Saturday 15 March 2014

Clever or Just Plain Crass? Risque Branding in Cosmetics

I know it's 2014 and I know I'm pretty crass myself ( I am Australian after all!) but I want to know what you think about the influx of increasingly sexual product names and ad campaigns adopted by a vast amount of beauty brands. Personally, I can see the funny side and I totally appreciate a cheesy pun (I'm looking at you Soap and Glory) but I can also appreciate how marketing strategies can put consumers off just as easily as they can drive product sales.
For instance, my mum saw my newly purchased tube of S&G 'Glow Job' the other day and let out a little tut and it got me thinking - product names are often enough to convince a person to buy something so by the same token are they also enough to scare people away?

Soap and Glory are well known for their punny ways and Glow Job is one example of cheeky marketing at it's finest, but then there's also Sexy Mother Pucker - a range of tingly, lip-plumping products.

Then of course, there are the rudely named world-famous shades by NARS - Orgasm, Super Orgasm, Striptease and the cringe-inducing Deep Throat.
I certainly can't imagine someone's Nan approaching a Nars counter and asking for some Deep Throat as she can't find her Orgasm and wants to try something different to go with her Striptease...

Urban Decay sell shadows called S&M and Booty Call while Illamasqua sell a nail polish in shade Phallic. Ehehehehe.

Too Faced Cosmetics are another brand that don't mind a bit of naughty branding as they sell products such as Better Than Sex Mascara and Juicy Melons Lipstick.

I've recently come across a US brand named 'B**** Slap Cosmetics' that have definitely taken the concept a little overboard as they sell questionably named products such as B**** A** Baby Daddy eye pigments, an eye shadow in shade Sperm Donor and a lipgloss simply named 'F*** Your Ex Boyfriend'. This brand also sell a range of penis shaped lipsticks though so I think that explains a lot.

I've really only skimmed the surface here - there are a lot of rudely named products on the market. Do risque names appeal to us because they're suggestive of a very basic human instinct? Do you as a consumer even pay attention to what a product is called or do you think you focus solely on the colour and formula? Have you ever not bought something because it was called something rude? Let me know!


  1. B*Slap takes it a bit far imo, but as for the rest - I genuinely just find them hugely amusing. Granted maybe not for your nan, but there are less risque brands out there too

  2. Sperm Donor?!! Nans aside there's also the issue of kids seeing the names and wanting explanations......

  3. This is such an interesting post, I thought I was just being boring when I immediately turned my nose up after hearing some of these products names. Even thought some of them sound amazing, it puts me off completely. And that last company sounds disgusting.

  4. that metallic blue nail polish by illamaqua looks pretty neat!

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