New Design Options for Fragrances
From caps to bottles to cartons, suppliers are offering a multitude of design and packaging possibilities for fragrances, many of which are new for 2013.
Aptar Beauty + Home offers a range of customizable bulb atomizers in new colors and patterns—and they have a new locking mechanism.
A study by Mintel forecasts positive sales growth for both women’s and men’s fragrances through 2017. Marketers are ready to meet consumer demand with many new launches planned, and fragrance packaging suppliers have been working on innovations sure to attract consumer attention.
“Market reports show that fragrance growth exceeded the beauty industry average in 2012, for the second time in over a decade,” says Sheherazade Chamlou, vice president of sales and marketing for SGD North America—Perfumery Department. Chamlou says that despite economic uncertainty, she knows women are still willing to buy fragrance, because it’s an affordable luxury.
“New launches will remain vital to the growth of fragrance sales,” says Chamlou, “and packaging plays a large role in capturing consumer interest and driving fragrance purchases. I believe that the fragrances that receive the most attention are the ones in bottles with unique features.”
Suppliers haven’t disappointed in terms of offering unique new design and decorating options. SGD is one of many suppliers that have been focusing on offering customers new capabilities. Innovation is evident in a number of recent launches, but we can also expect to see exciting new options that fragrance packaging suppliers are offering customers for the first time in 2013.
Using a unique decorating technique is one way to catch the consumer’s eye, and Bormioli Luigi has developed a new interior spray process to color the inner walls of a glass bottle. The spray coating is available in a variety of ceramic colors.
These bottles show Bormioli Luigi’s new interior spray process.
“We have been formulating the color and developing this process for some time now. We are building special spraying machines,” explains Olga Bursac, vice president of sales, Bormioli Luigi. According to Bursac, the ability to spray inner walls on a bottle with a small neck size was extremely challenging in the past, but the company’s new process makes this possible. “We have been able to achieve neck sizes as small as 13mm, and certainly, standard, industry used 15mm necks are completely validated with our process, as well” Bursac says.
The glassmaker’s machinery is being completed in Germany, and initial production is anticipated to begin in early May. “So far, we have only showed this to two of our customers, but we have had a lot of interest, especially in Europe,” adds Bursac.
Trends toward vintage looks come and go, and a bulb-shaped atomizer will always help give a fragrance a unique look. But up until now, some were limited in terms of color and functional benefits.
Aptar Beauty + Home is offering a variety of new options in bulb atomizers, many of which just became available in December. The supplier has an elegant bulb atomizer with an elongated tube, which has a distinctive vintage look.
If a more “modern retro” design is a better fit for your brand, Aptar also offers customizable bulb atomizers, in a range of patterns and colors. “They are vintage, with a modern twist,” says Des McEttrick, market development director, North America Beauty, of Aptar Beauty + Home.
The most innovative feature of these bulb atomizers is their functional benefit—a locking capability.
“Typically, atomizers are packaged separately from a fragrance bottle, to prevent leakage during shipping. Our patented locking system allows a brand to sell a fragrance with a bulb-shaped atomizer already attached, so the customer doesn’t have to attach it after purchasing,” explains McEttrick.
A quarter-turn to the left will lock the pump, and a small icon on the top of the pump directs users, showing where to turn. The atomizer has a 15mm finish and fits standard fragrance bottles.
The design for Issey Miyake Pleats Please presented a number of challenges for SGD, one of which was to create and print the logo on the irregular surface.
SGD has been investing a lot in its glass decorating capabilities, according to Chamlou. The supplier has worked on a multitude of celebrity and designer fragrance launches over the past year.
One example is the unusual bottle SGD produces for Issey Miyake’s Pleats Please, which launched last September. The bottle’s complex shape has a large number of sharp edges and flat surfaces, which are intended to represent the movement and fluid shapes found in the designer’s clothing line.
“The fragrance’s name is printed on the bottle’s irregular surface, which is not flat or level. This was a challenge, because it requires perfect alignment during the pad printing application,” explains Chamlou.
Another decorating option that can help a bottle look unique is SGD’s crackled effect. The look is achieved by using a combination of lacquers. “This technique can make a bottle resemble leather or ceramic,” says Chamlou.
