When it comes to stellar packaging design, it often means looking at the ordinary with a brand new, unique lens. Sometimes though, to be truly ingenious, it means parting with what has worked in the past to tread into completely new territory. This, in turn, can have the opposite effect of what we want, leading to mental shut down and brain block. Don’t fear, though. We’re here to help spur on those inventive ideas, and we have 27 phenomenal tips to get your visionary juices flowing.
Let’s check them out:
1) Great Typography – Nothing beats a clean design with great typography that resonates directly with a specific target audience. Typography sets the tone and gives a package its personality, so it’s not surprising that it can make or break a great package design. This is still true with cosmetic product packaging. Selecting a typeface that reaches out to those searching for luxury is going to be far different than those looking for a fun, funky product in their local box store. Try switching up your style to see how it connects better with your customers.
2) Easy to Read – Taking the previous tip a step further, don’t forget to make sure your great typography is also easy to read. While a creative display font certainly has its place, it’s not meant to be used across the board. Know when and where to have the creative fonts accentuated by legible supporting fonts.
3) Have Awesome Content – Speaking of writing, let’s take it yet another step further and remind you to encourage the great use of content. Your consumers are smart, literate, and informed. Make sure your content not only informs your customer but entertains them with some witty style when appropriate. Plus, having command over your language (read: no grammatical errors or spelling mistakes) will boost your credibility and you’ll gain the trust of your customers.
4) Go Minimalistic – You have seconds to entice your target audience to pick up your cosmetic product. Don’t spoil it with too much information. Instead, go for the minimalistic punch that knocks their socks off and makes them crave more.
5) Photography + Minimalistic – Take that minimalistic design a step further by combining it with simplistic photography. The pop of realism, combined with the minimal use of typography will be an eye-catching twist that may just capture more sales.
6) Embrace White – Minimalistic design often has a modern feel, and that’s thanks, in part, to a clean use of white space. If your cosmetic product is going for a more gender-neutral appeal, this may be the look to consider as it doesn’t lean heavily one way or the other.
7) Go Black – Or you go the opposite direction and embrace your dark side. The use of matte blacks, rather than whites, can change up the packaging—while keeping it simple and minimalistic. Plus, added pops of color can make it really stand out from the crowd.
8) Think Nature – In today’s market, nature inspired packaging is very trendy—and that goes for the cosmetic industry as well. Gone are the days where loud colors and bold fonts do all the talking. Instead, utilize the calming effects of nature-inspired colors and fonts to tap into the more eco-conscious consumers just waiting to jump on your bandwagon.
9) Get Origami with it – Not all packaging designs have to go by the box. Sometimes, you can create an origami-inspired package that’s not only simply beautiful but functions superiorly. There are several well-thought-out templates available online to get you started, and they’re surprisingly simple to work with—especially when you have a few under your belt.
10) Get Artsy – Not everything has to be computer generated. Don’t be afraid to incorporate a little fine art into a label or packaging design. The unique artistry might be the added boost your cosmetic package needs to increase its desirability and get itself noticed.
11) Add Patterns – If your cosmetic product is being tailored specifically to women, patterns are very in right now. Think mandalas, stripes, and other beautiful repeating patterns. When combined with great typography, you can’t go wrong.
12) Think About the Range – Does your cosmetic product belong in a bigger product family? Why not brainstorm the overarching range and how you can design each to complement the other? Likewise, consider how the outer package might be designed to relate to the product itself. Is there a creative solution that can be carried forward?
13) Keep Relevance in Mind – When designing a package or label for your cosmetic product, don’t add things that aren’t associated directly with the brand or type of product you’re selling. You want to keep fonts, images, and even colors relevant and associated to what you’re selling – within reason.
14) Keep It Convenient – Don’t over-package something just for the sake of trying to be creative. Keep in mind the environmental ramifications, the consumer use (when and where are they opening it?), the overall cost, etc.
15) Make It Simple to Open – Cosmetic packaging—or any packaging for that matter—shouldn’t be a riddle to open. No one likes to fumble around with a package that’s a pain to open. Not only can it be frustrating at the moment, but it can cost you customers in the long run.
16) Make Customers Feel Secure – While making a package difficult to open and interact with is problematic, you still want to make sure the packaging is strong and doesn’t look tampered with.
17) Think Eco-friendly – We’ve officially entered an era where being environmentally conscious is the norm, rather than the exception – especially for most women consumers. Embrace this concept by designing packaging that serves a dual purpose, is recyclable, or at the very least has minimal packaging to contend with.
18) Think Inside the Box – While you’re giving thought to your cosmetic package design, don’t forget to spend some time considering the most underutilized part of your package—the inside of the box. It could be a great opportunity to highlight the product in a new and interesting way.
19) Be Playful – Whenever you have the chance to play with your product’s packaging design, go for it. Having a light, the playful approach can illustrate the quality and character of the product in a way words simply can’t do at a glance.
20) Use Texture – When in your budget, and appropriate for your audience, consider using physical texture to add a new sense of appeal to your product. This could come in the form of stippled texture designs, a matte or glossy overlay – use your imagination and see what works for you.
21) Appeal to Each of the Senses – In fact, why not try to appeal to every human sense, if you can? The more you engage your ideal customer in your product, the more likely they are to buy – and become a loyal brand ambassador.
22) Make It an Experience – Your cosmetic product package can be a whole lot more than a disposable case. Think about how the consumer will interact with the product, to make it truly an experience to engage with. By doing so, you’ll not only design an interesting package, but you’ll also shape the way your customers interact with the product and your brand.
23) Be Luxurious – If your cosmetic is reaching out to a more exclusive clientele, don’t be afraid of getting luxurious with the packaging approach. Enclose your product in a unique box, with special gifts that call to your customers and let them know they’ll be pampered the way they expect.
24) Tell a Story – Can your packaging do more than just give it a name? Whenever possible, use your packaging to tell a story. What does your product stand for? Where did it get its name? Why should they buy it? Incorporate both visual and written storytelling to maximize this effect.
25) Give a Sneak Peek – Do you have an interesting product design? Perhaps you want to show off a blush’s true color, or the specific shade of eye shadow. If so, why not give your customers a sneak peek of what’s hidden inside that well-designed outer shell?
26) Use the Product as Imagery – When it works out, why not use the product itself as part of the imagery of the package? This one may not be appropriate all the time, but when it does—the results are phenomenal.
27) Don’t be Afraid to be Unique – Do you have a packaging idea you’ve been dying to try out? Don’t be afraid to break away and do something unique. Trendsetters are those who do just that. There are products out there that transform into games, paper dolls or use odd shapes. Don’t limit yourself. You never know, you may inspire a new way of approaching packaging design.
Hopefully, some of these tips resonated with you and maybe even inspired you to try something new on your next cosmetic product packaging. There’s more than one way to tackle packaging design, while making it truly a great experience for the consumer, too. Overall, don’t be afraid to look at things uniquely, get clever with your approach, and try new things. You may just become the next big trendsetter in the packaging design biz.
– Artwork Abode