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A More Colorful Shelf Presence

Posted: August 28, 2008, from the March 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.

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“When used with a deep opaque color like purple, it creates an impression of great depth—as if one were looking into deep water,” said Carolyn Sedgwick, business manager, Clariant ColorWorks. “It also helps heighten the reflectivity of the color system, making it appear more brilliant.” In addition to tactile qualities, the effects allow light interaction in a way that is different from pearlescent mica flake, the more conventional option for achieving light reflectivity.

“Mica-based pearlescents have become commonplace in mass-market consumer packaging,” said Sedgwick. “We are now seeing an increased interest in other effects that develop a more distinctive relationship with light. This is especially important in luxury and beauty categories.”

In May 2006, Prusak noted that OEMs were turning to effects such as iridescent pearls—at a cost four times that of white pearls—to differentiate packaging and that unique iridescent pigments were affective in attracting consumers. Clariant is among the companies using iridescent pearls as opposed to the standard white/silver pearlescents. Iridescent pearls provide a variety of color flips, and Sedgwick reports that the current trend of using a supporting effect—an iridescent pearl over a base, for example—boosts the overall color appearance.

“Moving forward, we expect to see a continued use of supporting iridescent pearls as well as an expansion into more innovative contrasting effect pairings, such as a green iridescent pearl over a purple base color,” said Sedgwick. “The contrasting effect makes a siren statement. The iridescent pearl color appears to hover over a contrasting base color, providing maximum light reflectivity and creating the appearance of movement as shoppers walk toward the package. It is quite unusual and, therefore, results in great shelf presence.”