteries required
Labels have a charming retro look
Not great for larger projects
On a budget? Go with the Dymo Organizer Xpress Pro Embossing Label Maker. We found it exceptionally compact, lightweight, and easy to use. To start, it comes preloaded with tape, so no setup is required on your part. This plug-and-play functionality is particularly helpful, since it doesn't come with written instructions. (You can access the instructions on the company's website if you need them, though.) The Xpress Pro also doesn't require any power source, since it's a rotary-style label maker.
Keep in mind that you can't backspace or delete, so you'll need to be very careful that you don't make spelling errors when you're working. However, this style of label maker is also extremely portable and good for anyone who's taking their product to different project sites. While it's very functional, it's likely not a great pick for larger projects, since the rotary keyboard isn't very efficient. For smaller projects, it's quite the companion, though, as it can stand upright on a desk and is generally compact.
Price at time of publish: $23
Type: Handheld | Dimensions: 8.37 x 6.25 x 3.75 inches | Weight: 0.8 pounds | Storage Capacity: None | Power Source: None | Max Label Width: 0.38 inches
Best for Home Organization
Epson LabelWorks PX 300 Label Maker
Several preloaded fonts
Can store up to 50 labels
Labels don't stick well on some materials
If you are specifically hoping to organize your living space, the Epson LabelWorks PX 300 Label Maker is a superb choice. It has several preloaded fonts and also allows you to add customizable text styles, icons, and banners. It also comes with a lifetime warranty.
Notably, the label maker can also store up to 50 labels, which can save you time as you organize your space, since you won't have to re-design the labels every time you organize your spice containers or tidy your office supplies. We especially appreciated the lightweight, user-friendly design and full QWERTY keyboard that landed the label maker with a perfect rating for functionality.
We did note that the tape works best on smooth surfaces, so keep that in mind when figuring out where to stick all your labels. However, you could try Laura Bostrom's advice for working around tricky surfaces like a basket or cloth: "Grab a label clip, slip it over the side of the basket and add your label to the clip!" You'll also need to have six AA batteries on-hand. Overall, this pick would ultimately be great for making labels for personal projects or even a small business.
Price at time of publish: $59
Type: Desktop | Dimensions: 6.69 x 4.33 x 2.2 inches | Weight: 1.52 pounds | Storage Capacity: 50 labels | Power Source: Six AA batteries | Max Label Width: 0.75 inches
Brother P-Touch PT-H110 Easy Handheld Label Maker
Easy to set up and use
Frequently discounted by retailers
Limited storage capacity
If you are looking for a handheld label maker that you can use every day, or take with you to complete projects on the go, this is the one you need. The Brother P-Touch Handheld Label Maker weighs 1 pound, even with the batteries installed, and is straightforward to set up. We had it up and running in just a few minutes, and we didn't even need to read the instructions to prepare it for use. Although it doesn't have as many features as pricier picks, the label maker offers three fonts, 14 frames, and more than 250 preloaded symbols. We also appreciated the soft, comfy buttons on the full QWERTY keyboard.
It almost earned perfect ratings across the board in our testing, and it was only docked because it's not as feature-packed as it could be. For example, you'll want to make sure you have extra batteries, since it takes six AA batteries and can't be recharged.
While the storage capacity, at 15 labels, is more than some products, it's still a bit limited. We also found that it can feel a bit big to hold and use with one hand. For a portable model that you may take with you, that's not necessarily convenient. However, generally, this pick is hard to beat and a good overall value in our eyes (especially since we've noticed it being discounted regularly).
Price at time of publish: $60
Type: Handheld | Dimensions: 8 x 4.3 x 2.2 inches | Weight: 1 pound | Storage Capacity: 15 labels | Power Source: Six AA batteries | Max Label Width: 0.5 inches
Brother P-Touch PT- D610BT Business Professional Connected Label Maker
Full color screen
Full QWERTY keyboard, or can be used with app or by connecting to a PC or Mac
Multiple customization options
Hard-shell case not included
If you are specifically looking for a desktop labeler, the Brother P-Touch PT- D610BTVP Business Professional Connected Label Maker is our top choice. We want to be clear that we tested an older model, the Brother PTD600 PC-Connectable Labeler. However, with that option now discontinued, and this updated version available in its place, we're excited about the possibilities.
The biggest difference? The latest version offers Bluetooth capabilities, along with a USB cable that gives you the option to print from a computer or mobile device like your phone. It still has a full QWERTY keyboard for on-the-spot printing, too, as well as a full-color screen and full QWERTY keyboard, plus an impressive selection of fonts and customizable lettering options. One of our favorite features from testing the Brother PTD600 was the ability to power it with an adapter or wirelessly with batteries, and we're happy to report that this is also available in the newer model.
When we tested the previous version, we gave it high marks for going above and beyond the basic functionality of some of its peers, and we're glad to see that Brother has offered even more in its next iteration. While this is one of the pricier label makers on the market, we think the abundance of features makes it a reasonable value. However, if you want to protect your investment with the brand's hard-shell case, note that it's sold separately.