Perfectly reflecting a pop star’s personality, the carton for Justin Bieber’s fragrance, Girlfriend, really pops on store shelves—just as much as the vibrant bottle does. It is produced by Arkay Packaging, which has supplied cartons for a number of recent celebrity fragrance launches.
The carton for Justin Bieber’s Girlfriend fragrance was printed by Arkay Packaging; a combination of innovative printing processes was designed to reduce costs and lead times.
A 4-color process was used to reproduce the artwork on the carton. “We also used cold foil technology to replace multiple passes of hot stamping, all as an in-line process. This reduces the number of passes needed, and cuts turnaround time by half,” explains Mitchell Kaneff, president, Arkay Packaging. “It also delivers a lot of ‘bling’ at a reasonable price,” he adds.
Kaneff says that he has been letting his customers know about the benefits of new technologies, such as cold foiling and liquid embossing, for the past two years. “Our customers are just starting to embrace these new technologies, which can reduce both costs and lead time. Designers and package development teams are used to hot stamping and screen printing, so it takes a while to get everyone on board with new processes, and incorporate them into plans for new carton designs.”
Also, before a new design process is used by a major brand, it must pass a series of tests, says Kaneff. “Packaging teams have to perform drop, shipping, scuff and fade tests. Then, purchasing teams have to approve the use of a new decorating process—and it is not unusual for it to take years for a new printing process to become a new industry standard,” explains Kaneff.
“But now,” he says, “we’re finally seeing a huge amount of requests for these new processes.” Arkay is in the process of switching all of Olay’s packages to cold foiling, and the supplier is also adding a new machine this year with cold foiling capabilities, to meet customer demand.
Caps are an important part of an overall fragrance package, and can transform the look of a bottle.
“We’ve been seeing a lot of innovative designs for caps,” says Jack Albanese, sales engineer, Lombardi Design and Manufacturing, which specializes in injection molding. “Many types of organic free forms have been popular for caps, such as floral shapes, and butterfly wings—and we just did a skull-shaped one,” says Albanese.
These shapes can be difficult to manufacture. “A cap in any unusual shape, such as a skull, which isn’t perfectly round, can have a number of complex surfaces,” Albanese explains.
This is one of Lombardi’s strengths, however, and Albanese says they utilize software that allows them to replicate a designer’s intent with precision. “We can take a rough sketch and realize the design in steel. We have recently had a string of these types of designs, for different brands,” he says.
A custom bottle shape or cap is ideal for branding and marketing purposes, but often out of reach for a small company. Stock bottle options are also important for any size company that needs to get a launch to market quickly.
According to Dave Desai, national sales manager, Coverpla USA, “There seems to be a resurgence in boutique fragrance brands that are new to the fragrance arena, and it is often difficult for a small company to find a fragrance bottle and cap in anything but a basic shape.” He says a few years ago, there was a very limited selection that was readily available, for low minimum quantities. “We recognized this growing need, and opened our first U.S. office last March,” he says. Coverpla is based in Nice, France, where it has been serving the fragrance industry for more than 60 years.
“Many of our customers are surprised when they realize what we have available,” he explains. “We design our own bottles and then have them produced, and restock them whenever our supply gets low. So a smaller company will have very unique design options, while relieving the burden of expensive tooling,” says Desai.
Coverpla offers dozens of bottle styles, as well as a multitude of cap options, in a variety of shapes and materials, including Surlyn and wood. “We are currently expanding our range of wood caps, which are ideal for natural brands,” says Desai. “Our wood is of European origin, and in compliance with all Lacey Act conservation legislation,” he adds. Coverpla also offers in-house decorating options, and can print or foil stamp its caps.
The popularity of unisex fragrances is another trend Desai is addressing. “We’re designing new bottle shapes that have cross-gender appeal, which means rectangles and squares with softer angles, as well as cylinders with wide profiles and sharp shoulders.”
If you’re looking for a truly eye-catching design with a neon glow, Solev, a part of The Pochet Group, is continuing to offer its “cristal fluo” decorating process. It is a protective varnish for glass bottles that reacts “spectacularly” when exposed to UV light, according to the company, which describes the look as “a high-impact visual experience.”
