Lisa McTigue Pierce, Executive Editor

June 16, 2017

6 Min Read
5 top topics in May focus on packaging trends and tech

As we head into the summer months, let's take a look at some of the hottest packaging trends and technologies based on the most popular articles on in May 2017:

#5: Comprehensive trends in beauty packaging

#4: 5 new performance-boosting packaging products

#3: Augmented reality and an egg carton

#2: High-end packaging design for upscale cannabis cigarettes

#1: Amazon on the best ecommerce packaging

We start at the bottom of the list and build up from there…


#5: 5 advances and packaging trends in the beauty universe

In her highly researched and cited article, Dr. Pascale Gauthier identifies and explains some of the top packaging trends and new technologies health and beauty manufacturers have been introducing with great success:

1. Combining form and function—such as sprays or foams that modify the physical form of a product. With a spray, the main ideas are to disperse the droplets, to create jet, to scatter the particles. With foam, there is production of small bubbles of gas, the gas is suspended in a liquid, there is effervescence, it can fizz or form bubbles

2. Helpful tools—beyond the recent evolution in brushes, we’re also seeing new “all-in-one” tools that allow deposition and application, as well as more functional sponges.

3. Crossover ideas—such as packaging from different markets (like food or pharmaceutical) that could deliver innovative systems for use with cosmetics. For example, caviar for cream seems suitable with pearl delivery systems that keep various formulas separate to protect fragile active ingredients.

4. New movements—such as “nail art” and hair perfume.

5. Impact of the digital era—such as smartphone and tablet applications that let consumers take a photo and add different colors for hair or various face make-up to virtually test a new look.

Gauthier is a pharmacist with a Ph.D. and is in charge of marketing and design courses at Auvergne University, serving on the Biopharmacy & Pharmaceutical Technology Department faculty of Pharmacy Clermont-Ferrand in France.

NEXT: 5 new performance-boosting packaging products


Learn what it takes to innovate in the packaging space at EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City). Register today!


#4. 5 new products that boost packaging performance

One of the top reasons to attend a trade show is to see new products. We polled exhibitors to the upcoming EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City) to preview their new technologies and found these five gems:

1. A melt-and-dispense glue system that efficiently seals packages.

2. A strapping system that uses ultrasonic sealing to secure pallet loads.

3. An inkjet printer that increases efficiency with an auto-clean function.

4. A child-resistant closure for laundry pods packaging that also provides easy access for adults.

5. A new 3D cobot packaging application that excels at performance flexibility.

All five products will be part of the Innovations in Packaging Performance tour on Wed., June 14, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. This is a free event! Meet me, your tour guide, a few minutes before 2:00 p.m. in Booth 341.

NEXT: Augmented reality and an egg carton


Learn what it takes to innovate in the packaging space at EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City). Register today!


#3. Augmented reality app complements egg carton redesign

To highlight the difference of its pasture-raised hens for egg production, Austin, TX-based Vital Farms has updated design the packaging design of its egg carton and has leveraged the interactive power of smartphone-enabled augmented reality (AR).

New graphics use a chalkboard approach to convey a “farm-to-table” on-carton message with graphics and copy that speak to the company’s humane philosophy and farming practices.

And Dan Brooks, creative director at Vital Farms, explains why they incorporated AR into the design: “One of the challenges we constantly face as a brand is communicating to our customers what the space that we provide our hens ‘looks’ like by comparison to other egg label terms such as free-range, cage-free. Knowing that AR experiences are becoming more common, we thought it would be fun to have the top of the carton lid represent part of our pasture so that customers could experience for themselves how much more space our ‘girls’ get to play in!”

Using an app to scan the top of the Vital Farms carton, consumers are able to uncover a virtual reality diagram of what a pasture-raised environment really looks like—further driving home the importance of purchasing pasture-raised eggs versus any other type.

NEXT: High-end packaging design for upscale cannabis cigarettes


Learn what it takes to innovate in the packaging space at EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City). Register today!


#2. Cannabis brand toast uses elegant packaging to convey luxury

As the retail cannabis environment continues to evolve in states that have legalized it for recreational use, packaging is becoming an essential merchandising tool for marijuana products—the way it is for other consumer packaged goods (CPGs).

That’s why upscale brand Toast created luxury-style packaging for its cannabis cigarettes to appeal to adults who smoke marijuana socially, the way cocktail-party guests sip mojitos.

The package design evokes the Art Deco styling of the 1920s, with the brand name and other details highlighted in metallic gold.

NEXT: Amazon on the best ecommerce packaging


Learn what it takes to innovate in the packaging space at EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City). Register today!


#1. Amazon on creating ecommerce packaging that’s great for all: customers, companies and the environment

When a top packaging executive at Amazon talks about challenges and opportunities for the top e-tailer in the nation, he gets attention…lots and lots of attention.

Which is why our exclusive Q&A with Brent Nelson, senior manager, worldwide packaging, Customer Packaging Experience (CPEX), vaulted to the top within a day or two of its posting and has stayed there for a second month in a row.

Nelson told us about the company’s business model, the Amazon Packaging Certification Guidelines and how teamwork will solve many of today’s packaging challenges for ecommerce marketing.

What’s the primary challenge you need to know? “Packaging designed for brick-and-mortar retail is in many cases not optimal for online fulfillment. Packaging designed to stand out on a retail shelf is often oversized, with expensive ‘romance’ design aesthetics, redundant features to prevent theft and not capable of surviving the journey to the customer. In many cases, these features can lead to suboptimal packaging for online distribution,” Nelson says.

So how will you design your packages in the future for online sales?


Learn what it takes to innovate in the packaging space at EastPack 2017 (June 13-15; New York City). Register today!

About the Author(s)

Lisa McTigue Pierce

Executive Editor, Packaging Digest

Lisa McTigue Pierce is Executive Editor of Packaging Digest. She’s been a packaging media journalist since 1982 and tracks emerging trends, new technologies, and best practices across a spectrum of markets for the publication’s global community. Reach her at [email protected] or 630-272-1774.

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