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A Slice of Summer Packaging

By Julie Rice Suggs, Ph.D., and Alli Keigley

May 17, 2024

Since we both love to travel and explore the world around us, the women’s travel kit below by Navajo Inc. caught our eyes first. For both of us, this is convenience at its finest—combining all the items we need to stay fresh and clean for a journey to, let’s say, Cabo. There’s even a bath puff with body wash to get the lather you deserve rather than scrubbing with the hotel’s complimentary soap bars (though we are divided on this point—Alli loves her some soap bars). As an added bonus, everything in this resealable bag is Transportation Security Administration-compliant, alleviating our anxiety of being pulled out of line due to a large mouthwash bottle that somehow made its way into our luggage. And they even have a version for men (also below) that includes a toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash—a full set of toiletries to keep you from feeling too travel-worn on your summer adventures.

As we turned the corner, we ran smack into an endcap display that was unabashed in its summer days agenda. You can’t get by without sun protection, and this display of sunscreen (upper right) helps shoppers prepare for the upcoming season of vacations, barbecues in the sweet heat, and the many get-outside-while-you-can activities. This endcap not only has a wide array of sunscreen options but also comes with fantastic sun care advice and a chart describing which SPF is right for you. This simple yet effective display was able to incorporate information consumers need to know directly into its in-store marketing materials—pretty cool, huh?

The next product (left) that grabbed our attention, LimonCello LaCroix, seemed to transport us to another country—we must have been thinking about sipping a boozy, citrusy beverage on the Amalfi Coast of Italy—a girl can dream, right? But LaCroix, with its effervescence and refreshing aftertaste, gives us a version of that experience minus all the sugar, alcohol, and travel expense as we sip this beverage to our heart’s content in our version of Italy—under a striped umbrella at the neighborhood pool. (Sidenote: We do hope Italy is on the itinerary one day.) The bold yellow color of the packaging—can and secondary container—and the use of lemon imagery radiate energy and optimism, much like the possibilities of a summer day.

Finally, we strolled through the chilly frozen foods section, where we came upon a product we’ve never seen before—Nature’s Premium Strawberry & Cream Fruit Pearls. This healthier dessert alternative (right) delivers innovation in a cryogenically frozen grab-and-go format. It’s not a completely new concept to us, but it pulls us in because it was previously found only at baseball games or concerts (Dippin’ Dots, anyone?). The package design offers a glimpse of one of the quintessential pleasures of summer—delicious, ripe strawberries swirled with cream. The vibrant red and green colors rounding out the background on the package are important because it’s been found that highly saturated colors boost perception of stimulus intensity. This means that a highly saturated packaging color can lead consumers to have a stronger experience of the product and/or taste it more intensely. We’ve yet to try this product, but trust that when we do, we will be doing so with the music turned way up and our toes in the sand.

This trip was another fun break from our normal, run-of-the-mill shopping experience, and we had a blast searching for packaging that embodies summer with its vibrant colors, nostalgic images, and memorable design layouts. But what do you think? Did these brands successfully leverage a seasonal element into their packaged products? Let us know by emailing julie@packagingschool.com or alli@packagingschool.com.  


Julie Rice Suggs, Ph.D., is academic director at the Packaging School. She can be reached at 330-774-8542 or julie@packagingschool.com.

Alli Keigley is production coordinator at the Packaging School. She can be reached at alli@packagingschool.com.

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