A bottle that is decorated using this technique can have one design that is shown, and another that is concealed, and which is revealed only under the glow of a black light. Solev says it would be ideal for a fragrance brand aimed at teens.
But with suppliers offering so many exciting advances in design possibilities for glass bottles, caps, pumps and cartons, can it sometimes be confusing for a package designer or marketing team, and easy to lose sight of your brand’s identity?
“Not at all,” says Jane Tarallo, a package designer who has worked on many fragrance bottle designs throughout her career for a number of celebrity brands. “It allows me, as a designer, to be that much more creative when looking for the right type of design for a bottle—one that will help convey and really relate to the DNA of a celebrity brand, for instance,” she explains. “The vast array of decorating techniques that suppliers are offering for glass and cartons right now is exciting.”
Still, choices must be carefully considered. Tarallo’s advice: “You still need to use discretion, without just using design for design’s sake…every embellishment you choose should serve a purpose, and relate to the brand’s identity.”
Aptar Beauty + Home is bringing design tools to smartphones.
Aptar Beauty + Home wanted to make it easier for marketers and designers to customize its new bulb atomizer, so they launched an app.
“Our new app is not only a first for Aptar, but also a first for the fragrance industry,” says Des McEttrick, market development director, North America Beauty, of Aptar Beauty + Home.
The app is a free download from iTunes or Google Play, for smartphones or tablets. It will allow you to create a scaled mock-up by choosing colors, as well as customizing other features. You can even merge a photo of your newly designed bulb atomizer with a photo of your bottle, so you can see exactly how your final design will look.
“We’re very excited to offer our clients on-demand design at their fingertips; with a couple of swipes, they can create an actual sized rendering of their fragrance package,” says McEttrick.
Experts often say a fragrance bottle’s design should convey what a fragrance smells like, and the team at Alice & Peter does this, literally. The fragrance bottles in the collection are all designed to be a “modern representation” of cupcakes, in five “flavors.” Alice & Peter launched the products on its dedicated website in December 2012, and they are also available at Urban Outfitters and Henri Bendel in New York City.
Gérald Ghislain and Magali Sénéquier created the brand, and designed the collection’s whimsical, cupcake-shaped packaging. The idea for the packaging came first, before the fragrances, according to Sénéquier. “Gérald returned from a trip to New York and said that he saw cupcakes everywhere. Even in the street, the hot dog carts were being replaced by cupcake carts,” says Sénéquier.
Lifting off the oversized cap reveals the pump inside the cupcake-liner shaped bottle.
Once the team decided to base the fragrance bottle design on the shape of a cupcake, they began the two-year development process. “We tasted cupcakes to decide on the five flavors in the collection, and then began working on the package design,” says Sénéquier. She adds, “We also knew we wanted elegant, yummy scents. We didn’t want it to be a gimmick—we wanted to create real perfumes.”
Each cupcake design relates to its scent. For instance, the Cherry Cherry fragrance has a chocolate-frosted pink cap, with a dollop of cream and a cherry on the side. The eau de parfum contains blackcurrant, cherry, bergamot and orange top notes; red fruit, apricot, peach, rose, peonies, lilac and freesia at its heart; and strawberry, raspberry, vanilla, white caramel and white musk as base notes.
The heavyweight glass bottles are all shaped like cupcake liners, and were produced using a custom mold. An aluminum spray pump protrudes from the top, and it stays hidden underneath the large over cap, which is made using a roto-molding process.
All of the caps are also embellished with a hand-applied pearl, crystal, and golden disc, which are glued on top, and protected with a varnish—and look good enough to eat.
Coverpla is offering a range of travel size stock packages as options for fragrances. The supplier recently launched a new size—a 15ml glass spray bottle, with a standard FEA 15mm crimp finish, which allows for a variety of closure options.
“We hear the most requests lately for travel sizes,” says Dave Desai, national sales manager, Coverpla USA. “Roll-on fragrance packages continue to be in high demand, but we have recently seen increased requests for small spray packages as well. It is clear that consumers are looking for convenient ways to take their favorite fragrances with them,” he says.
Plans are also in the works for a rectangular version of the travel-sized bottle, which Coverpla expects to launch this summer.
More Info: www.coverpla.com/en/