By: Casha Doemland
Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, and 700 million users open the app on a daily basis. Between curating your feed, posting Instastories and double tapping, Instagram serves as a way to stay connected to friends and family around the globe, a place to share your art, foster creativity and even promote your business.
For designers Angeles Baeck, Julia Artero and Florencia Suaya, the app became the perfect jumping off point for their project, Instance, which combines the world of Instagram with Rexona, a healthcare brand.
The goal was to develop a disruptive healthcare product in an 8-hour workshop led by award-winning agency Bridge Design, hosted at their school, ELISAVA, the Barcelona School of Design and Engineering.
“At the beginning of the workshop, we thought about reintroducing a product that does not have much popularity in the market,” says freelance graphic designer Angeles Baeck. “Deodorant in bars. We wanted our product to focus on that.”
“We understood that innovating the product itself was not the most important thing,” Baeck adds. “What was really important was the idea and concept born behind them.”
“We liked the idea of integrating Instagram to the deodorant in some way, not only with colors, type or typical photo frame on the feed,” says product design engineer Julia Artero. We wanted something more, something customizable.”
So, the idea to have the scent determined by your feed arose and the trio presented it to Asa Cook and Pati Zywert, the leaders of the workshop and directors at Bridge Design, and it was well received. Cook even dreamt about the project, which the designers took as a sign they were on the right track.
Essentially, Instance strives to have a software that is capable of decoding keywords, post engagement and chromatic palette that would work hand in hand with human analysis to create a scent based on moments that bring you joy, happiness or peace. Maybe it’s that time you went backpacking through Europe with some of your favorite humans, or the first time you successfully made a souffle. It could even be a weekend trip to a country fair or that time you finally hit that yoga move you’ve been trying to do for years.
As a bespoke, highly personal and customizable item, Instance also understands some individuals may want to define their scent and curate their page prior to placing an order.
And that’s fine. Instance is for the consumer. With a meaning of that significance, the packaging has to be just right to live up to the hype.
“We decided that the deodorant container should be the Instagram logo in 3D, with a box containing the deodorant in roll-on form and a mini-perfume with the same fragrance to wear at all times,” says student and graphic designer Florencia Suaya. “In terms of graphics, the upper face of each box will vary in terms of the gradient with the color palette taken from the consumer’s feed.”
One side will have the name of the individual, the day of the memory that scent inspired, and the location. Another option was to feature powerful words of wisdom like, “You are unique, your experiences have shaped your essence,” and “Scent is the most powerful trigger of memory.”
“We believe that this trend is increasing more and more every day and people and brands follow it,” says Baeck. “What better way than the collaboration of one of the most purchased brands of deodorant, Rexona, and the most used social media platform?”
A fragrance that expresses your story is a product that would sell like hotcakes. The idea of gifting someone a scent that brings them back to one of their fondest memories is about as personal as it gets, with the exception of getting their name tattooed across your chest. Gifts and products like these are the reason bespoke and highly personalized items are a trend in the market. Who doesn’t want a heartwarming gift that shows the person put a little thought into it or even a keepsake from a treasured memory?
Unfortunately, this is just a concept, and there are currently no plans around making the product a reality so you’ll have to daydream your scents a little while longer.
“We believe that it would be quite feasible to make it real,” says Suaya. “In fact, we would love to. We all agree that for any designer, there is no better satisfaction than seeing one’s work materialized in the market and if the product is a success, even better.”
LA-based and Georgia-bred, Casha Doemland spends her days crafting poetry and freelance writing. Over the last two years, she’s been published in a variety of publications and zines around the world. When she’s not nerding out with words, you can catch her watching a classic film, trekking around the globe or hanging out with a four-pound Pomeranian.
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