Price at time of publish: $100
Type: Desktop | Dimensions: 10.2 x 4.8 x 12.6 inches | Weight: 2.13 pounds | Storage Capacity: 90 labels | Power Source: Plug or 4 C batteries | Max Label Width: 1 inch
NiiMbot D11 Cloud Print Portable Thermal Label Maker
About the size of a smartphone
Only works with app
Need something extremely compact that you can take with you anywhere? Check out the NiiMbot D11 Cloud Print. Not much bigger than a smartphone, and only about an inch thick, this label maker is the most portable option we tested. It'll fit in virtually any purse and even has a wrist strap for hands-free convenience. Though no assembly is required, you do need to download the NiiMbot mobile app and enable Bluetooth on your phone or tablet for setup and use. Since it only works with the app, you can't pass the Cloud Print label maker between users like standard labelers, but it's still a great option for personal use.
The labels are a preset sticker size (which is the main feature we would change). However, you can explore tons of templates and customization options on the app. Handy and super slim, it also has a rechargeable battery and comes in multiple colors ranging from sophisticated to cute—all with an affordable price tag.
Price at time of publish: $37
Type: Handheld | Dimensions: 5.12 x 3.07 x 1.14 inches | Weight: 0.4 pounds | Storage Capacity: Not applicable | Power Source: Rechargeable battery | Max Label Width: 0.59 inches
Best for Construction Work
Brother P-Touch Edge Industrial Handheld Labeling Tool
Comes with a hard-shell case
Flexible power source
Premium features come with a higher price tag
Hard to hold with one hand
The Brother P-Touch Edge Industrial Handheld Labeling Tool is ideal for construction job sites, workbenches, or garage organization projects. During testing, this heavy-duty gadget earned perfect scores, thanks to its compact design, rechargeable battery, backup battery power source, and the fact that it comes with a hard-shell carrying case. We appreciated that even the polyester labels themselves are very durable.
Though it's on the pricier side, the extra investment isn't surprising, since it's industrial-grade. Aside from cost, the other potential downside is that it may also be a bit too large to hold with one hand. However, there is an included strap that makes it a little easier to carry around while keeping one or two hands free. Like many of its peers, this label maker also features a QWERTY-style keyboard that makes creating labels a breeze, and it can be connected to a desktop computer when needed. We also appreciated its "Preview" button, which allows you to check your work.
Price at time of publish: $121
Type: Handheld | Dimensions: 5.28 x 8.7 x 2.72 inches | Weight: 1.7 pounds | Storage Capacity: Not listed | Power Source: Rechargeable battery or six AA batteries | Max Label Width: 0.62 inches
Best for Small Businesses
Dymo LabelManager 500TS Touch Screen Label Maker
Large color touch screen
Requires a bigger buy in
Compact, but not handheld
The Dymo LabelManager 500TS Touch Screen Label Maker is the perfect label-making tool for small businesses. This high-quality gadget flaunts a tech-forward, feature-rich design without veering from the inherent purpose of a standard label maker. In other words, it offers plenty of options to customize your labels with fonts and graphics and hundreds of built-in clip art images and symbols.
Though it's the most expensive option of those tested, this top-of-the-line label maker is still a great value. With attention on the all-around, high-end look and feel, we gave this label maker perfect ratings for its setup, instructions, and functionality, noting that it props up on a built-in stand as opposed to laying flat. This feature makes this model very different from other label makers, and it can make it easier to prep labels. While we wish the price tag weren't so high, the label maker is worth the investment, given all the features. It has a rechargeable battery, boasts PC and Mac connectivity, and can store up to 500 labels at once.
Price at time of publish: $200
Type: Desktop | Dimensions: 7.5 x 6.5 x 3.75 inches | Weight: 2 pounds | Storage Capacity: 500 labels | Power Source: Rechargeable battery | Max Label Width: 1 inch
|Overall Rating||Instructions||Assembly||Portability||Functionality||Overall Value|
Dymo LabelManager 280
Dymo Organizer Xpress Pro
Best for Home Organization:
Epson LabelWorks PX
Brother Easy Handheld Label Maker
Brother label maker
NiiMbot D11 Cloud Print
Best for Construction Work:
Brother P-Touch Edge
Best for Small Businesses:
Dymo LabelManager 500TS
Our best overall pick is the Dymo LabelManager 280 Label Maker. It's a high-quality, handheld label maker with a full QWERTY-style keyboard, rechargeable battery, and customization options. For those who are on a strict budget, we recommend the Dymo Organizer Xpress Pro. It's a user-friendly embossing labeler with rotary-style lettering, offering a lot at a very agreeable price tag.
