Unilever has apparently noticed that some young women are more concerned about what ingredients aren’t in their beauty products and sneer at the items sold in drug stores and big-box stores. It has responded with a campaign where it tricks a diverse cast of online “beauty influencers” into trying a new product with sleek packaging for two weeks. That product? Rebottled Suave.
Suave was repackaged as “evaus,” spelled without capital letters on a super-minimalist white and peach label. The bottles look awfully similar to shampoo and styling product bottles from Bumble and bumble, a brand that costs more than ten times as much as Suave. Or evaus.
The packaging is an important part of how we perceive things as consumers, and Unilever seems to be targeting Millennial women who have substantial student loan payments, yet who also won’t be caught using personal care products that are available at Walmart.
Unilever took the subterfuge as far as using the idea of a new premium brand to draw in reporters. A writer for Racked went to check out an event in New York City that promised to introduce “the newest brand in prestige hair care to launch from Unilever,” evaus.
“I asked what the price point was and [a Unilever publicist] told me I’d learn more in the presentation, but that it was ‘definitely luxury,'” she wrote.
The presentation was a video that showed Instagram-famous “beauty influencers,” including a professional hairstylist, who had tried the product and were shocked at how nicely their hair turned out.
The lesson here? Cheryl Wischhover over at Racked thinks that the lesson Unilever should have taken home that it should redesign its packaging to stand out on the shelf of other $3 shampoos.
We all know that what’s inside and how it affects your hair counts, but our brains have been conditioned by years of marketing propaganda to believe that packaging signals which products are or aren’t for us.
You can get a $1 off coupon for Suave products at the bottom of the Evaus campaign page if you want to give Unilever your contact information, though.