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Organic haircare brand gets elegant update

Chuckles’ All-Nutrient brand of organic haircare products gets a makeover, signaling to salon customers the all-natural prestige of the 100% vegan and cruelty-free formulations.

Pw 183594 Chuckles All Nutrient Group 2015

Chuckles, Inc. of Manchester, NH, is a maker of organic haircare products for professional salons. Founded in the 1980s, Chuckles was one of the first to introduce sulfate-free formulas. Its flagship line, All-Nutrient, includes shampoos, conditioners, and styling and finishing products that are 100% vegan and cruelty-free, certified through PETA.

Says Chuckles Operations Manager Chelsea Zomberg, “For us, it is not just about marketing or being compliant with industry regulations. Organic is who we are. We set the standard for naturally derived products in the beauty industry. We control every raw material that we use in our formulas in order to develop the safest and healthiest options for our end user.”

Recently, however, the company noticed that it was not sufficiently conveying this all-natural prestige with its existing product packaging. At the same time, it had begun enhancing its formulas with additional antioxidants, amino acids, lipids, and peptides to transform hair. “A brand refresh was in order,” says Zomberg. “Our goal was to convey an organic feel in an elegant way. It’s a very visual and heavily saturated industry, so it’s tough to compete for the attention of the stylist and ultimately the consumer.”

To rebrand and relaunch the line, Chuckles partnered with TricorBraun. Through consumer research, TricorBraun learned that the company’s packaging was out of touch with its core customer base. Consumers didn’t realize the integrity within the products unless they read the ingredient panel.

To aid in the design process, company owner Charles Frank, who has more than 40 years of experience in the industry, including as a hairdresser, shared insights on the needs of the stylist when it came to package structure. He identified package objectives that included grippability, the ability to invert the bottle, more height, and a low-profile closure. While a great deal of time went into selecting the shape of each bottle, even more time went into the graphic design.

Providing continuity from the existing to the new design, TricorBraun retained a leaf design from the original logo as well as the six colors used to differentiate product categories, while adding the color purple. The color coding allows consumers to easily and quickly identify product categories, such as Hydrate (blue), Smooth (orange), and Restore (Green), for example.

A new design element is a silk-screened spray gradient with the look of a bamboo plant that radiates down from the neck. The element differentiates styling products from shampoos and conditioners and corresponds to the color of the haircare family to which it belongs. All-Nutrient includes eight families of products and more than 60 SKUs.

According to TricorBraun Graphic Designer Michaela Velasco, the biggest challenges in bringing the package to market were “color matching, determining how far down the bottle to go with the gradient, orientation, and retaining text readability.” The inks used for the color of the spray and the color of the leaf graphics on the face of the bottles are not the same type, so some of the colors were harder to replicate. The text closer to the neck of the bottles had to be thicker and printed in white to be legible over the gradient of color.

Says Velasco, “Because the gradients are not exactly the same from bottle to bottle, adjustments also had to be made for readability on an as-needed basis. In addition, there is a limited window of time after the bottles are sprayed that they have to be silk-screened, or the ink will not adhere correctly.”

Initially, the project included 3.4-, 8-, and 12-oz bottle sizes, but recently All-Nutrient added a custom 1-L salon-only bottle and a 750-mL size. According to Gerald Christian, Design Engineer at TricorBraun, “Retaining the integrity of the design with the changing capacities and closure types was definitely a challenge.” All molds were qualified, and bottles and closures were leak-tested by TricorBraun. The 8- and 12-oz bottles are made from high-density polyethylene for recyclability.

With the redesign, the bottle shape and graphics for Chuckles All-Nutrient line now have an overall organic, natural feel as a result of the synergy between package design, graphic design, and design engineering. Says Frank, “Since the relaunch, we are getting in more salon doors than we ever have.”

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