How We Tested the Label Makers
We purchased and considered 13 label makers, setting them up and digging into their features over several hours. First, assembly of each label maker was completed. We timed how long it took to take the product out of the box and prepare it for use, and recorded how useful and detailed the instructions were. After setting the product up, design was considered. We printed five labels, trying out the different features of the label maker. Before assigning a rating for functionality, we tested the available storage, power options, and keyboard, noting how reliable, practical, and versatile these features are.
While using it, we also took note of its portability: how heavy the label maker is and how much space it takes up in actuality. Finally, overall value was evaluated while thinking about the experience with it and the price tag. We boiled down all of these insights and ratings to this list of what we believe are the best label makers on the market.
What to Look for in a Label Maker
Most (but not all) modern options have a full, QWERTY-style keyboard. This format, which you'll know as the standard typewriter keyboard layout, is generally ideal for adults. However, you can also find a label maker with an alphabetic-style keyboard, which is sometimes easier for kids. There are also some rotary-style options on the market, which aren't as time-efficient but typically cost much less and condense the label maker's keyboard into a rotating wheel. Our "best budget" recommendation, the Dymo Organizer Xpress Pro Embossing Label Maker, has a rotary-style design.
Some newer label printer styles don't feature a keyboard at all, which cuts down on their overall size. Instead, they connect to a mobile device for cloud-based printing capabilities. The NIIMBOT Label Maker Machine, our "best portable" pick, is a great example of this tech-forward option. It allows you to design custom labels on your smartphone and print them out using the compact printer.
Label makers traditionally run on alkaline batteries (usually AA or AAA batteries). However, many modern options, like our "best overall" pick, the Dymo LabelManager 280 Label Maker, are powered by rechargeable, lithium-ion batteries. Battery-powered models are an ideal option if you want your label maker to operate similarly to your phone or tablet, and be more portable. Notably, higher-end label makers often give you the option to use alkaline batteries as backup, as well—just in case you're unable to charge the battery on the go or in the middle of a project.
There are also label makers that can be plugged in with a USB cable. This power source option is significantly less portable but may be more convenient if your label maker is a desktop pick and won't be leaving your desk much.
If you plan on printing the same thing over and over again, such as address labels, you should be sure to pick a label maker with plenty of storage. You'll save a lot of time not having to type in the same letters, and you won't have to check for typos after the first print.
The feature might be listed as storage or memory in the product description and might indicate the capacity in MB (megabytes) or a certain number of labels—like the Dymo LabelManager 500TS Touch Screen Label Maker, our "best for small businesses" pick, which can store 500 labels. Storage capacity isn't as critical for app-enabled labelers and those with desktop connectivity, though. as your presets will be stored off the device.
Is it worth getting a label maker?
Keeping a label maker on hand is a go-to, expert-approved home organization tip. According to Laura Bostrom, professional organizer and the owner of Everyday Order, a label maker is definitely a worthwhile investment. Whether you're a contractor, small business owner, or office manager, or if you're getting ready for back-to-school or just want to get your home in order, you'll be glad to have one on hand.
"We always add [labels] to bins and baskets as the last step to an organizing project," says Bostrom. "I always say, 'If you're the only one who knows the system, it's not a system.'"
Do label makers have different fonts?
Many label makers have several fonts preloaded into the device, including different text sizes and styles. With a high-end pick that syncs to an app or connects to a desktop, you can often add more of your own fonts, as well as symbols, icons, banners, and clip art. Basic embossing labelers will typically only have one font, similar to a typewriter.
What's the difference between a label maker and a label printer?
Since they both technically make and print labels, some use these terms interchangeably. However, when you get down to the nitty gritty, a label maker is traditionally a relatively small and portable standalone gadget that allows you to type and print lettering all on the same device.
A label printer, on the other hand, is typically designed without the keyboard, so it serves as the conduit for a label created on a computer or app. While most modern desktop printers can print on both regular paper and label sheets, a label printer is sized for just labels, so there's added convenience if that's a priority for you.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Theresa Holland is a seasoned commerce writer who specializes in lifestyle and home improvement. For this story, she tested 13 label makers at home for several hours—rating them on their assembly and instructions, functionality, portability, and overall value. She also researched the different types of label makers and interviewed Laura Bostrom, a professional organizer and the owner of Everyday Order. Holland has been contributing to The Spruce since 2019, writing product reviews and shopping guides on vacuums, sofas, storage solutions, and more.
Dena Ogden, commerce writer for The Spruce, updated and provided additional insight to this piece. She loves using her label maker for marking travel containers of skincare products and for designating between the queen- and twin-size sheets in her linen closet.
What Is Spruce Approved?
Here at The Spruce, we want to that ensure we fully stand behind every product we recommend and that when we say something is the best, we mean it. You might have noticed The Spruce Approved badge next to the products on this list. Every product with this badge has been rigorously tested in person and carefully selected by our expert team of lab testers and editors. In most cases, we buy all of these products ourselves, though occasionally we get samples provided to us directly by companies. No matter how we procure products, they all go through the same tests and must meet the same strict criteria to make the best-of cut.